Thursday, 22 August 2013
Tuesday night chain gang....My first one.
Jesus wept....I don't think I've ever worked so hard over such a short distance.
Imagine a Team Time Trail, only with three individuals, flat out, full on and fierce. It was only the 'short' loop.
Now only a few guys turned up, I'd hoped for more but the grey skies and pitter patter of rain had culled the herd. The now familiar face of Dale, whom I imagine I'll be seeing more of in the near future, an American amateur racer that lives near me and a girl called Anastasia.
Being such a small group I didn't have much expectation, Dale is quite a large, lanky rider and Anastasia was slight, I was kinda in the middle of the two with no clue of the route or how to ride in a chain gang but although almost strangers, we were all happy to spend the next couple of hours riding together.
Nice to be able to ride with such great people, neither of these 2 know me from Adam, It's the second time I'd ridden with Dale but I'd never met Anastasia. As we rode out of Windsor Great Park, I upped the pace in an attempt to prove my speed, clearly looking back this wasn't required, neither was it expected when riding in this manner, just to illustrate how clueless I was as to the planned ride.
Oddly but thankfully I got a timely puncture, both the guys pulled back and waited as I fixed the flat, this allowed Dale to explain how to ride in a chain gang and advised me sit at the back and watch how it was done until I was called on.
We rode a loop just outside of Windsor, which is well known to my club, it's fast, a little lumpy and hard work at pace. Thankfully its all left turns so no dodgy manouvers required. Being only 3 of us, we each spent quite a lot of time at the front and I have to be honest, I was spent by the end of the ride. I'm not entirely sure how long the ride was but it felt like too long.
Anastasia must have been 15 but wow, she has some power in those legs. Not at all put off by the strange men in lycra, she more than held her own, in fact when we finished the ride and she turned off, both Dale and I turned to one another and said "thank god shes turned off", a great, larger than life character but we were both simply happy to get our legs back. Pride intact, just about.