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Peter_Lyons

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About Peter_Lyons

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  1. Hello Guy, I logged in using the left hand side box and made an order. It didn't prompt me to put my credit card details in which made me realise that I had done something wrong. I did go in using the correct login option and ordered using my card. Hopefully I haven't duplicated the order. Can you confirm? Peter
  2. Well done Guy. You did it and that's all that matters.
  3. One of my new year's resolutions was to only sign up for Sportives I had never ridden before. The Squires & Spires was the first of four I had chosen. It takes place in Naseby Northamptonshire. The weather I experienced driving up the night before didn't look too promising with gale force winds and 'horizontal' rain ! The next day was pretty much the same though fortunately, without the rain. On arriving at the start, I decided to warm myself up with a hot cup of tea. By the time I had walked 200m from the burger van to my parked car, my piping hot tea had turned lukewarm . Using this as a barometer, I decided to put on an extra base layer, my rain jacket and two pairs of socks ! I am so glad that I brought a pair of winter gloves. I am also glad that I didn't get round to getting my hair cut as I didn't bring a skull cap! Looking at the other riders, it seemed more like a November reliability ride rather than a Spring Sportive. Some had obviously been keeping tabs on the forecast as many riders turned up in full winter gear and with winter bikes ! A few people obviously hadn't and turned up wearing short sleeved shirts and shorts !! How they got round without getting hyperthermia, I don't know. The organisation was pretty good with ample parking space and an organised queue to the start. I was a little surprised to see that the timing was done manually and that we weren't given timing chips. I did look out for i-team jerseys as I know a couple of you rode this one last year, but I didn't see anyone else. We were told that the route had been cut short by 5 miles to avoid a clash with the VW Camper Van enthusiasts who attend a nearby rally on the same day. Total distance was reduced to 73 miles / 117km. The first 20 miles went smoothly. In fact, I couldn't believe that I was riding a Sportive. It was so flat and the wind was behind us meaning I was coasting along quite nicely. The number of riders thinned out after the turning off point for the shorter 50 mile route. I wasn't aiming for any particular time, but I started thinking that I would finish this one in a fairly fast time. An hour into the ride and a turn in a different direction onto the first hill and into a headwind made me think otherwise. It was pretty much like this for the rest of the ride, hill, headwind, hill, side-wind, hill, headwind, hill side-wind etc . There weren't any major climbs, but every hill combined with the strong headwind felt like riding up Butser hill ! Everyone was feeling it and towards the end, there were even riders dismounting. I eventually got back in 04h15m (riding time) at an average speed of 17mph/27.3kph. Total elapsed time was 04h24:17 taking into account feed stations and toilet stops. Before setting off back home, I thought I would treat myself to a bacon and egg baguette from the burger van and another lukewarm cup of tea. As I sat in the car tucking into my baguette with the heating on and listening to the football, some riders (not being content with freezing their b***s off on a bike) were having a 'warm-down' run in the car park ! By this time it felt even colder outside and it started to rain ! Overall, I am glad I did the ride and I imagine it is a good route to get a sub-4hour time on a sunny day with no wind. I saw on the website that 700 people had signed up for the event and only 570 managed to make the start line. Taking into account the fact that I rode 95% of the ride solo and 70% in a headwind, I think I did all right .
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