There was rain forecast for this day, but nothing prepared us for the scale of the late afternoon downpour! Fortunately the rain had long stopped by the time we assembled for this evening’s club event, which had been relocated from the scheduled course to the Stoke Hammond course due to roadworks. The prospect of splashing through water seemed to have put off some riders, so we had a reduced field of 6.

In the end, it was warm and fairly sunny, but with two huge puddles to negotiate (one at the final RAB and the other just before the finish) each occupying a whole lane in each case, I think we were all a little apprehensive.

I set off and immediately found it hard going, though I’m not sure why. This feeling to riding through treacle continued all the way to the second RAB, but once out on the main dual carriageway, I felt much better. On the return leg, I was just catching Darren at the penultimate RAB when I got a bit stuck behind half a dozen or so cars. This was frustrating as Darren got through OK, leaving me grumping behind!

Once I got going again, I set off down the hill towards the first puddle. I negotiated this fine, but there was a fair bit of light tooting from cars behind me, though I I’m not sure why and it didn’t sound particularly aggressive! The second puddle was not problem at all, and I almost got back to Darren before the finish.

I finished in 22:49, for second place and 1st on veteran standard (results at the NBRC website). Here’s a photo gallery of all six riders, taken by Claire Stanton from two locations.

Annoyingly I punctured just before getting home.