Tour of Cambridge - Gran Fondo

Wonderful Day
Registered Friday and in the end we had eleven Willingham Wheels members - Dom, Robin, Roger, Mike, Noel, Chris, Les, Graham, Richard, Ken and Paul - all sporting the new kit.
We all met at Cambridge Services on the Sunday, then off in a convoy to Peterborough Show Ground, ten four.
Long wait in the sun but chilling wind queueing for the pen, then another pretty long wait until we had actually moved to the front. Wind behind us initially and people were off like a shot. Soon everyone's different strategies for achieving their own personal goals split us asunder. Dom, Robin and Roger after fast times, Mike nowhere to be seen from start to finish (!), Noel looking after his heart and then bombing it at the finish, Chris with Noel, quiet and efficient as ever, Les adopting a can't-be-arsed-to-stop (his words) strategy (apart from when Paul got a puncture), Graham and Paul making the most of a rest and bananas at all three stops, Richard taking it at his own pace, Ken nursing a bad hip ....
Apropos Ken, he says:

1)  youth triumphed over inexperience. (again!)

2)  why do 80 when you can do 60? (really annoyed about that, especially as in theory the bit I missed was the recovery section of my ride). 

3)  there is a right time and a wrong time to fit a new saddle.

4)  a Gran Fondo is the most fun way to lose over 3 pounds in 24 hours

Here is our proud record (out of 4565 finishers, 83 miles):

Dom 878th, 03:58:27, 182nd of 839 in age group 40-45

Robin 1328th, 04:14:01, 80th of 317 in age group 55-59 (some no doubt dropped out)

Roger 1774th, 04:29:12

Mike 2322nd, 04:48:01

Noel 3885th, 05:43:19

Chris 3895th, 05:43:52

Les 3896th, 05:43:53

Graham 4052nd, 05:52:25

Paul 4061st, 05:53:02

Richard 4494th, 06:30:52

Ken left frustrated by a quirk of fate (see above), reducing his distance to 60 miles.

Dom and Robin have qualified for Denmark by coming in the top 25% of their age group.
With thanks to Les for his amazing Excel file of all results!

Lots of ifs, buts and maybes, so most of us will be back next year to have another go. Riding on closed roads was a beautiful experience, not least because the pelotons were much wider and freer, so you could really get some shelter and therefore keep up with riders who are quite a bit stronger and faster. It was also fun to pretend to sprint down the winning straight at the end. We all got a good tan and a medal ...


© 2011 Willingham Wheels | . By ISEESOLUTIONS CAMBRIDGE.