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Sunday, 1 May 2016

King Of The Mountains




It is a mere 2 degrees overnight and it’s fair to say a bit nippy in the tent but at least it isn’t raining for the sportive.

The professionals are doing Middlesbrough to Scarborough but sadly we’re just doing a small section of that. Well most of L’s 40km is actually on the route but my 85km includes a big loop round Dalby Forest which isn’t. Sadly a lot of these roads are narrow, mud strewn, potholed and spectator free. In fact even the 'on course' sections are largely spectator free as they have set us off so early that no one is in place yet unlike last year when the crowds were fantastic and cheered us up all the hills. Problem was us amateurs almost held the experts up when they caught us up, so I assume things had to change.

The event, while still good, isn’t a patch on last year’s in other ways too. The ‘toad in the hole’ and fresh flapjack feed station isn’t repeated and the finish takes place in total gridlock on the roads into Scarborough. As people head into town in their cars to watch the race the riders slalom in and out trying to reach the finish line. A tad dangerous I think. At least the last 2k is traffic free.

We all do get a crack at the Harwood Dale ‘King of the Mountains’ climb where David Millar has kindly set the time to beat at 3:57.

After the race I head back to camp. L has already finished, had an isotonic beer and gone off to see if we need to reclaim the dogs from the RSPCA. We don’t head in to watch the race and hide in the tent instead from the cold and the damp, we’ll amuse ourselves instead with life's essentials.

In the evening we visit the nearby Scalby Manor eatery for some Black Sheep, a bottle of red and some food. Nothing dark again.

(Sunday 1st May)

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