It seems that Peter has engineered a very civilised culture of cafes and lanes at the moment - I would have loved to join in, but after a couple of Sundays off it was back to hard graft for 112 miles in the 3 Counties Challenge sportive.
A glorious day for a ride out by the estuary at Arnside and then inland to Kirby Lonsdale, Barbondale & Dent. I started with Mick Lever who was happy to let me go when the terrain got lumpy. At the Dent feed strong man Roger Palfreeman appeared and knowing he was fastest by over 20 mins. round the recent 'Le Terrier' sportive I apprehensively left Dent with him, and then watched him dance away up the Coal Road, however being a decent bloke he soft pedalled down Mallerstang and we got together for the lovely lanes from Kirby Stephen to Ullswater. Despite its fantastic setting the road by Ullswater is hideously rough, and busy on a day like this, and your reward at the end is the sight of Kirkstone Pass rising into the sky, but in your mind its downhill all the way from the top. In fact there is still plenty of little niggling climbs over to Staveley and Crook and then down the Lyth Valley to Levens and the finish at Milnthorpe.
My time was 6 hours 29 mins - Roger was fastest by 5 mins as he started later, but the gap would have been much greater if I had not spent a considerable time sat on his back wheel !
Mick Lever came in with 7 hrs 19 mins and Martin Croft of the Imps at 7 hours 21 mins - this included going of course via 'Oxenhope' - but I assured him it must have been Oxenholme !
This Sunday - the 10th, I am joining Brian at the Clifton CC vets road race in East Yorks. Looks like the cafes and lanes will have to wait a while longer.