Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Spring into the Dales and Monday MTBing

A good turn out by the Condor for last Sunday's Spring into the Dales on a cool and windy day. I'd been a bit dis-organised and got to the start HQ at Mytholmroyd Community Centre with only minutes to spare before the start. Glancing round at the assembled hoards I saw President Robinson was there continuing his preparation for the Fred Whitton, also present were Mel and Padihan Chris looking like they meant business, Robin, Brian, Paul D and Grimpy (who should have points deducted for travelling to Mytholmroyd by car), Old Town Stewart, Nigel and Oakworth Steve were looking up for the challenge as were Lumby and The Vicar. I also caught sight of Damien toeing the start line although no one seems to know what fate befell him during the ride.

I must thank Paul Daly for dragging me round the route, I'd no legs for the climbs, was well off the pace by the top of Cock Hill and continued to be dropped on every subsequent climb, but with Paul's encouragement and pacing I was dragged back to the wheels of Brian & John. We found Robin loitering in Stanbury having been discarded by Mel and Chris who were long gone making light of the stiff head winds in the company of cyclo-cross star Chris Taylor and a schoolboy from Colden, Rob Scott.

After the Earby check the wind began to be a little more helpful and the miles began to pass beneath our wheels a little quicker as we passed through West Marton, Gargrave, Cracoe, Appletreewick and Bolton Abbey. Draughton Moor again had me grovelling and losing contact, but my super-domestique once again saved the day and we entered Keighley as a group of 5 Condor's and a couple of North Cheshire Clarions who had been astute enough to notice that the Condor's didn't need to waste time looking at the route sheet.

From the Keighley check the hammer went down, Robin begged a gel from Grimpy, it went straight to his legs, he jumped on the bike with Grimpy on his wheel, and ignoring all obsacles they were up the road before Brian and I knew what was happening. Brian displayed immense fortitude, eventually, just before Oxenhope, catching up. Paul once again waited for me although I was beyond being paced we rode together to finish a minute before 2 o'clock and enjoy the renowned CTC hospitality and a chat with Mel and Chris who had finished over half an hour earlier.

I think Mel should give us a report as to how the ride developed at the head of the field and who had the honor of breaking the skin on the rice pudding.

With just the 4 of us by Stanbury it meant a well disciplined and enjoyable ride with no-one attempting any heroics. Young Rob (almost 16) was strong but I was expecting him to fade later in the ride however when Chris Taylor expired at Oxenhope the youth took off and was next seen at Mytholmroyd ! I clung on to Padiham Chris & battled painfully over Cock Hill. We insisted that Rob deservedly performed the 'rite of passage' on the rice pud ! Surely a talent for the future.
Great to see so many on the ride - a grand annual day out.

We were again blessed with good weather for our 2nd  of our summer social mountain bike rides on Monday evening. There were 11 hitting the trails round Brighouse, Southowram, Claremount, Ploughcroft and Ambler Thorn with a couple of us calling at the Cock o' the North shed on the way home. 6.30pm Monday evenings at Hipperholme Xroads should anyone fancy joining us.