Posted by: audaxing | March 7, 2011

Mad March 200km Audax

The event began at 8am so this meant a cold early morning ride to Exeter.

It had rained a little the night before so the ground was damp but there was no ice- good.

The start control was at a pub opposite the “park n ride”. I said hi to various people, Richie, Sarah, Julian, Ian, Rod. The turnout seemed good, the weather for the day looked ok. There was no reason not too start I guess.

The first bit of the ride is a climb over Woodbury common and then down to Budleigh Salteron at the seaside.

I got into a little group with Julian. Other others in the group were surprised at him decending at 30mph on fixed.

The turnaround at the seaside was an “information control” ie you answer a stupid question and put it in your brevet card to prove you’ve been there. The question this time was “name of flats opposite”. They’d used this question before and the answer wasn’t visible from the natural place to stop so a shouted the answer at the small collection of baffled randonneurs. I hate info controls!

The we had to climb away from the coast again, there was a stop at a garage in Ottery St Mary and then a lumpy route to the canal tearooms in Tiverton. As I was leaving the canal tearooms, I said hi to John Warner who left just ahead of me.
I thought I’d catch John on the long climb up to Wheddon Cross. But despite putting in a good effort, I didn’t catch him or even see him in the distance.

The next control was at a steam railway station at Blue Anchor. As it was lunchtime, I nipped around the corner to the “Driftwood Cafe”. I made a tactical error by having a Full All day breakfast instead of something light. For the next 2 hours I was under powered as my body struggled to digest fat.

After I’d left the cafe, John caught me. I’d spent 15 minutes at Blue Anchor but he claimed to have got lost in Tiverton. That would explain why I didn’t catch him. He pulled ahead due to my leaden lunch.

Next there was the biggest hill of the event, then a mad descent to Crewkerne then a visit to the Paramore’s house. At this point the sun came out which is always a boast late in the day. Finally a dash to Exeter on the badly surfaced B3181 and a much needed pint of isotonic recovery fluid at the pub.

To get home I had to ride back on the B3181 and waved to the later finishers.

This ride takes the Roubaix over the 1000km total kilometres ridden mark.

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