Steve Dennis writes…
I had the chance of a lift up to Chelmsford this weekend with Robin
Johnson of the Brighton Mitre to ride Unity CC 25.
I rode and won the same event last year, so it was a good opportunity
to prove to the Essex boys that it was no fluke!
Robin was supposed to have picked up another rider en route, but he
was knocked off his bike during the week so wouldn’t be coming. That
was a bit of luck for me because it was going to be a tight squeeze
fitting three people and 3 bikes into a small Citroen van.
After arriving in relative comfort and unloading the bikes, we
assessed the conditions – bit chilly (for June), but otherwise near
perfect. Or so we thought. In the 45 minutes or so that we had until we
were due to start, a north-westerly gale got up. So with trees bending
under the strain I set off under time-keepers instructions into the
tooth of a gale on the mainly uphill leg to Leaden Roding. There the
course bears right a little which eased the situation but not the
gradient which climbs still steadily to High Roding where upon you
descend to the turn at Dunmow, near Stanstead.
Maybe the legs had become immune to the punishment, but the return leg
to Leaden Roding wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be, and the
downhill tailwind section back to the finish was a BLAST.
Unfortunately the headwind had put paid to a beating of last years
time (54:16), and I finished in 55:25 which was enough to sweep victory
away from local man Richard O’Rourke of Flitch Crono by 9 seconds.
Robin fell apart in the wind and said he needed a calendar, not a
stopwatch to record his time! Thanks for the lift anyway Robin.