Nursing a sore throat was the perfect excuse for me to stay snugged up in bed this morning, plus it was a classic Melbourne winter's morning with showers, an icy wind and an expected low of 6 degrees! I awoke at 6:15am to the sound of raindrops pitter-pattering the colorbond roof and thought how the guys (if any) were going to stay upright on the Tour de Eltham this morning...the pro's seem to have enough trouble staying on two wheels of late.
Well they breed them tough (or really stupid...your choice) in this neck of the woods, so here's Sean's account of today's ride:
Wet and cold but the show must go on!!!
Nine brave souls turned up to Peak Bike Hub on wet roads and in cold conditions at 6am this morning, only to be greeted with a light shower. But that didn't deter the riders as we headed out Beverley Rd, with the first hill being greeted as always with over exuberance 1km into the ride. The pace slowed and the bunch reformed along Banyule Road, riders carefully negotiating the turns and roundabouts in the wet conditions.
Once we reached the silos the pace was back on for the climb up to the final roundabout on Banyule Rd. Peter, Paul, Adrian and Sean were together at the top, before they veered right onto the icy descent down past the horse paddocks to the bridge. Nicko managed to keep upright at the base of the descent which was positive for him on his ultra slick (and slippery...and narrow) tubulars, as we approached the Bonds Rd climb. Once again Paul led the charge, with Peter and Sean keeping him honest all the way up the 10% grade hill.
Wet roads did not slow the pace out the back of Montsalvat, coming up to Mt Pleasant Rd. Nicko's heroics of last week weren't to return on the famed climb up to the Mansion at 525, it turned out he was saving his legs for later. (Anth's comment - isn't he always "saving his legs" for something later????). It was Peter that took off approaching the summit, untouchable until his chain came off on the descent before the last rise in the road, leaving Paul to take the chocolates at the end of Mt Pleasant Rd.
Nicko drove the train all the way along Main Rd back to Viewbank, setting the bunch up for the last hill sprint of the morning. Paul stirred the pot lifting the pace half way up the climb from Rosanna golf course, and it was on until Phil got serious and blew the bunch apart with his sprint to the line, taking the win by about 10 meters.
Upon returning to Burgundy Street, coffees and muffins were well deserved to warm up the riders who could hang around.
Great work to all for braving the cold and wet conditions, see you Saturday...