Just 48 hours to go until the big day and disaster strikes. On the eve of the Cape Argus Pick ?n? Pay the lurgy strikes and I?m confined to my hotel room with a raging temperature, headaches, hacking cough ? proper man flu.

It?s not the ideal prelude to the 110-kilometre ride, particularly with the thermometer still showing 39 degrees. But the show must go on, so I struggled from my sick bed to the pharmacy to top up my supply of Nurofen and anything else the chemist could recommend.

Apparently I needed Borstol Cough Remedy. ?Improved and modernised from an old traditional recipe? it said on the box. If this was true, you certainly wouldn?t have liked the old version. Talk about powerful, and equally foul tasting to match. It looks like Lea & Perrins, smells like embrocation and tastes like something you should spray on your chain.

Now I?m worried because I?m riding a UCI event, surely there?s no medical control for poorly sportive riders.

Fortunately I wouldn?t get the blame as a mix-up with the transponders means that I am now registered as Wayne Zwiers, so my apologies to you if you are given a life ban.

Of course I could just return to the signing on to swap it over, but honestly I would rather ride an extra 100 kilometres on Sunday than have to return to the dreadful Good Hope Centre. It looked as though all 41,283 riders had turned up to register at the same time judging from the length of the queues when I arrived ? and Friday was meant to be the quiet day.