Our biggest and best sportive yet was enjoyed by more than 2,000 happy riders on an idyllic autumn Sunday morning in the Surrey lanes. A chilly five degrees at the start soon warmed to a balmy 17°C by lunchtime, ideal riding conditions.
Top billing went to Britain’s greatest ever Olympian, Sir Chris Hoy, who created quite a buzz before and after completing the not-so-short 43-mile route. Don’t be fooled — trackies, even retired ones, are also pretty good on the road. Ask Michael Hutchinson, who, having upped the pace ever so slightly in the closing stages, glanced over his shoulder only to see Sir Chris spinning effortlessly with both hands on the tops.
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What a difference a year, or even a day, makes to the weather. The Box Hill Original was rechristened the ‘wet one’ 12 months ago, when we endured probably the worst conditions any of us had even ridden in. Just 24 hours before this year’s event, it was raining, as it was again on Monday morning. We were lucky.
So a huge thank-you to Assos, our title sponsor and also to Pinarello, Rudy Project, SiS, Shimano, Continental and Cycleplan for making this year’s series such a success.
Here’s to 2015.
Robert Garbutt is editor of Cycling Weekly