Thanks to everybody who rode our innaugural Bike Blenheim Palace Sportive at the weekend, it certainly was a very grand day out. Well I certainly enjoyed myself and judging from all your feedback, it seems the same goes for the rest of you, all 1,200 riders.
Blue skies, traffic-free lanes and the idyllic Cotswolds countryside – there really wasn’t much not to like, although the 8am start was just a little too early and chilly for my delicate constitution.
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Of course, being an older chap, I was excused the longer 100-mile course, opting for the slightly less strenuous 63-mile option. I wasn’t silly enough to consider trying to stay with the rest of the large CW office contingent, letting the youngsters ride away at the start in the belief I would get them back later.
Indeed I did, but only by not stopping at the feed station, so while my colleagues dined on bacon sandwiches the editor rode on, only to blow to pieces with 15 miles to go when my hunger eventually overwhelmed by ambition.
The plan nearly worked, but fail it did and being re-overtaken by my co-workers and the majority of the rest of the field who had stopped was demoralising in the extreme. I needed an entire box of energy bars to restore power but I was still back at the palace inside four hours.
So would I do it again? See you all next October.
Robert Garbutt is the editor of Cycling Weekly