I washed my white shoes to ride 100 miles in the rain - but it was worth it: a coast-to-coast adventure

Riding the full breadth of southern Scotland in two days is no easy task. CW magazine editor Simon Richardson prays for a tailwind on the new, 256-mile Kirkpatrick coast-to-coast route

Opening miles of the new Kirkpatrick C2C route in Southern Scotland
Opening miles of the new Kirkpatrick C2C route in Southern Scotland
(Image credit: Andy Jones)

As I climb slowly out of bed my thoughts immediately turn to my shoes. Are they dry? The previous evening, the first thing I did after checking-in to our hotel in Langholm, tired, wet and dirty was get in the shower and thoroughly wash my once pristine white shoes. Covered in grime and soaked through, I got them sparkling clean before I turned the soap on myself. I’d smuggled some thick paper hand towels out of a cafe earlier in the day knowing I’d need to stuff them in my shoes overnight. I can’t start a ride with wet cycling shoes. I just can't. So in that cafe, even before I was halfway through day one, my thoughts had leapt forward to the start of day two.

The towels and heated towel rail had worked their magic. My shoes were clean and dry, and with fresh kit laid out, I instantly felt more positive about the 100 or so miles that lay ahead. A quick breakfast and we were soon getting the bike out of the back of the car. It was raining. Hard. In fact it had been raining most of the night, and water was streaming across the roads.

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Simon Richardson
Magazine editor

Editor of Cycling Weekly magazine, Simon has been working at the title since 2001. He fell in love with cycling 1989 when watching the Tour de France on Channel 4, started racing in 1995 and in 2000 he spent one season racing in Belgium. During his time at CW (and Cycle Sport magazine) he has written product reviews, fitness features, pro interviews, race coverage and news. He has covered the Tour de France more times than he can remember along with two Olympic Games and many other international and UK domestic races. He became the 130-year-old magazine's 13th editor in 2015.