ChrisD led most of this ride and writes:
Twelve riders came out for this first New Year ride including two new riders, Phil Brittain and Stuart Hughes.
We were soon joined near Gayton by Alex S. Soon after, Peter, who was leading the ride was forced to pull out given the challenges of a chest infection, so luckily, we stayed at 12. Chris D was nominated to take the lead role given that he had devised the route originally. However, there is nothing simple about the new ‘esteemed leader’ since he immediately admitted that he would have routed it differently now.
The weather held all day and with sunshine on our shoulders the route was a ‘lovely one’ out to Thornby, Flore, the Bringtons, Long Buckby – all on quiet roads. The hills were quickly despatched and the general feel was of a group glad to be enjoying the freedom and fresh air of a good day out on the bike.
The new ‘esteemed leader’ then ‘mucked it up’ by changing the last section before Thornby, taking the riders away from the comfort of their garmins through Cold Ashby. This was a faster and much less hilly alternative and avoids duplication later on. However, the ‘esteemed leader’ then went too fast and left a long tail of resentful cyclists in his wake. Equanimity was restored at the Buddhist Centre Café, as always, efficient with great cake and great coffee. The happy atmosphere led to some strange conversations including, sex, animals, paedophobia and paediatricians. Will the rest of this year be like this?
Three riders left to take a different route home. East Hunsbury to Thornby was never going to suit everyone! Then down through Guilsborough, past Coton Manor and through Ravensthorpe and East Haddon, then the Althorp Estate and the old Roman Road through to Duston. A change of route again (the ‘esteemed leader’ was feeling brave) and back through the ‘French Quarter’ and Upton to Hunsbury without mishap.
There was a good steady pace overall at 13.2mph and the ride was finished in good time before 2pm.
Thanks to Peter Bayles for getting us out the door this morning. It was day that rewarded those who did with no rain, good company and some nice moments.
Big thanks to our two new riders, Phil and Stuart for coming out – their company and energy were much appreciated and we hope to see them again soon.
Happy New Year to one and all.