Saturday Morning Ride

Posted: June 11, 2011 in 2011, Rides

Both Rich and I were free to ride this morning so we headed off on a planned, longer but slower ride. It was a strange start beig both too hot and a bit chilly at the same time…chilly enough for me to wear long sleeves and Rich to turn back for home to pick up his arm warmers.

The plan was to ride out to BCP via some singletrack and then get home for about 12.30. Rich was aboard his Anthem and I was on my re-re-rejigged Swift. Once again my legs were slow to warm up but I put this down to the Merlot I got outside of last night! We both agreed to a moderate pace and headed off via some back roads to the start of one of our forest access roads. Bumpy at the best of tijmes, it was quite hard going for me and the rhythm of the bumps and hollows left me at sixes and sevens. Once back on the smoother stuff I was fine and my pace picked up again. Once again the Swift showed its superiority in sand and soft surfaces and I almost ambled through the deep, drifty loam that was once a track whereas Rich found it a littlle harder going. Soon we hit the forest by the firing range and joined up with the red route, my first taste of singletrack on the new style Swift (more of that elsewhere).

This was a bit of a revelation for me. The surface was slippy because of recent rain (hurray!) and the slick roots made for skittish conditions. Once again I got into trouble with the Swift. Unused to the new configuration, I was hitting corners far too fast and I overcooked one or two. A little mental recalibration and a bit more trust in the extra grip from my tyres and I was in business. The ride was swift (ha, ha) and frighteningly easy. I can see how this could be fantastic once I get used to it.

After enduring the most horrible, bumpy and poorly thought out section of the red route (I was on a rigid remember) I quivered onto the fire road and we hit the gentle climb to the next bit of the course. Once again ther true colours of thre Swift were on display (to me anyway) and we rattled through the next section and onto BCP. A refil of water and a quick chat to the Revel boys and we were on the way home, under a bit of time pressure. Maybe a quarter of the way back I began to flag, my legs were getting weak, my arms were in agony and my back was on fire. At a suggestion of Rich’s, I let some pressure out of my tyres and that pretty much sorted it. As a by product, I benefitted from more grip and the ride was easier. We reckoned I was getting as much travel from my 2.4 (on the front) as we used to from our Rockshox Quadras 21Rs! This small change made riding easier and after a sachet of Torq Forest Fruits goo (with added caffeine) I was fit to go and we continued on. I can’t say I was flying but the whole riding experience was temporarily ameliorated. Lackford Lane was despatched  in a jiffy (I was sucking Richard’s wheel – he was fresher being on a full suss!) and so to home. A few tenths short of 45 miles it was a good ride.

Ride file: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/91543620

Tune of the ride:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y-lRmVOGw3M

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