Wet Wet Wet…

Peaky Climbers Training, 100 Mile Ride

15th January 2017

Wow, what a day. Our Training Officer, Mr Crick, had arranged for a century cycle ride that proved to be one of the wettest and windiest Sunday’s for quite a while. With 2 Peaky Climbers pulling out due to illness (JB and Ben) and one (Stewie) missing due to his new bike fitting it left 5 of the Peaky Climbers to take on today’s 100 mile challenge.

The day started wet, cold and damn windy – and finished much the same. Meeting at The Fox in Denchworth at 8am the intrepid cyclists headed out towards the Cotswolds totally unaware what fun and adventure todays ride would bring.

Hinge and Bracket (Nobby & Cricky) turned up in Speedo’s, home made shoe covers and Dick Turpin bandanas. Allen turned up looking like something out of Last of the Summer Wine, Simon was dressed like he was delivering Milk Tray (all in black) and as ever Macca looked svelte, athletic and perfectly dressed for the occassion.

The guys headed out towards Charney, over the A420 to Longworth then the long ride to Bampton and on to Witney…hitting the Cotswolds nice and early.

After about 30 miles Nobby was so cold that we decided to take an early coffee stop at the wonderful Huffkins tea room in Burford to help him warm up and de-frost his frozen fingers. We were served by the wonderful Evetta, with superb food and great beverages which certainly hit the spot. The only downside for Huffkins was us leaving puddles of rain water on the chairs and floor as we departed, sorry!

This refreshment certainly helped the guys as we sped on to Bourton-on-the Water, which is absolutely stunning, then onto the picturesque Stow-in-the-Wold.

At this point of the adventure it was pretty clear that all was not well with Cricky. He said that he seemed to feel ‘dizzy’ a little ‘fuzzy’ and something about him ‘having the same broom for the past 20 years’ – this we all put down to him being in dire need of food…or medicine. After a steep climb, he became dizzier, still never eat anything…it was only after the next climb he decided to eat an energy bar, thank goodness!!    

This was in addition to 46 toilet breaks spread amongst the lads plus Simon ‘Frans Klamer’ Haly getting 2 punctures for exceeding 39mph on the downhill parts of the ride. On the last incident, he pointed out that we only needed to go ‘over that peak over there’ – when we all looked round, the hill was covered in clouds and mist – joys!    

The rain kept teaming down, sometimes sideways, sometimes at 45 degrees and if we were really lucky straight down on our heads!! Allen kept his usual upbeat chatter going throughout, Dizzy Crick was pushing towards lunch at the Green Dragon and Nobby kept pushing on at the front.

Once we arrived at the awesome Green Dragon Inn in Cockleford we were met with a super warm dining room, with open fire and lashings of pasta and coffee. We filled our boots, staying for an hour whilst the clothing dried, Dizzy got back to his joyous best and Nobby completely thawed out!

After much discussion which involved us considering the possibility of us “staying and having a few beers and getting picked up” but we soon brushed this off and in true Peaky Climbers spirit, donned our cycling clobber, mounted our steeds and cracked back on.

Turning out of Simon’s pub, down a hill, up a steep climb and then heading out towards Cirencester. Outside of only 14 toilet breaks the lads cracked on apace through Fairford, Lechlade and Faingdon in the pitch black. Rain still teeming down, the Peaky Climbers were still singing and cycling hard, showing incredible unity and great teamwork in order to arrive back at the Fox in Denchworth in double quick time.   

In hindsight, it was an awesome ride. It showed true grit, strength and spirit from everyone of the lads and that teamwork wins out 110% of the time.

A huge thanks to Simon and all at the Green Dragon for the superb lunch – an absolute life saver!

Next week…who knows, watch this space!!!

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Peaky Climbers Team is raising funds for two amazing charities: BRITISH LUNG FOUNDATION and CARING CANCER TRUST

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