Maynard takes charge
What a fantastic day! Group 3 performed brilliantly under our new leader Matt Maynard. Matt dropped down from group 1 to give us some much needed direction and he did a great job and drove us forward on the 82 mile route to Nottingham.
You will be pleased to know that I did not get a puncture today and nobody was more happy than me. We had a few other unfortunate incidents including a few small crashes but thankfully there were no major injuries except a few cuts and bruises. There were also a few more lumpy climbs which got the hearts racing and tested most to the limit but it was heartening to see so many people working hard and getting the job done.
Yet again we had fun and that has been the most important part of this ride. It has been a tough route for inexperienced cyclists but there has been very little moaning and the fact that we have completed 3 days means that we have broken the back of the challenge. Apparently we have now raised over £140,000 which is a fantastic achievement in itself and will boost both charities greatly – if anyone is actually reading this then please keep spreading the word. I can guarantee that every man and woman taking part in this challenge is suffering and we are earning every donation!
Highlights of the day were Maynard’s leadership, the excessive amount of energy gels consumed by Ian Thomas, Mark Wallace professing his enjoyment of Shania Twain songs, Sarah Bell’s constant motivational words and bossiness and Richie Green’s peerless help in the support vehicle. Richie is always ready with some cutting banter to really pull you through the hard times. However the funniest moment for me had to be on a long hard climb towards our lunch stop. I had just got out of the saddle to climb up a steep gradient and thought I would turn back to shout some support to Ian Thomas only to see him holding onto Richie’s support vehicle as he whizzed past to the top of the hill waving at everyone as he went past. I wish I had thought of that one earlier!
At the end of day de-brief all eyes turned to the weather forecast for tomorrow – heavy rain and winds all day. Most cricketers dream of that type of forecast during the season so that they have a day off. However the room went quiet tonight. Wet weather gear at the ready for the morning I think!