Date: 2nd September 2012
Average speed: 25.3km/h
One of my initial targets had been to complete the Southend Bikeathon, which was 27 miles in length. I thought this would be testing, but by the time I got to September I had already been on rides exceeding 30 miles. Given that the Bikeathon route was fairly flat, I was now more concerned about my performance rather than whether or not I would actually finish!
I rode to the start and there were a couple of hundred people there, of varying abilities. There were quite a few on road bikes with much more expensive equipment than me! I started in the third or fourth wave, and got going quite quickly, overtaking almost everyone who had started in front of me (which would be expected as most people were on mountain bikes).
The main thing I was looking out for was people overtaking me, but that didn’t happen 🙂 The route involved two laps of a 13.5 mile route, and I was one of the first to complete a lap. This of course meant much more overtaking on the second lap. I made very good time and when I got to the end the lady giving me my medal told me I was the first one to finish. I didn’t think that was right as there was at least one person I’d seen who hadn’t stopped at a feed stop, but it wasn’t a race anyway.
I enjoyed being on the road with so many other cyclists, even if I was a bit too fast for the event by this stage. I definitely finished in a much faster time than when I did it in 1996!