Friday, October 26, 2007

The only way is up

As someone sang, there's a coldness in the air, but I don't care. Why? Because Sunday's national hill climb is the last race I'm doing for about five months.

It's been getting dark, cold and generally grey here in the mornings, so I'm looking forward to not having to drag myself out of bed at the crack of well before dawn each morning. No matter how much sleep I get, I'm always tired. It's mostly the mental effort of getting ready for a race each weekend. I've been doing that for the last three months - the longest continuous period of racing I've done for years, possibly since 1999.

That said, I'm actually looking forward to winter. Partly because it involves a trip to the Gent Six plus three weeks in Oz, and partly because I want to get stuck into some structured winter training. But mostly because it involves a lot of drinking. I've not touched a drop of C2H5OH this week and have even reduced my chocolate intake over the last few days. Not by much, I admit.

Sunday should be a laugh, too. It's my first ever national championships in anything and I'm up against 149 other riders. I'm hoping for a top 20 with a time under 8'00, which is possible if I have a decent ride.

I know quite a few people are going to be there watching, although that number might be reduced if it's raining, as is forecast. Our tech editor Jez has promised to throw a bag of flour over me and Robin as we come up the hill, and then empty a whole lotta diesel over the road to slow the later riders down. Do it Jez, you know you want to.

Then, maybe a cider or two are in order. There's a Halloween ride next week, too...

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