A great nights sleep, and even the luxury of a lie in, not having to get up until 7am for breakfast. Why is it whenever a full English is on offer you feel compelled to take it up, and boy did we have yet another fabulous breakfast (the justification is that we need the calories for the day’s ride but there is no way I’m using more callories than I am putting in).
Today we had Martin and Ralph from Black Horse Velo come to join us for the day’s ride from Kendal to Stoke. We took full advantage of them and they lead out front for most of the day – cheers lads it was really appreciated. The weather too had made a change for the better with hardly any wind to speak of and gorgeous sunshine.
The morning began with a pretty flat road with only a few undulations – nothing like the previous days. Going was steady with good banter on the road. Justin stopped in Carnforth to try to get some mirrors for his bike (and tassels I’m sure) but with no success. First coffee stop of the day was in Fulwood just north of Preston (around 45 miles in). Coffee and cakes in the sunshine.
Crossing th M62 we stopped for a quick pee and leg stretch.
And then the road ran out somewhere near High Legh (despite a cyclist going the other way saying the road was passable)……
With a bit of ‘Zen navigation’ we made our way around the back roads and eventually back onto the route and to Knutsford for the next food stop. We stopped at the Lost and Found where we met up with Nick from the BHV gang. The food and beer were good, and it was good to hear about Nick’s recent conquest of the Maratona in Italy.
Nick then took the helm being a local, and as we were not going to make the scheduled visit to the Royal Stoke Radiotherapy Department as we had originally planned, the last leg of the day would deviate from the planned route – little did we realise how much – as Nick took us on a ‘tour de Jodrell Bank’. The road gradually climbed up and through Congleton and back onto familiar roads in the Stoke area.
As we dropped into Norton, we met a sight that is hard to put into words – I think Nick’s Strava title of “Welcome to Stoke, my arse” summed it up perfectly.
With our minds now off the riding it was a short blast trough the rest of Stoke to Justin’s house where we were greeted by Keren, Hannah and the kids at the end of the road. A great day’s ride and the easiest one so far – especially compared to what we knew was in store tomorrow!
Beer, great food and great banter, we ended the day with a quick bike service before catching up on the Tour de France before hitting the sack just before 1am.
123.1 miles, 8:43:27 in the saddle, 4885 ft of climbing – a sunny chilled day on the bike 🙂