Whats this Caythorpe thing ?
The Viking Challenge results have finally been posted
1134 people entered in total . 810 of which did the 50k and i came 164th . start and finish times of 9am - 11.44 . so i did it in 2 hours 44 mins
As it wasn't a race I've had to work it all out for comparison as the results are listed by name .
I hadn't done a staggered start before so at 9am I was stood around wondering what to do , expecting there to be a group of people waiting to be let go . At 5mins past while chatting to some people who were going at 10 past I realized I should probably head off
I stopped after a few mins right from the start to have a pee in a bush , it was early so I filled up on coffee to make the early morning seem less early .
Once onto the canal the realization of the distance hit and I expected to hit the wall at any point and be passed all day but I just kept passing people , lots of whom had punctures or who too were pissing . I mustave passed 20 or more people at the first refreshment stop ( and subsequently each stop thereafter .) I knew there was a hill shortly after and wanted to get as far ahead as possible . sadly I had to walk it , I expected the guy on the cotic in front of me to be able to ride , but his gears slipped
and I was dead in the water ; a lad did pedal it though , right beside me , going at the same speed as me walking but at the top I just hopped back on , as those who struggled in the granny ring caught their breath .
Back to passing many , many people before getting stuck behind a group of suspenders , made a mental note not to follow so closely as they just bounced their way over things a rigid couldn't ; I ditched them when the dirt changed to airstrip . I've seen it quoted as being 40mph winds at that point , I'm not sure how accurate that is but it was certainly fookin hard , my gearing had been great until that point and I was now in the having to apply more effort to go slower pedaling range and fully expected everybody I had passed from the start to breeze past .
Some road next , surprisingly I still managed to pick people off , I remember one guy who must have taken being passed by a guy wearing jeans and a tshirt on a one gear as an offense ; but I had to laugh a little as out of my periphery I saw his chain unwrap from the big ring and he quickly coast away to join the droves of people behind me . I think it was now I started with the oxygen starved delusional hallucinations where upon I'd see a competitor ahead and I would hunt them down on my steed before slaying them as I passed , I might carry a plastic sword next year ; I'm sure I saw someone in a cow costume , I'm almost certain I saw a black and white striped robber .
After the stall at the steep hill earlier on I had got a lot more forceful on the hills and had to quickly carve a way through the people who would slow to a crawl at the bottom so I didn't lose momentum .
I was thankful of my 170mm cranks when we got to the ruts . Made more difficult by the long grass covering them and the people falling over in front of me . Loads more road , not fun being passed by people pedaling the same cadence but managing to go twice as fast , wheres the skill in variable gears ? I reclaimed those kills when tarmac changed back to dirt though .
Thats right you pedal your gears while I stay tucked behind you stealing your energy as I coast ; your pedaling for two I thought as another singlespeed appeared beside me , we exchanged some words that might not have formed a normal conversation had we not been hurtling along at oh 11mph
I said something about us not being suited to the road in justification for stealing the effort of someone in front , then he pedaled at about 800rpm and disappeared like I was stood still , I suspect he was the merlin to my imaginary sword swinging vampire knight , it has to be magic .
At the finish I met Stevek , I kinda figured it was him as I didn't expect there would be more than the one single sped Moots owner in attendance . I ate a load of shortbread and went home .
"It also has a seat. I don’t use it, but you probably will for the first few years until you build up the muscle."