The Tour de Force

The Tour de Force

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Good Times, Bad Times...Stage 6: Abbeville to Le Havre...Thursday 2nd July 2015

Today was a blinding stage for me, pretty much. So why the choice of tune? The answer in a bit...

Coastal malarkey ahoy!
More rolling malarkey!
Phil, our Tour Guru did warn us that we would probably get wet at some point today, so did either of Team Lanterne Rouge carry our waterproof jackets from the start? After an intense and heated debate which went along the lines of "Meh, it'll be alright...we can get them at lunchtime after all...". Yep, you can fill in the blanks yourselves: it started pleutin' right after the first food-stop, hah-hah!
We had a fast-ish bunch with us and caned it onwards, rain or shine. Rain mostly, with the occasional fairly adjacent flash of lightning...that concentrates the mind!
My handlebar
Handlebar Must be a slooooow news day!
Cliffs ahoy! Somewhere near Dieppe. I think.
Normally I loathe the sight of wind turbines but if they indicate a helping hand...short-lived, hah-hah!
Caution on the descents after the showers...
 After a brief lunch-stop (nobody wants to linger in wet gear) we had a carbon copy of the previous session, just at a slightly less frantic pace...but the miles were being eaten. As were bananas, apricots etc! The terrain was rolling all day and I just about stayed in touch with this bunch...on the flat is one thing, but when the gradient goes up, I go back!
This is Mr Andrew Wates churning out the miles on the run into Le Havre!
 After the third food-stop we were rolling along nicely again: even I put my nose in the wind. As happens, one of our number at the rear punctured, which caused our group to splinter as some guys stayed with him to help him out. This left Andy and myself to ride into Le Havre (we were joined by Malcolm for the last 10 miles) and we passed the charity's Chief Trustee (and father of William Wates). Good going, Andrew!

Ropey footage. Standard.
And a shoddy photo of Le Havre. Not a total kharzi.
Bike and top are model's own. Nobody else would touch them!
So far, so good. It wasn't until about an hour later that we heard that two of the riders had accidents...what sounds like a touch of wheels and down you go. Matt has a nasty bit of road-rash and Harry has fractured his femur: the former  will roll out regardless tomorrow and I hope Harry will return to Le Tour when he can. Heal the fastest, guys...

This is two tone!

You're doubtless fed-up with this incessant badgering, but the link to sponsor me is HERE!

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I do have a bit of previous...

2014: 1000 miles solo & unsupported out to France, then La Bicinglette...6 x Mont Ventoux in a day!

2013: 1000 miles solo & unsupported out to Austria, then the worst climbs in The Dolomites!

2012: The inaugural Haute Route sportive from Geneva to Nice, followed by the worst Pyrenean climbs!

2011: 3500 miles across North America...coast to coast!

2010: 1600 miles from Gibraltar to Blackpool!

2009: 1000 miles from Land's End to John O'Groats!

2008: 250 miles from Blackpool to London!

2007: 100 miles around Manchester!

2006: 0.5 mile to corner shop!