Today was the first time since accident no.2 that I’d ridden with Fusion CC. And it was a good job I checked the website as the meeting point had been moved further up the road to The Rutland Arms at Holmesfield, which is where the midweek runs depart from.
It’s always a struggle getting up at 06:00 to make the 08:00 start, but I accomplished it with 15 mins to spare – unheard of for me. Consequently, I was the first to roll up. A new guy, Darren was next, affable enough. Then Dan who was a little surprised to see me after all this time. Of course, he was curious as to my layoff so I recounted, briefly, the details of my second accident and explained how unfit I was. Adam, Andrew and Andy made up the numbers and we set off at 08:05 passing through Dronfield Woodhouse, Dore and up onto the Ringinglow Road.
It seemed that within 4 miles I had already been dropped, but they waited for me. What! Fusion don’t do that. This I had to query and Adam said the club were now waiting for riders who struggled as it was the more friendly thing to do. I thrive on getting dropped, it makes me try harder. I will have to ask them in future not to do so on my account. For me, it’s a dis-incentive.
During the rest of the ride they probably waited for me 6 or 7 times, with one exception. After passing through Miller Dale I took a short cut to the cafe at Eyam through Litton and Foolow. I arrived at the cafe a few minutes before they did, which gave me the opportunity, when they rolled up, to announce loudly in front of a bunch of club riders from Belper that I simply couldn’t keep waiting for them. By the level of laughter from the Belper Boys I think they got the joke. Turns out the guys had waited for ages for me in Tideswell.
The cafe was very busy so it took a while to get served, but it was worth it for the coffee and a very large portion of cake with lots of cream on top – delicious!
Leaving the cafe, we used the closed road to descend to Grindleford where I parted company and returned home via Curbar Gap. For those that don’t know, Curbar Gap is a short, sharp climb of 1 mile but with quite a steep gradient, which puts a strain on aching muscles that have just covered 50 miles. It’s one of three in the area, the other two being Grindleford and Froggatt.
Door to door the ride came to 62 miles with 5,800 feet of climbing. Thanks guys, awesome ride.
The header photo was taken from Baslow Edge looking towards Curbar Edge, Curbar Gap passing between the two.