The training rides are over and despite the cold weather this year I seem to have missed the worst of it and only ducked out of a couple of Saturday morning rides. As the mileages have increased thankfully the backpain I’ve suffered in the past has not returned.
I ran out of new football grounds to cycle to having found Huddersfield, Stockport and Preston’s Deepdale for the first time, so I returned to Goodison Park and Anfield for my last big ride. I found a few rugby grounds too with Warrington, St Helens, Widnes and Salford ticked off and as it was Grand National day on Saturday I visited Aintree for the first time
Despite ridiculously early starts I enjoyed all the rides out to these destinations. The ride to Huddersfield was my favourite as I was heading towards the sunrise and once up on the moors with the climbing out of the way I could admire some early morning views. As the distances increased I struggled but mostly because I was riding with an uncomfortable urgency, clock watching and wanting to get back home before too much of the weekend had disappeared and so not allowing time to fuel up properly before or during. A steady flow of budget caffeine drinks seemed to get me through. Although I spent most of last weekend’s 75 mile ride pounding up and down the East Lancs, I did appreciate the sunshine and similar weather this weekend would be perfect though I think the forecast is warmer but wetter.
I’ve ridden to Southport before and the TPT trail is flat but not smooth enough for a road bike. A cyclecross bike would be perfect but I don’t have one amongst my fleet so I’ll be on the trusty Saracen hybrid commuting hack. The 40 mile return from Southport on road will be when I’ll be tested and I might have to stop for a pint to help me through.