Under starter’s orders:

The commute this morning was the most fun one I’ve had in ages!

I just pulled onto the traffic free cycle / walking path that’s about 2 miles long and cuts out a lot of road travel on my commute and I spotted a fellow cyclist in front of me.

The rabbit had been spotted!

So I ramp up the rev’s and am quickly off in pursuit. Mr Raleigh as I shall call him (due to his classic white / blue Raleigh MTB) was completely unaware I was bearing down on him as he was going along at a steady enjoying you ride to work pace.

Ears pinned back I rode past him (not looking too shagged) with a chirpy “Morning”

Now I don’t know whether it was the greyhound syndrome or the fact he took exception to being passed or what it was but he was having none of it.

I was feeling quite smug with myself having passed a cyclist “scratch one for me”….

“Morning” He says as he passes me…….

Slightly dumbfounded for a second then I catch the scent of it…… RACE!!!

Up a gear, up the revs, out of the saddle…. I’m gone!

I quickly catch up with him and we look each other in the eye……

He is a 45 – 50 year old gentleman easily 6’5” tall slender build riding with ease a bike he’s probably had for 15 years, dressed in casual shorts, t-shirt, no helmet, trainers & flat pedals.

I am 27, only just 5’11” stocky build, daily commuter dressed in baggie’s, MTB jersey, Oakley’s, Helmet, cycling shoes & clip less pedals, 5 kg rucksack.

Long seconds pass….

“Come on then!” He says and accelerates away cutting across my path.

The next few hundred metres were me hanging on his wheel every move to pass was countered he was quick and obviously has the experienced cyclist sense of something approaching you from behind.

We reach the 1st set of barrier boulders, he slips through ahead of me, I’m on his wheel looking for an opening…

I lower my body and sit directly behind him, forcing him to pull me along, just as we approach the tunnel the path widens and I make my move,

Fainting to the left, he counters and then I accelerate to the right and we are side by side, the path starts to narrow and I’m being forced to the edge and in danger of hanging to concede position to remain upright

But the edge ramps up and I use these ramps every day to practice jumps and drops on I love this ramps. I have front suspension and plenty of horses left.

I aim away from the path and accelerate up the ramp on to the table top, pedalling at 110% of my max to keep the speed and then compress…. Lifts… lean back…. I’m airborne for 3 / 4 feet and land just in front of him, accelerating away…

I have the lead now and I’m not concerned about defence I just put the foot down, up out of the saddle, legs screaming but I know this pain. I love this pain I have been suffering like this for months getting to the stage where I can do this.

System of a down on the ipod. Perfect!

I don’t see him again.

At the end of the path I stop to look where he is and he comes pedalling past me with a smile.

“Later, Mate”

We go in opposite directions.

That was fun.


One Response

  1. Wow sounds like a great ride! As much as its nice to hear you won…. applause for the 50 year old! since I’m 49 I can’t help but revel in the fact that he kept you behind him for a while.

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