Day 6 – Boys with their toys – 70 miles – done!!
Some anticipation to this day from several quarters. However, we need to finish off Day 5 first.
Dinner after the Nevada gig had been booked at Zizzi’s. Simon and Terry (the Boyz from PMT) needed to settle pre-ride nerves with some pasta and sparkling water. This was just as well, as this useless restaurant (apparently they have 50 outlets) had no chicken and no meat!? The restaurant was packed…briefly. Anyway, having found something on the menu that could be served, the staff then preceded to outperform the Premier Inn restaurant crew with service that would have made poor Mr Zizzi turn in his grave.
NB suggest you do not use this restaurant, EVER!
Early night (not) and day 6 was upon us. The Boyz were in for breakfast, slightly the worse for wear….must have slept badly!
A short drive back to Nevada to pick up the bikes was not without incident. Griffiths managed to upset white van man, coming close to a full on confrontation at some traffic lights. As the three burly blokes stepped from their van to confront him, we were relieved to see them wearing Three Men on a Bike jerseys. I think it spiced up a rather tedious rush hour in Portsmouth.
Arrival at Nevada saw us reunited with our bikes and the first sight of the PMT tandem. Appearing theatrically (complete to music) from the back of their van, it was quite an entrance. Pictures only tell half the story. This machine was amazing. From the Roland mobile cube and iPod in the shopping basket on the front, or the detailed paintwork, to the huge flag on the back, it was a masterpiece of PMT over-engineered genius.
Photo call complete and we were off. Mark and Andy from Strings and Things were also guest riders for the first 40 miles and Zen from Resolution Mag joined us later on.
This section of the ride was flat, very flat, so good progress was made by all. The Boyz longest ride on the tandem to date had been 24 miles, so there was some relief when we made it to Strings and Things offices in Shoreham, 40 miles in.
The morning’s ride had been punctuated by a quite brilliant selection of music from DJ Terry Hope. Mr Blue Sky, by ELO appeared as the clouds parted and we quite literally boogied our way across Sussex.
By now, we’re working pretty well as a cycling team. Yellow Jersey James sets the pace up front and Sergeant Major Lewis patrols the lines keeping everyone safe from the increasingly dangerous motorists out there. Tail-end Terry brings up the rear picking up all the pieces, more often than not, yours truly, although Peter and Simon (G) do go to that place, on occasion.
With the Sussex Downs fast approaching, we left Brighton behind us and some serious work had to be done. Huge respect to the Boyz who battled up all the hills, just the once on foot. Tandems at the best of times are challenging to ride, but when you’ve pimped your ride PMT style and doubled the weight, hills become mountains.
As we approached Eastbourne, Zen decided to take us on a slight detour. Perhaps he thought that Simon and Terry hadn’t seen enough hills yet, suffice to say though, that by the time we’d completed the 5 mile detour he was close to getting thrown off Beachy Head. It was beautiful I have to say, and I’m glad we did it, but I did feel big time for the Boyz.
When you go up, you can always look forward to the down. The hill down from Beachy Head was a cracker. So good in fact that it burnt the disc brakes out, on the tandem. We regrouped with a slightly pale Terry Hope requesting the nearest qwik-fit.
Arrival at Bonners was around the corner though, and the end to the longest day of the ride (70 miles). Simon and Terry earned every pound of the money they’ve raised, and probably lost a few too. We’ll get the weigh-in results today, no doubt.
For the Three Men on a Bike team it gets us 350 miles away from Lands End and only 70 to go to get to London.
Thanks to Tony and the guys at Bonners for their support. Also to Dean, who finally shaved his head for the charity last night. We also should spare a thought for the waiter in the Premier Balti who endured a tough negotiation session from various Roland members of staff, keen to put their recent training into practice. We got the result we needed, but are now members of the Premier Balti Eastbourne club. I’m not entirely clear what this means, except that we have to eat here again at least once in the next 12 months.
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