Open eyes, open curtains, check location. Yes it’s Crewe Premier Inn. A relaxed evening yesterday at the nearby pub. It was quiz night so in addition to us shouting out all of the answers, Peter stole the mic and raised £55 for the charities from the various quiz teams.

Another grey morning today, thankfully no rain. We seem to be very lucky recently, this luck will probably run out by the weekend. Guest riders today include Paul from DV, Neil Cowmeadow and Myke from Bonners. A big day ahead as none of them has cycled 100 miles yet! Here we all are, raring to go?

The guest riders (fresh legs) definitely gave our younger core riders a run for their money this morning. Lewis sorted this out later, reminding everyone ‘who wears the white shoes’.

Having trawled eBay last night for a replacement leg and failed to win any of the auctions (you’d be amazed at what goes on on eBay after midnight) I had to resort to drugs today to ‘manage’ my knee pain. We’re all gradually succumbing to the stresses and strains of this massive endurance marathon and there’s barely a man on the team without issues. Sorry, that should read, without health issues.

Firmly keeping the family together (quite literally) is the multi-talented Rose. One moment she’s running Ruth’s Rolls, the finest lunch van on the JOGLE run, the next she’ll be rebuilding someone’s legs in her physio capacity and then without batting an eyelid, she’ll turn into expert bike mechanic. Girl power has nothing on this!

So the ride: painful, ouch, long, kinda sums it up. First stop was outside a McDonalds for a rare coffee stop. We then sped down the Ironbridge Gorge (just beautiful) into Ironbridge itself. Photo of the team here in front of the bridge. (I was behind the camera, just in case anyone thought I was having the day off).

There are two ways out of the Gorge, both are up but one is really quite steep. The Three Men chose the long gradual haul out of town, the rest of the support riders abandoned us (!) to show off to each other on the really steep one and compare the size of each other’s bikes.

Reunited at the top and ‘King of the Mountains’ awards completed (Lewis) we set off on a frustrating, undulating section of road which seemed to go on for ever, en route to Kidderminster. I’m even beginning to actually recognise some of the places we’re cycling through! Lunch, then Stourport, Worcester and Tewkesbury and we’re in sight of home. Well, I say home? Premier Inn has become home, but the one here in Gloucester is a bit more like a kennel. Our worst by far: I could hardly fit the bike in the room.

After today’s ride we clock up 650 miles and over 27,000 ft of climb for the ride so far. Everest is 29,000, so we should probably nail that tomorrow, assuming that ‘Make up my Ride’ gets the numbers wrong again. We’ll be joined by the Boyz from PMT (and tandem) and Paul from the MIA – anything could happen….

Roadside News

  • Fox x 2, not well
  • Squirrel, not looking well
  • Pigeons, lots, flying days over
  • Griffiths says he saw a bear
  • Terry now on work to rule, as overtime for Jules’ bike clocks up