A spring sportive in the beautiful surroundings of the Cotswolds, three routes to choose from, 54km, 104km and 164km for those who want to be out around this stunning area, and to top that you can ride to support Cancer Research aswell. Whats not to like!! So in the few days before the event as the weather warnings appeared from the weather gods, I wondered if id even brave the conditions.
The website is really good, such a simple process to register, and with no commitment to which distance you choose, depending on your circumstances on the day you can pick and choose how extreme you want to be. This became a good move when on the day it's self, the rain had come in overnight and some reports had stated the area had a months rain in one night. Having parked the car at the race HQ,which was of ample size for an expected 1000 competitors, I made my way to race check in. Great use of signs all day, from getting to check in to out on the course and all the way to crossing the finish line.
A simple but effective signing on process, gave you everything from the timing chip, zip cordes for your number and a very useful print out of a map of all three routes, a breakdown on the distances and where the food stops were. This came in handy having decided due to the weather conditions to ride the shorter route instead of the middle distance.
A great HQ base, supplying coffees and breakfasts and the all important bike shop for any last minute essentials gave me the perfect setting for reading the previous mentioned map to see the new route i'd let myself in for.
There was plenty of room to get changed before and after the event, I was able to leave my bike racked by the start and get to it with ease when it was my time to enter the start funnell.
A good briefing at the start explained the detours that had been put in place due to flooding and the red signs we had to follow gave us no reason to get lost. The signs were so clear and easily spotted from a distance which meant giving messages to those I was cycling with so easy.
Cycling through the Cotswold Water Park, brought back memories of my Middle Distance Triathlon the previous summer. How I longed for the bright sunshine of that day.
Although I did not really stop at the food station, it was well populated with a great area for people putting bikes and plenty of people were taking advantage of all the food and drink on offer.
The final push towards home took us through Cirencester and gave me a chance to see a town i'd not visited before. The fenced cordon bought us towards the final and to ride across the line with three people i'd riden with from almost the start made it such a great way to finish the event.
A lovely little goodie bag, including an Easter egg, bottle of beer, Truestart coffee Sachets and of course the medal.
A free Pesto pasta and coffee greeted us back in the HQ aswell as the changing rooms which was a great way to start recovery and also relive some of the views and scenery we had cycled through.
A great day was had by all and I'm already considering going back for the Autumn audtion.