TCR No. 6 : Getting to the Start Line

A lot of tarmac has passed under my tyres since the 2018 TCR, No. 6, and I’ve been meaning to get it all documented. It was an incredibly fortunate year on the TCR, with lots of challenges, and lots to tell. Better late than never, I guess!? Before getting into the race and how all that went, I’d thought I’d go through some things that got me to the start line. I may have gone through similar to this before in the past two years, so feel free to check out some of my older posts on TCR’s No. 4 & TCR No. 5. Training and … Continue reading TCR No. 6 : Getting to the Start Line

Italy Divide 2019 – Part 3: Race Report, Days 5 to 6 – Verona to Finish in Torbole

Catch up on my last post Part 2 – Naples to the Po Valley Day 5: Po Valley to Verona I woke to the sound of rain pouring outside. I initially was going to get up early in the dark and ride, but this put the brakes on that – remembering that now I wasn’t planning to ‘race’ I didn’t need to punish myself. It was inevitable I was going to get wet, so I resigned myself to doing that in daylight when it might be warmer. Laying there in the morning light, I checked up on social media and to see what was going on … Continue reading Italy Divide 2019 – Part 3: Race Report, Days 5 to 6 – Verona to Finish in Torbole

Italy Divide 2019 – Part 2: Race Report, Days 1 to 4 – Naples to Po Valley

Catch up on the last post here: Italy Divide 2019 – Part 1: Finding the Right Tool for the Job. The Start The start of the race moved from Rome in 2018 to Naples in 2019. I think in 2020 it was planned to move a little further down the coast to Pompeii, but for 2019 it’s volcano Vesuvius would serve as a stunning looming backdrop on the horizon of the start in Naples. It was on the busy waterfront with thousands of tourists milling around and gathering, pushing the low 30’s. With the start late in the afternoon, it was a case of lingering and … Continue reading Italy Divide 2019 – Part 2: Race Report, Days 1 to 4 – Naples to Po Valley

Italy Divide 2019 – Part 1: Finding the Right Tool for the Job.

Reflecting on a Seasons missed races So here we are, in the 78th(?!) lockdown in the UK, with all plans for ultra racing and trips in 2020 and a fair few in 2021 abandoned for safer times. I had lots of plans dashed, as did we all. It’s been a long time since I’ve posted on this blog, so I thought I’d use some of this extra indoors time to reflect and share some thoughts on the 2019 Italy Divide on a Curve Cycling GXR, aka ‘Kevin’ that I borrowed from G!RO Cycles in Esher, and comparing it with the 2018 Italy Divide I complete on … Continue reading Italy Divide 2019 – Part 1: Finding the Right Tool for the Job.

Dotwatching the Transcontinental Race #TCRNo7

Here we go again! So I’m back again for the 4th time, racing the Transcontinental Race. It starts In Burgas, Bulgaria on 27th July at 6am CEST (4am GMT). I’m looking forward to getting back on the road, but I’ve not had the best preparation. I imagine the expectations after last years 2nd place mean they are quite high, however I’m not as fit or as close to race weight as I’d like, so have taken the pressure off myself; my goals this race are to have a go, see how I feel and enjoy myself as much as possible. I’m looking forward to getting to … Continue reading Dotwatching the Transcontinental Race #TCRNo7

Dot Watching the Italy Divide 2019

It’s time to go racing! Spring (summer?) has been a long time coming, and the first race of the year is upon me. I’m headed back to the trails of Italy for the Italy divide for the second year in a row, but this time I’m taking a much more appropriate bicycle – a Curve Cycling GXR, also known as Kevin. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not quite as fit as I’d really like to be for this following a couple of setbacks over the winter, but really excited to be getting back to my happy place. What is the Italy Divide? This … Continue reading Dot Watching the Italy Divide 2019

Italy Divide Part 2: Bologna to Torbole

Part 1 available here: The Italy Divide – Part 1: Rome to Bologna Day 3: Gravel Grinding the Po Valley Breakfast was not an option at the hotel, but was glad to leave it despite a late start at 8 am. I had some McDonald’s left over from the night before to keep me going for the first couple of hours. The previous days effort, and illness from the start had started to catch up with me and was feeling a little worse for wear with a hint of a cold coming on. Despite this, I was determined to give it bit of a nudge today. In … Continue reading Italy Divide Part 2: Bologna to Torbole

The Italy Divide – Part 1: Rome to Bologna

What is the Italy Divide? Checkout my post from last April 2018 with all the info Dot Watching the Italy Divide The Bike for the Italy Divide I updated my Curve Cycling Belgie Spirit with a few modifications to accommodate going off road. Bigger tyres, more gears, and some MTB SPD pedals & shoes (for all the walking I’d end up doing). I also added some proper lights – Exposure Diablo and Strada for negotiating trails at night. The rest of the bike was as per my normal Transcontinental road bikepacking setup. Aero bars, with eTap blip shifters, Apidura bags, dynamo lights. Rome Starting the Italy Divide … Continue reading The Italy Divide – Part 1: Rome to Bologna

Chasing The Circus

The Tour de France Back in July of 2018 I was at a bit of a loose end. I had the TCR coming up in 3 weeks time, and I needed to get away on the bike for a weekend, mostly to just enjoy riding but also to try a few bits and pieces out ahead of the TCR. I also was super keen to take the opportunity to go and watch the Tour de France that was moving through northern France, so a short hop over the channel would give me a chance to get up close to the action. Planning After looking into ferries, … Continue reading Chasing The Circus

Dot Watching The Transcontinental Race #TCRNo6

Dot Watching – what is that?! Dot watching is how you follow me on the Transcontinental Race. There is no TV coverage, no radio, but there is a better way… Each rider in the race has their own satellite tracker assigned to them, which can be followed on a tracking site in the form of a dot on a map, but you can also interact with me and other riders on social media. No assistance can be provided though, but words of encouragement are most welcome! Some more info below, but you can really get immersed in the race this way. How to follow me – … Continue reading Dot Watching The Transcontinental Race #TCRNo6