A wet and windy 200km

The 200km Audax event , “The Poor Student” proved to contain the makings of what will become Willesden Legend (perhaps that should be Leg End). Phew what an event! The course was made more difficult by challenging weather. Though there was 2000 metres of climbing, the main enemy was a block head wind, pitch black lanes and sideways rain.

The event relies on commercial controls, so there are no comfy controls to shelter in. The weather on the actual day was not as bad as forecast, so we only had to contend with 20mph head winds and several hours of rain, most of it after dark.

Once darkness set in the wet tarmac seemed to absorb every photon from my lighting system. This made the descents quite hairy. Out of eight Willesden Starters 50% packed. Hilary Pandya finished in under 11 hours, a very respectable time for such a tough day in the saddle. Willesden Audax debutant, Ian Oliver, was second in from the Willesden, despite breaking a seat post! Well done Ian!

Despite the hardship it was a good day, made even better by Sara and Amy,who staffed the Co-Op at Chipping Camden. They could not have been more helpful or supportive. Well done girls you really made our day.

The route sheet for the event was first class as was the scenery we went through. Perhaps we should ride it again in the summer!

John Davies

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