October 1st, and summer has finally arrived. Having had a succession of wet races all year the sun decided to show itself just as the season was coming to a close. I made the most of it, I had a nice ride down to Wisbeach , 102 miles and got sunburn, which is actually quite pleasant in October. The following day was a reasonably quick group ride, slightly shorter at 101 miles but somewhat hillier, up around the Vale of Belvoir, and I got sunburnt again, still not complaining though.
The following weekend was the Hillclimb Championship at Normanton, in which I took an unexpected win and broke the course record in the process, full story of that race below.
The good weather continued throughout the month and I continued to make the most of it. With the season now over I can spend a while not having to worry about any particular training and can just have fun messing about on bikes.
The Tuesday night circuit sessions have been good fun, and with riding there and back usually work out to be around 55-60 miles for me. The laps are just over 5 miles and usually have two or three sprints of a couple of minutes each. Someone (who shall remain nameless, to save Henry from any embarrassment) has started keeping score of who wins these sprints, with the result that they have suddenly become very tactical.
Wednesday nights are the fast group rides, just over 30 miles, which is around 65 miles for me by the time I’ve got there and back. These are a really fast session with a couple of good hills and a typical cruising speed of 25-28mph and an average of 21-22mph.
Since the untimely death of Big Paul early in 2010 we have started our own spinning sessions in the winters, hiring a local village hall and bringing our turbos or rollers, really easy to do and something I would recommend to you all, much more interesting than just sitting in the garage on your own. A big thank-you to Ben and Dennis for standing up and shouting at us. However, with the unseasonal sunshine it was almost a shame to be inside. After all this lot I’ve been having Fridays as a bit of a rest day.
Although I didn’t manage to get out on the mountain-bike during the month I did get a trip up to the Peaks with the road bike which made a nice change. We only did about 48miles but there was several thousand feet of climbing, including a blast up Froggat Edge, 14min39 on the winter bike was respectable enough. I came over all competitive though, I shall have to return with the fast bike and have a go at the record! We made the most of the late summer sun, sitting outside eating ice-cream afterwards.
Overall I covered 1,238 miles in October, let’s hope the rest of the winter is this warm.

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