Wednesday 13th March

Tonight we had a couple new faces to the peloton, both of whom are more used to riding bikes with engines! Kev who owns FreeFlow Moto and Ross the current Scottish Motorcross Champion joined myself, Ally and Gilly on our usual Wed night pedal.

Ally arrived at mine having cycled from mum and dads little over a mile away. When he arrived he enlightened us that his front derailleur wasn’t shifting and that he was stuck in the big ring. I had a quick look and removed all the crap from the derailleur, but still it didn’t shift so he was in for a tough shift tonight, if you excuse the pun.

Next issue we had was with the new light I bought Ally for his birthday. He went to put it on his bike and realised that he’d left the elasticated ring which holds the head unit onto the bars at home! I had one that would do the job as a temporary measure.

Gilly duly arrived, followed shortly by Kev and Ross. After a brief introduction we set off towards Langlands and through Auldhouse on road to that beast of a climb they call Ardochrig. It was a cold brisk night and Ally was suitably dressed in his shorts showing off his bare legs while the rest of us chose to cover up our legs.

As we came out of Auldhouse and swung a left onto Millwell road, Ally’s light went out so I stopped to help while the other continued on. He simply hadn’t pushed the connection in properly. Once that was fixed, Ally and I set back off in pursuit of the other three who were progressing well along the road.

Ally and I turned onto Ardochrig and I said to him that I’d get him at the top as I wanted to give the climb a blast. I had to put the boot down to catch up with the others who were making good progress. Once caught up with the group, Ross and I pushed our way onto the front and led the charge to the top. I managed to knock 1 min 23 secs off my best time up Ardochrig so was well chuffed!

At the top we waited for the rest to regroup then proceeded on our way along some pretty cut up roads.

We carried on the usual route into Strathaven, up the back of the park and onto the Strahaven road. After about half a mile we swung a left back onto the back roads which were a little ropey at places due to ice, thankfully no casualties were taken. Continuing back into Auldhouse then East Kilbride and back to my house.

Great wee pedal on what was a chilly night. Ally arrived back at my mum and dads and had to get dad to switch his light off as his hands were that cold he couldn’t manage it by himself! That was with me giving him my pair of liner gloves at the top of Ardochrig!

Felt really strong, powering up all the climbs and taming the beast that is Ardochrig.

Kev and Ross seemed to enjoy the pedal too and I’m sure we’ll see them again soon!

Hat off to Ally who not only completed the chilly 25 miles in his shorts, but also on a hardtail mountain bike which was stuck in the big ring on the front!

Got up at 6am this morning (Thursday) and battered the Turbo for 50mins doing the 3LC Climbing dvd, while Gilly made it out with Chris for a hilly climbing session.