The mud out on the trails was pronounced and I haven´t been as dirty or as cold as this for a long time – sorry bike for putting you through the mire. But it was very Roubaix/Strade Bianche out there and of course deep down I loved it.
I repeated the ride I had undertaken the previous Friday because when I looked at the Strava map I noticed a nice section of gravel that I wanted to include on a proposed route.
Sweet Painful Memories
I do not go along with the notion that cycling narratives should only resonate with the glory of pain.
Nonetheless days of hardship on the bike do lie deep in your head for a very long time and I remember wet and muddy MTB, cyclo cross and road rides and races where getting home or to the finish line was a huge victory for me.
On January 5, 2020, I got so wet and muddy that this ride will stay with me forever. I didn´t punch myself in the face by mistake as I once did on exiting the Arenburg Tranche, but it was close.
In Northern France a thunderstorm had poured upon and flooded the cobbles made infamous by the Paris Roubaix cycle race. After kilometre after kilometre of being battered I was thus disorientated enough for me to break my glasses with my fist. This unintentional punch did pull me back into the real world and after a quick stop I completed my fifth of six Paris Roubaix sportives.
Not whole memories remain of past events more a montage of flashbacks persist – for example not being able to change gear in an MTB race (1990´s) when because of mud my new Twist Grips made it impossible to shift gear. I eventually got off and selected a different gear by pulling the cable…. or when I mangled a Campagnolo Record rear mech during a cyclo cross race which hurt me emotionally at the time (I made it into a trophy for a race series I was helping with).
Although I do not seek out mud or the puddles that came up over my hubs, but I do seem to accept it with a degree of relish.
Garmin Connect: https://connect.garmin.com/modern/activity/4403794828