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Cycling Monologues No 6 – The Sportive Rider

“So anyway I’m doing this sportive in Wales it’s called the Dragon Ride it’s the toughest in Britain so they say I think there’s 30000 feet of climbing and one of the hills is 1 in 2 apparently I’ve done loads of them I did that Circuit of Kent one last September it was a nightmare it finishes on Carter’s Hill what you’ve never tried that but the feed stations were rubbish I’m doing that one in June in Italy the Maradona it’s called after that footballer you know the hand of God bloke he was a keen cyclist I read somewhere it goes through the Dolomites they’re in Italy I think or is it Austria one of them anyway who cares it’s one of the biggest in the world 10000 riders last year and Miguel Indurain did it he didn’t win you’ve got to book up really early there’s a famous one in France it’s called the Marmotte which is a small animal like a hamster or is it a beaver I can never remember that finishes on Alpe d’Huez last year the weather was atrocious and only 80 people finished and there were 9 deaths it’s a tough sport I want to do this retro one in Tuscany you can only use bikes made before 1977 and you can’t have clip-less pedals everyone dresses up in classic woollen jerseys it’s only 95 Euros to enter there’s a similar one in this country I don’t fancy that it’s not the same is it there’s a Tour of Wessex also dunno where that is, three days through the West Country and you camp every night I hate camping you get a medal at the end I’ve got loads of medals I heard about one in South Africa in Cape Town biggest in the world there’s like 35000 riders I’m hoping to do that I like the feed stations where you get bananas and cakes and shit some of them are rubbish though I did one once and you only got water no it’s not a race you go at your own pace there was a new one last year the Tour of Cambridge through the Fens I didn’t go but someone told me about it the top 25% got entry to the World Championships you know that Sagan won, what oh the amateur not the pro championships I was confused but still I think they’re great sometimes they close the roads but not always I’m hoping to get a place on the Prudential Ride this year I’ve applied every year never got a place it’s not fair it’s like the biggest in the world there’s a ballot apparently last year they had like 2 million applications it’s easier to win the lottery ha ha but I’m going to keep trying I want the medal are you doing the Hell of the Ashdown?”

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