Monday, 16 June 2008

Day 15 – Dalwhinnie to Inverness 58 miles – The Team is on fire!

This was the day the tour pace record was smashed. Monday (Day 15) would witness the end2end boys, bike and support at their most efficient. The team machine was now firing on all cylinders as we covered just short of 60 miles in a blistering 6 hours (including stops) pulling into Inverness at 1535 hrs. Dalwhinnie – Kingussie – Aviemore – Inverness. COME ON!

There must be something for alcohol fuelled power. We pulled out of Dalwhinnie, Ali made a slight whimpering sound as we left his beloved Dalwhinnie. The bike was running like a dream, the tyres were pumped to a mind blowing 160 PSI [Only joking JD Jamie ]...seriously 90 in both tyres. Everything conspired to create the conditions for us to cover 26 miles in 1 hour 20 mins! Wow the roads were gorgeous, Ali’s knees were great although he had them strapped up, and the bike was tight and running superb. 2 weeks in now we know so much about this bike. Team and machine work as one. We now operate the machine with few words of command, everyone acts in quiet anticipation. Our plan was to ensure we complete this project in good order. Jonathan’s concern was that the team would become complacent in the last couple of days and place ourselves and the bike at risk. The team must refocus and above all remain safe.

At 1040 hrs we pulled into Aviemore, pictures at the sign and Ali use the opportunity to play his didgeridoo in an access tunnel. The team loves the Didg! Breakfast was served at the Mountain Cafe – highly recommended by several locals. The cafe was outstanding and served us possibly the best breakfast we have had on this tour. [For any end2enders passing through Aviemore you must stop at the Mountain Cafe, who incidentally gave us 10% discount for charity] We met the Hill family, mum dad and 3 lovely daughters [Katie, Emma and Zoe] Hi girls hope you enjoyed your breakfast – leave us a message, plus Grandparents. They gave us a donation for our charities [thank you]. With breakfast sitting very heavy we mounted up and pressed on. Prepare for a cheeky 10 mile climb...

Once again our pace was outstanding, we chomped up the hills reaching the summit of Slochd (how very apt) at 1400 hrs. The descent was enjoyable as we were rewarded with mile after mile of FREE MILES. We pulled into a lay-by to rest our bums; an elderly couple came over and chatted. She reached into her purse and said here boys put this £10 in your bucket. People are so generous, they wished us well and the departed. Alistair looked at the money – lads she’s only given us £20! We felt we should have caught them up...but amused ourselves with the image of screeching brakes and reversing lights as they realised their over generosity! The boys pressed on.

The descent was fabulous with the rear disk brake worked hard. Suddenly flaring nostrils preceded the combined comment of ‘is that burning I can smell?’ - the disc brake was not happy...a rapid pull in for several minutes allowed our white hot component to cool. Inverness was 5 miles away.
1535 hrs the monster bike pulled into the TA centre of 7 SCOTS. Sgt Major Lyon greeted us and showed us to the Officers Mess. This was outstanding. The lads worked on the bike and Jonathan (Blog Geek) sat in the corner of the Mess and blogged away. Showers and the out for a bite to eat. The end is in sight we can smell the finish line but now is the time to switch on and keep focused.

1 comment:

Andy Bate said...

is there any chance that you guys can cycle back the other way when you finish??? i dont know what ill do without my blog fix each day!!

cant believe youve met father christmas!! have the ice packs been used????