Rencontre Multidaymen la Toure de France.
Yes thatís the title, Two of the original Multidaymen ride again.
Karen over the years our Number 1 supporter. A multiday woman veteran of all the
had been quite a traumatic time over recent months, Our father sadly passed away
after a long illness. Plus Jill had to have surgery for breast cancer.
The Tour de France Grand depart in Yorkshire was big business and living in
North Yorkshire you couldn't help BUT be sucked in to Tour Fever. yellow bikes
appearing on every wall and street corner, French flags etc. etc.
I was really pleased when Colin said he and Karen were going to travel down to
my house to watch the tour and what did I suggest. Parking was at a premium,
roads would be closed from early morning. So living 4 miles from the route was a
bonus. We could cycle down to watch.
the Friday afternoon I was working in Harrogate so in the pouring rain I had a
walk around the finish on the Stray. Wow I had not realized how big business it
was. Fan Park plus vehicles and media from all over the world. I had also called
into Ripon lots of Tour tourists walking around.
Saturday morning at Marton le moor on 5th July. After a wet overnight deluge. It dawned fine and warm and sunny and no wind. The tour was due to pass through Ripon from 2pm onwards Colin and Karen arrived around 12 noon, Colin had the bikes offloaded and up and running in minutes, Colin on his trek racing bike that is a commerative limited edition to Lance Armstrongs 7 tour wins, hope he doesn't get booed. Karen was on Colins Merida mountain bike.
We had a coffee and some pics
before setting off. My task
was to find a good place to watch The Race. We cycled out up Cana Lane and down
towards Sharow, nice and sunny and a nice steady pace. No one was around and
this would not last.
got onto the Sharow Lane and despite the road closed signs there was a steady
stream of cars going towards Ripon. As we neared Sharow one family had parked at
the top of the bank and were off loading bikes you had to smile. Then into
Sharow cars parked up every street, cricket field open for parking even a chap
had opened his paddock and painted stones yellow to point out Tour parking.
the bottom of Sharow lane it was wall to wall people usually this is a sleepy
got down onto the by pass, now find a spot to view. A marshal jumped on us asked
where we were going. Don't ride your
bikes he shouted. Then (as everyone knows on multiday men trips something funny
always happens.) we were pushing our bikes to go along the by pass, when a young
police officer said the road is closed you
cant ride your bikes. I noticed his helmet badge was Northumbria Police, I said
to him what's Northumbria doing all the way down here. He said how do you know I
am from Northumbria, I said its says so on your helmet. He then took off his
helmet and looked at his badge, much to the amusement of everyone especially his
said well I can stop you riding but I cant stop you walking and if you are pushing a
bike so be it.
we walked and found a good spot right in front of an RAC van managed to take
over a section of crash barrier to
sit on too. It was a great spot on a
sweeping bend we could watch the passing show. We even had red wine, French of
course, brie and pate for lunch. The
Police bikes, Entertainment and promotion vehicles the media its was endless
everything from a Vintage car to a fruit shoot.
the riders themselves you knew they were arriving as the helicopters circling
got closer and when they passed I will always remember the
wind they generate, amazing everyone applauded
and cheered all the riders. It
must Have taken 3 1/2 hrs. for everything to pass, we then cycled up to Ripon
Market place a spectator hub to watch the finish on the big screen, along with
1000's of others.
the cycle home along the via the racecourse through the crowds, but after
passing over the river and turning right towards Skelton we were back in quiet
countryside once more.
multiday men ride I had even put my panniers on. As we cycled along Skelton
Colin summed up what I was thinking, I have missed our Multiday men trips. Yes I
have too Colin.
cycled up through the farm lanes back too Marton le moor a 10 mile round trip in
the sunshine. Karen did well too.
We finished off the day with a lark about me and Colin with bikes and flags, Karen on the camera,
BBQ in my back garden and a couple more glasses
sitting in the sunshine.
perfect end to a near perfect day.
THE ORIGINAL MULTIDAYMEN WILL RIDE AGAIN
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