Club Spin 14th April (racing group)
Baltic. That’s the only way to describe it. Six hardy souls left Parkvale ready for a nice late spring spin to be met with arctic winds and snow lined edges. How Richie managed with with summer gloves and 2 layers is beyond me. Rule No. 5 with No. 9 added for good measure.
We had discussed routes and the day ahead with the touring group prior to leaving. Paula, Aisling and Aidan were adamant that they wished to be left to their own devices in training for their summer goals. I argued long and hard against this hoping for a nice steady spin to get the measure of the much hyped touring group. The talk of coffee stops, cheese cake and good company had me prepared for a nice easy day. Having left Wicklow an hour earlier to strong Northerly winds and a practically unmanageable N11, due to slush on the hard shoulder, the motivation to slug it out with the club heavyweights had dipped slightly.
I was overruled however and 6 of us headed out towards Enniskerry at a steady pace. Cresting the back of the Poggio things started to get tasty. We ramped up toward’s the long hill, with increasing pace, testing each others fitness levels. The long hill was the first real test of the day as Richie, Martin and Michael traded places setting the pace towards the top of the long hill. We regrouped at the top. A tailwind encouraged the high pace with some up and overs on the spin to Roundwood. Snow sat on the hills reflecting what sun there was as we admired Martins’ “Orbea” and Brians’ “Pinerallo” when they came through to take a turn.
Under time constraint the group was reduced to Kevin, Martin, Richie, Brian and I, as we proceeded to Laragh. We cruised into Laragh for some scalding drinks and tactical discussions for the following days race in Stanmullen.
It was here that I bid farewell to my teammates. They headed for the Wicklow gap en route home. I passed the very same Gentleman that Paula saw who told me his name was Joe Conway, a member of St Tiernans from years gone by. He passed on his regards to Andy and any others who rode with him.
My journey took me to Rathdrum, Rathnew and back through Ashford. This was hard lonely work into strong chilling North Easterly winds. A total of 110k for the day with some good hard intervals & steady state wasn’t bad given the day.
by Barry Doyle