Deloitte Ride Across Britain Day 5

 

Setting off from Carlisle on the 5th day of the Deloitte Across Britain was a voyage into the unknown for me, due to the fact I am an airhead and had brought the wrong charger for my electronic gears battery. Not the brightest thing to have done but with the red warning light on, it meant that I was down to around 50km's of battery life, with a 185km stage in front of me!

 

Sarah Storey Deloitte Ride Across Britain Day 5

 

There was going to be a charger waiting for me in Haydock [thanks Bex and Nick!] but the plan for the day with the red light on was to be as efficient as possible with my gear changes and especially in the first 50km as there was a ride over Shap to enjoy and I didn't dare be caught in the 53 chain ring with a block headwind! It was a day of all seasons, with the morning seemingly quite nice, but then the drizzle turned into a full on downpour and by the time I'd finished climbing Shap, there was no visibility at all for quite a few hundred metres. Just as I entered the gloom there was a set of traffic lights where workmen were replacing the weather damaged road, but the fog was coming over in such waves and it was possible to see the next really thick patch being blown over the hillside. It was like something out of a movie!

 

My relief at descending into Penrith was not only because the skies had brightened but also that i had the chance to change gear again!

 

There was still over 100km to ride so I stuck the gear into 53x19 and that is where it stayed until I approached Garstang some 2 hours later! The route was undulating so I was spinning out and freewheeling on the downhills and then grinding it out of the saddle on the uphills. Having the Di2 electronic gears has been an amazing help in allowing me to change gear whilst out of the saddle, but for today i was just out of the saddle on the climbs and constantly reminding myself that I might not have another gear change left in the battery. The 2nd pit stop was around 90km from the finish so it was a good 3 hour ride before I knew I was safe and was able to cruise into the Haydock Race Course and the awaiting camera crew from Granada reports.

 

Sarah Storey Deloitte Ride Across Britain Day 5 Finish

 

The final few kilometres had seen the heavens open again, so not for the first time I was soaked to the core again!

 

After drying off and catching up with our soigneur from the ride last year, Colin Baldwin for another awesome massage [well needed after all that fixed gear riding!] I was back at camp to host the Deloitte Evening with the GB Paracycling team. As Deloitte's Sports Ambassador for 2012, it was my privilege to interview some of my team mates and also our Programme Lead Coach, Chris Furber. Asking the questions is a new thing for me, so it was good to be chatting to people I knew really well.

 

 

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