A crisp cool morning saw 11 Leek CC riders meet up for a slightly earlier than normal start, for the ride out to Congleton, to join the host club for their first reliability trial of the year.A fairly brisk pace over the Bridestones soon saw riders warmed up, and ready for the start of the trial. After signing on, we were joined by “Team Coates”, who had opted for the less taxing option of driving out, due to racing the previous day. A unanimous decision to ride conservatively, but quick (18mph target) was taken, and we would all ride together for as long as possible. With Andy Magnier, “human satnav” Phil Gayes and Rich Coates doing the majority of the early donkeywork, the pace was pretty constant, and no one was left behind as we went around the outskirts of Macclesfield, and towards Alderley Edge. A slight separation occurred as riders split to allow an ambulance past, but by Warford, and Ollerton we had all regrouped, and the Leek CC train was in full flow again, with most people doing a turn or three on the front, successfully fighting the headwind all the way down from Toft and Peover, to Middlewich. Leaving Middlewich, we entered back into the lanes, heading for Warmingham (Not the Dad’s Army setting!!), and into the outskirts of Crewe, where a diversion added a mile or two onto the correct route.At Winterley, we were back on track, and back into the lanes through Betchton, Smallwood, where we had our first casualty, as Phil Gayes decided his legs had done enough for the day, and was left to cruise the last few miles back into Congleton on his own.All our riders made the 18mph target average speed, and were greeted at the Congleton CC clubhouse with a well earned brew and biscuits ready for the, second trip of the day over the Bridestones.A great mornings riding had by all, and most eager for the 65 mile trial on the 18th of Feb.
Written by Club Rider Phil Gayes