With the cycling racing season is now in full swing with Team Sky racking up their best start to a season so far and Mark Cavendish (Etixx-QuickStep) already with 5 wins, more that any other pro rider this year with races in Australia, South America and the Middle East.
A tough day in the saddle with 3 ascents and descents of Cragg Vale the longest continuous climb in the UK, clinic I left my home at 8am and stayed low in Airedale valley to meet Ben Wood in Keighley, the Garmin was hovering around -5oc with wind chill and the finger ends numbed. A steady climb up through Oxenhope and over the tops and down into Hebden Bridge, the descent was sketchy with ice patches and slippery road surfaces in places. So onto Cragg Vale, something I had only been told about from cycling mates an awesome climb and one that would provide simulation for Ventoux. For me this was a recce to set out a plan to ride this regularly during the build to up Race to Space, with an increasing amount of ascents as our schedule builds towards our July target date.
This was a really clear day as we approached Cowling Pinnacle, seek this was to be our first Ultra6 Race to Space group filming session with use of a video drone and a long road ascent to the top to create some amazing images and film. But of course as ever the Yorkshire winter brought with it freezing snowy conditions with ice patches that froze the team to their bones.
Ben Wood, price Nicky Jovanovic and Andy North went out to climb a local hill with a bad reputation ‘MURDER MILE’, this was Ben’s childhood riding days re lived and it sure was murder after 5 ascents and descents of the hill with legs on fire and weakening with every turn of the crank, Ben and Nicky set of fast and hard whilst Andy took and rest and filmed the lads racing each other in sections.