My 2nd time at 24/12, first time racing. It may be a long way from anywhere (except Cornwall!), but it's the best race of its kind by far! Because of the distance, my GF and I decided to turn it into a very long weekend break (hence I've only just got home to get online), coming back home via Woolacombe, Exmoor, the Quantocks and Weston Super Mare after leaving the site on Monday morning which was nice!
Anyway... First time ever doing a solo for me. Only the 12hr (no way am I doing a 24 solo!), but I managed 12 laps and finished 14th out of 37, which I am more than pleased with! Camping with Jonny and Gareth of Loco racing (great effort guys, well done!) does bring home just how much quicker some people are, but as I've never spent more than 7hrs in the saddle in a day before, it was a genuine step up for me to do a 12hr solo, so I'm chuffed.
Highlights of the weekend (other than crossing the line and handing my bike to my mate not to have to get back on it again!) were:-
-Meeting Team Sumo, and spending hours on Sunday evening putting the world to rights over a couple of ciders with them.
-The general atmosphere and everyone cheering everyone on
-The marshalls just before one of the water crossings blaring tunes out of their pickup at huge volume!
-Matt Carr being as mental as ever on the Microphone
-Very nearly everyone (including all of Team Torq) being exceptionally polite when passing me... In fact prize for the most polite overtake definitely goes to Mike Hall.
-The catering... Normally I don't have to pay £4.50 to have to make my own (yes really!) Sausage and Bacon Bap. I appreciate they were busy, but what were they expecting? They could learn a few lessons from Quavers I'm afraid to say.
-The one guy who was desperate (on my 11th lap out of 12!) to get past me on a short sharp technical climb, who then held me up the moment he'd crested the climb and got onto following singletrack. I could have sworn but managed to almost bite my tongue muttering "if you're going to overtake me, ride faster than me" under my breath afterwards.
And that's about it to be honest. Thoroughly enjoyed it on the whole, and hope that the rumours of it moving from Newnham don't turn out to be true. Everyone I know that rode this year has said they'll definitely be back next year as long as it's happening.