Spend the night before prepping food and making sure that I have everything I needed. Cooked me some sweet potatoes for easy eating during the ride, packed plenty of energy gels, energy bars and waterproof jacket just in case the storm hit us on the way back in the afternoon.
In the hope to get an extended rest by calling it a night early but turned into a restless sleep with the brain activities skyrocketed with worst-case scenarios could happen during the event day. Keep on telling myself repetitively to get to sleep, but eventually, I passed out not sure when it happens but glad it did. Woke up not feeling satisfied and tired, collecting all the gear I need before my partner drops me off near Alexandra Gardens just around 5 am on Sunday.
Starting Location at Alexandra Gardens
Good to see plenty of riders turn up to the event ready to go, find me in category three as my starting point. Met a lovely guy from Queensland who came all this way to attend the event for the first time. We kept each other’s company until the signal was given to start our journey.
It was a plodding start getting away from the city, plenty of traffic lights stopping and starting. Eventually, we all made our way out and over to the Westgate Bridge for a first and slow climb. I lost my riding partner and was alone, but join a group who was doing 33kph for most of the way to Werribee where I should have stuck with a slower pace group to conserve energy.
Due to the tough and faster ride, I feel tired, and legs were about to give out. I decided to take it easy and stick to 23-27kph to catch my breath – some areas with the wind I was doing 18kph and feel as though I would not make it to the ferry by 1 pm but I just kept on paddling with one leg at a time.
The weather could not have been any more than perfect, lovely cool breeze to help keep you cool and most of it all makes it easier to enjoy the ride. Luckily for me but it was hard to see riders pulling over because their tyre popped and have to replace the tube. During the course, I was thinking to myself not to let this happen to me as I am short for time.
After my fast pace group I dropped off soloing for rest of the trip to Queenscliff as I could not keep up with anybody, now and then small groups of riders passed me. During my break at Geelong, I met a couple of guys who are friends, and we chat for a bit as we consume food for energy and taking a toilet break. We said we would ride together but as I was short on time and they seem to be at a slower pace than me, so I went ahead to keep on pushing solo.
Severe headwind approach when I reached the coastal route to Queenscliff, this is where the extra 40kms comes in to make the 250kms. The wind was crazy, and I was doing 18-20kph at best. Stop a couple of times along the way to refill food and energy bar.
Just in Time
Made it to Queenscliff for the 1 pm ferry to Sorento with just 15 minutes to spare. The lovely lady gave me lunch and said to relax so I went to buy myself an iced coffee and as I was starting to drink the boarding announcement came on. It left me with no choice but to skull my sweet cold drink…cry. I must say it was a bloody good coffee indeed and kept me refreshed.
Met a new buddy during the break-in Queenscliff who had also ordered iced coffee and left to drink it in a hurry haha. He kept me company on the way back from Sorento to the finish line.
Facing the Storm
Everything was perfectly fine until we just passed Mordialloc to face the thunderstorm, the strong wind pushed us onto the road. We had no choice but to pull over for a bit, but we decided to keep on paddling and off we went. My new buddy was taking it easy during the rain as I start to pick up speed and getting more confident in the wet conditions. The rain gave me a second wind that keeps me fresh for the trip to Brighton before the storm stop and lost track of my riding buddy.
We met again at the finish line to congratulate each other on one hell of a good ride!!!
Click to watch my video below.