July 09, 2012

Team Dave 'Up Norf'' - Wiggle Tour of the Peaks Report

The Northern arm of Team Dave (aka  Team Dave 'Up Norf' - TDUN) took on the huge challenge of the Tour of the Peaks in late May. In what is a condensed version of the Tour de France in just one day, this one looked a lactate threshold beast and a half. To add a little extra to this 97 mile Goliath of a cycle event, it transpired to be the hottest day of the year, reminding the TDUN riders of the evenings they should have spent on the Turbo Trainer versus down the local Indian Restaurant downing their pints of Cobra.
Fantastic views as Team Dave 'Up Norf' storm The Peaks
Team Dave 'Up Norf' down a few pints of Cobra beer
before taking on the Cols of The Peaks!
Making his debut for the team was Adrian “ Dave “ Davey , who can legitimately claim his place within this esteemed group through not only his appropriate name but also his climbing ability that could potentially challenge King of the Mountain 'Everest' Hall. Dave-D's polka dot jersey would certainly be necessary to take on a huge 7,000 feet of mountain climbing over the glorious Peaks. Adrian has been welcomed to TD with open arms because, as MD for Cobra beer,  he could be persuaded to act as  refreshment sponsor for the TD Tour of the Alps in 2013 including le Marmotte!

Anyway, as the the Tour of Peaks kicked off from Chapel en le Frith, ferrets were neatly packed away and Team Dave UN made some last minute checks to their sun cream, spray tans, shaved legs and hydration supplies (note: check enough Cobra's packed) - TD cycling were off again! The peaks glistened in glorious sunshine as the boys set off in one of most beautifully scenic parts of the UK...What more could you ask for?Well looking at the gradient of the course - some flat roads was the first thought that sprang to their minds!!

You've heard of the saying you can't make an omelette without breaking eggs? Well in this case you couldn't create a 97 mile picturesque biking challenge in the Peaks without breaking the hearts, minds and legs of these TDUN riders! This was a challenge for the big boys....
Adrian “ Dave “ Davey
Note the cars crowd on the category 1
climb many of whom had camped overnight to
cheer on their 
Neale “ The Ferret “ Lewis
on the mighty Winnet’s Pass

The Peaks Challenge is just that - and more...it's a sportive that includes three of Britain's most iconic climbs - The Cat and Fiddle, Winnats Pass and Holme Moss and here's the more:
  • 11 x CAT 5 climbs
  • 2 x CAT 4 climbs
  • 3 x CAT 3 climbs
  • 1 x CAT 2 climb....................that's 7,070 feet of climbing....ouch!

Summit of the Col du Car and Fiddle with Team Dave 

setting a hot pace on the hottest Day of the year
The story is kept short as the undulations proceeded at pace. The boys were doing well...in fact so well that after conquering most of the Category 2 and 3 climbs with gritted teeth and clenched buttocks, their minds switched to the finish line with just 6 miles to go. Unfortunately however Ferret's legs had other ideas as cramp kicked in at  Buxton. A combination of dehydration and fatigue that not even Buxton's famous watering hole could resolve - the tank was well and truly drained. However, in true TDUN fashion, a few encouraging words from Adrian-DD along the lines of "...do you want to give up?" soon re-ignited the flame of Ferret, (well more a flicker than a flame), but this was enough to propel the bike and rider to the finish line. For this time at least, the bunch sprint had to wait until another day....

Team Dave UN riders both agreed as they pass the Wiggle finishing line...this was quite possibly the most challenging thing they had ever done…!
Neale focused on getting his smile right
on the Col du Cat and Fiddle

As both riders supped on their pints of Cobras to recuperate, Ferret Lewis could only comment to Adrian Davey-Dave what a great stint he'd put in throughout the day to literally drag his comrade over the Cols of The Peaks and across the finish line. Adrian however was too emotionally and physically drained to say anything constructive until a week after the event to reply!

Congrats go to TDUN for completing such an awesome challenge - Bring on the next one!