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Now retired but busy still living..

Saturday 30 July 2011


Three weeks tomorrow I will be setting off for the outward journey to Gibraltar and the start of the 'Rock2UK' ride.

It was about this time last year whilst I was still undergoing radiotherapy that the idea was hatched. The very thought of a bike ride across the entire length of Spain and France gave me great strength and a lot of hope during a very dark episode in my life's story and although the recovery process has not all been plain sailing I am pretty certain that ROCK2UK enabled me to concentrate my focus on recovery and has helped get me to this point one year on.

Since ROCK2UK was first discussed the original plan has changed a number of times due to all the variables involved in arranging a trip like this.
Dave (broom wagon) Vaughan had told us that he would be unable to accompany us as support, as his employers would not give him the time off required. This meant that we faced the extra task of crossing Spain first to get to Gibraltar before heading back to the UK...it looked like it was going to be UK2ROCK2UK.
We had also hoped that we could  recruit some additional adventurous souls to ride with us.

The final plans are as follows.....

Dave HAS been able to negotiate some extra time from work by selling his soul to his employers...!!!
This means we will now be driven by Dave in the broom wagon to Plymouth on Sunday 21st August. We will then catch the ferry to Santander arriving there at about 12.00hrs local time on Monday 22nd. Dave will then drive us to Salamanca where we will stay overnight before continuing our journey to Gibraltar where we hope to arrive on the evening of Tuesday 23rd.
We will start the ride back to the UK on either the Wednesday or Thursday. Dave will accompany us with the support vehicle for the first four or five days and then he will head back home. We will be on our own as an unsupported ride for the rest of the trip.

No other possible riders came forward..........a lot of people said that they would love to do a ride like that, but were also able to put forward a score of reasons why they were unable to actually do so.....therefore it will be just JD and myself doing the pedal pushing.

For my part..although it has been a touch or go type of situation with my health all year... I have managed to continue with the training rides and by the time we set off I should have about 5,000miles under my belt so far this year.
One of the reasons for me doing this ride....apart from the pure cycling enjoyment of course....is to draw attention to the fact that even a diagnosis of cancer need not mean you cannot achieve your goals..!
Just go for it..... look at Lance Armstrong.

Both John and myself will be hoping to raise money for our respective chosen charities- more of which in another post.

As we approach the start of this trip over the next few weeks I will post more about the plans and our expectations of the ride itself.

Sunday 24 July 2011


Another year...and another Tour de France completed.
What a wonderful sporting event the Tour is. It never fails to deliver thrills and excitement and this year these carried right on up to the final line.

Cadel Evans proved a worthy winner (a first for Australia) - he had ridden a consistent race clawing back time where it was needed and battling through the mountain stages in classic style. His time trial around Grenoble was total cycling magic and a joy to watch. Overall a dogged and tenacious performance.

Mark Cavendish won the green jersey as well as that final stage( a first for the UK) .....to watch his team HTC all working together in order to deliver him to that springboard position was perfection.

As for the Schleck brothers....to get two brothers on that final podium is no mean feat as well as being another first.

We must not forget Thomas Voeckler either.....ten days in the yellow jersey and a truly heroic ride - his courage throughout the tour really was something to behold.

The only thing that I regret is that I now have to wait another year for what I think is the most exciting three weeks in the sporting calendar.


Six weeks off.

 The visit to see the Consultant went quite well really ...   My ' numbers' have started to creep up again so I am going to be given...