The Tour Divide is off the menu for me this year. It’s a long story, it was kind of out of my hands but there’s no fallings-out or drama over a bike ride. I’ll just do other stuff. Guy’s still going to do it and I’ll help him to prepare for it as much as he needs me to.
We’re both riding coast to coast in Scotland, including all of the 7 Stanes red trails, then hopping on a ferry to Northern Ireland and riding coast to coast there too (including the red-grade trail centres over there) in a couple of weeks. Back in time for work on Monday. The ride is in aid of the Ride For Michael charity and we’re being joined along the way by various mates and cheerers-on. It’ll be ace. In fact donate some money on the Ride for Michael website in recognition of me and Guy having to put up with each other’s shit jokes for 4 days.
Then I’ll be doing the 3 Peaks fell race, just to get this running thing out of my system for another few months.
I’m going to ride the Rumble in the Jungle MTB stage race in Sri Lanka in June (which coincidentally starts on the same day as the TDR). I’ve ridden my bike for long distances on repeated days before loads of times, but I’ve never taken part in a stage race nor have I ever been to a country where I need loads of inoculations beforehand, so that’ll be novel. I’ll be riding as a Singletrack Magazine “our man in the East” reporter so expect to see loads of inane drivel and photos of me riding bikes and eating curry later on…
I’m also planning to head down to Switzerland a week or so after Sri Lanka to have a crack at the European 24 Hour Solo Championship. I assume it’ll be a hilly one, that.
Apart from these adventures I’ll be lining up at as many UK MTB Marathon, 24 hour and XC events as I can before the grand finale to 2016, the UK 24 hour Champs in Fort William in October.
The Tour Divide however is right under my skin now, so the plan (my plan) is to do it next year, providing I can raise the necessary backing (and cash!) to do so.