Bob Burden Writes ……….
Kent CA Open 12 Hour, Sunday 9th August 2009
Once again it was the second Sunday in August and time for the highlight of the time trial year for me! It was up at the crack of dawn, sadly not to ride but to assist two of our riders, Mark Amon and Dave Wheeler, both of whom were riding their first twelve hour event. Dave’s preparation with drinks and food left nothing to chance with an array of proteins and carbohydrates or something like that (as one who has ridden all his long distance events on sultanas and liquorice allsorts and a few gallons of orange juice I was well out of my depth). Luckily Aly Nye loaded her car with their equipment and food and was ready for the ordeal, it was rumoured that having Dave’s spare wheels in the car more than trebled its value!
The first problem of the day came when Bronwen Ewing, unaware of the CTT rulings on clothing turned up in a “trade top” and had to wear my top for the event, I hope that it doesn’t expect that speed when its returned to me! To replace my shirt I found that I had been placed in a marshals jacket and standing for the first hour at the end of Kiln Lane sending the riders towards Ashford, I resisted the temptation to encourage with the shout of “Only eleven hours fifty nine minutes to go”.
All twelve of the Rye Wheelers who entered the event started, yet another credit for the club. Of the dozen five (Carmen Kubisa, Andy Croft, David Bryant, Mark Amon and Dave Wheeler) were riding their first “twelve”, all five completing the course. Paul Simpson riding his second “twelve” managed to complete his first. Granville Bantick, Steve Maxted and Jim Hollands were as reliable as ever all riding the event in their own ways. Bronwen Ewing and Barry Goodsell had a battle of their own going on which produced personal bests and club records from both of them. Dave Spice was the unfortunate rider who had to abandon with severe cramp, but credit to both him and his wife Sue they were soon around the course supporting the other riders.
It was a long day for many of the other Club members who were either supporting riders or marshaling (in some cases both), Rod Harrow was at the Bethersden headquarters not long after 5 a.m. Offering support to Carmen, Granville and Steve. Julie and Lucy Bryant, plus a shift system from Liz King, Ali Steed and Jane Reeve took care of Dave Bryant, Paul, Andy and Jim. It was left to Craig Ewing to look after both Bronwen and Barry while Sue Spice was there for husband Dave. The site of Julie and Lucy’s table laid out to perfection at both Appledore and Sugar loaf left one speechless. Both Gary Booth and Ros Harrow did marshaling stints before joining other club members to support the riders. Gordon Sherwood and John Ashdown also did stints of marshaling for the event. Bob Giles, fresh from his ten mile Personal best, had the unenviable task of turning the riders from the A2070 towards Sugarloaf.
Mrs. Goodsell was out supporting Barry and dissuading Bronwen, to add support she brought along her sister and young Alfie. As always it great to exchange banter with her, I should have learnt by now that I will only come off second best. How can anyone by so bubbly after such a long day?
What a great day for the club, Bronwen Ewing (224.216), Dave Wheeler (250.761) and Barry Goodsell (243.571) all set new club records, unfortunately Barry’s only stood for three minutes. Even better news was to come, the three of them had a total distance of 718.518 miles which gave them the first team prize beating the “Elan” and “Fairies” by 4 and 5 miles respectively. Carmen Kubisa completed her first “twelve” covering 178.147 miles. Mark Amon (197.040) and Andy Croft (206.003) also did well in their first event. Jim Hollands was disappointed not to break the 200 mile barrier but his 190.154 still gave him the over 70 club record. Paul Simpson (176.199) completed for the first time, but puts it down to the pampering he received from the ladies of the club. David Bryant must have been pleased to complete his first “twelve” with a very creditable 176.199 miles. Steve Maxted and Granville Bantick must be pleased with their rides of 183.620 and 166.076 respectively.
The awards didn’t stop there as Bronwen picked up the award for second best improvement turning the tables on Barry who took the award for third best improvement.
What a great way for all of the riders to thank their helpers!