Verenti Magnificat 2010

Another weekend, another sportive.  This time the Magnificat sponsored by Verenti.  Probably a bit too long at 205km but a good long ride in preparation for the Marmotte in a couple of weeks time.

Having been a little disparaging of the UK sportive scene earlier in the year I’ve had a change of heart.  Some of these events are terrifically well organised and give riders of all abilities something to have a go at. Yes,  there are lots of hairy legs around, and entry level bikes and people of all shapes, sizes and abilities – heck, some people even have the cheek to look as though they’ve turned up to enjoy themselves!

The whole event was very well organised; great facilities at the start/finish, quick sign-on, well signed and supported with decent feed stations.  I was also very grateful for the Mavic support who mended my gears so I had a very smooth ride.  Also the results were on the website by 20:00 the same day.  Amazing.

My goal for this event was quite simple.  I wanted to “win” it.  It takes a special kind of arrogance to look at a start sheet with 700 riders and believe that someone of my mediocre ability can get the fastest time but after the disappointment at the Dragon Ride I wanted a bit of payback.

90km Chase

I spent the first 90km kicking my own arse trying to catch the lead group.  We were set off in batches and PaulC and I were about 10 or 15 minutes down on the earliest starters.  I rode hard from the outset passing decreasing numbers of riders as the ride progressed.  I finally caught the lead group on the road and spent a couple of kilometres deciding what to do.

1424D-MAG01

105km Solo

We hit a feed station after which there was a small climb.  Without really trying I put a bit of a gap between me and the other riders.  Trying to solo until the end of the ride from this far out seemed like utter madness so I backed off.  Still the group didn’t catch me so I thought ‘fuck it’ and just went.  I figured ‘out of sight, out  of mind’ so I put a decent effort in for about 10km before ‘relaxing’ into a steady, hard pace.

So the question – could I hold off the group for 3 hours on my own?  I had the pleasure of my own motorbike outrider who was staying at the front of the ride which was pretty cool.

And that was it really.  I rode my balls off for 3 hours haunted by the fear of being chased down.

1424B-MAG01

The End

By the last 10kms I was pretty tired.  I was starting to get annoyed with the kilometres not counting down quickly enough and I was having to manage my legs a little as they were starting to cramp up.

With 2kms to go I got caught.  Not by the bunch, but by a team of three Torq (the nutritional sponsors of the event) Pro and Semi-Pro mountain bike riders that had set off 20 minutes or so after me.  I jumped on their wheels and rode with them until the end.

This meant that I didn’t win after all.  I came 4th which was still pretty respectable.  1st of the amateurs or 3rd of losers as a colleague of mine would say. 

Here’s a wee chart showing the first 30 finishers – in the end there were just over 400 finishers of the 127 mile ride.  Quite a few must have switched to the shorter route.

magnificat

PaulC had a great day also; despite some mechanical woe still managing 12th place.

No Comments on “Verenti Magnificat 2010”

  1. 1 Simon Roberts said at 2:06 pm on June 17th, 2010:

    Good performance. you should mash up the marmotte. No mechanicals? (Should have stayed with Shimano)

    I have been in the Dolomites for a week. I did the Maratona Dles Dolomites course, which I thoroughly recommend. Easily the most spectactular circuit I have ever done. It ended up being a solo ride for me, 6 hours 16 mins for 138kms, 4100m of climbing. I guess that will put me over an hour behind you on the Marmotte.

  2. 2 paulnixon said at 3:31 pm on June 19th, 2010:

    Simon

    Thanks.

    No mechanicals thankfully. Maybe Shimano would have been better. However, now I have a new chain (and Mavic gave it a little love) the SRAM works pretty well. Time will tell.

    Dolomites. Presumably the Italian mountain range and not the spotty dogs? (not sure why I said that). That sounds like proper training – I’m very jealous.

    I did 2.5 hours on my raised front 300PT… not quite the glamour!

    Onwards, hopefully catch up in France

    Paul