Follow my leader (or not…)

OGIL ride 28th July 2021

Nobody felt particularly optimistic about the weather on this cool, damp and distinctly blustery morning, and we weren’t to be disappointed. Sunny intervals with showers was the forecast, and to be fair we did have some short bursts of sunshine. However, the showers seemed at times to have integrated both vertically and horizontally to give us extended periods of fairly heavy rain. It was a rain jacket on, then off, then on again sort of day.

The other source of initial consternation was Ian turning up with gears – this usually means we should expect being guided along a route with the climbing equivalent of at least twice up Mont Ventoux. However, it turned out that he had a gammy leg, the result of falling off the sofa (I may have got that wrong – but there was some kind of incident involving falling and a sofa).

To make things worse, there had been considerable confusion because of the presence of two Colins – we were lucky to be graced with the company of Thornbury Colin again this year on his holidays, replete with mysterious tubes and cables dangling from his backpack. Certain people who shall remain nameless (you know who you are Amanda and Kath) got their bibshorts in a complete twist on Whatsapp when Thornbury Colin innocently enquired about riding with us and asking to be added to the Whatsapp group. However, it all turned out OK, and having two Colins compensated for not having plural Phils on the ride (absent for different reasons).

Perranuthnoe was the chosen destination, and we rode there using the usual route, despite momentary confusion at Nancegollan when Ian appeared to suggest taking the right fork to Drym. A quick check of the time made it obvious that we needed to keep to the direct route to keep within the breakfast cut-off time (now we know what it feels like, Cav), and of course stomachs come pretty close to the top of the priority list with the OGILs.

We arrived at the Cabin after riding through just light showers, but we repaired to the marquee to keep out of the drizzle. The only disadvantage was that inside the marquee it was virtually impossible to hear the order numbers being called out, but those with unimpaired hearing and the helpful staff meant nobody missed out on their choice of refreshment. The rain cleared and the sun came out so we moved outside (it was relatively quiet considering we are now firmly in the holiday season) to finish off.

Riding home, John somehow managed to find himself at the front of the peloton, and unexpectedly turned right after leaving Goldsithney instead of carrying straight on to Leedstown as we usually do. Although there were mutterings, it was assumed charitably that John had an interesting alternative route in mind. When we paused at Millpool to regroup and find out what was going on, John denied all knowledge of wanting to lead us (except apparently up the garden path). As retracing our steps is anathema for the OGILs, it was decided that we had no choice but to take the next left and skirt round the north side of Godolphin Hill, thence to Godolphin Cross, Sithney, Truthall and Coverack Bridges. All was going well until we approached the junction with the Helston to Redruth road, when Steve unfortunately had a visit from the P fairy. As some of us gathered round to offer sympathy, advice and operate the stopwatch, others decided that Sunday lunch beckoned and abandoned the hapless victim. So much for the famed OGIL solidarity!

Dean the helper
I’ll just hold this for the next 15 minutes then
Doc Steve at work
Doc Steve takes the risk of infection seriously







I am told that the official time was 14 minutes and 55 seconds, which was claimed as a new OGIL record (I am not sure whether it was a new high or a new low), but of course comparisons are not straightforward. We need an agreed handicap system based on whether we are dealing with a front or rear wheel, time of year (working with numb fingers in winter is obviously an issue), tubed or tubeless and the level of help/hindrance provided by other riders – something for the Committee, perhaps? Despite Steve not finding any obvious cause of the deflation, we were soon up and running (well, riding) again with no further problems. Home for the now depleted group was via Wendron school and the usual route.

Apart from the wet stuff falling out of the sky and being held up a few times by traffic on the lanes, a thoroughly nice ride. 74 km for me.

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