Arch to Arc completed!

Hi. I’m new here. I’ve been blogging my training for Arch to Arc on my own site, and knowing that I’d be sure to write up my experience once it was complete, Andy asked my to sign up and post them here, too. So this is what I’ve just published on my site.

Trevor Coultart, Arc to Arc rider 2010.

 Well, we did it. Eleven cyclists. 266 miles. Four days. And only one puncture.

Marble Arch, Thursday 8am.
Eleven riders raring to go.

What an amazing experience it was. Apart from a few hills that were damned hard work, I loved every minute. Heck, even the hills weren’t that bad, as a long climb was almost always rewarded by a fantastic sweep back down the other side.

In f act, I was amazed at how I got on. The first day alone was the longest I’d ever ridden, so I thought that the next day would be hard work right from the start, but I was delighted to discover that I felt just the same on day two as I had on day one. And so it continued. My thighs are aching, and I’m a bit saddle sore, but apart from that I feel absolutely fantastic.

I’m quite sure that there’s no way I could have undertaken such a ride alone. The random bunch of cyclists who came together to do this ride turned out to be a lovely group, and it was a pleasure to ride with them. And an ideal number, too: enough to group and ride as a bunch, to help one another along, to encourage, support, cajole, and mock one another. And few enough that over four days we could actually get to know one another and it soon felt like riding with friends. I suspect that would be less likely to happen riding with a much bigger group. It was great to have the benefit of a couple of experienced club riders who could advise us on all sorts of technical, physiological, psychological and practical issues, and also others who, like me, had never done anything remotely like this before. At least a couple had hardly ridden since childhood until signing up for this ride. But we stuck together, and all made it in one piece. We’ve all swapped contact details; I hope some of us manage to stay in touch.

And we also couldn’t have done it without the support of an amazing crew. At every stop – or whenever we needed – we had an endless supply of water, energy bars, snacks, sweets available. And picnic lunches of fresh french bread, cheeses and meats, cakes, crisps – as much as we needed. All served up from the back of a big white van.

Arc de Triomphe, Sunday 2pm.
A well-earned glass of champagne or three.

Overall, I’m so utterly glad I’ve done it. People have asked if I’ll do it again next year. Initially, I said not. But it occurs to me that if I could persuade a few friends to do it with me, I might consider it. Anyone fancy a challenge?

This is just a short report until I can get myself sorted to write up each day in detail. I’m back at work today (!) so not sure when I’ll get started on it.

Posted under Arch To Arc 2010

This post was written by trevorcoultart on June 28, 2010

Just a week left to the great Kidney Cancer Arch to Arc Cycle Ride!!

We’re so close now to the event,  just a few days and we’re all off to Paris and if the weather holds like it is today it’ll be fantastic !

The team have raise over £22,000 so far and the contributions still seem to be coming in…. what an effort!

It sounds like the team have been training hard and every-one’s physically ready, but don’t forget to give yourself a few days off before we go, time to taper off as they say.  My final ride will be on Sunday (the London to Brighton) and I’m just going to take it nice and easy and enjoy the day.  I can’t do anymore than I’ve done and my experience from doing it back in March tells me that it’s worth being well rested up before we start. 

Also If you can get to your local bike shop before we go then it’s worth getting them to give it a quick check over, however a certain amount of spares will be taken and we have a spare bike in the support van if all else fails.  There are cycle shops along the route (at least in Boulogne and Aberville so we can get parts if needed, they all seemed to be very helpful)

As before, if you’ve got any questions about logistics or anything then let me know, I’m taking the whole of next week off so I have plenty of time to run around for people if needed.  We have a final pre-event meeting over at the James Whale Fund on Monday where we’ll do our final checks.

Everyone should have received their Arch to Arc tops by now, and here’s a picture of one of the riders modelling it for us …nice hip work Trevor!!  Makes it all seem much more real, the excitement for me is palpable.

The Official Arch to Arc Shirt

I’ve been forced into riding my push-bike into work this week due to a flat tyre on my motorbike :(   I was only intending to ride in one day this week, but never mind at least the sun’s out.  My BMW dealership love to delay things, I almost feel guilty asking them for anything, it’s like they’re doing me some big favour allowing me to buy one.  Anyway, enough of that I could rant for hours on how badly I’ve been treated as a customer.

As for next year’s ride, I’ve been plodding around the streets of London during my Lunch-hours going into as many cycle shops as possible asking them to put up a poster and leaving them with a batch of leaflets, they’ve all been pretty nice about it so far and CycleSurgery and Evans Cycles have both given me contacts in their head office marketing departments. 

We’re looking to learn from this year’s ride and extend it to 50 people next year so it’s going to mean a lot of leg work to get the riders.  Jane and the kids have agreed to hand out leaflets at the London to Brighton event this weekend to see if tapping into a targeted audience has any impact.  I’m of the belief that doing as many of the Cycling Sportif’s as possible this year and handing out leaflets and talking to people may be the best way forward.  Anyway, nothing to lose by trying that approach.

If you’re reading this and still want to donate then please click on one of the links at the bottom of this blog, if we could get to £25,000 this year … well, wow!!

Please sponsor me by clicking on either of these links VirginGiving or JustGiving

Posted under Andy Thomas, Arch To Arc 2010, Arch To Arc 2011

This post was written by AndyThomas on June 16, 2010