The 2024 Gralloch – we go again

My first, in fact, THE first Gralloch last year was fun. Big fun. But it felt like a bit of a learning exercise, and this year my firness was much better. I was excited, and, dare I say relaxed? I was just going to throw myself into it with all that I learned in 2023. But that was about as good as it got in terms of results and outcomes. A day of misfortune and balls-ups.

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Lil and Dave Les Houches ski trip 2024

Feeling like I fell on top of the ‘lucky git’ pile. It’s a long story, but I mentioned to Katie about a year ago that I felt that Elsie got a lot more of my time that Lily did, because of our shared love of cycling, and the trips that Elsie and I have made to things like the cyclo-cross worlds in Hoogerheide, or the Tour de France in Paris. Katie suggested I should take Lily on a ‘school time’ ski break.

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Gralloched

Gralloch definition

How apt. More on that later.

A biggie

This was the second year of the UCI Gravel series and the first time a round had been held in the UK. The Gralloch was going to be exciting, star-studded, and a proper decent race. That it took place 3 hrs drive from home was a luxury and a lure. Plus, loads of the ‘cross people were there, too. It’s always a small world in off road cycling.

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Cross at cyclo-cross – I’m on my knees

Not sure what to make of my cyclo-cross at the moment. On the one hand, I have great times and love the company, scene, people and racing. It’s pure, it’s serious, but it’s fun and friendly. But I’m fighting some proper demons at the moment with injury. I’ve had injuries before and worked out a way through or round them. But the latest thing (knee, totally out of the blue) really feels like a proper blocker.

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3 Ups and 3 downs

I shouldn’t let the 3 Peaks Cyclo-cross get to me like this. I should know better. I’ve had my day in many ways and know that I’m never going to have another belter of a result in this beautiful race after 22 times around those hills. But this is what the race does to you. It gets inside you and niggles away.

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Summer in Scotland – COVID calls for last minute panic holiday plans

In the strangest of years, the simplest of lovely holidays. When we’d originally planned to go to Portugal for the summer hols and meet up there for a spell with Sally and Simon & family, the idea of a COVID compromise of a trip to Scotland seemed a bit of a poor cousin. And in the run-up to that trip, it seemed like even that might be a stretch, too.

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A Lockdown story – Getting the band together for a party.

Strange times. We all agree. And like everybody, Coronavirus-compromises have been made, and good times put on hold.

Amongst the irritations for me this spring was the 50th birthday party I had planned for 100 or so friends on Easter Saturday.

Part of the evening’s fun was to get some music friends together to play some of my favourite songs. People who had never played in the same band or together, but all of whom had played music with me at some time in my 50 years.

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