Ed,s Dragon Challenge

New club member Ed Wells took on both the Dragon Ride and 5 Valleys Sportive, wearing club colours for the first time.

……… Tough Climbs on the Dragon Devil Route……

In June, Ed entered the 296 km ‘Dragon Devil’ route. With no particular target other than staying within the cut off times, Ed set off from Margam Park at 0630 passing over Sardis Hill, Glyneath Hill and the Black Mountain to the second checkpoint in Llandovery. All was well up to this point, with fair weather and good legs. Pushing North over the Sugar Loaf and on towards the Devil’s Staircase, the weather started to turn and his eTap front mech started playing up, eventually leaving him stuck in the granny ring for nearly 200km. Heading south again over Bwlch Cerrig Duon, Bwlch Bryn-Rhudd and the Devil’s Elbow the rain really started pouring and the fatigue was starting to set in. Heading up the Rhigos, Ed was looking forward to heading up the final climb of the Bwlch, but just shy of Treherbert was turned round due to an accident so had to head back up the Rhigos and down the Neath valley, with a final cramp inducing climb over the Cimla. Ed finally crossed the line 13 hours and 27 minutes later.

In August was back at Margam Park as club president Chris managed to secure him a spot on the Five Valleys Sportive. With a far more sociable start time of 0900, Ed set off towards Talbot Green, where he was shepherded up Smaelog Wood by Chris acting as marshal for the day. Ed was going well until puncturing near Gilfach, but managed to make up time setting a personal best up the southern side of the Bwlch. Climbing up the Rhigos, the route was similar to the amended end of the Dragon Devil but this time without the cramps going up the Cimla!

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