Today’s sportive was a lovely ride around Warwickshire. We started out in Kenilworth, gathered in front of Mike Vaughan’s bicycle shop. This was the closest ride to home we’ve ever been on so it wasn’t too early a start. It was a lovely Spring morning, sunny and crisp, cold in the shade but otherwise a really nice day for a ride. There seemed to be lots of keen club cyclists waiting around so I was expecting them to roar away into the distance as they are always pretty fit.
Once we got underway the route wound through the streets of Kenilworth, mostly pretty free of people on this early Sunday morning. On leaving the roads of the town riders started to string out and Erik and I soon lost our sense of where we were but between the GPS route map and the signage we were mostly pretty ok. We churned through the miles, past field after field, farm after farm.
The traffic was light and the villages we passed through were the typical pretty Warwickshire villages with chocolate box thatched cottages and local pubs with interesting names and wooden pub signs out front. (This is rather a theme—probably because we would have loved to have stopped.) One of the nice villages we went through was Harbury, which had a pub, the Crown Inn, that looked great. I think we’ll return there. The Fox and Hen near Southam looked promising. Another pub we noticed was the Joseph Arch, in Barford, which had a terrific sign on the side of the building. That sign alone makes it worth a visit. The final pub we’re going to nominate as looking great is the King’s Head, in Cubbington.
I started to feel pretty tired and achy as we got to around mile 30. I found that I kept looking at the GPS and it had hardly moved! Still by that point I knew that I’d be able to do the 39 miles—furthest I’ve ever ridden, I was also clear that it would hurt a bit!
Once we got back to Kenilworth we added some jeans over our cycling tights and headed in for lunch at Pomeroys – a place we love to eat in, nice food and good service. We actually had breakfast there yesterday too! After the cake I’d eaten on the road I wasn’t ravenous but was really grateful for a drink. We posed for a quick photo in Abbey Park before driving the short distance home.