ITS ABOUT THE WHEEL


jamie TT event and other stuff 187

I hate being late ……….. what I should say is HATE BEING LATE!!!!! 

If I am late for something/anthing I get into a sort of panic attack situation.  My throat closes, I start crying, my palms get all sweaty and I really just get very upset.  Its just really a hot mess if I am running late.

Anyway …….  On Saturday morning Jamie is riding in 2 man TT’s.  To the layman this is a road cycling thing where you have a two man teams, each team has their own start time and the team must go flet out for a certain distance and the fastest team wins.

We leave home well in time for Jamie to put his bike together and have at least a half and hour warm up.  Off we get to Greenbushes an area our side of Port Elizabeth.  And we simply cant find the venue.

We have a map and no phone call or studying of the map can help us find the place.  We even try following race arrow pointers and no way hoze can we find the place that should be quite easy to find because there will be hundreds of cars and even more cyclists.

I can feel my throat closing and the panic starting ……… I am in a mess ……. 20 minutes before Jamie is due to start we finally see a whole heap of cars in a totally random road.

We park at the end of the cue of cars and jump out of our car.  Jamie gets to the boot and takes his frame out the car.  He looks, double looks and his lip hits the pavement.

He says the dreaded words ………

“I’ve left my front wheel at home”.

Now if had just been Jamie at the race we would have packed our stuff and ridden out of Dodge.  But this was a team event, already Keith had been waiting patiently for Jamie to arrive ……….. and now to blast this on him just wasn’t fair.

There was just no way that we were going to let Jamie NOT ride this race.

I check down the road, there are loads of cyclists and loads of cars ……….. surely someone will have a spare front wheel for us!

I start running down the road loudly asking (read screeching) “Does anyone have a spare front wheel for us????”

Up and down I go ……. Lots of “no sorry”,  “I rode here” and “you dont have a helmet/cleat/ pump for us”.

Its beginning to look quite bleak.

I try again and run up the road, up the speedhumps, down the speedhumps and up up up the road.  People are beginning to look at me as if my own wheels have falled off.

Teams have already started racing.

About 1 km up the road, right at a speed hump a person says to me “I’ve got one”.

She hands me the wheel.

I stand on the speed hump and doing a sort of Mel Gibson Braveheart move, I hold the wheel up high and shout …. “JAMIE …………. WE HAVE A WHEEL”

Right at the end of the cars, very calmly, Jamie is getting dressed, Frans is mixing his energade …. all in the calm knowledge that Mom will sort this horrible situation out.

Frans looks up the road.

Jamie looks up the road.

Frans says nothing.

Jamie says, “I’m very happy Mom found a wheel but I wish she would stop screeching”

I cant talk anymore ………… I’m kaput!

The moral of the story ………… Well …………… when the wheels fall off shout for Mom.

The End.

KAROO 2 COAST


You all know that cycling Ad ……. yip you do know!  It starts with this plumpish oke looking longingly at a group of cyclists, they are all in club kit, and they are cycling in a pack as only cyclists can do.  Next thing plump oke is sweating it away on a bike, not in club kit and definitely not as cyclists do.   But as in all good Ad’s plump oke overcomes all obstacles, becomes one of the cyclists and gets his club kit – and all in 30 seconds.  It can’t actually be a particularly good ad because I have no idea what the ad is for but the story is good.

Now this is Ad is playing out in my house in real time.

Seven days ago Frans announces that he is going to cycle the Pennypinchers Karoo to Coast Race.

The Pennypinchers Karoo to Coast is a particularly gruelling Mountainous Cycle race starting in Uniondale and finishing in Knysna – 100 km’s of pure hell.  From what I have heard there is even a farmers truck or two which are dedicated to the many cyclists who fall and break bones and bikes – these trucks are called the “meat wagons”.

The blurb on the dedicated website states:

The Lions Karoo to Coast is a 100km offroad race from UNIONDALE to KNYSNA via the Prince Alfred’s Pass 100 km offroad Race and is not for the faint-hearted !!!

Now whilst I have the deepest respect for my Husbands sporting ability, all of his achievements have happened on water, all of them have happened whist he is sitting on a yacht – he is a respected YACHTSMAN, cycling however a different kettle of fish.

I also know he will do it.  He does these things and once he sets his mind on something little will come between him and his goal (hopefully not a vehicle named the Meat Wagon)

In the past his Yachts have been masterpieces, they are primped and tweaked, Banjo he built and finished building himself ………. so lets see what he is going to ride the K2K on:

Bike – A twenty year old Gary Fisher with no shocks or suspension of any kind.

Helmet – Bought at the same time as the bike – it doesn’t look the same as Jamies helmet.

Kit – None

Cleats – none

Pump – one

So off he goes on his first 30 km training session ever.

On his twenty year old bike, with his twenty year old helmet, wearing a “Mykonos offshore Race” T-shirt, baggies  and running shoes.  In  his hand is his handheld GPS – last seen being used in the Simonstown to St Helena Race on Banjo.

“Ummmmm, Sweetheart whats that for???”   I ask.

“Gonna use it as my speedometer”

Will someone tell the man he is cycling and not sailing!!!!

He Loved it.

Now Jamie begins to see the benefits in his Dad being bitten by the cycling bug.  Our dinner table has been taken over by cycling chatter – mostly about how the two of them are going to tackle this gruelling experience.  Frans sees the K2K as an experience – Jamie only has one speed on a bike – FLET OUT!  Jamie is talking about all the kit they need to do the K2K – Frans is adamant he can do it with what he has on hand.

Jamie wants a sponsor – Frans tells him he already has one – DAD!

Jamie is talking about camel-packs, Go-Pro’s, 29’ers, tubes, kits, more tubes, energy bars, when to drink water, arm warmers, leg warmers, Borat looking suits and training programmes.  Jamie is talking about how to tackle the hills up and down – Frans is working out how much heaver a bike is than a back-pack for the push-to-cycle ratio  – Frans is thinking about survival rates.

Both are totally ignoring each others K2K bubble of expectations.

My boys are bonding on a level I never would have imagined.

On the 23rd of September my boys are going to be at the start-line of the K2K, along with 3000 other riders.    Rosie and I will be there to cheer them on at the Start and the finish.

The St Helena Island yacht race was our “mid-life crisis” thing.  I am not sure what this is.

I am loving this common thread of cycling that is starting to weave its way into our lives – Jamie, Rosie and myself all love our cycling and it looks like big-bad-Dad might just join us.