Cape Argus Cycle Tour 2010
It was an early start: breakfast was at 5.45am and Julie arrived with her bus at 6.15am to take the four Ragstones, Judith, John (E), Martin and Peter to the start in central Cape Town.
After much milling about amongst thousands of cyclists, Judith and John found themselves in the FF pen and Martin and Peter in the EE pen for consequitive starts around 8.00am. After cries of 'Hoopla', they departed through the archway to find the first obstacle - a strong cross wind. A few yards of walking and then it was up the hill towards Hospital Bend and the Ragstones were off...for several hours fast cycling.
The weather was kind - only a 40kph head wind and temperatures were in the upper 20s - and it was a great day. Fortunately none of the Ragstones were involved in any of the accidents (none too serious) and all four completed.
John was first to finish: Time, 4.44 ; Position 12,630th out of 28741 who completed the course in under 7 hours
Judith was next: Time, 6.02; Position 22,747 out 28,741, but more importantly 3,495 out of the 5,169 ladies who rode.
Peter followed: Time, 6.12; Position 23,601 of 28,741 and 408 out of 510 riders over 65 years old.
Martin swept in: Time 6.54; Position 26,528 of 28,741. He had been held up by slow physios!
Jeanne and Rosemary were waiting at the finish. Judith did another 10 km trying to find Julie's bus, but in the end everyone was reunited. That evening the Ragstones were entertained with a fantastic South African braai by Julie and her husband Colin - a special thank you to them from the Ragstones for their hospitality.
It was a great experience, fully justifying the organisers' claim that the Cape Argus is the greatest cycle event in the world. All this fun was in a good cause: over 5 million Rands were raised for local charities. It was good the be there.