On Saturday the Women’s Tour was finishing a section of the race in Welwyn, so I persuaded Andy to go along.
In the morning I had been on a 9.5 mile run. I wanted to do 10 miles, but the weather was predicted to be heavy rain and wind, so I thought I would play it by ear. I have a half marathon at the end of June, so a while away really, but we have a wedding next weekend, and then we are away the week after, so I wanted to have a solid long run before these two weeks as I think I will have to drop back. Anyway, I ran through the town centre and saw them putting up the finish area clock, all the fencing and the podium, and that got me more excited! It was drizzling when I left, then it brightened up, and then when I was about a mile from home the heavens opened and I was drenched within seconds- hello squelchy trainers. I was going to go out and back to make it up to ten miles, but I was pretty close, and I was soaked and knew that the extra half a mile would not make any difference to my half marathon training, so headed home to drip everywhere and fill my trainers with newspaper.
Shock! No pancakes! I was hungry after my shower and also pretty cold, so I opted for a quick breakfast of muesli (that stuff is not as nice as the normal Dorset stuff), strawberries and raspberries, and a chocolate flake tea. Mmmmm. Then, after drying my hair we were off! Due to road closures we parked near Andy’s work and walked in to town from there- we could hear the tannoy from a while away- it was very exciting!!
We found a good spot to stand, and had to wait for about half an hour. The atmosphere was great though- music playing, kids being handed little flags and windmills, the guy announcing giving updates (“they are 10km away now” etc) and then suddenly we could see them whizz around the corner. The speed they went past was amazing. I mean, I expected them to be fast, but literally blink and you would have missed half of them!
Most of them went past within seconds of each other, but there were a few that came in a bit later (maybe 5 minutes later, not much)- the announcer commented that because it is a team sport these back riders would have had important jobs earlier in the race.
Then we went to watch the presentations of all the different jerseys- they actually put them on right then! Although one rider won three different jerseys so she had to keep coming back on again!
By then it had started tipping it down, but the crowd was still there.
After the final presentation we wandered into the town centre and passed the Wiggle Honda team gazebo.
Laura Trott was in there having her photo taken and chatting to people. I saw her talking to a little girl and I just think it is great that children, especially young girls, have sporty female role models to look up to.
After that we went to Starbucks to warm up – I had a free drink to use on my card so we shared a huge chai latte- mmmmm.
Are you a fan of watching sporting events? I like watching running races but have not really watched cycling before, but it was really exciting.