Guest post from Joe Webb:
The idea was simple. Ride up and down the three roads that ascend the iconic Mont Ventoux in a single day; 86 miles with 15,000 feet of climbing.
Sunday: We arrived at our accommodation in Malaucene, a great location. During a quick bike check spin on Sunday afternoon it was very apparent that Ben Moody was in fine form, climbing a 2 mile 6%er with ease or so i was told later...by Simon Jackson, who wasn’t too far behind him.
Monday: After leaving the trip support, Chris Ensom, behind to organise supplies and dinner the four riders headed off to Gorges de la Nesque, a must if you are ever lucky enough to be in the area, beautiful scenery, quiet roads and nothing too steep.
Tuesday: The Main Event. On the first climb from Malaucene (13.3 miles with an average of 7%) (me; 2 hours-ish) Ben and Simon were very soon out of my sight. When the road had long straight sections I did manage to get a glimpse of Siobhan Carrol further up the road now and then. Eventually after climbing through the clouds the summit came into view, Chris was a welcome sight supplying essential food and drink. Let the first descent begin…12.8 miles later in Bedoin I turned around and started the climb back to the top.
This climb was brutal, the first few miles are about 4% then it never seems to drop below 10%. Again Chris was a great sight, not only for supplies but also for someone to talk to, I’d been on my own for nearly five hours at this stage. Downhill to Saulte, the third climb and last climb (16 miles, avg 5%).
The route from Saulte is meant to be the easiest! It maybe easy if you hadn’t done the other two first, at this stage there wasn’t much left in the tank, it wasn’t easy!! Just keep plodding away. Just keep saying “the hill never wins”. Just keep plodding away. Just keep saying “the hill never bloody wins”. Just keep plodding away. Just keep saying “the hill never effing wins”. Eventually the summit for the third time. DOWNHILL FROM HERE!!!!
By the time I stumbled through the villa door the others had showered, changed and had probably had a three course dinner, I didn’t care, I had achieved what I had set out to achieve.
Wednesday: A 30 mile recovery ride in more beautiful countryside.
Thursday: The drive home.