On a clear but chilly morning on Sunday 7th October a hardy band of determined SAOBA cyclists assembled in the old Prep School Car Park (“where have the bike sheds gone?”) ready for the first official SAOBA day ride.
Some had cycled from home, and Mike O’Kell had cycled the furthest (16 miles to Hale Barns). But he didn’t complain as he was still freshly trained from his recent mammoth Lands End to John O Groats cycle ride!
The day’s route took us from Holy Angels church, down Wicker Lane, following the former St Ambrose cross country route, down to Bankhall Lane, and then over the railway bridge to Ashley, through Mobberley and south into Cheshire, all the time keeping to the quietest, smallest roads. It was a fine morning and there were plenty of cyclists out.
We arrived at the Jodrell Bank big dish cafe in under an hour. We were able to learn about the origins of the universe over 14.8 billion years ago, and catch up over coffee and a bacon and sausage barm.
The slightly extended return route took in Goostrey, Peover, Plumley, Knutsford with a brief refreshment stop by Tatton Hall, before we waved goodbye to Mike at the Rostherne gate, as he headed back to Northwich, and the rest of the group took the Tatton mile home, completing the 33 mile course.
Simon Harrop and I were asked to pick a 2018 SAOBA cycling champion from the group. It wasn’t an easy choice, as it was never a race. We decided that the only way to distinguish individuals was by their mileage on the day. As Mike O’Kell had clocked up a total of 58 miles, he has been confirmed as our Inaugural 2018 SAOBA Cycling Champion. Simon Harrop is second and Ian Taylor in third place. All three are excellent cyclists.
The day was great fun and who knows, it might even happen again in 2019!