3 Peaks Cyclo Cross Race – 2014

And off they go - all 650 of them
And off they go – all 650 of them

The last Sunday in September is very special, and has been since 1961, when the Three Peaks Cyclo Cross Race in North Yorkshire was first run and has been going ever since.

Well, I have done a few of these races, the first one back in 1989, and the last one in 2014. It is the 2014 one that I am going to write about here.

Sunday morning was almost perfect 3 Peaks weather, dry and not too hot. And as it happens, I knocked almost 9 minutes off my previous personal best, so it must have been good (nothing to do with cycling up Ventoux and doing lots of riding, honest).  3:48:09, happy with that and a First Class Time.
It is dubbed as “The World’s Toughest Cross Race” which sounds impressive. And impressive it is, 650 riders battling over the 3 Peaks of Ingleborough, Whernside and Pen-y-Ghent, what is not to like? What is not so impressive is the amount of littering that goes on. I don’t get it. Is it really that difficult to put your empty gel or energy bar wrapper back into the pocket that you have just taken it from? Fellow cyclo cross riders, we are very lucky to be able to race over such beautiful scenery, with some real legends.  Please don’t spoil it by dropping your litter, there is no excuse!

At the start I was lined up next to a former Swiss National Cyclo Cross Champion, Christian Heule, trying out the 3 Peaks for the first time.  And Tim Gould was there, a 6 time winner in the 1980s and back as a 50 year old veteran (and still finishing 13th overall, the legend).  And of course, Rob Jebb made it his 11th victory this year – a true legend and almost knocking on the door of 40!

The end.  Quick glance over the shoulder to check that I am not going to get caught by the rider behind.
The end. Quick glance over the shoulder to check that I am not going to get caught by the rider behind.