Rumours abound that Alwyn was the passenger in the latest 3FIDI conquest; but those in the know, and those who were there to witness every lap, every recovery, every chippie consumed, and every cup of tea brewed know that is not the real story.
Jimbo led us out on lap 1 but was still adjusting his hair when the flag dropped, leaving us 30 seconds off the pace with barely 200 metres covered. He recovered (only somewhat) to come in around 20th and sucking the dust of that disrespectful nephew of Matt’s (Stuey)!! Dayn was next out and put in the usual respectable ‘loosener’ – though he was a little off the pace of Magnificent Mal – and it took Dayno about 6 or so laps before he really felt warmed up and started putting respectable times in. Alwyn led the team from the back, going off fourth, shrugging off two heart episodes in his opening lap to put in a time at least in the rough region of Mal’s. By the time we’d done 4 laps we were 2nd in our category and feeling fine. Then the usual procession followed – regular lap rotations, loving chain maintenance to somehow deal with the dust fest, the occasional nibble on a celery stick, and James’ incessant socialising and talking up his laps and jumps – usual story.
Mercifully we avoided having any flats or mechanicals all race, and were all reasonably consistent – even if that was consistently slow in Alwyn’s case. Mal had a bit of a dip in the night, but lap on lap we started to ease away from the second place team in our category, getting up to 8-9 minute lead by nightfall, and 20 minutes by dawn – never enough to relax (in case Alwyn had a flat that took an hour or so to fix), but always keeping them at bay. After much arguing, James and Dayn insisted on doing more of the laps than the rest of us (7 each!) leaving Mal and Alwyn to fight over the remainder. Alwyn’s British reserve and decorum meant that he had to let Mal do a 6th lap and settle for just 5 of his own. He’s negotiating a refund from team captain James as I type.
Sadly Alwyn’s leftie fork clamp sheared, making steering a challenge for the last couple of laps, but fortunately the fork stayed attached and didn’t separate from him and the rest of the frame long enough for him to heroically and fearlessly f inish the race (and face up to a healthy bike fix bill)
Overall we came a highly respectable 10th overall (out of 275 teams entered) and first in Honest 40s. A very enjoyable event overall – a shame no other FIDIs out there to share the tent and trash talk, and none of you buggers even came out to visit and cheer us on!?!? Where is the spirit of FIDI? Next time maybe…?