Cycling from London to Cannes in 6 days
My second cycle to MIPIM is now completed; London to Cannes, six days in March, 200 riders split over two routes. What’s it like? Well, it’s probably the closest any of us come to feeling like a pro. Club Peloton’s organisation is immaculate, all we need to do is ride our bikes, while they organise the baggage transfers and hotel sign-in, food and drink between stages, masseurs, mechanics and a team of moustachioed French motorcycle outriders.
For this, my second cycle to Cannes, I was a ride Captain, tasked with looking after riders on the road, keep everyone in formation, helping riders where required (with the occasional push up hills), pacing riders back to the peloton post-mechanical (the peloton doesn’t stop), trying to impart seasoned advice (I suggest wearing Lycra shorts over your tights for extra padding). The hardest thing? For me, getting up at 4.45am, on the bike from 6am in dark, sub-zero temperatures, getting damn cold, bits of my body hurting (it seemed my Achilles heel were my knees), and the rapid stops between stages. There’s just about enough time to fill your bottle, grab some gloves or glug a coffee.
And much as I like riding my bike, bloody hell, that’s a lot of hours on a saddle. The best thing? The stages where I’m chatting to some great people, speeding along at a good pace, through amazing landscapes. And seeing the weather and the geography change as we cross a country from north to south – all this was amazing.