As the New Year has been and gone, I’ve realised it’s probably time to let everyone in on my 2020 plans in some more detail. I announced that I would be retiring from road racing and transitioning into ultra-endurance, but that’s a pretty vague statement. In all honesty I wasn’t sure myself what exactly it meant at that point.
This is a world I knew very little about, so it’s taken some time to find my feet and explore what it is that I really want to do. And perhaps what I’m capable of doing in year one of this new challenge.
It’s felt like my own little project up until now, but I’ve realised that the journey’s much more fun when it’s shared. So, that’s what I’m going to do this year.
Historically I kept my cards pretty close to my chest when it came to my cycling career. I didn’t want to risk people seeing me fall down. But telling you about a race I’m doing no longer fills me with dread. You can watch me train for it, see that I really care about it, and then you can watch as the event unfolds.
At this point I’m not afraid of failing, because I don’t even know what that means to me anymore! I guess you can make your own minds up about that.
Before listing out the events, I’ll start with the fairly obvious disclaimer that all of these plans are provisional. Some of them require you to be accepted after completing an application process, and the time for that hasn’t yet arrived. And regardless of this, as you’ll know if you’ve been following me for a while, even the best laid plans can go awry.
That being said, these are some of the main races I’m planning on doing this year.
There are still some I’m considering adding to the calendar, and I’ve also tried not to get ahead of myself. The risk with this kind of racing is that I want to do pretty much everything that I see. It’s important not to underestimate how hard this is going to be!
29th March: Spring Challenge (not a race)
3rd-4th April: TransEngland
18th April: Dirty Reiver
1st-3rd May: TransWales
17th May: Rough Ride Reborn (not a race)
24th May – ??: Badlands
27th June – ??: GBDuro
12th-13th September – Dukes Weekender
2nd October – TransPyernees
I still have some gaps in the calendar to fill over the next few weeks, mainly during the summer, and I’ll post about events I enter in the future.
I want you to be a part of this journey from the very beginning, and I can’t expect you to be interested in it if you don’t actually know where I’m going.
Aside from racing, I’m looking to fill the year with lots of other gravel adventures.
Outside of organised events I’m planning on riding the Trans-Cambrian Way, the route of Gritfest (unfortunately the official event clashes with GBDuro), and a number of other multi-day training excursions. If you have any other suggestions then I’m open to more.
2020 isn’t all about chasing success on the bike, it’s also about having fun.
And I genuinely hope you will follow along as I embark on this new adventure.