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14 Sep 2010

Back again, starting with a race, Zwolle

It's been quiet on this blog for a while. You don't have much to type when you're dealing with flu. And even when I got rid of that after a week, I still needed time to get back in to shape and to re-gain some weight. But now, everything seems alright again. Not that fit to happily do a 6 hour criterium or a 300 kilometre night ride, not yet. However, fit enough to take part in lasts Sundays race in Zwolle. I sent both my parents South too to help the organization. They had a fun day and cycled about 23km in total.

Zwolle is only 72 km from Assen. Riding there would be a bit to optimistic, so I took the train and brought my Fuego with me. It felt good to be back on my 'chromo' steel racer again. It would have been better without the constant drizzling rain. Rain is the biggest reason I have a velomobile. That same velomobile is the reason that I have very little experience on cornering in wet conditions on two wheels.

The event is one of the best organized of the year. It's a street circuit with very little traffic. The track was closed for just about everything. Only locals and bikes where allowed. There where persons in orange vests at the intersections. There was a guy on a motorbike, complete with flashing lights, who patrolled the 4.3km track. We could get good coffee and cappuccino, both freshly brewed. The apple pie, sold for charity, was of outstanding quality. There where toilets, shelters, volunteers, friends and 25 riders. To put that in contrast, the next race in Groningen has a great track, but only 1 facility, a toilet. So 'Zwolle' is like a luxury resort.  The track is challenging in it's own way. It has 3 speed bumps and a corner in which the tarmac has seen better days. High speeds are possible. I averaged 37.6kph. Not spectacular, but good in these circumstances. The fastest guy pulverized the records set during the 1st edition in 2009. He did 47.7kph, 4km faster than the winner of last year.

The first 5 laps of the race where the fastest. I was with a group of 4, that got smaller as the race unfolded.  After that, just kept pedalling at my own speed whilst keeping an eye on my heart rate watch. I lapped some riders, and got lapped a few times as well. And since I already was wet, the ongoing rain didn't bother me. My glasses did fog up. I usually know how to prevent that, but know I'd forgotten to rub the glasses in with a special cloth. Not really a problem, the roads where wide and there was little to bump in to. I did loose my superflash tail light on the back straight, a the screw had come loose. That meant an extra lap after finishing to pick it up.

The end result was satisfying. There was plenty of time to chat and socialize afterwards. My day ended with a puncture, 700 metres from home. I simply carried my Fuego home on my shoulder and fixed hat the next day. A part of Monday was spent on cleaning the bike as well. It's white, dry and shiny again.

The race results are here.


  1. Hi Peter,
    Either the county improved the situation or you cut it out of the video (because at that part there is a cut.) But after the farms there was a corner to the right past year that frightened the hell out of me. Because it was imposible to look it over!
    That's why i dicided not to participate with the 222 rowingbike again, about my fastest bike. And would have been most fun...
    Cheers, Mick

  2. The grass had been mowed recently, so all corners offered proper visibilty :-)

    And there also was a fence to mark that particular corner. I should have left those few seconds in the video to show the entire corner.


  3. In my membrance you went of the main road to a small red bicyclepath on the right.
    But from the mainroad (with the farms along) I couldn't see in what direction to steer, because of an elevation. The 222 is not even very low.
    Some guy in fluor-vest shouting something like that i was being "a coward": Horribele!
    I broke my hip with a rowingbike so i'm not risquing that again.
    I can not find this situation in the seconds that remain in the clip near the fence.
    Than again it may have been altered in a years time...