Excuses, Excuses

Here’s Paul, climbing Alpe d’Huez.



Paul is 57 years old and till last weekend had ridden is bike outside exactly 6 times. Because of a bet made in a pub (I’ve had a few of these go horribly wrong) he and his son, along with a bunch of interconnected friends, did the following over 4 days last week:

  • A climb of Ventoux (some even did the Triple)
  • Col de la Sarenne and Alpe d’Huez
  • Col du Glandon and most of Alpe d’Huez again

A quick add-up brings the total climbing over 3 days to at least 5500 meters, and Paul did every last one of them. He was usually out the back (but not always) and must have suffered badly on these mountains, but he was one determined dude and finished it all with smile.

I’ll remember him (and the one-armed, one-legged guy who does 3 Haute Routes each year) next week when I’m struggling up the same mountains he just rode in La Marmotte.

12 thoughts on “Excuses, Excuses

  1. Kudos to Paul. Only 6 rides beforehand! Fantastic.
    By the way did you read about the 32 year old Belge Betty Kals – 7.5 times up Mont Ventoux in 24hours. Guiness record.

    • I had heard of Betty but she must have done that this past weekend, right? La Canibale took place and there were thousands of crazy Belgians (even more than usual) on the mountain.

  2. like the great Yogi Berra said (a great and much loved American baseball player in the 40’s and 50’s…..
    ‘Baseball is ninety percent mental and the other half is physical.’ I believe that goes for cycling too.
    Obviously Paul has a very strong will..Bravo

    • He sure does. I didn’t get up the nerve to climb Ventoux for 2 years. He just did it. Ignorance is also bliss, I guess. He had no idea what he was doing!

  3. I’m guessing Paul wasn’t all fussy about silly details like riding position, rotational weight, ride quality, etc etc… Awesome.

  4. I’m not sure when she did it. It’s in the July issue of Le Cycle so couldn’t have been this past weekend. 331km and 12,336m climbing.

    • It was really gravelly this time and someone even took a header on a hairpin (avoid me, as it turned out!). Pretty descent but hairy as hell!

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