April 01, 2017 0 comments

Day 1 Recap – Mercer SuperCycle 2017

Food stop with the Bendigo Bank Food Van - day 1.

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was…”rolling!”. Thus began the sixth edition of Mercer SuperCycle…

The weather as we rolled out of Marden Shopping Centre (thanks to Taplin for the use of their car park) could best be described as moist (“Hi Leeza!”). A bit of drizzle, but otherwise a good start up the best ride in Adelaide (IMHO) along Gorge Rd. The pelotons set a good pace up to Cudlee Creek, with the cobwebs shaken off quite early.

Coming into the drink stop at Cudlee Creek - Day 1

Coming into the drink stop at Cudlee Creek – Day 1

The newbies in peloton 3 from interstate showed that they had been doing their training, with good levels of fitness and an idea of the safety protocols that are a big part of SuperCycle (we like everybody to get home in better shape than they left).

From Cudlee Creek we climbed the hill up to Lobethal, with about all I can say is that we got there (there’s nothing in the ride guide that says it has to be pretty). We then turned onto Onkaparinga Valley Rd, and discovered most of the potholes, and a lot of Saturday morning traffic. Thank you to everyone in the Adelaide Hills today, as there was great courtesy shown by drivers to all the riders.

A stop for coffee in Hahndorf was welcome, with all riders tossing down the fruit cake (moist of course) and muesli bars. We managed to not clog up the main street, and even attracted a bit of attention from people along the street.

The road then opened up, and the traffic dropped a bit, as we headed for Echunga and Meadows. The weather had cleared up by now, with the sun shining and a light southerly, making for beautiful riding.

Another quick stop at Meadows, and then down through Kuitpo Forest to the top of Willunga Hill, where the 100 club got to the end of their day. The 100 club are riders that have signed up to do 100kms a day, and then they get to hop on the bus and have a rest (and the rest of us think “that looks like a good idea”). A quick dash down Pages Flat Rd, and lunch in Willunga overlooking the reservoir. A nice feed of quiche (yes, real cyclists do eat quiche) and sangers provided some refuelling, which was quite a good thing. What was arguably the nastiest climb of the day came straight after lunch as we climb up to the top of the hills behind Myponga, and then down across the dam wall. The descent down to Carrickalinga was a bit tricky, as the wind had got up and was blowing straight across the road. There was no land speed records set down that hill as the riders had to take a lot of care to stay upright and on the left hand side of the road.

Cruising out of Echunga in the Adelaide Hills - Day 1

Cruising out of Echunga in the Adelaide Hills – Day 1

The last section from Normanville to Wirrina is pretty, but everybody was just keen to get to the end and a shower.

The best thing to say about today is that there were no problems. Everything seemed to go smoothly with very few problems. This is a reflection of the work put in by the board, the committees, the team at The Hospital Research Foundation, and especially the support crew, who were just awesome. Well done all, and time for some rehydration (internally moist).


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