Decided to do the 20 miles this time (though my gluetes wished I hadn't done). Ten other riders joined me. I set off first, two riders overtake me before the first roundabout (if you can call it one) so it is head down for the first lap. Gradually more riders overtake me but I keep my head down and push on. Eventually I am round the Oxton roundabout and heading up the the hill to the start and I shout out my number as I pass, no need to bother as the timekeepers know it is me. Second lap started and I get some pain in my left leg and I tell it to tough it out as I am not giving up, and a rider passes me shouting keep going! Eventually with a little free wheeling down the hills (not too much though) my leg gives up complaining and just gets on with it. As I near the half way point approaching the roundabout I get a bit of encouragement as I see a couple of riders on the opposite side of the road, not completely on my own yet.
I slog my way to the finish putting in the best sprint I can passing the line with cheers from the other riders who I think must have been on their second cup of tea by now.
Back at the the line I get off my bike and realise how much my muscles are complaining as I hobble back to my van and put my bike away. I keep telling myself this is going to get easier but I don't quite believe yet!
First lap 37:27 (37:34 last time when I just did the ten) and second lap 38:33.