It was (and is) a glorious day in Abbey Wood, there was a great atmosphere as I sloped up the road to get my place. Abbey Wood, whilst rough around the edges, has a good community and we were all out in force to get our photos, to say “We were there”.
The French have an interesting way of working the crowd up that involves driving at speed in strangely attired cars whilst yelling “Woo!” in a heavy French accent – kind of like a continental Ric Flair promo.
This was followed by a carnival of vehicular marketing during which all manner of free stuff was thrown to the assorted crowd. I got sweets. It was great. I’m a cheap date.
At 11am the peloton left Greenwich. At 11.05 they shot past us on the hill, even that early in the stage they were really booking, and at 11.06 they were gone.
Now to provide some context. Bostall Hill is a long, steep winding climb up to Bostall Heath and Erith. It is a casual cyclist’s nightmare.
So what did I do? Well the road was closed, there were no cars, it was an opportunity not to be missed.
I got my trusty trek 100 road bike out and tried to get up the hill. I started the hill at 11.45 and got to the top at 12. Sigh. I’m really out of shape.
Still the sight of a fat welshman trying to cycle up the hill seemed to amuse the Police who had to remain watching the route even though the race had moved on.
Of course they seemed less amused when a ballistic fat welshman came back down the hill at speed but, as we all know, that’s the only reason for cycling up a hill in the first place.