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Weekend at Robbo 20-21 October 2012

Ride Organisers - Howard Dove & Rebecca Morton

"Challenge or Cruise, your choice" was our opening line in the hard copy calendar for this ride. That's the first thing we'll edit next time we run this one!

It's been 3 years since we last ran this series. The original was just a 100km circuit on the Saturday and a different 100km circuit on the Sunday. This time round we included a 200km option, which could be done on either Saturday or Sunday.

Day 1

Having looked at the profile, the majority decided on the 100km on Saturday. This was always going to be a ride of two halves. Robertson, in the Southern Highlands of NSW, is 754m above sea level. Kiama, the first Checkpoint (57km), is a beach resort town.

The first half of the route basically plummets down to sea level and follows easy flat all the way. This allowed us to ride as a group.

robbo1
Sea Level - Just two climbs to go

We were all sipping cappuccinos beach side at the "Blowhole Kiosk" in Kiama in just over 2 hours. Noone was under any illusions about the second half of the ride and the stop was brief. It was everyone for themselves from here.

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Johan and Geoff - Still hopeful at this stage :)

Saddleback mountain was first up and before long some were forced to walk the steep grades.

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Paul - equally hopeful

No one took the optional 500m 28.5% grade to the summit this year.

We were all well softened up by the time the ascent of Jamberoo Mountain started, which is only a few kms beyond the descent of Saddleback Mountain.

This climb is not only very steep, but seems unrelenting. The last 43km from Kiama includes approx 1,600m of climbing according to my Garmin and even more according to others.

Last time we ran this ride 5 riders pulled out of the 100km route. This time all completed it, though some with just 2 minutes to spare.

The 200km riders followed the same route as the 100km riders. All 3 of the 200km riders were DNF.

Day 2

Although we were at least 2 hours drive from where most riders live it was almost a new field for the second day, with only 3 remaining from Saturday. Craig Stevens was the only contender for Sundays attempt at the 200km circuit. He was encouraged to join the rest of us on the 100km circuit before starting but he felt confident. All hopes pinned on him completing.

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Sundays Starters. No pressure Craig!

Sundays ride turned out to be not quite the cruisey option first thought with approx 1,300m of climbing. However, there weren't the steep grades of Saturday and the group chose mainly to ride together.

We were all in Robertson in time for lunch at the pub ... yes all! Craig decided he'd had enough once he'd reached the top of Jamberoo Mountain.

Well that sends out the challenge for next time round. Noone completed the 200km circuit.

Why don't you have a go next time?


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