The earliest the inn would do breakfast was 8:30, so I got up early to cycle up to the Sheep’s Head point and back before then. It was raining again and I had to cycle into a headwind when riding out to the point which made it tough.
I bumped into Joshua and Lachlan coming the other way. They were going to head to the finish today. If I felt good about the hills and the weather I would do the same, and estimated a late night if that was the case.
After breakfast it was a challenging ride along the coast into the wind and rain and over hills to Mizen Point, Ireland’s most South-Westerly point. Had to put a lot of effort in and sometimes felt that I was hardly making any progress at all. Also because of the rain / mist, I was not able to have much of a view for a lot of it.
Had a coffee and sandwich at the tourist centre at Mizen Head. After which I had the wind behind me for most of the day, which was fantastic.
Late-afternoon and I got beeped at by a car going past. At the next garage the car driver was waiting – It was Don who had been following my progress online and had come to say hi – really nice to have a chat and a break.
The last 100km was tough because at this point I just wanted to be finished and the hills kept on coming. The rain by this point had stopped. The last three big hills were tough ones.
When I got to 5km from the finish I had a big sense of relief. If anything happened to the bike at this stage I would be able to push it back, which gave me reassurance that I was going to complete this race.
The finish was at a group of holiday cottages. The road up to the holiday cottages was incredibly steep but I managed to (just) zig-zag my way up the road. At the top of the hill Adrian, the race organiser was filming me cycle up the hill. It was really great of him to stay up to welcome me over the line at 2am! I had a beer and something to eat and chatted to Adrian about the race. It’s been really tough but I’m so glad I did it. The scenery has been amazing and after the problem developing with my Achilles heel halfway through the race I was so pleased I managed to make it to the end.
So that’s how you complete one of toughest bicycle races on a folding bike 🙂
Thanks to family, friends, London Brompton Club, the organisers, participants and the friends I have met on the way for your support.