So we were chatting in the office, right, about the best *bit* of the road we’d ever been over. I don’t mean a long stretch or a climb or anything romantic, I mean when you know there’s that awful, pot holed section on your local route and then finally it’s been resurfaced. That quick 20 seconds of track-board smooth road bliss you just want to go on forever. But it never does. It always stops and you wonder to yourself – I wish they just made all roads like that bit.
There’s a bit for me that springs to mind – 20 seconds of road that made me get that feeling when scissors start slicing through wrapping paper on its own.
Tenerife – my misses’ mum has a place there so I go up and down the mountain sometimes. I ONLY go up to come down – the descent is like nothing else (I haven’t been to Majorca yet.)
There’s this one bit of sh*t road I always have to scrub up on the brakes for. Then one day at Avio HQ we see a post from Geraint Thomas snapping a picture of the bit I mean. But it’s not the same…it’s brand new Spanish tarmac in 35-degree heat; the stickiest tarmac around. Two months later I’m in Tenerife and have forgotten all about it. I’m heading up Tiede on the same bit I always go up – from Golf del Sur through San Miguel (no not the beer) and up past the cafe/petrol station all the way up to the cafe at the top for pizza and a coke.
I go over this new bit a couple of hours in and I remember the photo from G.
It’s Wednesday at 12:30 and there’s not a soul around. It’s scorching – probably 35.
Get to the top – 4 hours in.
Pizza (it’s covered in oil but I like it like that).
Ice cold full-fat coke – down in 3 gulps.
A quick stretch and I’m back in the saddle heading straight for what my brain is calling ‘the new nice bit’. Takes longer than I thought to get there – probably 25-30 minutes. Then every time I think it’s just around the corner – it isn’t.
Then I see it. Plain as day, I’m so ready. The air over my arms as I’m heading down is hot, like riding behind a hairdryer; its hot – really hot. I know the tarmac will be sticky – there are two long fast bends that it coats. I’m absolutely screaming down – I don’t even care if I crash, screaming. Then I hit it.
The wind stops there’s no more bike rattle…nothing. I’m actually flying and it’s so much better than I thought it would be, my mouth is shut, my eyeballs are pressing on the inside of my sunnies and I’m just flying. I imagine this is as close as I’ll come to a heroin high. There are not many moments I find like this anymore. I’ve been riding for ages. Nice roads are just nice roads. But there are those little moments – bonking/mars bar…they just go together, bikes and nice roads are perfect together – I don’t know what about it appeals to my brain or any of our brains but it’s bloody lovely.
Then it stops and I’m just going down the hill again – which is nice, but it’s tempting to turn around and go back up. I was only on it for about 60 seconds in the end. But it was an epic 60 seconds.