On April 30th we had an extra easy paced ride, eight of us took part in Isle of Wight Mini Randonnée 2017 taking the 55 km route.  We took the passenger car ferry from Southampton to East Cowes at 10 am.  There was an excited buzz among us as we sat in comfy seats and had some refreshments.

At the check in we were given brevet cards.  They had a simple outline of the route on them showing all the check points. I was leading but Iain was itching to get going on the route to warm up and when I asked if he would like to lead he said ‘No, I am trying hard not to! ‘

We enjoyed the first section to Wootton and got our brevet cards stamped, had a quick drink, bite and loo stop and then were off. Next stop Bembridge.  I said “I don’t remember it being this hilly!” which made others smile.  Little did I know how hilly it was going to be and perhaps that is just as well!  At Bembridge we did the same routine… brevet card, drink, bite, loo.

There were many other cyclists participating, hundreds!  Next stop Alverstone.  That was a rather quaint pretty old hall.  We had our Brevet cards stamped again and took the opportunity to buy some postcards.  Next we took a National Cycle Network off road route to Newport.  It was very pretty indeed.  It was a rather bumpy ride for skinny tyres and trikes but no trouble for hybrids and mountain bikes.  At Newport Iain took over the lead to get us through the town and in the right direction for East Cowes, not West Cowes since the floating bridge was out of order.

We were all very pleased to reach East Cowes where we were each given a certificate.

Thank you to Nigel. Wayne and Anna who all took turns as back markers.