Five years after my first Grinduro on the isle of Arran; I decided it was time to make a return to the event. This time it was in Machynlleth, mid Wales. The event is run over three days from Friday afternoon through to Sunday afternoon and includes food and evening entertainment; there is also a beer tent!
The first ride was a short prologue on Friday evening, which according to reports (I didn’t do this) was pretty technical for a drop bar gravel bike. As it turned out this was also the last section of the main ride on Saturday.
Saturday morning started wet, earlier in the week Wales had recorded record high temperatures in the mid thirties but we were now at the opposite end of the summer weather range which was preferable considering what lay ahead.
On the start line the waterproof jacket was jettisoned as the rain relented and was replaced by a light drizzle, something we Scottish are familiar with, the temperature had also increased and with close to 7000ft of climbing ahead I didn’t think getting cold would be a possibility. So off we went and it wasn’t long before we were on the first of the many climbs of the day. I was riding my Ridley Kanzo Adventure gravel bike which came supplied with a Shimano GRX 800 one by groupset more than adequate for most gravel situations but we had modified it with a set of Classified G30 wheels with classified powershift hub. This set up allows you to run a single chainring, in this case a 46T and the hub can reduce the gear by 30%, this is the first real test these wheels have had and they performed faultlessly shifting in 150 miliseconds and under full power. The first loop done without any drama’s it was back to the event village for meatballs and pasta.
45 minutes later the second loop was looming large and with less than enthusiastic legs we set off again, this loop was slightly shorter but with what seemed like just as much climbing and more technical descending, it didn’t take long for the legs to start working again but I didn’t really threaten the four timed sections on this event, I was just happy to get round and enjoy riding what was a fantastic route. Back to the event village for more grub and a couple of well deserved beers!
Roll on next year, I’ll be back.