A couple of years ago I posted a... Post. About training in Richmond park. I'd just bought my current bike and Ken was doing his best to prepare us for our LEJOG effort. Today I went back for the first time to see how I would do in Richmond park given that I'm now nearly three years older but have ridden a lot more.
Despite conflicting ideas about where the park may be... Thanks Richmond council man... I found the park and set off to try my luck.
The loop is not an easy ride by any stretch of the imagination. It is full of headwinds, false flats, climbs and descents. Needless to say the hill did not beat me this time and part of me is surprised it did the first time. It really helps to know that you are climbing the back of Richmond hill which I had already climbed to get into the park today.
Richmond park is 11km approx as a loop. You WILL be passed by men practicing on time trial bikes but this is ok.
Entering at the roehampton gate turn left and follow the road round to the left. Then climb the hill. Then descend. Then climb a bit. Roundabout. Descend then climb a bit. Roundabout. Climb then descend. Then undulate. Roundabout. Then have no idea where you are then climb then descend. Roundabout finish.
Did I mention the wind? It's always bloody windy. It's like a practice Cornwall.
As I lay there on the grass after my last attempt an old guy, maybe 70, pulled up, put his bike in an old estate car, grinned at me and left.
Richmond park is the best practice for a big ride on small roads.
Love it because that's easier than hating it.