There aren’t many big events that take place in Welwyn Garden City. In the six and a half years we have lived here, the only things that come to mind before this weekend are: the Olympic Torch route and being one of two main filming locations from The World’s End. This weekend we got to add event number three to the list: the fourth stage of the first ever Women’s Tour ended on Parkway in the centre of WGC!
Sam and I are both cycling fans and, having watched most of Le Tour last year, it would have been rude not to go down and support the ladies. We had it in the diary from early March and invited the Watling Parents to come with. Despite some interesting weather, a lot of other local people had the same idea and Welwyn was positively buzzing (for Welwyn GC!)
The race wasn’t due to finish until close to 2pm so, getting in to town by about 11am, we had some time to kill. We took a look round the numerous stalls and events and got some tea and cake. About 1pm though, crowds were starting to build so we decided to bagsy a space. We got a good spot near the finish line, although on the second row back.
The first riders arrived through just after 2pm. Before they appeared, the compere said to keep watching because “blink and you’ll miss it”. He wasn’t lying. They came by at such a tremendous speed that we didn’t see the front riders. Sam managed to get a snap of the riders just behind them who placed about 5th / 6th +.
We were in a great spot for the presentations though and got to see British Rider Lizzie Armistead (who won Silver in the 2010 Olympic Road Race) pick-up the Best British Rider Jersey.
We also got to see current World Champion and 2012 Olympic Gold medallist Marianne Vos pick-up the Stage Win, the Points Jersey and the Yellow Jersey!
You can see the full set of pictures Sam took on his website.
Whenever I watch elite sport, I always feel an urge to go and train harder again. Of course, the reality is that training for even the level I was in amateur rowing is time consuming and both mentally and physically difficult. None-the-less, Sam went out cycling this morning because he was signed-up for an Evans Sportive; Cycling there and back, he clocked-up almost 45 miles! I did a hard, but by comparison meagre, 30 mins on the cycle trainer. Better than nothing though I guess..!