Unfortunately group C failed at the first hurdle by deciding to try a longer route via the A6 only to change their minds after watching the B group blithely hang a left as descend down to the East Lancs crossing to Monton and Eccles. A frantic chase caught the B group in Eccles and they proceeded to disappear up the road into the murk whilst the B group, after a few ribald comments, continued their merry way out on the A57/Irlam bypass, over Warby Bridge, under the mucky bridge and up Burford Lane. Then out via the lanes and A50 to Knutsford. After more lanes through to Lach Dennis, lo and behold, group B sighted group C in the distance; the chase was on! Into Davenham and the catch was made so a truce was made to get everyone safely through the slightly muddy Vale Royal Drive, avoiding the pond, through the golf course, up the nasty little leg burner called Cinder Hill and onto the lunch stop.
A pleasant stop for coffee, tea, cake, toasties and more coffee for some before the B and C groups called a truce and made their way back via Hartford, Winnington and up the next leg burner of Soot Hill. A quick stop in Anderton for a puncture (bl**dy potholes!), then lanes via Comberbach and High Leigh to Warby Bridge and Glazebrook.
Chris Chrisyb Burgess elected to time trial home straight down the A57 under pain of anatomical removal if he wasn’t home soon and group C decided on a final dash for home leaving a somewhat diminished group B to make their way back to Worsley and their separate ways home.
However the ride leader succumbed to the devlish wim of Julian Ainsworth with those immortal words “fancy a quick rehydration therapy?”. Well, being so close to the Barton Arms who was I to argue 😉
A thoroughly enjoyable day out, despite the filthy roads and lanes. A real sense of groups coming together, loads of banter both during the ride and especially at the cafe stop made it a true club run experience. I must also commend everyone on the group riding; it really is coming on well and makes such large group rides safer, despite the odd attempt by the greater unwashed public to try to run us off the road. If I ever catch the driver of the white Fiesta near High Leigh again…………