The Creemore Classic 400 Brevet

Aka Bikes, Bowling, Beers and Bank Machines

Last weekend saw two ESR Rando riders join 6 other starters in Port Elgin for the annual Creemore Classic 400 km Brevet.

The forecast said 80% chance of rain, and this time the weatherman got it right. But really, the rain was light and sporadic. Nice lunch in Owen Sound at 100 km was followed by a screaming descent into Beaver Valley and a long climb up into Eugenia at 170 km.

It was at the start of this climb that Sean from Hamilton failed to unclip quickly enough and toppled onto his hip. We’ve all been there

Nice rolling hills into Collingwood.

And here’s where it starts to get a little different.

Stopped at the Collingwood Bowling Alley for a tournament. Tried my best but only pulled off second place. Terry got first by 10 points!

Rolled out to Creemore and a great dinner at the Old Mill Restaurant. Extra mashed potatoes please. Most everyone else had a pint or two. Would have made me too sleepy with 150 km still to ride. Back to Collingwood and the Village at Blue Mountain. The cafe was closed so we got cappuccinos at a night club. Lights on at this point until the end of the ride.

Many of you have probably done the steep climb at Scenic Caves, but how many of you have done it at 11pm with 290 km in your legs? A nice climb and particularly amazing effort from Dave who rides a fixie. Put it back together up top. 6 riders together, with Sean and his wife Rene a couple of minutes back.

A big fog rolled in making visibility very poor. We made a turn off the main road, but Ali was just off the back and couldn’t see us turn, so he went straight. Figured it out in about 15 minutes, called us, and proceeded alone.

Stopping for the phone call split the group up a bit. Dave and John were off the front, Terry next, then Chappy and I coming up last. I tried to bridge up to Terry and found him nearly asleep on the bike, weaving back and forth. A bit of conversation woke him up and the group came back together in Chatsworth at 350 km.

Terry had Chappy and I follow him to the local BMO branch where we went in to the bank machine area and caught about 25 minutes of sleep. Fully recharged, we headed out for the last 50 km. A cold wet foggy finish. We sat down for a great breakfast and learned that Sean and Rene had to stop at about 330 km because Sean had a lot of hip pain due to his accident.

Kudos to Ali who proceeded alone through the night, using paper cue sheets for navigation and made it in 30 minutes before the cut-off time.

In Chappy’s words, this ride was unbelievable.

Tim (Mad Doc)

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