Three Honiton Spinners had signed up to do the Nello this year, back as an event after
being held as a virtual event for the last couple of years due to Covid.
The event was well organised from start to finish. It was nice to get a bowl of porridge for
breakfast before setting off.
Due to the event being held in Topsham, we were set off in small groups to limit the
effect on traffic.
Stephen Driscoll, Kevin Goss and Tony Peek set off together with a small group. After
leaving Exeter, they were soon in country lanes for about 20 miles, taking it in turns on
the front to save the legs for the climbs later on.
There are two different options. The Nello 55 and Nello 100. Both take the same route
over to Tiverton before splitting at the first feed station.
It was here that Tony took the 55 route whilst Kevin and Steve took the 100 route.
The 55 mile took riders out of Tiverton heading towards Crediton. This meant that there
was some challenging climbing involved, with three long climbs within the next 20 miles
before arriving at the next feed station. Tony managed to overtake a good number of
riders on route to the feed station. Once past the feed station it was on towards Black
Dog. There is a drop down into Black Dog from the top of a climb, which put you straight
into a head on buffing wind. It was here that the wind really took hold and Tony was
fighting to hold onto the bike after being blown across the road at a gap in the hedge.
From Black Dog it was on to Morchard Bishop and then Crediton taking the back lanes
to bring you out on the main Crediton road a couple of miles outside of Exeter. This was
at 55 miles which meant another few miles through the city back to Topsham. Reaching Topsham and the event station just shy of 60 miles.
Tony was in 3rd place with an amazing average speed of 16 mph with 3780 ft of climb in
only 3 hours and 45 minutes.
Steve and Kev completed the 100 in 7 hrs 27 and climbed 5761 ft at an average of 13.2
Kev said there was a “brutal headwind climbing out of Simonsbath, battling headwind all
the way home.” It was the toughest Nello Kev has ever ridden.