Tour of the North!


New Member
Jan 24, 2002
Well it's official - the P&O Tour of the North in Northern Ireland has come and gone and taken my legs with it. A few of you asked me to post some results/information so here it is:

The Tour of the North was one of the selection races for the commonwealth games and had 3 national squads, 5 or 6 under 23 teams and a bunch of elite and 1st cat club riders. I'm a weekend warrior that raced as a licensed rider about 10 years ago!!!

I put in 8 weeks of hard graft and got walloped like a beginner!

Some 'high' lights:

Stage 1: 1 mile (1.6km) uphill time trial - finished 65th out of 120 and thought "that's not too bad I should be able to hang onto the bunch".

Stage 2: 60 mile (100km) hilly road stage - blown out the back at 16 miles. Got together with a dropped team mate and an Irish rider that punctured and lost 30 minutes on the pack.

Stage 3: 7 mile (11km) flattish time trial - took it real easy to preserve my legs for the afternoon stage (hell I was 30 minutes down already!). Finished near the tail...

Stage 4: 56 mile (90km) flattish road stage - got blown out the back with 16 miles left - got into a pack of 4 and lost about 5 minutes on the bunch (I did beat around 20 county and national team riders so I was quite chuffed). We did the first 30 miles (48km) in under an hour and the whole 56 miles (90km) in under 2 hours!! My poor legs...

Stage 5: 89 mile (143km) really hilly road stage. Punctured at the 3 mile mark and never got back on! Got together with two team mates and rode the remaining 86 miles together. Lost an hour on the bunch - going down the mountain passes was so cold I couldn't change gear or brake!!

Stage 6: 80 mile (129km) flat with a few hills road stage. Team mate punctured at the 2 mile mark so we rode the remaining 78 miles (124km) together admiring the scenery and complaining about our sore legs and aching asses!

All in all we finished WAY down on GC but had a good weekend as pretend stage racers and thoroughly enjoyed all northern ireland has to offer. I now know that I have NO pro aspirations and am happy being a 'professional fun rider'. 3rd and 4th catters beware - there's a ringer with 293 miles in his legs....
You have achieved something we can only dream of, Eldron. Well done!
So, were there any big names there, and where are the pix?
No BIG names - the only guy I had heard of was Michael Hutchinson. He's more of a time triallist though. I'll check the start list again and see if any names pop out.

Certainly no world famous continental pros though...

Took a bunch of pics - I'll have a look through them. You'll hae to teach me how to post them on the board....
Hi Big Boy Eldron, well done on the tour! Stumbled across this website and saw your message. How hard are those hills? Little bumps or proper climbs?
sounds like you did very well considering you only started seriously traing for 8 weeks and was only 30 mins behind on a long stage . well done :D :D

dont let those pros know you where only taking it easy ;D ;D you didnt want to put them to shame ;D ;D ;D
Big boy Eldron? That has a suspiciously familiar ring to it....

Mostly the hills were rolling - you know the ones where you get half way up in the draft and only have to pedal the crest. Stage 5 was tough though - lots of sit down climbs on the 39-17 or 39-19.

I would like to say I'll get them next time but I won't ;D

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