Thursday 4th March Carmarthen-Fishguard 86km Done: 2339 km. To go: 549 km Weather: Perfect.
Think we are in love with Wales. What looked like a slog down the M4 corridor, into the prevailing westerly wind, turned into days with the wind and sun on our backs, in the most beautiful countryside.
And then on top of that a great group, lovely hotels and good food. Just popped two Stugeron as our Stena ferry pulls out, and back one-handed on the Blackberry so slow going.
The Welsh have greeted Lawrence like one of their own. At the feed stop a farmer gave us his Prince’s Gate bottled water, and a cheque for £50. Unsigned mind you – but well spotted. But I guess every four years he pulled on a red jersey as a lion and they loved him, just as we loved Stephen Jones or Gareth Thomas.
Pretty uneventful on the road, with a deadline to make for the ferry. Greg and Freddie made it by one minute after a ten mile ‘detour’. Peter Nagle from event sponsors Causeway is back. Completely hooked, two stone lighter, and with his new Giant TCR fitted with electronic Shimano. If only he’d spent £2.50 on the right sized spare tube. We are heading to his homeland on the day their fund raising broke through £50,000. Great stuff.
Campo has produced a Stage 4 video which you can see via the BBC and Sport Relief site. Steve Holt from Sport Relief is with us but chipped a bone in his arm in a fall so the Doc sidelined him. He told us the Slam has received 300% more traffic on their site than any other challenge.
There is something unique about seeing sports stars outside their comfort zone. This was the premise of Superstars. Lawrence and Freddie bring a rock star dimension to this. I can’t articulate it yet, but Eddie Izzard’s seemingly spontaneous marathon epic worked, as did David Walliam’s swim which had genuine sporting credibility. Does the current Jogle bike relay and the water skiing work? I don’t know. The latter looks a real challenge but just too hard right now. I hear Davina McCall was in tears on Radio 1 this morning after two hours on the bike. Comments on a postcard.
Good fines last night. Ed Haskell (brother of England flanker James) top of the pile for thinking Andrew and Freddie Flintoff are two people. So four nations down, two to go. A daily average of 80k sounds OK.
Andrew Croker is part of the core team accompanying former England rugby union captain Lawrence Dallaglio on every leg of his epic 2,770km Cycle Slam which started on 12 February in Rome. They’re riding between Nice, Paris, Twickenham, Fishguard on to Rosslare and finally Edinburgh. The aim to is to raise £1M to be shared between Sport Relief and the The Dallaglio Foundation. You can support the Cycle Slam at www.dallagliocycleslam.com.