Vätternrundan with Skoda Cycling Team

When things just work, without hazzle and without seen stress. Then you know the planning has been good. Skoda Cycling Team and Vätternrundan is such a thing. Friendly people with things under control, trusting that you also got things under control.

Travelled by bus Saturday morning all together and when arriving in the centre of Motala the bikes where there and the numbers got handled out. Checked the bikes, got dressed and rolled down to the exhibition centre for photos, like selfies with the Pro’s:

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Back to the bus to fuel up, fill up and get ready. Meeting Henrik

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and be cool with Glenn:

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Start ready on time, cheered on by Madde:

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I was one of the last riders rolling through the start on this 20000+ event. Felt a bit cool. Easy in the beginning with a locked train. Got rolling after 10min it felt good. Was going around and taking my turns and it felt well disciplined but not too serious. Down in the tail once but it felt harder so went around again.

Even had time to take photos in Uppgränna:

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A short stop after Gränna where the shoe covers went off and we got company by Tobias Ludvigsson to Kaxholmen. Climbs where I been dead before felt great and I could keep up going fast downhill. So cool riding in a 30+ group with everyone looking the same and with riders like Calle Friberg and Henrik Sparr who doesn’t seem to get tired 😉

Through Jönköping and up Trånghalla feeling great. Down Bankeryd flying and then the first stop. 5min stop with new bottles and Enervit energy. All prepared by the team and all bags the same so no need to look for a certain one. Back on the bike and it felt wise to stay a bit in the tail as it was 180km left.

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Warm and hard and it felt like it went a bit too fast for me taking turns. Tried to keep the tail straight. Took 3 turns the next 90km to the next stop. Now just water in the bottles, a coke and more gels and I was ready, felt more under control than last stop.

The last part where we were ahead of schedule felt good. And the finish got closer and closer. Happyride.se took some nice pictures:

And then the thing happens that always happens. Around 20km left and everyone wanted to be finished. Felt like the tempo went but everyone hanged on and everyone got a bit more happy 😉

Finished at 7h27min (18min faster than the target)

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Happy and really tired, also had a bit of a problem to stand straight 😉

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Map and stats: Strava

After high fives, hugs and some champagne we took our bus to the hotel for dinner and talking about salt, cramps and strange things from Skåne. Massage and breakfast today before we went back to Stockholm again.

An Awesome weekend with great people and a team behind with Skoda making it so easy. 😀 And so impressed with some riders be able to ride so fast and make it look so easy. Maybe some day I can also be such a rider…

 

Morningspins

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A bit of a strange week this week. Maybe the first one 2017 without any Le Peloton. To tired on Wednesday and am trying to not ride too much now when Vätternrundan is getting close.

Did Morningspins yesterday with really bad legs yesterday, was dead last. Was thinking if I should do Le Peloton or Morningspins today. Thought Le Peloton would be a little hard for a long time while Morningspins is more about speed but short distance and time to rest in between. Great to get some speed for Sundays Lida Loop XCM 🙂

A lot of riders today as you can see

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Some very fast, some like me and more or less a cool group of riders 🙂 The first loop got was really fast and I was dropped, but not as early as yesterday. Yesterdays KOM got smashed too so says a bit. The 2nd lap wasn’t as fast which was really good for me. Found some legs and was able to hang on and make a new PR 😀

3rd lap started as an Instalap:

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But then HRT attacked and some people followed, went fast again and I missed the train a bit. No worries as I was happy with the mornings training. Got some speed, felt a little bit fast and built some confidence 🙂 Great to have a positive feeling when it’s racetime.

Me and Peter matched in our Danger Speedsuits too 😀

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Map and stats: Strava

200km Brevet

I did my 3rd Randonneur ride today. First one was 1,5 year ago in the middle of the winter. A long long snowy day riding alone around Mälaren. 2nd was last year on my birthday when Sumo Cycling Club smashed a ride from Uppsala with an average of over 34km/h for 200km, but with a bit too long stops and sadly a crash.

Today was a classic ride which many of my friends have done before, Slottsrundan (castleloop) in Sörmland starting in Östertälje. I missed it last year but today on Sweden’s National Day which of course is sunny seemed perfect 🙂

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Got there with my Sumo club with El Gringo, The Joker and the The Dictator.

It all started in a very big group with like 30-40 riders and it was a bit too big. El Gringo thought of attacking and the Dictator wanted the same. Passing Vagnhärad it was an attack and some stopped, a bit messy but they tried to make the group smaller. Dropped a few but not so much. After the first stamp/castle and we turned right into tailwind it changed quiet a bit. El Gringo went up in the front and just smashed it, one line behind and not so many wanted to help out with the pace 😉 People got dropped and into Gnesta we where a fine little group. Stopped at Circle K for some water and a guy complained at the speed, hmm, nothing said about it.

Another group passed but they stopped for Pizza in Gnesta. We started riding again with mostly known people for me. Really fun. Mats got some attacks, a couple of signsprints and we lived life 😀

South of Mariefred where we turned to Åker Styckebruk the road got very undulating and while Sebastian was really strong on the climbs not everyone was.

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In Åker Styckebruk we lost the Dictatotor and El Gringo and the Joker stopped to wait for him. I continued to get some more help from the 1st group.

Ended up at Malsåker castle:

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Back over the water in Stallarholmen and stopped at a gas station.

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The other Sumos wasn’t so far behind so we met up. Johan was pretty tired so me and him waited while the group I rode with before went to finish the ride. Johan was still tired after the break so he rode alone from Mariefred. Just the SUMO group back together:

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El Gringo keeping the pace right, The Joker and me pushed the tempo a bit too high for the Dictator. Have to live up to my name (The Lightweight Lizard) on the climbs you know 😉

A nice pace straight back to Östertälje and the ride was over. me and the Joker celebrated like you should a sunny summer day 😉

Map and stats: Strava

The funny thing is today felt alright, I had no problems with going around (mostly) and take my turn. Compared to last autumn where I more or less just tried to hang on as I thought the pace was to high. Same speed today, more climbing and less good teamwork. Feels good 🙂

Some may think that you shouldn’t ride Brevet this fast but why not. Everyone in the final group today was happy about the speed I think, otherwise they should have dropped to another group 😉 And short stops makes it easier to get back on the bike 🙂

New day :)

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Ready for the wet commute I got a pair of new waterproof shoe covers. Feels like I’ve tried and worn out some now and we’ll see how long these GripGrab Raceaqua works, felt good. From Cykelkraft

And to get ready for tomorrows 200km I changed bearings in my Roval SLX24 wheels. From regular steel to Enduro Zero Ceramic, black and red is the new:

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Rode to work with a pair of Roval CLX40 with hybrid Ceramic Speed bearings inside that spins forever. On my way home with low profile wheels with Roubaix instead of Turbo tires the Zero Ceramic bearings felt a lot smoother. Like when changing from regular hubs to ones with hybrid (just ceramic balls) bearings like in Roval CLX, DT180 and so on. You notice the difference. Now it was one step extra 😀

So my bike got ready for tomorrows sunny ride:

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And finally. After buying a new set of cleats last summer in Nice for my Sub6 shoes that I never changed on… Got a pair of S-Works6 shoes that I mounted almost new cleats on then, cleats that broke last week when riding to Torö. Couldn’t sprint as the front broke. But tonight the shoes got new cleats:

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As much as I ride I think I have to change more often 😉

2nd Skoda

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Some moments can be so nice on a picture. But the days 3rd puncture wasn’t so nice.

Rode with Skoda today, only cyclist missing in the picture was Johan so a small group. Was hoping for a big group today but people dropped out of different reasons. The ride got shortened from Nynäs and we just went to Ösmo. Was really nice, specially riding with Fredrik Kessiakoff for real for the first time talking old idols and memories 🙂

As usual with the teamcar behind with all things necessary (floor pump was today best thing)

142km when I got home, doing a detour and meeting a couple of friends at Le Mond 😉 Map and stats: Strava

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13 days left for Vätternrundan. Will I do good? Am a bit nervous but with this people it will be fun and will do my absolute best to make it awesome and an experience for life 😀

Älgö Deluxe

Don’t know what it is but it seems like my body like Älgö in a way. Seems to have easier to hang on compared to a Le Peloton. Until Mathias attacked today with Michael and Anders rode up to them. Ended up in a chasing group just behind, A great group with great speed, lost a lot at a redlight but except that I think we had some flow 🙂

Looked like this, filmed by Jesper:

Got together afterwards and had breakfast in the sun 🙂

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A great morning with a ride like this: Strava

Le Peloton #161

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After a rainy evening yesterday and not so promising weather forecast it wasn’t so many riding Le Peloton today, around 20 cyclists just in 2 groups.

My legs felt really tired after yesterday so not even sure why I rode, but joined the slower group. Sat in the back of the first group until Duvnäs where we turned left and while it wasn’t any group dynamic with people taking turns and going around all the time it was more time in front for me and Stefan 😉 Sometimes it feels good to be able to do a lot of work and not just trying to hang on and just take a turn or two.

Was a bit wet in the end but nothing that bothered us as we could sit inside and eat breakfast at Le Mond 🙂 Diane took a picture:

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Map and stats: Strava

Ending with a picture of my fast bike, tt-setup from yesterday:

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