… and that just happened to be me.

2013 was a bad year for racing and punctures. 2014 started well but that was soon to change.

After the last Nutcracker race I’d been enjoying some nice rides in the Lakes with Marin.


The next race was a favorite of mine. Something very local and for a good cause.


Sam Houghton passed away after battling cancer in 2006 and this challenge is a charity ride that raises money for cancer research.

The course is 46km with 1400m ascent over and around the Kentmere Valley in the South Lake District.

It’s hard, its fast, and the trails are some of the best you’d get to ride. Be prepared to walk/run also.

I’d ridden it in 2012 and 2013 full rigid singlespeed and came close to the top step (overall) both times, even if I did waste 10minutes fixing a sidewall rip last year.

This year was a little different. I got to ride a prototype Kinesis full susser. It has bouncy bits and gears.


Thanks for sportsunday.co.uk for the image

That was until I hit Garburn Pass and sliced the back tyre. Same place as last year. Another tyre died.

Fed up I rode back up Garburn and descended to Kentmere where Marin was waiting for me.

Happy my money went to a good cause but I’m still not over getting so many punctures last year.

I’m annoyed of pulling out, but even more annoyed at the three inch long slices to my back tyre which I had to repair quickly before heading off to Norway the following day.


My first time to Norway – my first of many.

You’ll end up seeing why #norwayaway

A week of perfect dry woodland singletrack and messing around in the rivers and lake.



I had planned to run a little, but as the singletrack was so good I didn’t get chance always favoring the bike over the running shoes. With a 73km race the following week – maybe I should have ran a little more.


After recommending some shoes for someone competing in the 10 peaks I got a little carried away and thought it would be a good idea to enter. It would be my one and only long training run for the CCC which is at the end of August (100km, 6100m ascent)

The 10 peaks is a 73km running race with 5600m ascent over 10 of the lake districts highest peaks.

The race started at 5am in a midge riddled car park below Helvellyn.

After running up and over Helevellyn, High Raise, Bowfell, Esk Pike, Great End, Ill Crag, Broad Crag, Scarfell Pike, Scarfell, Great Gable, Pillar and Skiddaw 15 hours had passed before reaching the finish line in Keswick.

My legs were sore from the descents.


Thanks for sportsunday.co.uk for the image

I was the 9th person over the line (ended up 10th as the guy I overtook on the ascent up Skiddaw had started a little after me).

A good day out, and next time (IF there is a next time) I should be able to save at least 2 hours now I know where to go and what pace to run.

It took me around a week to get back to running properly – I did have a little niggle in my achillies but nothing major.

I was still able to get out on the bike and I can’t get enough of the Aithein at the moment.



Tomorrow I’ll be racing/riding at Nutcracker Rd5 at Aske again. One of my favorites.

On Thursday I’ll be traveling to Norway for 11 days. Can’t wait…

Check out instagram.com/singlespeedmatt for more pics

Till then I’ll leave you with this.

One thought on “Cutting up the competition.

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