One of the dangers of relying on technology became clear on Day 6. “It’s all downhill today!” announced Sean at breakfast, having mapped the route using an app that produced a cross section of the stage showing a consistent downward course from Ljubljana down to the Adriatic coast. The weather forecast was kind too, cold at first but warming up nicely through the day, and with a gentle following wind. How hard could it be?
Oh dear. As Sean headed off to the first rest stop at 24 miles, the hills closed in and the road started twisting ominously upwards. Cresting the first of many long ascents, he was sure he could hear the roaring of an angry bear some distance back down the road, and the full horror of his confident prediction at breakfast became clear. This was going to be much tougher than we thought.
Placated by a good strong cup of coffee, Miles decided not to strangle his older brother, instead repeating the Molloy mantra of “I love hills, me!” every time the tarmac turned skywards.
Looking on the bright side, what goes up must come down and every climb was followed with an exhilarating descent, and this combined with the nice weather and great scenery, kept spirits up.
Another stop for tea/coffee/hot chocolate (Gary/Olly & James/Miles), and the awesome foursome were heading for their final border crossing into Italy. This meant that the final hilly stage of this year's challenge was over, and the boys could look forward to a lengthy but flat stage around the Adriatic coast to the finish in Venice.
The neg box was fairly quiet today, with just 2 fines for Miles incurred when the unexpected hills got tough.
Just one day to go now and another classic Park Leisure charity challenge will be over. Thanks for all your support, we are very close to reaching our target so please dig deep, just like the boys!!