The Pacific Coast Highway was shrouded in mist for most of the 100 miles we rode in yesterday's Best Buddies Challenge. Tim, Marcella and I flew the Rapha flag start to finish, with those two opting for arm warmers and gilets while I went with a black Stowaway Jacket. Other than a brief spell on the climb at Big Sur I kept the jacket on for the duration. Given the cooler temperatures I wish I'd opted to wear the new Rain Jacket (yes I'm lucky enough to have one a little ahead of the curve). It's beautiful, but we'll get round to that in good time.
After bagging the last two climbs I shot straight past the final rest stop at Ragged Point with just 17 miles of shallow rollers to go. The thought of a hot shower and real food was all the motivation I needed. Forty miles earlier, in an effort to keep warm, I'd ridden off alone expecting Tim and Marcella to rejoin me in a few miles. As it turned out that never happened. I soldiered on, passing and being passed repeatedly by the same five or six guys. I never fail to find that weird.
In that last stretch from Ragged Point I caught a three-man bullet train and together we made short work of those final miles with a little tailwind push (not as good as last year Brendan... and you were missed). I picked up my backpack from ride support and hit the shower truck for a blissful ten minutes of hot water, then wrapped in a big Audi towel got dressed out in the sunshine and privacy of the men's enclosure.
Clean but tired and hungry I pulled on some comfy clothes: Rapha Touring Shorts and Rapha's new Merino Jersey. This was my first chance to wear the jersey and it's a very nice piece of soft, itch-free luxury. Like everyone else addicted to the brand, I was on pins and needles waiting to see what the fall lineup would bring and as usual the boys and girls from London didn't disappoint. The Merino Jersey feels classic, urban and stylishly casual all at the same time. The perfect fit for relaxing on the edge of the Pacific in the reluctant sunshine we'd been waiting all day for.
Brian over at thewashingmachinepost has got more good things to say about the Merino Jersey. This morning, after a good night's sleep, Juli and I headed out for breakfast at the Naglee Park Garage. Inspired by egg, spinach and mushroom lasagna we took a crack at some photos of the Merino Jersey paired with the Touring Shorts. As always, yours truly... A.K.A. ordinary guy wearing extraordinary kit.
Notes to follow about my Enigma Eulogy, and the latest mods/maintenance that had her purring beautifully on that century.