Tom Mansfield takes on the Primal 'Two Ton Tour'
On the weekend of Saturday 13th/14th July I took on the challenge of riding the Two Ton Tour, dubbed by Ed and Keith (the organisers) as a proper cycling weekend involving 2 days back to back of 160km each day of minimum of 2500m of climbing on each day; it was set to be a good challenge. I chose to ride this following a heavy racing crash and feeling very despondent to racing and the racing scene in general. This event presented the perfect opportunity to challenge myself in a different way to racing and start to enjoy being back riding my bike again!
We started from Ludlow brewery in Shropshire with riders set to head off between 9am and 10am. I arrived for about 8:30am to collect my rider numbers for the event. One for the over night bag which the event staff were to transport to the overnight accommodation at Aberystwyth university (all included in the entry fee to the event) including a dinner on the Saturday night and breakfast on the Sunday morning, an absolute bargain!! And one for the bike which has all the emergency contacts on the back. Most riders tried to get away as early as possible knowing it was going to be a tough day ahead with plenty of tough climbs to come. I set off much closer to the 10am mark after a chat with all the event staff and organisers who I know personally through riding with one of my local clubs. About 9:45am I set off heading west towards Wales. There was no easing into this event as we rode out of Ludlow and straight up a long climb before hitting some flatter lanes and flying through the first 35km and into Wales. It was from this point in I knew it was going to get tough with a little flat road in the next 130km. With 3 sign in points along the way it was easy not to think of it as such a long day but 3 shorter stages, normally I wouldn’t be fazed by rides like this but having had 6 weeks off the bike following a crash racing I wasn’t sure how the legs were going to go. After winding through some beautiful welsh countryside, I quickly arrived at sign in point 1; a quick stop and chat and away I went again into and through the Elan valley through mid-wales and some more beautiful country side to distract me from the what seemed to be continually uphill roads I soon found myself catching up with riders that had set off before me and with a hello was past on the climbs and away. Knowing the worst of the days climbs was still to come it was a short stop at sign in point 2 with a bag of Haribo and off I went trying not to think of the main challenge of the day the 25% climb of the 'Devils Staircase', I can happily confirm it has earned that name, riding towards it was like riding towards a brick wall quickly putting me in the easiest gears on the bike a 39/28 and still I was searching for more gears as I ground my way up the climb for 1.5km. After this it was fairly plain sailing through to Aber on some undulating roads with a few extra kickers thrown in to spice things up, just when you think your there but then a short final climb up to the university the final challenge of the day no more than 1km long at a little over 10% a sting in the tale of a great day of riding and finished for the day 5hrs 35min of riding solo and a quick lie on the grass before heading off to find a shower. At 6pm it was time find some food, before an early(ish) night ahead of day 2 back to Ludlow.
For me the Two Ton Tour gave me the perfect opportunity to remember why I started cycling in the first place before all the racing and competing, simply an opportunity to enjoy riding my bike! It was great to see so many different people of ages both female and male of all different sizes on their bikes and simply enjoying a superbly organised event.
I can’t thank Joe (owner of CES Sport) enough for his support and I opted for a set of RC38 wheels to ride throughout the event, the wheels were absolutely solid throughout the whole weekend and I couldn’t fault them at all. Great under braking and very responsive. The wheels climbed really well (especially when being thrown around to crawl up the steepest of climbs climbs) and cruised along on the flats and up the longer more gradual climbs. I choose the RC38 as they aren’t too deep as it wasn’t a race. I wanted a more versatile set up and the shallower section of these wheels provided absolutely that. By far the 2nd best choice of the weekend the first being entering in the first place. My first non-race event in a long time and I highly recommend it for anyone looking for a new challenge! A massive thank you to Ed, Keith and all the event team and riders for making it a great weekend of riding. Fully sign posted route and GPX files sent out in advanced so near on impossible to get lost!
You never know what’s just around the corner so why not pick yourself up your own set of CES Sport wheels and get out to enjoy your own cycling adventures using discount code CESTOM at the checkout when placing your order!!
Whilst I am an ambassador for CES Sport all views and opinions are my own and honest opinion of the wheels and event.
You can follow my personal journey and adventures in cycling through my Instagram and would advise checking out the CES Sport ambassadors’ profiles to learn more about all the ambassadors and scroll through the fantastic wheel options available. Make sure you read to the end to avoid missing out on a gift from myself and Joe the owner of CES Sport!