I had one of the best riding days ever on Day 2. The organizers made day 2 a bit easier after the really tough day yesterday. Many riders found the going really tough yesterday. The loop was shortened to 85 kms and some of the big hills were left out as we rode up the valley around the hill instead of over the top. I went around for 15 for the day after I had a go at some of the harder red line sections. The scoring is non stop and some of the locals don’t fully understand the rules that well. Most of the sections had us riding up steep waterfalls with lots of water. There were a few drowned bikes today.
We stopped for dinner. The locals provided a home cooked variety of local food. Most dishes were rice, noodles or mixtures of beans. The meat dishes were either fish or chicken curries with lots of very fresh vegetables and fruit. We ate on the beach listening to the waves splashing up. The locals dressed up for lunch in what looked like their best clothes. The town was a really happy place. I ended up signing autographs for lots of kids.
I stopped for a beer and an ice cream with Andy Perry about 7 km from the finish at a shop which was just a shack in the middle of cane fields. I can’t get over the scenery we are riding through – simply amazing.
In some ways I am looking forward to the last day tomorrow but really, I am not. This is one of the best events I have ridden in. Tomorrow is going to be a short loop, only 25 km. Then party time.