During the first two days, leading up to CP1 were very hot. The temperatures were reaching 30 Celsius and over in France, Germany and Austria, Switzerland, we haven’t even hit the hot countries yet!! I was constantly stopping to refill my bottles, get more food, cokes also mandatory ice creams all the time too. Once I filled the water bottles up with new cold water, it would take on average 15-20 minutes for them to be more than warm. I religiously applied factor 50 everyday, but still managed to get decent tan lines everywhere.
A big part of my route went underneath Luxembourg rather than across it, I spent a bit more time in France than others. The smaller French villages do not have any shops or petrol stations in between or anything similar where you could top up with water, food. At one point, I had ran out of water and could not find any shops in the towns I’ve passed. In fact, all the small villages seemed empty! I did find a church and in its court year there was a tap. The water seemed good to drink, so I filled up my water bottles, rinsed my cycling cap with the cold water and carried on. `
Approaching Check point 1 this was one of the more serious hills I climbed. The hill went on what it seems was forever, gradual climb with steep bits!
I’ve reached Check point 1 in 2 days 11 hours, which was 800 km or 500 miles away from the start line. I still felt good and fresh, no pains or niggles. Once I got my card stamped, as the CP1 was in hotel, I decided to use their bathroom to wash myself and my jersey and I’ve also jumped into my second pair of bibs and I’ve also washed my orange socks! Once that was done, I went outside to dry the jersey which was a bit wet and to leave my bibs to dry out together with my socks! The jersey was dry within 10 minutes and I went off to get some food from the restaurant. As it was still early in the morning, they were serving a buffet and I enjoyed a variety of meat slices, cheeses and breads with orange juice and a coffee!
As I faffed around outside, I overheard a conversation nearby and recognized that it is Rimas. A fellow Lithuanian who has done the TCR two times previously, but this time he was around on holiday! as he has done the Alpi 4000 (1200km) event in Italy not too far away and came out to see the riders at the CP 1. We chatted for a bit, I showed him my bike, kit, etc and had to shoot off. He did grab a few pictures of me, which were great!