The imminent opening of the latest Bike Boutique in Melbourne got me thinking about one of the most popular city rides and its Swiss counterpart.
Our version of the Beach Road Ride travels out from Port Melbourne with the Spirit of Tasmania along the coast turning at the flashy resort of Sorrento, second beach home to the rich and famous! We fly through St Kilda venue for the Commonwealth Games Tri and fun fair through trendy Brighton and windswept Mentone, all the time hugging the coast making our way to Safety Beach. Steve told me they re-named this place Safety Beach because of all the shark attacks. Apparently they were trying to re-launch the image?? (Not sure if he was just trying to fool this silly pom?) Then its on through beautiful Mount Eliza with its amazing golden beaches and blue blue sea. You know you are nearly at the turnaround as you reach the strip malls of Portsea and smell the hot chips and burgers.
The ride is mainly flat but you are often dogged by a constant headwind or buffeted by a nasty cross wind. One magic day we timed our ride perfectly with a tailwind out and back. The wind just literally turned with us and blew us home towards the silhouette of the CBD seeming to float in the sea in front of us.
Of course no ride on busy roads is perfect and Beach Road is certainly dogged by a lot of traffic lights. It gets incredibly busy at the weekend too and you are quite likely to turn around and find a mini peleton sucking your wheel if you are not too careful! Not my favourite!!! Or join in the Hell Ride which sees literally hundreds of riders making the pilgrimage along the coast together on a Saturday.
Today I did the Beach Road Ride Swiss style … nowhere near the sea and certainly not in Melbourne but incredibly beautiful nevertheless.
To do any flat riding you need to descend 17km from Leysin down to Aigle and this is how my day began. Then its on through the windy valley until you get your first sight of the water (Lac Leman) surrounded by mountains. Quite stunning, it never fails to bring a smile to my face.
First stop is Montreux home to the famous Jazz festival (and very delicious coffee!!). Then you cruise past vineyards perched on the side of almost vertical hillsides
and Chateaux sitting imposingly on the lakeside.
We turn at Lausanne, Olympic town and home to numerous Tri European and World Championships and some incredibly elegant waterfront architecture.
Two very different beach roads one very happy Cervelo riding triathlete!