Pan Celtic Race 2021

What’s not to like about riding with a big group of friends for a week in some on the most beautiful places the UK has to offer?

This year’s event was faultless thanks to the tireless efforts of the PCR crew battling the ever changing Covid restrictions.

One of the best parts of the ride for me this year was the time spent meeting and sharing a few miles with other Clan members. You can feel like you’ve known someone for years after spending just a short amount of time chatting with them on a ride.

I thought I may have to scratch from the race on day 1 when Jason Hayles decided he would show me his skills and try using the rear wheel of my bike as a jump. He’s no Evil Knievel though as he fell off as soon as he hit the ramp. I had laid my bike half across a cycle path as I rushed under the trees for some cover from the rain while I put my waterproofs on. Jason came riding along the path but was busy looking at his Garmin which was playing up and didn’t notice my bike until it was too late!! Thankfully both of our bikes and Jason were unscathed so we could laugh about it.

Despite being run over my bike was faultless with the exception of one nail in the rear tyre that went in one side and out of the other. Thankfully I run the tyres tubeless so this was nothing a couple of Dynaplugs, some sealant and a bit of additional air from the pump couldn’t sort.

The support throughout the event from Dot watchers was another highlight this year as they gave a little extra boost every time I saw them. They cheered, waved signs and even offered food and drink to all of the PCR riders. Some even made the extra effort to stand on the roadside in the middle of the night or in the pouring rain. Thanks everyone, it’s very much appreciated by all of the Clan.

As I’m sure everyone does at some point on a ride like this I questioned why I was taking on this challenge, but these words from the Chief in 2019 kept going around in my head. ‘Nothing worth anything is ever easy’. The sense of achievement when riding the final loop around the Great Orme makes every pedal stroke worthwhile. I always have mixed feeling when riding around the Orme as I’m happy that I’ve nearly completed the race, but I’m equally sad that it’s nearly over for another year.

I amazed myself at how much quicker I managed to finish the ride this year compared to 2019 (almost 3 days quicker). I must have learnt a lot more from my first event than I realised. It was nice to finish a few days before the finishers party this year as it gave me a chance to cheer other Clan members over the finish line and hear their stories from the road over a few beers in the Chiefs garden.

This really was the most beautiful journey shared with an incredible group of people.

When does the 2022 registration open???