Earlier last week I took another swing at Norton Summit, my goal, a sub 20 minute climb. Once I got to the top, I didn’t think I had managed it. But when I got back to the motel, I thought I had. That was until Carl made this comment on Strava.
Oh arse ache. One issue I have with Strava is the amount of segments that pop up when you ride in a popular area. I reckon there is more segments than metres climbed on Norton Summit.
So yesterday morning, Carl and I rode it again. I wasn’t feeling real well, but it would be my last time til next Adelaide trip.
I stopped at the bottom for an energy gel and a drink. Then we were off. Carl at the front, me sitting on his wheel, hoping he would pace me all the way up. We passed a few people, then Carl waved me through as he got blocked by a few other people that were slower than us.
I got onto the wheel of a bloke with tri bars and sat there for the first kilometre or so. At a tight hairpin, I gave it some gas and went by him.
We managed to go by a few more people, and I wasn’t feeling too bad. Around a bend, I was trying to figure out how far to go. I asked Carl “Are we half way yet?” No answer. Hmmm. A few more metres and I asked again. Nothing. Strange. I looked over my shoulder and got the shock of my life, I had put a few metres between the two of us. I must be going ok, I’ll be buggered if I am going to stop.
I little further up the road, I pass a tall skinny guy who jumps on my wheel. Awesome, I am hoping we can swap turns and I can have a bludge. I start flicking my elbow like a pro. Nothing. I keep going and then flick again. Still not coming around. Ah crap. I turn around and he is gone. Bloody hell.
I push on and still manage to miss the line on the road that marks the official end of the climb. I get to the point that I always stop and look at my time, I reckon it is 22 minutes.
Carl rolls up not long later.
Carl reckons it is a sub 19 minute time. I am not so sure.
He took me up a few more hills and got a bunch of terrific photos. See below. Then it was the plunge down to Adelaide. I managed to top 70kph at one point, plus a few hairy moments going down the hill.
A terrific ride and my first sub 20 minute ascent of Norton Summit.
So, a successful ride and a great ride to end the Tour Down Under.
Massive thanks to Carl for taking me out and for the photos below.