It’s been almost a week now, since a bunch of graveling heroes set out on their adventure called Ghistele Epic. They gathered at dawn to get an early start, since 222 demanding kilometers were on their menu of the day. “Why did I even register” they were all thinking somewhere deep inside, still trying to shake off the sleep that didn’t want to let go.
However, by the time the first rays of sunshine hit their cup of morning coffee, restraint turned into fire. They got hungry as the smell of gravel found it’s way into their noses. Funny thing really, the fine line between resentment and absolute love that exists between every cyclist and the things he puts himself through on days like these. In the last couple of minutes prior to the start, it dawned on every single rider; they were in for a serious amount of second degree fun…
Second degree, because even though the weather couldn’t have been any better and not a single puddle of mud would lie in front of their tires, each and every one of them knew this ride was going to hurt. They were going to suffer under 50 shades of sun, but enjoy every minute of it nonetheless.
The course itself would wind through forgotten forest roads, lead them past the graves of the fallen and across some of the most beautiful hills in Flanders. They weren’t racing each other, nor were they racing the clock or the trails they were on. If anything, These riders were racing themselves, trying to stay ahead of monday. Because no one actually wanted this ride to end.
As the world rolled away underneath their wheels, the finish line of this journey everyone wanted to last for ever, started to get within reach.
Rides like these mean so much more than just the time spent in the saddle. To most cyclist these are the most valuable hours of the week. Not only because this two wheeled horse on rubber takes them places and leaves their legs dripping with lactic acid. Oh no, it’s really about the ride into their own headspace. Us cyclists just need our bikes to get us there.
That’s is why we are so grateful to everyone who made it to the start of our event. We love sharing experiences like these. The atmosphere created by every single one present that day, was simply magic. On and off the bike there were nothing but good vibes and love - maybe some beers as well ;) - involved.
We really just wanted to say thank you to every single one that made it to Ghistele that day, on to the next!
Your eCHATlon crew
Terry & Reinout