25 July 2010

DD 2010: Best ever?

The fantastic Dunwich Dynamo 2010 was surely a candidate for the best ever.

Tailwinds all the way, warm dry T-shirt weather even in the depth of night - and the buzz of being part of something huge, spontaneous and still unspoiled. Over 1,400 cyclists, the most ever, doing a 120 mile bike ride. Not for charity, not for competition, but for sheer fun.

I've just got back and I'll put up a more detailed report tomorrow. But right now I think I need a bath.


  1. Good to see you!

    We limped over to Ipswich to get the 8:42 back.


  2. Well done! (wot, no punctures?)

  3. Well done, sounds like you had perfect conditions! Congrats on completing the ride, looking forward to hearing more soon

  4. This was my third DD in a row. In the first two years I was on my own, though as you do, fell into a group in the first year. (Last year I used it as a training session for a half ironman, so went relatively quick.) This year, I was shepherding up two friends. So three different experiences, and in a way incomparable.
    So I don't think I can have a "best ever" and worst experience, but between the joy of accompanying my friends as they discovered the DD which in turn made me look at things in a new light (e.g. finding the battiest village name), I did for the first time see something that saddened me: selfish behaviour by a signficant minority of participants. On the whole these were small groups of people on expensive bikes who looked like they should have known better. As the route sheet suggested, they were dufuses... the main crimes were talking through villages (e.g. the group that were shouting directions and "clear" to each other through Needham Market) and stopping in the middle of the carriageway at junctions to regroup. I really hope there aren't complaints from residents but I expect there will be; it's almost as if the DD is becoming a victim of its own success.

    I should emphasise that this isn't a complaint about the groups clearly from cycle clubs who were doing the route together. They were well behaved and caused no trouble (although I'm note sure whether being stuck in the middle of a pelaton watching the wheel in front is really the point of the DD, but that's a different conversation).

    Also, it was cloudy, which I know kept the temperature up but there is something cool about the moonlight.

    But the positives: laughing at the village names, the midnight combine harvesting that was happening somewhere in north Essex, the very bemused cat that was sat in an upstairs window inspecting the stream of cyclists, the person with the burger tent in their front garden (I hope they made a killing), the teenagers from Dunmow who started by taking the mick but then rode about 5 miles on their mini bmx's before suddenly announcing they had to go to work in the morning and turning round, and the glorious sense of isolation which we still managed to find despite the ever growing crowd.

  5. Brilliant ride - my first, and definitely not my last! I agree, too many people taking it too flippin' seriously - and what's the rush to escape from Dunwich! If you've spent hours getting there, why not hang around and enjoy it - rather than smugly announcing you've booked your own coach home so you can leave early! My best bit was the swim at the end ;-) And the pub opening at 11 am. Also, the Essex boys (and girls) shouting encouragement from their cars - who'dve thought it?

  6. Love this blog! I too did the Dunwich Dynamo for the first time this year, what an experience!! Brilliant