Saturday, 10 November 2012

Cambodia Day 4, The Finish Line

The final day has come, 70K of cycling planned, on road, off road, through the jungle, deep puddles and sand!
Today was always going to be a special day because it would be the last time we, as a team, get to cycle together on the awesome trip, that has seen, so many ups and downs, but has always been brilliant, we had no idea what to expect and as always, it was a day to remember.
The usual strict 6am breakfast (shouldn't have stayed up late last night!!!!!!), the coach, took us to the edge of of the Jungle and we got to cycle through it, to get us to the famous Jungle Temple, as seen in Tomb Raider and Indiana Jones
After a quick water break and when I say water, i mean one or two fell in a massive puddle, trying to get through, that gave everyone some fantastic photos or video, we then got to the official water stop, parked our bikes and headed off, with our guides to the temple
And to say the temple is breathtaking, would be an understatement

Once we left the Jungle Temple, it was all about the cycling, much of which was on single track sand, something many people were not used to and we had quite a few falls and no one got hurt, they were more of tips than falls, we were heading for the finish line, something we only dreamed about when we got here on our first day, back in Ho Chi Minh City, before we became 'Team Extreme'
This was the first day, my camera battery seemed to drain really fast and the first day i forgot to bring a spare, so i decided the important thing now was the finish photos.
During the previous evening some of the team had come up with a brilliant way of raising extra money for Alzheimers by staging a 'filmed' race between a selected number of people from all levels of cycling and two places were left unfilled, so that you could bid money for a place, it was decided between a few of us that we would also 'pool' our bids to get Andy (group leaded) in the race, so when the announcement was made, one very generous bid of $100 was made, plus another $250 for Andy to race (he kindly added another $25), but this was to be no ordinary race (why would we ever think otherwise), this was to be a handicap 400 metre sprint, between some very, very good cyclist and a load of us, one of the cyclists was Mr Lucky, one of the crew and one of the best cyclists in Cambodia, but 400 meters in 1st gear, makes it a very funny race, it was like extreme spinning in 40 degrees! But Mr Lucky spun to victory.
After that it was, 14K to the finish, I set off with one of the leaders (Cambodia's number 2 cyclist) and 3 of the others and boy did we push it hard for the full 13K.
With only 1K to go we all got together whilst the leaders went on to put up the banner, girls in the front, boys at the back so we could all cycle in together for one last time and with the exception of one crash between a number of the girls, we all crossed the line as the team we had become.
And the tears flowed, the hugs started and we were the happiest bunch in Cambodia, we had just completed a epic journey, through two beautiful countries and between us, raised over £100,000 for Alzheimers

So that was that, some of us headed back to the hotel to chill, some went to another temple and we all met up later for a party and boy did we party!

But that wasn't the end of the night, we were up, it was late, sunrise would be in a couple of hours and where best to see it other than at the Angkor Wat Temples, so we hired tut tut's and headed off to sit with hundreds of people and just watch

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