Picos Original Riders

Picos Original Riders
Highlights of 2010

Last of the Picos Riders - to Rome Alone!

Our first two charity rides were a huge success - raising over £20,000 for the South East Cancer Help Centre.

The Centre does a fantastic job of supporting patients and carers at the most difficult times of their lives. They make a real difference and you could help them in their work by contributing to our fundraising. Donations can be made via JustGiving.comhttps://www.justgiving.com/Tom-Vaz/ or directly into the Centre. For more details of the Centre and their work see their website at http://www.sechc.org.uk/

After 3 years of rest it seemed time to dust off the old muscles, bones and sinews and do one more spectacular ride in aid of this fabulous charity.

This time I will travel alone for 25 days, mainly following the ancient pilgrimage route to Rome, the Via Francigene, covering a distance of around 1,400 miles.

The route travels through Newhaven - Dieppe - Paris before I eventually reach the Via Francigene in Eastern France. From then on it is pretty simple apart from having to cross the Alps without an elephant!

Friday, 17 July 2015

Day 4 Paris to Sézanne

Today has been an odd affair. Terrible traffic as I headed out of Paris and then blistering heat ending up over 30C.
The endless pedalling was punctuated by the search for
a) coffee. Found it at a nice village where the only thing going on was a film crew. If the young lady I saw was a lead character then look out for a new version of Dexys Midnight Runners "Come on Eileen". Overalls are back in!
b) lunch. Nearly had it at the beautiful village of Mortcerf but it was closed - i keep forgetting that France closes for lunch.
c) bed. Ended up sleeping in the hammock after running out of energy.

70 miles is a long way when you have to deal with this kind of heat. Also, Sézanne, where I wanted to sleep, could only be approached via the N4 unless I used a long detour. The N4 looks something like the A3 between Guildford and London. You can in theory ride on it but the lorries are doing 60mph and that was not what I signed up for!

Oh I forgot to mention dinner: two plums and a nectarine. I hope you all enjoyed your jacket potato, rice and fruit salad at the Cancer Centre!

Strange noises in the woods last night. Something biggish judging by the crunching branches. Could it be a gruffalo? I did what you normally do if the toilet door doesn't have a lock. Hrmphed loudly and coughed. That sorted Mr Gruffalo!

Photos of someone trying to park where the crew were filming, Mortcerf closed for lunch,  Lescharolle closed since the 19th Century


  1. Day 4 and you seem to have progressed really well with your cycling miles. You have cycled 315 miles approximately so far so only another 1085 miles to go!!!! The road to Rome is definitely getting shorter and shorter with every passing day. Hope the poor Gruffalo survives the trauma of sharing the Woods with you!!

    1. That is pretty much what I said to her today. I think we are building up a case against her!