Belinda (Hampshire, England)

“February 2019 was my first tour with Sunvelo. Very much the rookie middle aged cyclist who thought the transition from runner to cyclist couldn’t possibly be a problem. The lungs and legs were all good , but bike skills not so much . I had more encounters with tarmac than I would have liked, especially going uphill. In those early days the Coll de sa Batalla was my arch nemesis. At just under 8 km with an average gradient of 5% , in most write ups this is described as an easy climb. But I am the sort of cyclist that liked to make a mountain out of a molehill. I think I probably still do. But this climb , for me back then , was a mountain the size of Everest. There is a perfect little nook about half way up through the twists and turns of this climb that should have my name on it. If I had the energy during those early attempts at getting to the top , I would have carved my name on a tree. And then scored it for every time time I did the climb and failed to do it in one go. Instead I spent my time inhaling as much of the air around me , before getting back on the bike to continue the climb to the top. The Sunvelo ride leader and the other cyclists would be waiting patiently at the top for my arrival. I would rest up a short while before we all grouped together to continue our ride.

Fast forward to 2023 , I am a totally different cyclist. No longer is this a climb I dread , but one I embrace . No longer do I stop at my little safety nook struggling to get my breath. I am racing against myself each time I do this climb to do it better. It is a beautiful ride to the top , sheltered by trees with stunning views over the mountain where the trees thin out. I honestly think I now do this one with a smile on my face, especially as I cycle on past those trees in that shady little nook.”

Belinda first booked onto our very popular Winter Cycling Holidays in Mallorca.