Inveterate dabbler in business, travel, gadgets & life

88 days in Thailand

I’ve now been in Thailand for 88 days and this is the first time I’ve been near my blog!  Which is to say very unusual for me as is riding 6600km (4,125 miles) in the same period. Not sure if the cycling rate will continue at such a pace with, as in the UK, all Audaxes stopped and the daytime temperatures reaching 40+ in the late morning.

With a lot of help from a very friendly Thai Lady, I managed to extend my 90-day visa to a 1-year retirement visa which if I pay an additional 3800 Baht (£94) when I next leave the country it will be converted into a multiple entry visa. Which given all the COVID-19 virus stuff is very useful.

I made the decision to stay here in Bangkok rather than go into isolation on my own in the UK. interestingly as of today Thailand with a similar population to the UK has a total of 2,169 infected with 10 deaths against the UK’s 42,000 infected and 4313 deaths!

Almost Immediately after I arrived I  failed the Sai Yok 600km audax due to a total lack of sleep on the plane and not been acclimatized to the afternoon heat but I still managed to ride 180km. The following weekend I successfully did the Kaen Makrut 400km in just over 23 hours with its two mega hills and very few/no supplies at the control points.

The star attraction for me was the Isan 2020km audax, awesome and very well organized and I did it comfortably in 160 hours the worst part by a long way was the 11 hours it took me to ride/walk the 80km from Ban Tat Kloi to Ban Kok Ka Bouk.

Two weeks later after doing some rides exploring Roi Et and then Ratchaburi we did the Ayutthaya 200 BRM audax a lovely easy ride (apparently Thailands first-ever audax route) but with a rather unfortunate abrupt ending at dinner after the event 🙁 🙁

I then decided to take a bike tour on my own with my pannier from Bangkok >> Na Rim beach >> Chantaburi >> Sa Kaeo >> Bing Nam Priao >> The Khun Dan 200 audax >> AyutthayaWattha Sung >> Kamphaeng >> Bantung >> Nakorn Lampang >> Lampang 200km test audax ->>Chang Mai then an overnight train back to Bangkok to try the Tha Chin-Mae Klong 400 Audax which I DNF’d by 5km due to punctures and my miserable attempt to repair them! Thus making a rather epic 2,339km in 18 days! and apart from the audaxes with all my baggage!

Back in Bangkok life eventually returned to before the dinner episode with the help of my bike box 🙂 although we now have the COVID-19 closing all the shops, bars, etc, fortunately, the Rembrandt Suites is a pretty decent place to be although a real pity the pool is closed 🙁



Nakhon Pathom 400km Audax

Buoyed by the success of my first 600 I thought it would be a grand idea to finish a Super Randonneur series whilst in Thailand 🙂 I managed to get entry to the Nakhon Pathom 400km Audax so I rested a few days at the Payamai resort which so reminded me of places that Pelosi gets invited to in Hotel Inspector! The Full moon festival was in full swing at Uthai Thani so great experience.

I cycled the 31 miles in the morning to Ban Takhli station to catch a train with the loaded bike to Bangkok the bike fitting in the old dining car converted to a parcels van easily through the double door opening. I spent the night by Bangkok station in the OYO 140 The Krungkasem Srikrung Hotel.

Platform 9 Bangkok station

The next day I caught the train going South to Nakhon Pathom, amusingly the main parcel van was full of boxes and a couple of motorbikes so myself and a small group of cyclists at to lift our bikes through the ever open windows 🙂 You have to be fit to travel with a bike 🙂

The train slowly filled up when leaving Bangkok eventually stopping at Nakhon Pathom.I had taken the front wheel off by now so I could upend the bike and squeeze through the regular door 🙂

The Zen Hotel is great about a mile from the Audax starting stadium and does breakfast from 6 am so perfect for the 7 am start. Great to see so many folks from the 600 ride at the start including Wit from the Audax FB post. The Fatty Bikes had now grown into a group of 4 plus a Californian lady on a recumbent.

Once again we set off at high speed averaging 18 mph to the first stop at 45 miles away! at which point I slowed down to my normal 21 kph. A small group invited me to their early lunch which was good, by noon I had reached the temple where I really enjoyed ice cream it was just so hot! far hotter than on the 600 the afternoon descended into a blur of finding roadside drink stops, I wish I could find something that is palatable when warm and doesn’t dry up your mouth. Fortunately, the sun gave up before me and the wonderfully cool evening started whilst I was ascending through the lakes gorgeous apart from the flies!  I eventually found the temple at Chom Bueng cunningly hidden off the main street, with ‘only’ 85 km to go and just after midnight (the speedier ones came through 5 hours before!) I declined the offer of floor space and ploughed on through the night with no other cyclists, the 7-Eleven seemed an eternity and I was getting  desperate to close my eyes but as soon as I stopped a posse of barking dogs would gather 🙁

I eventually finished at  Nakhon Pathom at 5.45 am with just over 4 hours in hand! I managed to be having my hotel breakfast again 24 hours later than when I set off.

So still on a learning curve especially with regard to sleep and maybe removing a lifetime habit of dashing off, although it has stood me in very good stead over the past 72 years 🙂

Now just a 300 to do to complete the SR series, I’m booked into the Chom Bueng 300 this Saturday a bit hilly compared to the last two. Here is the Strava for todays ride

My first 600km Audax – Bhumibol Dam, Thailand


As I write this I’m still blown away that I pedalled 24,000 crank revolutions and covered over 384 miles in one 37 hour ride!! Will I ever get over it?

This was my 39th Audax including 24 consecutive months of 200km+ each month and a thrice of 300km but for me, it would be my first REAL Audax that is cycling all day and all through the night and what better place to do it than in Thailand where the night temperature doesn’t go below 20 degrees thus taking away, for me, the pain of freezing in the night.

125 of us met by the temple in the dark at 8 pm the usual eclectic mix of  friendly nutters, notable was the young lady doing it for a second year on ‘a fattie’ the other oldie who had done LEL in 2017 plus guys on fold-up bikes etc etc.  As the book says Its not about the bike!

  • To Lat Yao Civic Centre
Distance rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
57 CP1 57 1 55 01:55 29.74 36 18.59

A fine pace soon got underway on the smoothest road ever I felt totally in the zone & totally effortless to the first checkpoint, in fact, I was in the first group checking in averaging over 29 kph. Yes, I know totally stupid but oh what joyous fun 🙂 making it only a quick stop to fill the bottle and have a pee but I still lost the guys I was with 🙂

  • – `To 7-Eleven Khlong Nam Lai
Distance rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time +20 for clock time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
141.7 CP2 84.7 5 32 03:37 23.42 53 14.64

The next stage was a bit slower at just under 15mph but settling in nicely I just got very thirsty whereupon at CP2 a 7-Eleven I gulped down 1.5 litres of milk 🙁 🙁 when will I leave the trough. The new technique for the wild dogs worked a treat, stop pedalling look at them (why always from the left?) and YELL they look astonished at me then padded away!

  • Nong Dan food van
Distance rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time +20 for clock time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
194.8 CP3 53.1 8 50 03:18 16.09 33 10.06

My speed went well down due to the idiocy of drinking 1.5litres of milk 🙁  plus I had started wandering across the road so had to stop and close my eyes a couple of times.  Interesting to note that this would be a very good time for a 200km Audax so well pleased with myself plus my stomach biome was making a good job of digesting all that milk!

  • To Rak Phak Tawan House Restaurant
Distance rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time +20 for clock time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
253.5 CP4 58.7 12 10 03:20 17.61 37 11.01

– Very hilly section but what we would call rolling on pleasant roads the final section on the 12 was sheer bliss reaching well over 20mph on a beautiful road. Checking in the guy s said I was 51st so I was well chuffed 🙂 Time for a change of kit Night yellow to Day orange for me and to try and charge my devices up plus get some real food – I tried to sleep but was way too hyper 🙂

  • Bhumibol Dam Crest
Distance rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time +20 for clock time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
316.1 CP5 62.6 16 15 04:05 15.33 39 9.58

–  Started off very pleasant along the river but In my mind, I had this as just a short hop to the dam I’d never checked that in fact, it was nearly 40 miles  🙁 Sam Ngao was having a carnival so diversions were in place then it was a 500 foot climb to the crest of the dam for the control selfie photo. Panic! the wretched iPhone screen wouldn’t come on 🙁 so no selfie, with some cajoling I managed to convince another rider to take my selfie on his phone and explain to the organisers below!

  • To -Bhumibol Dam Tent Point
Distance rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time +20 for clock time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
323.4 CP6 7.3 17 59 01:44 4.21 5 2.63

– An unfortunate by-product of the duff phone screen meant that I couldn’t see where this CP was on ridewithgps so I went to about the right distance on the Wahoo, unfortunately, the tent point was a late addition so it wasn’t where I thought  🙁 I met another couple still on their way who showed me the error of my ways so about turn to find the tent! Meanwhile, I noticed a faint glow on the screen so with difficulty I found the screen brightness control! Why does Apple think it’s smart to allow the screen intensity to go to zero? Turns out the tent place had food and sleeping on the grass I availed myself of the food but not the sleep – a mistake with hindsight.  Thankfully the selfie guy had shown them me at the top so I cleared the control. well over 90 minutes wasted 🙁

  • To 7-Eleven Chom Phon Market
Distance rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time +20 for clock time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
377.7 CP7 54.3 21 9 03:10 17.15 34 10.72

– Back to the never-ending road stretch which seemed a lot hillier than a couple of hours ago 🙁 The footbridge to the town was closed as they were having a full blown festival with rammed city streets I refuelled in the shop but with sunset happening I desperately needed some sleep. I found a bench near the river and zonked out but soon woke up again, I couldn’t see any other cyclists so I followed the route eventually getting on the correct 104 dead straight and deadly dull with not a cyclist in sight 🙁  Eventually another cyclist on his Pinarello caught me up and gave me something to focus on although I had to keep stopping to close my eyes to stop me wandering all over the place including the opposite verge 🙁

  • To 7-Eleven Kamphaeng Polytechnic
Distance rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time +20 for clock time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
442.9 CP8 65.2 25 24 04:15 15.34 41 9.59

– When I eventually arrived after a total nightmare of a ride hardly knowing what I was doing the shop was like a scene from a disaster movie with sleeping bodies strewn all over the place 🙁 I was wrecked and yes it is only a 200km Audax left but not really that helpful to know that. I started biking and found another bench waking to think I was OK then cycling a bit then collapsing on another bench etc as soon as I saw a group come by I would try and hang on but very soon  having to lay down and sleep again – worst time ever 🙁 I eventually found a place and must have slept for a fair while because when I awoke.

  • To Wang Khaem Offices
Distance rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time +20 for clock time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
499.6 CP9 56.7 30 27 05:03 11.23 35 7.02

 I started going the wrong way for a few yards (memories of wasting a day in Taiwan!) but quickly turned back only to discover where I had been sleeping was right outside the offices! where they had beds & food. So I had mysteriously covered then 35 miles in my sleep 🙁 I was overjoyed suddenly realising that I had almost finished the ride!

To 7-Eleven Kao Liao

rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time +20 for clock time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
552.9 CP10 53.3 33 30 03:03 17.48 33 10.92

I felt refreshed however and a couple of guys were leaving so I decided to tag along with them as it really is much easier to focus on someone else’s lights than the pitch black. I still wasn’t totally with it so kept stopping to rub my eyes only at one point to discover I had a front puncture! the other guys turned back to hold my torch and help me out the culprit was found to be like a broken tip of a hypodermic totally wedged in the inner tube. We carried on each km seeming to me to be at least a mile. We eventually made to the 7-Eleven which was pretty full of cyclists getting ready for the final leg

  • To The Finish
Distance rode Km Stage End Stage Km Total Ride Time +20 for clock time Stage Time Stage kph Stage Miles Stage mph
615.6 Finish 62.7 37 0 03:30 17.91 39 11.20

I write this with disbelief that I could be so stupid! I kept stopping thinking the front wheel or tyre wasn’t incorrect as the bike had developed a severe list to the right with my knee catching the top tube and my hands trying to keep it upright.  I spent the whole time as part of a bike disaster movie coupled with the never-ending hill and suddenly vast amounts of traffic made me think I had gone totally wrong! the others had pushed on of cause smelling victory! I eventually made it with 3 hours to spare. The cause of all my angst? the saddle had rotated slightly around to the right! totally unbelievable 🙁 What tiredness does 🙁

A great event and very enjoyable especially the personalised T-shirt which was delivered to my hotel room!

If you recognise yourself in this please let me have your names 🙂

At the finish of my 600

More photos in this previous post

Photos of my first 600km Audax to Bhumibol Dam, Thailand

Here is the Google Photos Link

Here is the route:


Many thanks to this site for getting the Google Photos to embed!