This is it, Cycling Weekly’s bumper Christmas special magazine is on sale now, featuring the best riders of the year plus the results of our annual web poll, your chance to vote for the best and worst things in cycling in 2012.

We’re in full on review mode this issue, which is a good excuse to include our reminiscences from the inaugural CW Sportive. Again, a big thank you to the 900-plus riders who made it such a fantastic day, we all certainly enjoyed ourselves.

You’ll find a full account of the office outing further on in the magazine but sadly this version of events excludes the thoughts of a certain editor. It’s as though my co-workers were trying to disassociate themselves from me!

Sportives aren’t races, well they’re certainly not when I’m involved. It’s the end of the season and I was imagining something similar to a cycling club’s president’s run. I would take my rightful place at the front of the group with no half-wheeling or overtaking allowed. The reality is that I was dropped on the first hill without so much as a goodbye.

Fortunately the laughing group, which contained several drunken women, did want my company, especially when it came to paying for the sausage rolls and tea at the top of Box Hill. That had the trick of sobering up my group but then I had to contend with moans and groans about hangovers.

At least we were able to accelerate up to a speed in double digits, although only just, as a near three-and-a-half-hour finishing time testifies. The 33-miler was advertised as a fun ride. It certainly lived up to its name.

Robert Garbutt is editor of Cycling Weekly

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Cycling Weekly Christmas bumper issue on sale now

  • James Hartridge

    The best bit of my year was realising I was still alive and still have the use of my legs after being knocked off my bike by a car at 60mph! All I need to do now is wait for my broken back to heal and I will be well away!