Day 15 – Pau – Vernet / 191 km

Today Derk is dropped at 10.36 AM directly east of Pau. The real mountains are behind us, which doesn’t mean the climbing is over. The landscape is less extreme and mostly agricultural.

In the village of St. Michel, some 75 kilometres from Pau, we have the first break. After two weeks we know Derk isn’t the type of guy who complains a lot, so if he does there has to be something really wrong. near his left ankle, a muscle or a string is hurting and this is bothering him during rowing. A bandage is put round his foot, hoping this will give some improvement.

During the rest of today’s trip Caroleen and I follow Derk everywhere. After 191 kilometres it is time to stop. We still have to go a long way to go by car to the start of tomorrow, Castelsarrasin.

During loading his bike in the ambulance, Derk tells us that the bandage seems to provide him with some relieve, but that he’s still having pain. He even rowed with one leg for some time, but keeping his leg from the ground is hard to maintain. He already had the idea to make a construction to put his painful foot in and then move on with one leg and two arms! Well, it’s clear we’re dealing with someone who won’t just give up.

The average of today is already higher than the last couple of days, 25.3 km/h. The maximum was 82 km/h and the time Derk has rowed today is 7.5 hours. Relaxed day.