Having buddied S the last two days I've been going at quite a sedate pace but this morning I was alone.
And my goodness I was fast.
I set off a bit late and was all panicked but I sit here, freshly showered, at my desk, blogging a full 10 minutes before work technically begins. Shocking stuff.
I overtook several people, including two who were red light jumping but I still managed to lose them eventually, and I was nearly hit by a van that swerved into my lane because he 'didn't expect me to be going so fast!' He apologised and as there was a small and frightened-looking child in the van with him I let it go. It was a genuine error rather than malicious and he apologised, which is more than most.
I sped off once more and, joy of joys, the whole of the hill in Acton was empty of cars and the lights were with me. Bugger all traffic meant that even the many vans parked in the cycle lane weren't a problem as I didn't have to swing in and out of the cycle lane continually.
I pedalled on towards Shepherds Bush and the lights remained with me. The enormous bus lane and flat road on that section means it can be very quick and glancing at my speedometer I was shocked to see I'd hit 36kph. Shocked but smug, obviously.
I then swept down the hill to Hammersmith in triumph.
All in all, a marvelous commute, hurray!
It just all adds weight to my argument that the Uxbridge Road is a far better cycle superhighway than the A40 route proposed by the head honchos. When it works, it's a great road to commute on and if the cycle lanes were better protected and some tweaks were made in some narrow places it'd be ideal.
Come on Boris, agree with me.