15 December 2012

Benjamin's Blog does Tube Challenging

Benjamin's Blog is not 100% political. We can have some fun. This week, Benjamin's Blog went to the Random 15 Tube Challenge.

Rules:
Each station must be arrived and/or departed by tube train.
No "private" transport allowed aside from walking/running.
Time starts when envelope containing stations is opened and ends when the first foot is placed on the platform at the final stop.


Added Twists for this round:
London Overground is included.
All tube lines must be ridden on at some point.

There had to be one meeting point beforehand - Denmark Hill. So that was one down...

Denmark Hill
New Cross Gate
Goodge Street
Homerton
Edgware Road (Circle/District/H&C) [Bakerloo does NOT count]
Euston
Old Street
Hampstead
Arsenal
Warren Street
Willesden Junction
Holloway Road
Imperial Wharf
Mornington Crescent
White City

... and our route did them as...

Denmark Hill
New Cross Gate
Homerton
Arsenal
Holloway Road
Old Street
Goodge Street
Warren Street
Euston
Mornington Crescent
Hampstead
Willesden Junction
Edgware Road (Circle/District/H&C)
White City
Imperial Wharf

Now, this is what happened...

Upon opening the envelopes at Denmark Hill, Rhys and I decided to team up (as "The Rhyses"). Peter and The Rhyses decided to aim for New Cross Gate rather than Imperial Wharf, which (at the time) was the right decision as the train came to them first. Undeterred, Peter bailed out at Queens Road Peckham to try to run the 1.5 miles to New Cross Gate. Rhys and I went to Surrey Quays and back. We lost Peter and weren't quite sure if he had worked or not. We went up to Whitechapel, to West Ham, to Stratford, then to Homerton. 3/15 in 1:09:07 never looks promising.

Two sexy changes at Highbury and Islington and Finsbury Park put us back on track when we were able to do Arsenal and Holloway Road. We stayed on until King's Cross St. Pancras, where we decided to fanny about to sort out all the lines here, as from Old Street we needed to get to Goodge Street. Simple? Not if you have to go via the drain. And so - to Moorgate, to King's Cross St. Pancras (again), to Holborn, to Bank, to Waterloo, then a very humorous moment.

We arrive at the Northbound Waterloo on the Northern Line to be greeted by:

1 Kennington
2 High Barnet
3 Edgware

That's brilliant. One friendly staff message later and it changes to "Edgware". Spiffing, as it meant we were able to take out five stations all in close proximity to one another: Goodge Street, Warren Street, Euston, Mornington Crescent, Hampstead. At Hampstead, we ran to Hampstead Heath, with two occurances of "Rhys' Random Person" - "Excuse me sir/ma'am, how can we get to Hampstead Heath?". It was, though, a seven minute wait (whereupon Rhys bought some Cokes - they were brilliant). We then took the overground to Willesden Junction, where we had a sexy change (again). Down to Edgware Road, and ran to the other Edgware Road.

Which is where we cocked up. We were looking for a Circle line train to Wood Lane, but the train that came in was a Hammersmith & City line train. No good to us. We waited for 10+ minutes, before we decided to hop on a District line instead to reach White City a different way. We could have cut this down, though, as a Circle went and left (in the direction of HSK) when we got there. We ran to Wood Lane, took the circle to Hammersmith, ran to the other Hammersmith, where Tube Motor Racing commenced.

The doors closed together and the Piccadilly, predictably, had a much better acceleration than the District but could it hold it round the outside of the bend? Yes, yes, yes! It could! And after Barons Court, it lead by 9 seconds.

Earl's Court, and Rhys was looking for the Starkey Stairs™­­, when I shouted, "THEY'RE BEHIND YOU!", and, predictably, he... missed them. Nonetheless, we still made the train (in the platform) and a super-sexy change at West Brompton put us just 54 seconds outside the podium. Drat.

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