Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Wednesday Ride

Paul's new Boardman made its debut on today's club ride creating many admiring glances from from the congregation. Unfortunately Grimpy still had tired legs from last weeks exploits in the Alps so Paul wasn't allowed to give it full throttle. We wound our way through the traffic on the busy roads between Bradford & Leeds but soon made it to the quieter backwaters around Eccup Reservoir, Netherby and Sicklinghall to lunch at Wetherby. The home leg was taken through Knaresborough and on the Beryl Burton Cycleway up to Killinghall then back down to Penny Pot Lane and Bland Hill with an interesting diversion down to Dob Park en route to Otley. A steady 80 miles were recorded on an overcast but dry and warm day - good preparation for next Sunday's 'Other Fleet Moss' Audax - 8am Oddfellows Rooms, Halifax.
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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Sun 24th Ride Report 2

Five Condors were toeing the start line outside the church hall at Fairburn last Sunday for the Brimham Rocks 200k Audax - Paul G, Trevor, Peeps, Big Phil and myself together with Paul H & Everard from the Imps and another 30 or 40 long distance stalwarts. The start was reminiscent of the start of last Fridays stage of the Tour; eyeballs out from the gun. Myself and Big Phil, an Audax virgin until the Good Companions a few weeks ago but now astride a state of the art 14lb Cube speed machine lodged ourselves at the front in the hope of controlling the pace. This we did until the first slight incline over to Kippax where Elland's Mike Thompson and a lad from Liverpool Century became impatient at the speed dipping below evens and darted through to the front.
By Barwick in Elmet there were only 5 of us left at the front including Phil and myself, the rest of our lads were sticking together and a significant number of other participants had followed a VC167 led short cut straight up the side of the A1 to Wetherby. 2 kms of bridleway between Barwick and Bramham reduced our numbers to 4, we stuck together to the Knaresborough control, the VC167's had already left, a quick banana and Coke and we were off in pursuit; or we would have been if Mike hadn't forgotten the combination for his bike lock. After trying most combinations between 000 & 999 we hit lucky and were again eating up the road. Peterborough Man disappeared at the Bedlam climb (later found out he'd punctured). Mike came through too fast for me up the same climb, Phil chased him down and sat on his wheel but I had to chase all the way over Brimham Rocks and down into Pately Bridge before getting back.
The 3 of us had a quick drink and bite to eat at the How Stean check then it was back down to P Bridge where we crossed Everard, the Paul's, Peeps & Trevor all of whom appeared to be riding strong and were in good voice. It was then over to Blubberhouses and on to Otley, we were catching remnents of the VC167 which spurred us on to the Weirside Cafe Control where we found the leaders on the road sunning themselves and taking refreshments.
A quick drink and a bun and there were now 8 or 9 of us rushing to get on our bikes worried we were going to miss the bus. The bus soon split up the road up to Farnley with Mike and Bob Johnson setting quick pace, Phil paced me back as we descended to Leathley and a couple more got on round Castley. On the road to Sicklinghall Bob said he knew how to avoid the dreaded Kearby Brow and deviated right from the route, Phil and me, wanting to keep on roads I knew stayed on the published route but the others followed Bob - this worked a treat because when they returned to the route proper we were half a mile ahead steaming along to Wetherby. They chased with Bob and a guy from Holme Valley Wheelers catching us in Wetherby but the other 2 being left in the chase.
We worked together now through the lanes to Askham Bryan and the Naburn Lock checkpoint with the wind behind us helping us to turn the big gears. Phil and Mike nipped away from Naburn whilst I was only half way through my bottle of Coke and if it hadn't been for Bob I would not have regained contact. We rode in echelon to combat the cross winds through Cawood, Thorpe Willoughby and Hillam by which time we were down to 3, Phil, Bob and myself. Just through Hillam, with less than 2 miles to go Bob had an attack of cramp - I was tempted to put the hammer down but then I remembered that less than an hour earlier he had dragged me back to the front so we soft pedalled back to Fairburn together.
A great day, good company, good weather, mainly quiet roads and no mishaps, 123.2 miles, ave.speed 17.3mph.
All Condors and Imps finished in one piece and I look forward to hearing the tales of their days. If you look on
you may recognise some of our gang.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Sunday 24th July - Set Feizors for "stunning"

Denholme 08.30 or Keighley 09.00 for a steady road ride to the dales,we will be riding at autobus pace hoping to get back just inside the elimination time.

Ride report: Three met at Denholme (Ian, Nigel, Vicar) and we were joined by two more at Keighley (Melv, respendent in new "radiant" cycling gear from Italy, and Richard II, dressed all in black). Up through Gargrave, Airton, over Attermire down into Settle going steady on the descent in my case past the previous scene of a broken collarbone. Then up again over Buck Haw Brow to the fabled Feizor and enjoyable butties outside Elaine's tea rooms. The sun shone brightly all day and we had these dales pretty much to ourselves. Pottering back home we took advantage of a stonking tailwind and it was all going really well.
Until Bank Newton. Where Paul Milnes & friends caught us up and we had to try instead to look like proper cyclists for a while. It went OK initially with a reasonable tempo to Broughton and on to Carleton, where I even made it up the slight rise into the village intact. However a series of kamikaze attacks by Nige caused a yo-yo effect of chasing to catch him up followed by a screaming halt when we caught him. The finish was a lined out burn-up back to Keighley where our fiends dispersed. I was glad now to switch off up Ingrow and left Vicar to go on ahead. Back home for 2pm and time to take in the sun before watching the final stage of this year's grand Tour. I'm tempted, just about, to consider the Other Fleet Moss next week. Ian

Thursday, July 21, 2011

General chat

As you can see from the above photo Tony Parrish is still effortlessly sprinting up hills at 70 - Congratulations Tony.

Its also good to see Pete Gravenor clipped into the pedals again after recent surgery.

Brian is still setting the example for the rest of us to follow on the racing scene taking silver in the Veterans National 50 Mile Time Trial Champs in Cheshire last Saturday to follow up on his category win in the Clifton CC Road Race the previous Sunday (how did you go on Mel? - I was expecting a full report on the blog). Grimpy travelled down to Essex the same day to defend his lead in the season long Percy Stallard Veterans Road Race Series, he took 2nd place behind Richard Booth to retain his lead but its looking tight at the top.

Whilst on the subject of Grimpy, many of you will know that last Sunday he began the last week of the T de F, riding the last six stages of the Tour 2 days in front of the actual Tour - todays 'Queen Stage' which finished at the top of the Galibier, Grimpy was due to ride on Tuesday - as you will have seen on TV it was snowing on the Galibier on Tuesday and 'cyclists were being rescued from the mountain', I look forward to hearing how John fared.

This coming Sunday its the Brimham Rocks 200k Audax starting 8am from the village hall at Fairburn, just north of Castleford, its a flat start, lumpy in the middle with a flat fast finish, we have 3 or 4 Condors pre-entered and 1 or two entering on the day - not a bad weather forecast and good training for the following weeks Other Fleet Moss 200.
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Saturday, July 16, 2011

MTB option

I just logged on to say we've arranged mtb with Robin, Nige and young Johnny Perry meeting 9am at the Co-op in Hebden Bridge, all welcome. Pete - its not too late to switch to the dark side and come with us.

Sunday 17th July

No other preferences aired so I'll stick my neck out and say 8.30 Denholmgate/9am Keighley for Ribblehead & Hawes (subject to change on the day if weather poor).

Saturday, July 09, 2011

10 July - mtb potter

Nige & I plan to potter round on our mountain bikes this Sunday - 9am from mine. All welcome. Are you interested Neil?
You could drag us away to another start point if you'd prefer, just let me know. Ian

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Wharfedale Section

It seems that Peter has engineered a very civilised culture of cafes and lanes at the moment - I would have loved to join in, but after a couple of Sundays off it was back to hard graft for 112 miles in the 3 Counties Challenge sportive.
A glorious day for a ride out by the estuary at Arnside and then inland to Kirby Lonsdale, Barbondale & Dent. I started with Mick Lever who was happy to let me go when the terrain got lumpy. At the Dent feed strong man Roger Palfreeman appeared and knowing he was fastest by over 20 mins. round the recent 'Le Terrier' sportive I apprehensively left Dent with him, and then watched him dance away up the Coal Road, however being a decent bloke he soft pedalled down Mallerstang and we got together for the lovely lanes from Kirby Stephen to Ullswater. Despite its fantastic setting the road by Ullswater is hideously rough, and busy on a day like this, and your reward at the end is the sight of Kirkstone Pass rising into the sky, but in your mind its downhill all the way from the top. In fact there is still plenty of little niggling climbs over to Staveley and Crook and then down the Lyth Valley to Levens and the finish at Milnthorpe.
My time was 6 hours 29 mins - Roger was fastest by 5 mins as he started later, but the gap would have been much greater if I had not spent a considerable time sat on his back wheel !
Mick Lever came in with 7 hrs 19 mins and Martin Croft of the Imps at 7 hours 21 mins - this included going of course via 'Oxenhope' - but I assured him it must have been Oxenholme !

This Sunday - the 10th, I am joining Brian at the Clifton CC vets road race in East Yorks. Looks like the cafes and lanes will have to wait a while longer.

Monday, July 04, 2011

Weekend news round-up

A nice steady 60 miles with 2 cafe stops - why can't every day be like that. Just four of us turned up at Luddenden Foot on a beautiful sunny Sunday morning. It was good to get off the valley road, potter up Mytholm Steeps and enjoy extensive views of the Upper Calder Valley and as far afield as Pen y Gent and Whernside from the Long Causeway. We took mid morning tea (55pence a pint) with our comrades at the Clarion Tea Rooms - a magical place - if you haven't visited, you should, either by bike or on foot but if you want anything more substantial than tea and muesli or chocolate bars take your own. After a good hour sat in the sun and chatting to the regulars we made our move. Roughlee, Borrowford and Nelson then on the Seasons of Mists route up past Coldwell Tea Rooms to Widdop.

I had hoped to get a few group pictures of the ascent of Widdop but with Damian's new wheels refusing to drop back to the bunch and with Richard worrying about whether his hair was straight my photographic ambitions were thwarted.

Such was the relaxed atmosphere of the ride that as we approached Heptonstall there was a suggestion that we may stop for a coffee at Steve's magnificent establishment. This idea was taken up with enthusiasm by all, the coffee (and the free refills) and the flapjack were 1st class. Richard left for home but Damian and myself escorted Ian up to Mt Skip, on Heights Road and round by Jeruselem Farm for the final sprint up Jowler to deliver Ian almost to his front door.

On the racing front Brian had another busy weekend, 8th overall in the Vets National 10 mile Time Trial Championships in Cumbria on Saturday evening with an actual time of 21min52secs, (+9min53secs faster than his age standard). He and Grimpy travelled to the Yorkshire Wolds on Sunday where Brian took 2nd and Grimpy 4th in the Vic Sutton Memorial Road Race, the same positions that they achieved in the previous weeks road race when Brian went on to record 1hr55min the following day in the Otley CC 50mile time trial.

There's a few local Audax's coming up soon, Paul Gower's ordered a brand new all carbon fibre speed machine and he's looking for people to hammer in the Brimham Rocks 200k on the 24th and the following Sunday (31st) Chris Crossland is putting on 'The Other Fleet Moss Randonee' 200k from Halifax.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Sunday 3rd July

In the absence of other ideas may I suggest an 8.30 meeting at Luddenden Foot tomorrow for an easier run than last week, up Mytholm Steeps and along the Long Causeway, taking a trip back in time by having refreshments at that monument of the Socialist movement, the last surviving Clarion Tea Room at Newchurch. We could then follow the Season of Mists route back over Widdop and be home early/mid afternoon. Don't miss this chance for a bit of social history and a ride over the fells in the summer sunshine.