Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Mountain Bike Monday

Eight attended at Hipperholme X Roads to take advantage of the sunshine, blue skies and dry conditions under-wheel for this weeks mountain bike ride. We headed down Badger Lane and up to Beacon Hill and along to Bank Top. Down Trooper Lane taking a left at the end of the cobbles and then down Whitegate, past Paris Gates and onto the Hebble Trail where we were amazed by the numbers of Stainland Lions running along the Trail. We followed the canal on to Copley and made our way up through North Dean Woods and on to do a circuit of Norland Moor coming out at the Spring Rock and dropping down past Bondina to follow Black Brook to West Vale. Then it was over Workhouse Lane and down Gog Hill to Elland Bridge and the canal bank to Brookfoot and up Sunny Vale for refreshments at the Travellers.
All agreed that it had been a good couple of hours, many of us have been away from the mountain bike for quite some time and we agreed that we had forgotten just how much fun it is to get off-road on fat tires.
 Same again next week (May Day bank holiday) 6.30pm, Hipperholme X Roads.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Hitler loses all of his KOMs on Strava

Ride to St Ives

Melv - thanks for the blog entry. I thought there was a maximum average speed in an Audax? Did you have to wait outside the finish until it was opening time?

Meanwhile, a small group of Nige, Steve Barker & myself pottered round on mountain bikes going all the way to St Ives and back. That's St Ives near Bingley, rather than Cambridgeshire or Cornwall. The wind was pretty kind - on our backs most of the day - and it didn't rain until after we were safely home. The route is great fun with section after section of interesting riding, plus a finish up Stairs Lane just for fun.

There was no time for taking pictures but here is a fine view from a previous ride a couple of weeks back (going up Hey Head Lane climbing from the valley bottom right up to the top of Long Causeway near Duke's Cut). I bet most of that snowdrift is still there. Ian.

Wet Rose Ride

It was no comfort to learn that most of Yorkshire had stayed dry till later on Sunday, when we had got soaked and cold in the Red Rose County.
The rain was forecast so I chose the winter bike and many of the 47 riders had already donned waterproofs and overshoes when we left the Oddfellows. The depleted Condor presence was just Simon and myself and I was pleased to see V.S.'s  Dwarty and Martin Croft had decided this was a more rewarding day than the 75 mile Brian Robinson Ride. Paul Daly joined us at the start with the offer of helping with the considerable headwind over the Moss to Laneshaw Bridge, which almost required an out of saddle effort on the downhill.
Paul left us at Colne and on the Pendle climbs Simon was wrestling with his single free as myself, the V.S. duo and two lads from Calder Clarion pushed on to Whalley with the rain already appearing.
A re-group at the Abbey checkpoint soon fell apart as Dwarty decided that attack was the best form of defence against the worsening weather. Over the Trough it was just 4 degrees with the strong cold wind cutting through our wet gear.
The sheltered lanes through Dolphinholme and Galgate gave some respite till we were almost brought to a standstill by the fierce wind crossing the estuary to Glasson Dock. The cafe here is always a very welcome break and we re-fuelled hoping for an easier ride home. The Calder duo arrived, eat and promptly departed, as did Simon, without eating, instead choosing to claw back time on his single-free handicap.
The south westerly wind didn't let us off the hook till we turned off the A6 for the lumpy road to Longridge and it was big ring all the way as we caught and left Simon and the Calder duo. After Longridge there was no holding Dwarty and I clung onto his wheel with Martin. He did slip briefly onto the little ring for the top part of the Burnley by-pass.
Back to the Oddfellows before 4 o'clock to the welcome sight of the famous Halifax CTC post-ride spread. (With an outstanding selection of home baking Peter!).                

Single Simon says -

Red rose ride was as usual well organised and despite the lacking number of flocking Condors (Melvin and Myself only) we were in for another treat.  As usual Condor RC headed the group out of control and on through the town centre and out to towards Denholme.  As soon as we hit the first climb, I steadily dropped to the back of the front group where I stayed until the climbs after Colne (kept company by a struggling Bob Johnson always nice to see, and a guy I met on PBP, Jon Rowe).  After controlling quickly at Whalley, Jon and I found ourselves at the front but it was short lived and that would be the last time I’d ride with anyone to the finish in Halifax!

Trough of Bowland was wet and a strong headwind but just about rideable on the single speed.  I controlled at the cafĂ© in Glasson Dock but decided to make up time by continuing on and not taking advantage of the full breakfast delights.  Irish John, another guy from VS, Melvin and several guys from Calder were all tucking into food.  I managed to hold off the chasing group to just before Longridge when the train of VS/Mel flew past.  The heavens continued to lash it down and surprisingly I felt in good shape to Whalley humming tunes and smiling to myself…..it must have been the effects of the red bull I’d had at control in Longridge.  The final up and over to Tod finishing with the valley tail wind to Halifax, ended a wet but thoroughly enjoyable day out.

I didn’t ride anywhere near as quick as a couple of years ago but I did do it mostly on my own so I was quite pleased with how things are now starting to change round……just need to do a bit more effort and longer runs that we have planned in the calendar.

Pete Horne says -
I ate too much - I knew I would - Thats what the Fat Rascal Ride was all about.  A 7am start from Betty's in York, the group of over 30 who were doing the long ride took advantage of a helping wind to average over 20mph for the 1st 35 miles up to Bettys at Northallerton where we were given breakfast. It was then down to Bettys at Harlow Carr for the genuine thing, Fat Rascals plus tea and coffee, I later regretted not sticking to one Rascal but its difficult to resist when they're sat there winking at you. 
After Harlow Carr came the hardest section, into a strengthening wind over to Fewston and Ilkley where we were forced to eat sandwiches, sausage rolls and more Fat Rascals. A tail wind then blew us back to York via a marquee at Wighill that was dispensing tea and refreshments - its a good job we had a tail wind, I was so full I had to sit upright on the bike.
There were some fast lads out and I did suffer a bit with the changes of pace but we persevered long enough for the fast lads to run out of steam and Phil, Andy an myself were the first to finish - 130 miles at 17.6 mph in windy conditions - then 4 pints of the strongest beer they had at the Shed so I'm staying in bed Monday (at least until 6.30pm when I will be at Hipperholme X roads on the mountain bike ride).

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Mountain Bike Ride, Mon 29th

Meet 6.30pm Hipperholme cross roads for Beacon Hill, Hebble Trail and Norland

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Sounds like it was a good day at the Spring into the Dales even without the usual flock of Condors soaring over the mountains. As can be seen above Paul and John were at the head of the bunch but it looks like the Imps's Paul Hickey was handing out some pain. Lumby's now gone off to France for a couple of months recuperation. Mr Gower turned up for the Wednesday ride but was still suffering from Sunday's efforts and limped home alone after lunch.
Thanks to Dave Dodwell & John Sutcliffe, CTC Calderdale, for the photos

A good attendance for Wednesday's ride, we headed for Rascal's Cafe, on the waterfront at Knaresborough
via Weardley and Follyfoot and returned via Knox, Penny Pot Lane, Norwood Edge, up the Chevin, down through Esholt with a sting in the tail when Paul Daly made us go up the Golf Course climb from Saltaire.

Its CTC Calderdale's Red Rose Ride 200k Audax from Halifax on Sunday, I know Mel and Simon are intending to ride it but myself and Big Phil are over in East Yorkshire taking part in the Fat Rascal Ride, a charity event starting at Betty's in York and visiting Betty's Tearooms at Northallerton, Ilkley and Harrogate, Phil tells me we are to be fed limitless amounts at each of these establishments but he may have just been trying to focus my interest (it worked).

Last Mondays inaugural mountain bike ride went well with 7 attending for a ride taking in Cromwell Bottom, Southowram, Beacon Hill, Claremount, Shibden, Pepper Hill and back through Judy Woods and Bottom Hall to round the evening off at the Cock o' the North Shed at Hipperholme.
 Meet at 6.30pm again this coming Monday - meeting place not yet decided but will be blogged on Sunday.

I'm putting in a Condor team kit order in the next week or so, please let me know if you want some new kit, e-mail me at petehorne@yahoo.co.uk or tel.07549821349 or just come out for a ride and tell me. Have a look at the Endura web site and you can see whats available.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Halifax Imps LVRC Road Races 2013

Imps Road Race & Monday Mountain Biking

A disappointing end to todays Imps LVRC Road Race when, one and a half hours into the 44 mile event being held on the Norland Circuit, just as the racing was reaching its climax, a crash in the bunch of the 40 to 50 age section, believed caused by debris in the road, resulted in all the races being abandoned.
Our boys, Damian, Mel, Peeps, Grimpy and Brian were all still in the mix but, alas, we will never know what may have been. Organizer Sean Smith thanks Condors, Simon (ably assisted by Adam), Pete Smith, Steve Cavell, Richard Burnham and myself for assistance marshaling the event. Best wishes and a speedy recovery to those injured.

At 6.30 tomorrow evening (Monday 22nd) a few of us are meeting at the bottom of Huddersfield Road in Brighouse for a mountain bike ride followed by the odd pint at the Rooster.  This will be a social ride rather than training.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

All the latest

Grimpy made the long journey down to Malvern worthwhile last Sunday with a 'G' category win in the 52 mile VC Sevale, Percy Stallard National Series Road Race. John was delighted to beat the usually unbeatable Tony Woodcock to the finish line with old adversary Mick Ives in 3rd place.

Brian looks to be getting back into the groove with a short 23 minute ride in the Yorkshire Vets 10 on Saturday and a 2nd place in the Staffordshire Oatcake LVRC road race on a circuit at Swynnerton, south of Stoke on Trent on Sunday, with Pete Smith just behind him.

Big Phil and I also headed south to ride the Macclesfield Monster sportive on Saturday. Good weather, good challenging route, good feed stations, helpful helpers, nearly 300 keen, fit, happy riders on their best bikes, but the day was a marred a little when everyone got lost.  I don't like cycling hard in the wrong direction, not when I've paid 20 quid to enter an event, thats why I like to study routes beforehand and upload them to my GPS and not rely on arrows zip tied to lamp posts at junctions. For some reason the route published on the event website would'nt open so we had to rely on those zip-tied boards several of which had evidently gone missing overnight. At least everyone got lost not just me and Phil.

A big weekend coming up. An unfortunate clash has led to both the Spring into the Dales audax and the Halifax Imps LVRC road race both being held this Sunday. We have a good entry in the Imps race, Damian, Mel, Brian, Grimpy and an exciting young prospect making a comeback to racing after over 40 years, Peeps. With several other Condors having volunteered for marshaling duties our presence at the Spring into the Dales will be well down on our usual numbers and we will be relying Lumby to lead the Condor charge.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Wednesday 10th April

Sunshine and milder temperatures encouraged a good attendance for today's run and  more south in the wind direction led to a speedy ride through Skipton and over to Wharfedale.  Thorpe Road from Cracoe over to Burnsall didn't turn out to be the best route choice (see above), especially for those with Look plates but we were rewarded for our efforts with the excellent catering at a quieter than expected cafe.
As ever the ride to the east of the river down to the Cavendish was a delight but the gated road to Embsey was over busy with harassed looking mum's driving their children filled Audi's and BMW's to and from Hesketh Farm Park (Fun for all the Family!).

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Ronde van Calderdale

Excellent ride round our local cobbled climbs last Sunday. Mick Collins and the whole of the organising team really looked after the riders and it was a real pleasure to be riding with people new to the area and listen to there appreciation of our South Pennine scenery. The below links give access to a couple of ride reports that have been published elsewhere.



Our star rider, Melvin, had a day he will want to forget. Not feeling great at the start still recovering from man-flu things got worse when he shredded a new tyre on the Fly Flatt road and had to call out Nigel with a new tyre - I don't know the full story - he was still too upset to tell me at the finish, perhaps if he's now recovered his composure he will give us the full sad story.
I managed to float off the back of the leading group as early as the drag up from Colne Bridge to Fixby, fortunately for me Big Phil was just behind me, we teamed up with Mick Lever, caught Damien and formed a little group that stayed together, collecting additions along the way, until the half way point, Lee Lane, or as its known in cycling circles, Shibden Wall. From thereon Phil and I stayed together having occasional meets with Mick but I'm not too sure what happened to Damien - he was with me at the a quarter of the way up Shibden Wall, when I reminded him of the day he had said to me that if he ever got to the stage where he felt he needed a triple chainring he would give up cycling - he got off to walk then and wasn't seen again.
Plenty of food, drink and banter at the 3 feed stations, great weather and free armwarmers for all riders, a great day out and a must do event for next year.
ps. with the help of my triple c/set I managed to ride all the climbs with ease - I've eye witnesses that Paul Daly had to walk on more than one ascent - but I don't mention it to him.

This coming Saturday Phil and I have entered the Macclesfield Monster sportive, Simon and Mel are considering riding - VS's John, Dougie and Martin have entered - if you fancy riding you will need to get online - they are not accepting entries on the day.

Friday, April 05, 2013

A few updates

Not many of us out on Easter Sunday, Big Phil, Paul Daly, Oakworth Steve and myself were joined by VS's Irish John and Dougie.  Because of frozen meltwater on some back roads we decided not to go over the Tarn road and Darnbrook and instead towed about 20 or so Milnes guy's up through Cracoe before we turned off to go to Burnsall Cafe via Linton. We were at the cafe by 10.30 which was good because it was soon bursting at the seams.
Our return journey took us at a far too fast a pace through Appletreewick, Cavendish and Ilkley down to Otley. Then up the Chevin, down through Esholt to Shipley and Saltaire from where we went up the ramp past the golf course and down to Sandy Lane, Egypt and Keelham, the VS boys ripping my legs off. 

Despite my legs not having recovered from Sundays ride Paul and I rode the Monyash Peak Grimpeur from Marple on Wednesday. There were 4 sections similar to what you see in the above photo including the renowned Goyt Valley. Paul and I were the only completers from the 40 or so entries, many having elected to join Peeps, Paul H and Everard on the alternative 'Icecream Wensdae' 100k event in the Cheshire Lanes.

Its the Ronde van Calderdale this Sunday, thankfully most of the snow has now gone. We have several riders, Mel, Phil, Damian, Adrian Lord and myself plus Paul Daly, Sean, Chris Thompson and plenty other familiar faces - entries on the day are being accepted.

I'm fancying riding the Macclesfield Monster Sportive on Saturday the 14th, it looks like an interesting route in and out of Cheshire, Derbyshire and Saffordshire with many well known climbs such as Flash, Axe Edge and Cat n' Fiddle plus Mow Cop, a climb with a big reputation but one I've never done before but often heard about.

Monday, April 01, 2013

Better Late Than Never? 
I'm sure all you ever present bloggers (e.g.Peter). i (Grimpy) only performs a blog every blue  moon. 
Having just posted the Race race stuff i thought what the hell i will do a quick one from Louisville. Well i will even try to insert some pics. Here goes! Well it started that way an hour ago?

21C Museum Hotel

Cool spot,last years art work was a large chevy. Great place to stay local sandwich shop says theres a 21C in London? Anyway if your ever in Louisville go to the 21c loo. The urinal as a waterfall with eyes watching you? This is were the Belgium team had there dinner one night, tried to crash but no chance.

Race stuff

Louisville ( Home of Ali, Kentucky F C and the Kentucky derby)UCI World Masters (My Race Thursday 31st January at 9.00)Venue: Champion Park (just passed last years venue: Eva Bandman Park where the elite races were held) (approx. 3 mile out of town on the bank of the ohio river)   

Arrived Saturday and as last year knackered weather fine around 32F (don’t do C in USA). Sunday got bike together and road out to the course. Course conditions were superb, firm no rain reminded me of Sutton Park (used to be the Nat champs venue in Birmingham). Shown around by a local 55 year old star who advised me to look out for a Tom Sailor who was the American top dog in O70’s, whilst managing a lap in 8 min’s. We were even able to climb a grassy bank with an elevation of around 20%. All would change, we were allowed back on the course to train on Tuesday but after overnight rain, conditions had deteriated, normal slipping and sliding and the grass bank was well like pete’s peel park shot unrideable. But with the right lines I managed a lap in 10mins. Often you get guys who say why does it turn you on all that muck and mud? For me it’s like getting into a zen zone, the skill and concentration required well dare I say it’s likes a drug. Trouble is all the technique goes out of the window with fatigue and poor form. You are aware you have to keep on the top of an off camber slope, you also need to look at the exit of a corner to get around smoothly and to continue turning the pedals instead of braking into a corner to acquire grip but do you? When you are in the zone and have the form it does, believe me all come together. Well we can dream, guess you need to ask Wiggo or Brian when they are time trialing or Nibali decending what zone there in? Back to the trip, as an aside I stay again in the 21C museum Hotel, not just an hotel but a mini art centre (see comments above). The Kentucky people both at the hotel and indeed anyone I met were kind considerate and interested in you- I never heard – have a nice day- honest?  Obama must have trained them?

By Wednesday the weather was balmy, it got to 70F and after an overnight storm which blew the course apart besides depositing the marque down the venue, races started 2 hours late. The course was now water logged but because of the depth of water the mud seemed to wash clear?
Riding back down River Road a Belgium (Bert Welliens ex world champ) fly’s passed me tooked in behind a scooter guess doing at least 40 miles per hour, he would finish fourth in the men’s elite race on Saturday.   
I return to access prospects for my race tomorrow. The weather was nose diving with the forecast freezing (32F) for early morning? So it’s back from shorts to full winter gear. Then remembered never signed in when I collected my number, back to headquarters to enquire told no problem you are digitally signed in? I now I’m 70 but hopefully not sienial, I just gave in guess its like all this internet stuff just tick it to say you agree otherwise you hit the stop sign. Then I open my big mouth having a number three (2 age groups were in the same race) are we a different colour? No we are going to give out new numbers tomorrow morning -when- from about 8.00 a.m. Me thinks great there’s 3 numbers to fit 12 pins etc all you need my chimp won’t be happy?
The Big day
Up early 6.30, breakfast and ride out dam it, it’s still dark and freezing but at least no snow, why do us old gets race this early? Arrive at champs park at 8.00. Unlike last year when Phil Roach and his son were present, there was no support except Anne (Vic Barnett’s wife) who would be looking after Vic, so I needed to sort out a spare bike from Sram, organise and leave it with a young lady mechanic, promising to return. Back to start line to enquire about numbers? Nobody as a clue, so into marque where surprised to find cyclo op turbo’s available for warm up. Start warming up next to an American I recognise from last year’s trip he was on the podium in 65+ age group and he’s now in our group so I say’ guess you are favourite?’  Replies, no there are two other american’s who beat me in my last event. Still I note his warm up seems much more serious than me he’s even removing top layers and sweating?
I keep stopping to see if numbers have arrived but no sign. So with 15 mins to go I decide I had better pin my original numbers on? The chimps in charge and I make a right arse of it? Just has everybodies going to the start grid I manage to get my numbers on, by this time I’m cold. Guess what numbers arrive with commissiare’s explaining we will have to change your numbers- great! Me thinks I could more easily have controlled the chimp had I put my numbers on last night. The 65+ age group are gridded first followed by us who are all having new numbers pinned on as we move to our start grid line. Finally I am pinned up and the 65+ start, we follow 30 secs. later.
The start is on a new hard core section which continues just beyond the finishing line, you then hit the grass well its really mud or a better description GLUE. I slow down but am surprised to find I’m at the front but its so dam painful. The best analogy I can think off is when you are on your turbo with too high a gear, its like pedalling with the brakes on. I’m now with no 41 who passes me and we alternate positions until we hit the pits when the winner passes us at a fair rate. I know what I have to do but my bodies struggling its not going into oxygen debt, it’s just lack of power/strength? I leave no 41 but I’m making no headway on the leader. Through the back side of the pits over the planks and up the hillside. Jesus the bikes got heavy, onto the incline off camber, down a tricky decent and back up the slope for the crazy decent to the finishing line. I pass the finish push on but can’t engage gear?
If you have ridden your mountain bike in the snow you will have had this problem the blocks full and the chain just spins around. In this case the mud/glue which as pick up which is frozen and compacted between the sprockets. Eventually by staying in the same gear position I engage and can move forward again no 41 catches me again but I manage to lose him but i keep getting no drive. Sod it the technique is simple keep in mid gear and don't change otherwise it wont engage.

Last lap everything seems to have seized up so i go into the pits can't find the spare bike but get a similar size SRAM bike, a bit high but at least it moves freely. Look behind and its a big gap to the next rider so its just dig in and finish.

Bike (white one) ready for wash

  Podium - I'm so dam clean because presentations were a few hours later and my skin suit was only clean gear i had. Note how the americans stand to their anthem?  


CONDOR ROAD RACE NOTICE: (end of ice age soon?)

JOHN G (Grimpy) NEEDS YOUR HELP TO MAKE our LVRC road race another SUCCESS - Thanks for all your help last year
Details are:
Race on Saturday 18th May  race starts at 10.00, Distance  8 laps (36 miles), open to riders 40 age +  
EVENT headquarters:  Greetland Sports & social club

Looking for all the help from club members, imperial wheelers and others who can kindly help
From 9.00 at Headquarters, signing on help earlier. It’s on Saturday to avoid missing Sunday's ride/race/sportive, the race will finish before 12.00 noon.
The Course:

Course description for riders & marshals:
Riders will assemble in the layby opposite Moorcock Inn on Moor Bottom Lane, proceeding westwards to bear left into Butterworth End Lane and up through the finish area at Gallows Pole Hill (2xWS), proceed to the junction with Rochdale Road (B6113) (4xM) (3xWS) where left with care, continue for approx. two miles before turning left (3xM)(2xWS) into Turbury Lane for 1 mile crossing Clough Moor Bridge with care (2xM) (3xWS) and proceeding on Clough Road into Norland Village. Bear left (3xM) (3xWS) onto Moor Bottom Lane for approx 1½ mile to pass through the start and, soon after, the finish area.  (WS =Warning Signs- M = Marshall)

Commitment needed to cover the event safety & logistics are at least:
To Marshall the course we need (4 + 3 +2 +3) = 12 in total , To Judge we need  3 , Signing on  2 , Cars  3 events  running concurrently  3 cars one  for each event.  In return for your help either free pea & pies or a pint will be supplied, event cars will also have funds towards fuel. Please contact John by email: johnginley@btinternet.com  or home tel:  01274 601567 to advise him what support you can provide whilst cheering on the condor and imp. flyers who we are expecting to ride.
The Imps are also promoting a road race on Sunday 21st April same venue/course and they are looking for the same support we supplied last year, which we hope will be kindly reciprocated at our event (again as last year) please contact Sean Smith on 01422 341101 event starts 10.00 distance 45 miles or just get to the HQ  by 9.00 .Many Thanks.