Friday, August 30, 2013

Sunday 1st Sept and a few other things

Big Phil and I are having a bit of a change this Sunday, we're having a day mountain biking in the Dales. Parking at Horton we're heading over Cam High Road to the top of Fleet Moss then down the old Roman road to Bainbridge for a cafe stop. Then its south past Semerwater, over the Stake Pass and down to Cray where a swift pint may be taken at the White Lion.
Its then up Langstrothdale to Yockenthwaite, over the Horse Head Pass and down to Halton Gill where we will be turning right to Foxup and back to Horton to the north of Pen-y-Ghent over Foxup Moor.

A lovely circuit, not too demanding technically and only about 40 miles so it will feel like a rest day.
If anyone fancy's joining us we're leaving home at 7.30 so should be up and running at Horton just before 9, I intend parking on the old bit of road to the left just as you're getting to Horton.

Whilst on the subject of mountain biking our Monday evening rides are still on the go, 6.30pm at Hipperholme Xroads, we needed lights for the last half hour or so last week.

Have a look at the following links for details of cycling events from Shibden Park in a couple of weeks time and

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Sunter Shines at Cockermouth

Bank Holiday Monday saw Brian continue his stellar season adding another national championship to his long list of honors .  On a course based on the A66 in the north Lake District he took the gold medal at the 2013 VTTA National 50 mile Time Trial Championships. Incredibly he won the event on age standard by over 4 minutes from the current over 60's 50 mile national record holder, Peter Greenwood of Clayton Velo.  Well done Brian and good luck at next Saturdays national 10 champs down in Cambridgeshire.

It was good to see 9 out on last Sundays ride up into the Dales. Ian is quite correct stating the the Cove Road climb was keenly fought, Graeme took a flyer at the foot of the climb and had such a gap that, although I witnessed Mel and Robin take up the challenge I had assumed that he had taken the honors. Myself, Pete Smith, Big Phil and, to my surprise, Damian, knowing we had no chance of victory rode up at a more sensible pace. 
Graeme turned to head for lunch at home from the summit and Robin and Mel chose the Darnbrook road towards Littondale so the Feizor group were down to four. By now the weather was superb and the Dales were looking gorgeous as we headed over to the Silverdale road and down to Stainforth making our way over the packhorse bridge to Feizor via Little Stainforth and Austwick.
Elaine's Tearooms were, as ever, spot on, and yes, Phil managed to consume their full breakfast although the success in this sphere caused him to forget the combination for his bike lock and standing watching him attempt to unlock the bikes for about half an hour did nothing to eliminate 'cafe legs'.
Once mobile again we went for the fast route home, Wigglesworth, Bank Newton, Connonley Bank and Ingrow. 

Whilst most of us were enjoying our cycling nearer home last Saturday Grimpy was riding down the Promenade des Anglais in Nice celebrating being the oldest finisher on the 6 day Haute Route Alps. Sounds like a magnificent route over many of the iconic alpine climbs although he was grumbling a bit about tired legs on todays vets ride.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

A tentative 2-speed idea

Ride report:

Cheers, chaps, for the perfectly paced lead-out all the way to Malham into the wind. Melv & Robin did a sterling job. After coffee & cakes for myself and barker, it was time to head back, via Otterburn because it is a lovely and little-used diversion. The main group had more pressing concerns and I hear that honours up the Cove were keenly fought, but experience (Melv) triumphed over youth (Graham the fell runner) at the finale - perhaps someone else can add the full tale. And did Phil get his full breakfast?


I can only sit here (warm and comfortable) and admire the dedication of my clubmates out in all weathers riding the hard miles.

Now this Sunday, we could have a 2-speed club run. Starting say 9am from Keighley and meeting for the cafe obligatoire say in Burnsall, or perhaps Hetton as being a bit quieter. The pottering section can go straight there and back, while the fitter and faster brethren add long, hard and steep loops to their heart's content before and/or afterwards.

Anyone up for that?


Sounds like a plan Ian - Keighley r/bout 9.00
and decide on a route and, most important, the cafe stop.

from petehorne

I'd arranged with Big Phil to go to Feizor this Sunday (hav'nt been there since Spring and suffering from saturated fat withdrawal symptoms), where he is to attempt to eat a full breakfast (that should slow him down on the way back) - we were going to get there via Malham Cove and Little Stainforth) but anyone wanting an easier ride could go up to Settle via Bank Newton, I suspect the cafe at Burnsall will be v.busy with it being Burnall Sports/Bank Holiday weekend - hoping to get to Feizor Cafe for 11.30. We will be at Denholmgate 8.30 and Keighley 9am - hoping for a steady paced ride as I'll be a year older tomorrow.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Saturday in the Lakes

Despite the poor weather forecast Paul and I were joined by Big Phil and Damian in the Wheelbase car park at 8am for our Fred Whitton ride.  Spirits were high as we sauntered over Kirkstone Pass, a full day of cycling heaven ahead of us.  We ignored the aroma of frying bacon as we rode through Patterdale and were soon over Matterdale End and freewheeling down to the A66 for a less than enjoyable ride down this super-fast highway to Keswick.
Unfortunately by now the weather forecast was proving more accurate than we had hoped and the precipitation was chucking down so instead of a quick visit to Greggs to sample their magnificent sausage rolls and a Coca Cola we dripped wet clothing all over the tables and upholstered chairs of a coffee shop where we sat for an inordinate amount of time waiting for the bacon to cure and the hen to lay some eggs whilst watching the rain get heavier.
By the time we set off the sight of Derwent Water was making me feel sea sick, however, undeterred, we progressed south through Borrowdale and up the Honister Pass where the roads resembled rivers and upon reaching the summit the winds were gale force. The descent from the slate mine was treacherous, the road surface being akin to black ice causing even Paul Daly to walk the steepest part of the descent.
As I walked down Honister and struggled to avoid being blown over as the winds gusted down the valley towards Buttermere I did wonder whether we ought to shorten the route but the boys were so full of enthusiasm after the Newlands climb that such negativity soon evaporated as Phil and I watched in admiration as Damian and Paul battled for supremacy  over Whinlatter Pass.
The rain bounced down as we passed Loweswater and that always harder than you were expecting climb over Cold Fell with its extensive views over Sellafield and out to the Irish Sea. Paul had promised me that the weather front would have passed over by 3pm and at 2pm it looked as if he may be correct.
At Gosforth (where the annual agricultural show had been a washout) we took a break at the cafe above the Spar shop (don't have beans on toast - only a teaspoon full of beans - but the cake was good). Once fed and tea'd we were off towards the coupe de grace, Hardnott and Wrynose.   In Eskdale, it was not raining but the roads were still wet, running with water and flooded in the dips. Looking ahead and seeing the mountain road glistening before it disappeared into the mist I was less than confident that I could conquer them without getting off the bike. Paul and Damian dropped Me and Phil before the cattle grid near the start of Hardnott, I didn't chase them, my priority being to get up without walking, Hardnott doesn't get any easier but I was pleased to once again make the summit staying on the bike and now knew that I would be able to do the same on Wrynose. Phil passed me half way up, I gave him some cheery words of encouragement and he mumbled something about being on his limit but slogged on to the top.
The rain by now had returned and the descent down to Cockley Beck interesting to say the least.  Pauls yellow jacket could bee seen ahead on a lone attack of Wrynose but Damian had waited for Phil and I on Wrynose Bottom only to attack us once the road to 3 Shire Stone got steeper. He gapped us by 30 or 40 metres but then stopped, got off and began walking. Well; the man who had been on his limit was suddenly blessed by the gods with previously unimagined  power as he chased down and overtook the distressed window washer.
Once at this last summit it is usual consider that the days work is over but for me that wasn't the case. With both brakes on as tight as possible I was still accelerating down the 1 in 4 slopes towards Little Langdale so much so that I had to ride in to a grass verge to bring myself to a halt and once again I resorted to walking a descent as the rain got heavier and heavier.
Once reunited we pottered back to Staveley where we all agreed that it had been an epic day out and one day we may even try it in good weather.

Number of punctures - 8 less than last Wednesday
Number of mudguards - 3 pairs
Number of mudguard extensions - 2
Number of saddlebags - 2
Number of backpacks - 1
Number of carbon framed, Zipp wheeled racing bikes - 1
Number of mechanical's - 1 (crunching rear Zipp wheel)
Number of crashes - 0
Number of near crashes - numerous
Number of riders who rode all the climbs - 2
Number of riders who walked down both Honister and Wrynose - 1
Number of soaking wet but happy cyclists - 4

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Damians Birthday Bash

Due to holidays and Peak District Audax's we were down to a dozen for today's vets ride. The pensioners were joined by several members of the working classes including Neil, now well back into his annual comeback and riding faster and stronger every week; Martin Gargett, as ever, looking lean and mean; Phil Haigh, deeply tanned from a recent holiday in foreign parts and looking resplendent in his new Condor jersey and the birthday boy himself, Damian, celebrating 46 years of this mortal coil and intent on reminding the old fogey's of the joys of (comparative) youth.
However Damians plans were somewhat thwarted by the route choice which resulted in him not having a clue where he was for most of the day.   A pioneering route was chosen which took us down the Greenway to Ravensthorpe and east from Dewsbury on the new cycleway through Earlsheaton tunnel and up the Alpe d'Huez to Ossett.   From Ossett, guided by the wonders of satellite navigation, we found our way to the Trans-Pennine Trail at Stanley which was enthusiastically followed to Methley Junction and on to Castleford. It was on this section where the first of the days 8 punctures occurred, Hoppy's rear Pro-4 ('its only done 3000 miles') proving no match for a thorn.
Unfortunately this set the theme for the day with Phil managing a pinch puncture after hitting a pot hole on the main road up to Allerton Bywater. On the road through Fairburn Ings the unfortunate combination of Paul Daly and Damian hit the front of the peloton together (note: must never be allowed to happen again!) it always looked dangerous and so it proved with speeds in the high 20's and neither willing to give an inch despite the pleading of a current national G category Criterion Champ. On reaching Fairburn heart rates and adrenalin were allowed to subside as Mike, for no apparent reason fell off his bike and Hoppy punctured again.
 Time was getting on so an alternative to the intended lunch spot at Tadcaster was found at the motor bikers cafe at Newthorpe  but not before Damian managed to have a flat and, I'm not sure why, blamed me ( it may be because he usually punctures or brakes a spoke, or both, when he comes out with me).  At the cafe decision was made to go for a shorter and easier route home than originally intended  and we returned via Castleford and the usual route to Tingley, Dewsbury and the Greenway with several more breaks for for even more punctures and a fall.

Well done to Brian who last Sunday rode away from the field to take the honors in the VC Nottingham 'Ey Up Dave' LVRC road race with Grimpy taking third.

This coming Saturday Paul and I are intending to go up to the Lakes for a potter round the Fred Whitton. A final decision whether to go up there or not will be taken based on the weather forecast on Friday - its intended to be an 8am start from Staveley.

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

John Radford update

Thanke to todays Hudds Examiner for the below update.

Cycling champion fights for life after smash in New Mill

John Radford, 69, of Meltham, was in collision with a car in New Mill last week
John Radford of Meltham
Relatives and friends of a popular cycling champion fighting for his life after an accident have organised a special bike ride.
John Radford, 69, of Meltham, was in collision with a car in New Mill last week.
He suffered severe head injuries and had to be airlifted to Leeds General Infirmary where he remains critically ill.
John, chairman of Huddersfield and District Cyclists’ Touring Club (CTC), works tirelessly to promote cycling locally and nationally.
He also organised the cycling section of the Examiner’s Charity Challenge.
A week on from the accident, friends and family of dad-of-two John will take part in a six-mile ride to show their support and help raise cash for the Yorkshire Air Ambulance, which flew him to hospital.
The ride will start at St George’s Square in Huddersfield at 6pm tomorrow finishing in New Mill. A collection will be made for the air ambulance.
John was in collision with a Vauxhall Corsa in Huddersfield Road, New Mill, last Wednesday afternoon.
He was out on a ‘warm down’ ride having taken part in the gruelling London-Edinburgh-London cycle ride.
He had cycled 300 miles to Barnard Castle near Darlington when he was forced to give up the challenge.
Police are investi

Monday, August 05, 2013

Bad News

Bad news regarding Huddersfield CTC's John Radford, known to many Condors as organiser of the Brimham Rocks Audax.

Martyn Bolt
10:52am Aug 5
Cyclists from the area are asked to join a social ride on Wednesday evening to show support for a local rider injured a week ago

John Radford, 69, of Meltham is a well known figure in the cycling community organising many events ( such as The Examiner’s annual charity cycle ride), working locally and nationally as a CTC Councillor, and organising and taking part in many events himself

John was hit by a car in New Mill last Wednesday. He had returned from taking part in the marathon London-Edinburgh-London ride on Monday evening and his solo ride on Wednesday was a steady cycle for fun.

John is currently in a serious condition in Leeds General Infirmary following the incident and police have arrested the driver and occupants of the car which hit him.

The 6.5 mile ride which will leave St George’s Square , Huddersfield at 6pm , under the name Justice for John is a way of friends and fellow cyclists showing support and solidarity for John and his family.

The ride will be led by Johns daughters Emma and Helen and a collection will be taken in Support of the Yorkshire Air Ambulance who airlifted John to hospital

If you need further details please contact martyn 0752 898 8817

Re: John Radford
« Reply #35 on: Yesterday at 11:43:39 AM »
As far as I know, members of John's family are aware of this thread, and of other related discussions elsewhere.

For a couple of days, updates on John's condition have indicated that there has been no change. However, John's daughter Emma has posted the following message on the Huddersfield CTC facebook page this morning:

"i would just like to say a huge thank you for all the best wishes and prayers that are being said for my dad john radford, this is certainly the toughest journey he will ever go on, he is struggling to say the least, yesterday we were told that the journey got tougher as he now has a chest infection, anti biotics will hopefully address this. My dad is so poorly and as a family we are feeling very desperate, we saw west Yorkshire Air Ambulance land again at LGI last night which made me realise how we take certain things for granted, the service treated my dad and apparently he had one of the best Doctors travelling with him from New Mill to Leeds, on arrival he had already been ventilated and his condition and treatment were already being voiced to the staff in A and E meaning his scan and treatment could start as soon as he arrived, i can not thank the staff enough for their hard work.
The police are heavily involved with my dads accident and did make two arrests as unfortunately their is a witness to say that the accident was not actually an accident and that the driver drove into him on purpose which i feel extremely angry about and deeply saddened.
thanks again and i will up date when possible "