Dear Avanti member,

As the title suggests this newsletter will be mostly about Christmas, gifts from Santa and our plans for 2017 but also a little bit about the winter training and cakes (they are like the famous couple Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde).


Garmin & Early Years

On an even lighter note than Christmas festivities, my six-year old son discovered the other day my old Garmin cyclo computer in the drawer. He was very curious about it and asked me if he could have it. I agreed on one condition - that he would start using  it properly on his little bike. So now he has started collecting data (no power meter or a heart monitor yet) and I was wondering if I should create a Strava account for him. Probably not quite yet but you need to start them early. The other day I read an article which was discussing the development of the cardiovascular system and other human systems. Apparently, the network of blood vessels and the number of fat-storing cells in the body are determined by the age of 17-18 so physical activity in the young age is a crucial factor for a later life. I only wish I was doing more turbo sessions when I was a teenager...


Vision 2017

Our chairman Chris Dines organised an informal club meeting on 5th December in a pub at the start of the infamous Cudham Lane Time Trial. A big thanks to everyone who came along! It was great to share ideas for the next year, in advance of the formal AGM in January.

On the top of many things that we already do, we are looking to roll out even more activities:

• Monthly "discovery rides" aimed at those 16y+ who can ride but have a limited experience (i.e. not ready yet for a 40-miler with G4)

• All-club weekend trips somewhere in the UK (e.g. Snowdonia, Peak District, Highlands)

• A programme of financial support for members taking part in competitive activities (e.g. road racing, open time trialling, LVRC, MTB, track)

• Monthly off-road bike rides

• Providing expenses to people who volunteer as marshals at Time Trial events

• Regular hire of Cyclopark for training & coaching session (led by Lee Staples)


Winter Training & Turbo Sessions

The old wisdom used to be that the winter season is for the base training (high volume, low intensity). There is no doubt it works and it builds a solid base of the training pyramid and fitness. However, many of us are now time-crunched cyclists who simple don't have time for 3-4 rides a week for 3-4 hours at a moderate pace. A lot of research was done which shows that a low-volume & high-intensity training (intervals) has the same fitness affect as a high-volume & low-intensity training (endurance rides). I believe that the sweet spot is somewhere in between and as a club we offer both types of activities to develop further our cycling abilities.

This week we started our Club Turbo Sessions led by Lee Staples in the Halstead Village Hall. The next session will  be on Tuesday but thereafter they will be on Thursdays at 8pm. They are 100% free to all club members, and your current level of fitness makes no difference at all because you will train at a percentage of your threshold (max sustainable performance). All the data are projected on a big screen with training details (effort, time), music and occasional dancing (i.e. me trying my disco moves and slipping on my cleats in front of everyone). These are great sessions and I personally benefited a lot from them last year.



Orpington Photographic Society who attended our Brands Hatch day have one of the three local community green token boxes in Orpington Waitrose splitting a share of £1,000 between three organisations. This runs until the weekend. If you shop there, please support them by dropping your green token in their box.


Club Shop

Our club shop with Kalas cycling kit is now open again until 15th December with the delivery at the end of January. We have many new winter items in the shop. I have personally tested many of them and they are great. The testament to the quality of our club kit from Kalas is the fact that British Cycling will have the same supplier until 2020! We now also have a stock of cool Avanti socks (summer models) available. For any information, please email


Club Rides This Weekend

We have a selection of club rides this weekend. On Saturday, a daring squad of early riders will set off from the G at 8am for a mixed-ability ride (45 miler). Please click HERE for more details.

On Sunday, Graham & Richard B will be leading a mixed G1/2 group (subject to numbers we can split into two groups) on a 55-mile loop without a stop and back by 12.30-13.00. Please click HERE for more details and to indicate your attendance.

G3 wil be going to Hartfield taking an undulating route including Magnificent Four Hills. Your ride leader with be the one-and-only DaveB. Please click HERE to find out more. 

G4 will be heading to West Malling with a stop in a popular Raggamuffins Cafe. Your ride leader will be Jenny and all the details can be found HERE.


Whatever you decide to do, enjoy your weekend on or off the bike. If you decide to jump on the bike, please join us for one of our club rides. Winter tyres and mudguards are a good idea in the wet winter season. 

Enjoy your mulled wine and rum tea!

Over and out.