January 8, 2018 at 2:50 pm #519999
G4 to Hilden Golf was an excellent start to 2018. Well almost – I took an incorrect left turn at Bagers Mount RAB(despite being reminded by Steve Chivers) we then passed through Shoreham Village to get back to Dunton Green. Jenny was not amused and promptly left the group at the foot of Polhill. Cutting through by The Bullfinch allowed Brian Bulmer to escape up Back Lane,(the shorter route ) However the tail wind on the longer route proved the fastest, we then waited for Brian to appear.Rapidly descending Ide Hill my freewheel bearing loudly protested, forcing me to peddle ever faster in drive mode. After the narrow bridge and left turn the road to Hildenborough invited Denis to push on, I had no alternative but wheel suck all the way to our destination (21mph average) An inexhaustable banter over lunch, proved very amusing to all 6 of us, although cheese lover Steve Chivers informed us that fly maggots in a certain French cheese were left to die, before serving with a glass of Port was considered a delicacy ! On that sickening thought we returned to our trusty steeds for the jouney home.
Despite various attacks, I stupidly took the preme up Plaxtol, only to regret it up Polhill. We all agreed it was a fine effort for our first club ride after the Festive Season. 42 miles at 13.3mph.
January 8, 2018 at 10:27 am #519998
The Sunday G3 ride had 8 takers for the scheduled ride to Aylesford priory. I was down to lead but the short ride along the A21 to Pratts Bottom showed how unfit I was having not done a club ride since the middle of December! Luckily claire took over at the front and was helped for much of the ride but the two “yellow perils”, Graham and Dave, wearing matching lemon yellow crash helmets. I warmed up later and did a few tokan turns on the front but I was grateful for the help from everyone else with setting the pace. The ride out along the Pilgrims way to the bridge over the river Medway at Peters village was a real slog into the cold easterly wind, but after we crossed the bridge and turned into the village we welcomed the tail wind which blew us on to Aylesford priory. The cafe was deserted so we had the place to ourselves and after we had all defrosted we set off for the ride home. The easterly wind was helpful for much of the way home but there were a few sections where we encountered cross winds so the ride back was almost as hard as the ride out.
Total distance: 51.6 miles.
Average speed: 14.25 mph.
Total ascent: 1108 meters.
January 7, 2018 at 8:24 pm #519996
Yeah Nick! Thanks for the route – it timed my seat post bolt fatigue failure to perfection… All down hill from there, which tests your bike handling skills, changing gear whilst standing up at speed is a challenge. You do get some funny looks from motorists when you have no saddle and just a seat post with a single upright bolt spike, although some probably just think you are a cult member of an extremist Opus Dei sect or maybe something more liberal!
An interesting ride all round and a good account as ever.
January 7, 2018 at 7:39 pm #519995
I met up with Richard Bingham this morning to do the West Kent cc Reliability Trial. I like these events, friendly and not too formal. We did the first 10 miles together but as we found our own groups, speed wise, we parted company. I cycled with a very pleasant bunch from WKCC – everyone doing their bit at the front into the wind. Carters was the feature climb that always leaves me brutalised. A great day and good to be back riding again!
January 8, 2018 at 7:03 pm #520017
The West Kent RC celebrate 80 years this year and delivered another great Reliability Ride to start the year. Well attended with 60 or so riders at Horton Kirby for sign on enjoying New Year bonhomie and banter with a mug of tea
Met up with fellow GSA members Johnnie Owen and Keith Cooper and mixed in with a large group of Old Ports (the self styled “Red Snail”) at the start. Off in groups of 10 but with traffic we were a 20 plus by the end of Franks Lane. Soon worked out but the first real splits occurred on Shacklands. The lights at Sundridge saw the peloton mass again but the climb up to Ide soon splintered it for good. The miles ticked by on the FourElms and Edenbridge flats but the route change meant a surprisingly nasty drag up the Hartfield Road to the Markbeech crossroads. Thro Penshurst then tough going into the wind past Leigh and Hilden. Not surprisingly chatter dried up as we approached Underriver and Carters. Two of the Old Ports skipped away on the way up and I wasn’t to see them again until the queue for the bacon rolls at Horton Kirby! I finished with 3 others shaking hands as we got off the bikes in recognition of our shared efforts on the way back
Like Johnnie I really enjoy these low key events, they are well attended by the local clubs very social and the etiquette and manners on the road is a lot better than you experience in sportives
There are two more cracking Reliability Rides coming up with the Sydenham Wheelers and Old Portlians hosting and I would encourage members to give them a go
January 7, 2018 at 5:06 pm #519994
Thanks Nick for the route. The “breakaway” group had a great second part of the ride – no floods and no losing of bike parts! And the cafe was so quiet when we arrived that my coffee was ready just as I sat down! Sorry I led our part of the group on a slightly early turn, I will pay more attention in future when I plot your route onto ride with GPS.
January 7, 2018 at 12:41 pm #519982
Er, the inevitable puncture from the trip over the scraps of hedges in School Lane presented itself overnight !
January 7, 2018 at 4:31 pm #519984
Had the same thing. Found my front tyre had gone flat after the Saturday ride probably from all the debris on the roads, and when changing the tube muddy water leaked out from between the tube and the tyre and also from the valve too.
January 6, 2018 at 6:37 pm #519981
A tale of two rights and one wrong !
The Saturday ride headed North today with a total of 11 in our party, on what was an eventful morning.
Simon C, Claire C, Simon P, Simon V, Alistair D, Neale N, Dave B, Steve B, Paul B Colin P plus Me. Obviously the lure of rarely ridden roads and lanes was the attraction on a damp and chilly morning, as it certainly wasn’t the weather.
The lungs were tested immediately with the climb up Worlds End Lane, before the gentle drift over towards Crockenhill, and with these early lanes proving quiet it was ok to ride as a single group.
Continuing to Farningham, and then Horton Kirby (where we may have been lost for a few hundred yards, but if you weren’t near the front at the time you’d never have known ! )
From there, it was nice to see School Lane has been resurfaced, just a pity the hedge trimmers had worked their magic there recently too, leaving loads of debris to ride over, and us all hoping we’d avoid a puncture. At the top all agreed they were enjoying the surfaces !
The left turn at the top of School Lane brought us more muck on the roads, and then to a stop to let a couple of horses through after they’d been spooked a bit by the mass of flashing lights. Within yards a random loose dog presented the next challenge. Once down Scudder Hill the road surfaces dried up a bit and we picked up our pace down to Southfleet and our turn just before the Cyclopark.
Coming back up New Barn Road, we were too big a group to ride as one, and in an attempt to let the cars through nearly stacked into one another as the front of the peloton slowed. It wasn’t far up the road therefore, we pulled over to let the cars through, and agree a 5/6 split until back on the lanes a few miles miles further on following a left and right turn.
With the L and R turns successfully negotiated for the leading group it brought them to a suitable waiting point at The Green Man pub, however the 6 following did not arrive and that was the last we saw of them until we got back to Belmondos. After a bit of a wait, and a bit of searching the 5 of us set off again, but came up against a 40 yard flood along the road, although in bullish mood by now we rode through it. The phone rang, we stopped, too late to answer, and then we called the other group. They didn’t answer this time ! Message left – We’d meet again at Belmondos.
Another nervous horse was negotiated, and then we headed upwards and over the top to drop down to Pilgrims Way. Down the High Street in Otford we all got to practice our emergency stops at the pedestrian crossing when a family made their intentions to cross known. Again no crashing, but all quite close.
The creep up to the top of Polhill was notable for its lack of incident, but we didn’t have long to wait after the re-group for the next moment of excitement……… With a rather large metallic crash on the road Steve B pulled up, and by the time we’d slowed and got back to him he’d recovered his saddle from the road !
So with only a bolt head out the top of his saddle stem to sit on Steve made his way gingerly down to Coffee, whilst the three remaining members of the party luxuriated in the comfort of our saddles 🙂
Once together it turned out the other group had taken a slightly earlier right turn after the left, and in doing so had dodged the big puddle – A master stroke they claimed !
I had 68km, at 24kph with 780m of uphill. Thanks to all today for the good company throughout (for some), and the good company for half the ride for the others. As always a nice cup of coffee enjoyed with all once reunited in Belmondo’s.
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