Club Rides. Revolve 24 weekend (inc the 4upTTT).

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    • #1022027

      Bill Fitzgerald

      Revolve24 6 hour
      I think my riding buddies have said all that can be said.

      Totally agree, an epic event and a great show of numbers and strength across the 4up TTT and 6 hour duo event.

      Was a pleasure enjoying a great ride and coffee with my half of the Avanti team.

      So many riders complimented us on how fast our trains were moving, but also how we ensured that other riders knew we were coming and that they felt safe.

      Great efforts and advert for our club, well done all.

      Talks of the 12 hour next year already underway.



    • #1022019

      Steve Rodgers
      • #1022020

        Steve Rodgers

        here’s a cracker – but take a look at the links and find your pics!

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    • #1022014

      Martin Rowling

      What a great weekend of cycling!

      I think I suffered every emotion possible over the weekend but it’s now Tuesday and I’ve not stopped smiling. I enjoyed the 4 up TT on Saturday but it was nothing compared to the 6 hour on Sunday. It was great to see so many Avanti members at the TT but I’d say to anyone that missed out on the 6 hour, get along next year, you won’t regret it!!

      Forgive me for glossing over the TT, my expirence was pain, pain and more pain.

      On the Sunday tactics were discussed with the greater goal being an Avanti podium lockout…. unfortunately a few hiccups with transponders and timekeeping meant the first five out were pretty much decided by who was ready at the time.

      Bill, Gary, Paul, Johnny and myself headed out first for the opening laps. I struggled at the beginning due to a lack of warm up but gradually we were all working well taking turns on the front. For a first stint the pace was high and we were soon making our way through the field of competitors.

      Halfway round the last of our 4 lap stint I started to hear a clicking sound on my bike. Despite shifting gears and lots of looking down at the rear mech I couldn’t work out the issue, although it did reminded me of my beloved Raleigh Wildcat circa 1989, with cardboard attached to the seat stays, as it started getting louder and faster as I sped up like a motorbike.

      With the home straight in sight my rear tyre decided to realease it’s contents like a post curry morning evacuation. Shouting to my fellow riders I would limp it back to the pits it was soon aparant to me that the rumble strip was eating my rim and the only options were to pull over and fix a puncture on the infield or elegantly run across the grass carrying my light bicycle.

      I chose the latter and in my mind it was a beautiful thing…. a wafer thin, 6’5” idiot in Lycra, running across damp grass in cleats whilst struggling to carry a bike in windy conditions. Picture a giraffe running for the bus in He-man pyjamas on an icy day carrying a trombone and you have the image.

      I handed over to my teammate Chris Moss who had come down pit lane to relieve me of a modicum of embarrassment before finding I had managed to puncture on an errant number pin….

      Lee Staples made a break from our opposite group but fortunately Chris M was back in with Graham, Steve and Chris D to keep the Avanti peloton going.

      Bill, Gary, Johnny and I maintained the group of 4 for a good 4 hours or so and it was a pleasure to share so much pain, exhaustion, sweat and coffee together. We were going hard at it on track and having a great laugh together in the pits.

      Once fatigue set in, the groups fractured and I was left with Bill for a two man battle against the wind. I cannot explain how energy sapping those last couple of hours were but Bill and I stuck together and despite the screaming muscles, I enjoyed every second of it.

      Post race cuddles and handshakes were aplenty and what was noticeable was despite the clear exhaustion etched on every face, accompanying the fatigue was a huge smile.

      Big shout out to my team mate Chris Moss for an amazing effort, we did ourselves proud and came 4th team overall. Well done to Lee, Paul, Graham, Chris D and Steve for great rides.

      Bill, Johnny and Gary it was an honour to ride with you.

      Would I do it again…. it’s all I can think about at the minute!

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    • #1022012

      Steve Rodgers

      Some stats grabbed from the website – strong efforts all round!

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    • #1022011

      Lee Staples

      The build up to Revolve 24 weekender was huge, with the club taking part in two events, the big 4-Up Team Time Trial and 6 hour Duo.

      Will leave the 4-Up write-up to others but there was a muttering of CTT rule infringement ;-).

      Paul and I teamed up again as defending 6 hour Duo winners from 2017 “Jet and Lag”, but this year to mix it up entered as “Lag & Jet”. A further 4 GS Avanti teams also entered
      Pumpy Tyres – Steve & Johnny
      Double G – Graham & Gary
      Smokey Bacon – Chris M & Martin
      Chariots of Fire – Chris D & Bill

      The banter in WhatsApp’s and prior group ride meet ups was of friendly banter, with plenty of enthusiasm to work as a GS Avanti club pace line. with half of the team on track and half off track with an aim to further GS Avanti’s Success of 2017 (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th and distance record 133.8 miles). However, there was already whispers and an underlying plot by Teams Double G and Pumpy Tyres that they must win. With demonstrations by both teams in the previous weekends Circuit of Kent and Saturday’s 4-Up of a want to win at all cost and a gentle disregard for Club Team work and the rules. This lead to Paul and I coming up with Plan A – join the pace line but do minimal turns and save energy to response to attacks that where going to eventually come from Teams Double G and Pumpy Tyres.

      As with all well laid plans this did not workout, Paul set off for the 1st effort with Johnny, Gary, Martin and Bill, watching cooper straight from pit could see Johnny was riding off the back of the pace line and when the pace line came into the switch over after 4 laps there was no Johnny or Martin. Expecting then to just roll out with Chris D and Graham instead found myself riding alone. So just rode at tempo pace to allow the others to catch once they got themselves together and working as a pace line. After 4 lap of riding tempo and they hadn’t caught me I realised the pace line was either not working well as a team or other cards were being put into play, so Plan B was put into effect, try to catch the current leader, 6 hour soloist (Darren Franks) and work together. On lap 30 when finally caught Darren realised he had already gone too deep and would be unable to help, so gave him a few words of encouragement and he did his best to ride with me.

      With the handover to Paul on Lap 34 we where almost within 40 seconds of catching and lapping the other GS Avanti Teams, but Lap 35 saw our first mechanical and with Paul yelling across to the pit as he rode by “I need a front wheel” he then proceed to put in a mega lap to enter the pit and getting the gap down to around 20 seconds. After a few calm team words I gave Paul my spare wheel, special brake blocks and tools to get ready for his next effort.

      Finally on Lap 37 we had gained a lap on the other GS Avanti Teams, so was now hoping just to be sitting in looking at the sticker on the seat stay of Graham’s bike that read “Bye Bye Paul”; but Graham went on the offensive and Steve was following strongly, so just had to hope could hang in with these two for the last two hours. Luckily the pace line numbers grew providing more wheels to shelter behind; Including the world famous Multi Olympic and UCI Gold Medallist (and all round good guy) Sir Jason Kenny who put in a couple of massively powerful turns on the front of the pace line.

      With the clock ticking down to the final 20 minutes waiting for the last handover, Graham shot off down the pit lane setting of the pit radar gun at 25mph (10mph over the limit). Once entered on to the circuit put in a big sprint to chase but at the top of druids, luckily again for me, Graham slowed, Steve caught back up around Pilgrim’s drop only for Graham to attack again over the top of Dingle Dell so just sat on his wheel. Crossing the line with a total of 53 Laps in 5 hours 55 minutes 33 seconds; not quite as quick as last years 55 Laps in 5 hours 58 minutes 45 seconds; but have successfully Won the Revolve 24 6 hour duo two years in a row with the Team and Club mate Paul Delves.

      Congratulation to
      2nd place Double G,
      (disputed by
      3rd place Pumpy Tyres,
      4th place Smokey Bacon and
      5th place Chariots of Fire

      Thanks Paul and all the GS Avanti Team for a fun weekend racing at Brands Hatch.

    • #1022007

      Jim OLeary

      Hello everyone….Steve kindly gave me a mention earlier and thanks to his good advice on training and preparation I managed to survive the six hours.

      I’ve walked, run,rallycrossed and raced around Brands over the years and so thought it would be good to try and cycle it as well. I attended the race last year and that convinced me that I would like to try.

      I signed on and took part in the orientation laps on Saturday as I had been fearing for weeks I wouldn’t make it over Hailwood Hill. Fortunately I did survive and so was happy to go home and leave the others to start their 12 and 24hour rides.

      Coming back the following morning, I noticed that the wind has got up quite a lot from the previous day and soon realised that the day was going to be tougher than expected! I came with a plan…….5laps, then back in for rest, and another 5, etc. Good idea at the time……but as the hours went on, I realised I couldn’t manage it, and so I was happy to finish with 23laps.

      As others have written, there is a great atmosphere, riders are all happy to chat and help each other and give encourage, which you do need when struggling to get around. I would add that the organisation is first class and the whole weekend was very ‘enjoyable’!

      Would I do it again? At the moment, with aching legs and walking around work like John Wayne ( for our younger members, a famous cowboy) I’m not sure I would. But after a few days, I’m sure my mind will start thinking…….if only I had…….and I will want to try again!

      Thanks, Jim

    • #1022001

      Steve Rodgers

      The buzz that the Revolve24 event created was clear to see – everyone was exhilarated at the end and there’s still plenty of sharing of stories, photos, stats and more via social media. Check out the club’s facebook page and twitter feed etc for a taster.
      Looking forward to reading about how everyone got on after letting the legs relax afterwards – I was pretty tired by the time I got home and popped open a beer.
      I tried to whip up as much interest in this weekend festival of cycling as I could and it’s great to see how much fun was had.
      Amazing result – 5 duos entered and filling the top 5 slots – well done everyone!
      We also had a relatively new Avanti member taking part as a soloist – Jim O’Leary – who I hope will let us know how he got on.

      It’s really inspiring to see some of the efforts that others had made too – the most amazing was the 24-hour participants raising money for blind veterans – 4 blind vets on tandems with seeing pilots. I gave them a cheer every time I met them on the circuit.
      Some people you bump into from previous years have clearly put in effort to improve since the last time and there are some huge teams on the 24 hour event. The sense of achievement for them was remarkable – an infectious feeling to be around 🙂

      • #1022005

        Steve Rodgers

        The 4up was an interesting morning out – as Nick and Dave wrote – much enjoyed.
        I’m glad so many people made it out and for what seemed like a third of the turnout was their first time taking part in a time trial – well done! It’s a lovely smooth surface – sharp hills and technical bends but the conditions were perfect – no wind, nice temperature – and most importantly no traffic. What more could you ask for on your first TT adventure?

        Last year my team lost a lot of time due to having to drop pace several times and making the decision to sacrifice a rider that was struggling (not literally I hasten to add). This year our team held together like glue – it bode well for the 6 hours of what amounted to very similar pace and length of efforts the next day!

        Our first lap we set off quickly – and by the time we’d reached the top of the first climb – Druids – it was a wake-up call to the legs! After some more wake up calls we started to get into a groove and motored along the home straight. As we passed the finish line for the first time we saw a 7Oaks team emerging from the pit lane – we moved out to give them space.
        The must’ve set off quickly as they had caught us by the second hill and started an overtake – we let them by but had to be careful ourselves not to lose too much momentum as it was on a long hilly drag.
        We let them proceed at distance but it was clear that they were not going as fast as our pace would be as we had to hold back – so we put in more effort and shouted that we were going to overtake – difficult to hear anything in aero lids!
        We pushed hard and on the fastest part of the course – Stirling Bend – hung out wide and started the overtake – passing them by the end of the finish of our 2nd lap.
        It’s clear that both teams had their own rhythm and were unlucky to clash such that we’d have periods of overlap – the first time we were passed and they didn’t gain distance on us we were puzzled about what to do and the result was slow down safely – get out of their shelter and see if they would gain time – which didn’t happen.

        Lap 3 – the 7oaks boys launched an immediate overtake on the ascent of Druids and pulled clear along the same stretch that they had caught us on the first lap – TT bikes keeping momentum downhill. At the very next climb we had caught up with them again and launched another overtake – this time messier – but once past we pulled away again for the duration of the next couple of climbs but were caught once more, letting them take the fore, this was before leading into the home stretch again – and coming up for our last lap so we figured we had to push on harder and avoid any further passes as every time we were passed we had to ease off. Hitting the home straight for the penultimate time we put down the hammer and put in a good gap as we overtook and then extended the gap for the rest of our final lap as we emptied the tank – keen to not have to slow down again.
        We passed a few other teams out on the circuit and we had some great encouragement and we returned the favour cheering on our fellow teams as we rolled by! Great fun indeed!

        Turns out that the winning overall team was what CTT term composite – ie made of up of riders from more than one club – so they won a composite prize, 7oaks took first place in the ‘same club overall category’ – pipping us by 6 seconds – and we just managed to pip the next Avanti team by 11 seconds. Had we not had to slow down due to the overtakes – we might’ve made up those 6 seconds – but then again we were spurred on by having to push harder to clear the other team – so it’s hard to say for sure.

        We gave out additional prizes as a club to the inter-club teams – best overall – 7oaks, best age-adjusted – Sydenham and best mixed – GSA! Every club was a winner.

        Best results of the day though were from the #1 GSA mixed team – taking home a cash prize as well as a bottle of bubbly!
        Well done to Jo, Denis, Simon and Andrew!!!

        Hopefully this has encouraged a few more people to get involved in TTs in future – just riding at your own pace and trying to better yourself can be really rewarding.

    • #1021998


      Avanti were out in Strength at Brands Hatch on Saturday’s 4 up TT. Fielding 7 teams we were not to be denied. The only thing we were denied were copies of the results. Hopefully these might appear in the future, as will concerns about the organisation skills of the CTT.
      We all enjoyed the event, the camaraderie was second to none, with the Interclub teams enjoying themselves. Warm sunshine greeted us at the finish, as did monetary rewards to the team winners.Over 60 riders took part, all with differing versions of the race. Simon in Bill Fitzgerald’s Team also experienced his first, but not his last TT, I hope. Most riders agreed that the severity of the climbs and decents were much greater than riding on the roads, but the smooth surface and lack of motor vehicles outweighed the cycling challenges. NEEDLESS TO SAY, AVANTI WON THE 2018 INTERCLUB SHIELD, due to a persitant turnout over the 21 events, plus of course, fast determined results by individuals.

    • #1021994

      Neale Napier

      G2 rode out to the 1809 cafe at Hildenborough. The group consisted of Sefi, Jo, Matt, Jim, Will, Matt and Chris (visiting guest of Jo’s). Our leader Sefi, suffered a front tyre blowout going down the hill to castle farm (v fast). Luckily he managed to come to a controlled stop. It was very terminal, but fortunately he had a lift home available close by.

      The route was kindly prepared by Graham (at Brands today) and we were all grateful and praising him during the ride as we climbed, Col du Knatts, Toys and Brasted 🙂 but no pain, no gain and all that! It was a good route though, mostly keeping us off main roads and muppet car drivers. There was only one such muppet today who passed us in the other direction whilst tooting vigorously. We were all on the correct side of the central white line, but he was clearly offended that we weren’t single file and giving him even more space.

      En route we crept past a couple of riders going up Beesfield/Maplescombes Lane. It turned out they were visiting from Italy and asked if they could join us. No problem and they fitted in well. They might have been having 2nd thoughts as we immediately started climbing Col Du Knatts!

      It was pretty gusty. I logged approx 50 miles @14.8MPH with 3,900ft climbing.

      • This reply was modified 1 year, 9 months ago by Neale Napier.
    • #1021993

      Sefi Dakar

      Nick! Your write up is funny as heck. Glad all had a good time…

      Alas mine was not.. Descending Redmans Lane at 40 mph my tyre decided it had enoough and blew a huge hole….so ended my ride for a total of 7.4 miles. New tyres on order and luckily two riders downloaded the map and was able to continue to 1809.

    • #1021992

      Simon Lumsdon

      G3 was aupposed to be led out by Claire but first tjing Sunday i saw on the website she wasnt well so quickly downloaded route so i could help lead. Quite chilly at the green so gilet and arm warmers please.

      G3 was well attended with 10 of us, Ian, Simon, Dave, Karl, Wasiq, Keith, Ken +2 new riders. Route was the open day 50 miler to Speedgate which is lumpy but an interesting and really nice route. All made it to the cafe where we met Alan et al and had a chat and a fry up.. Two elected to go straight home whilst the remainder headed onwards. Then Up a long draggy hill Keith had a broken chain and unfortunately no one had a chain splitter or quick link. Keith had the long walk to the train station near Darenth, hope youngot home OK Keith. The remainder of us continued over Crockenhlll and back to the Green.

      Great ride ans thanks to all for coming, 50 miles at 15’s

    • #1021991

      Nick Patow

      The return of Team Saturday to competitive action…..

      Paul Baldwin, John Caine and Steve Butler joined Me in chasing past glories at the TTT yesterday, the “team” reforming after a two full years away from competition.

      Along with many other Avanti’s we assembled extra early on Saturday morning to complete sign on before 7am. Formalities completed, three of us looked round for our fourth member, John having arrived first was now missing !
      We made our way round to the pits assuming he’d gone in search of the facilities, but couldn’t find him. Eventually he appeared riding the wrong way down the pit lane, and we were ready for a practice lap. Or so we thought !

      At the pit exit we were told unlike previous years, we would not be allowed on track before the event, so whilst others warmed up on their rollers and things like that we stopped in the sun for a chat 🙂 From our vantage point, we did however see Dave B’s team being escorted off the track by a “safety car”, Naughty naughty !

      We were third off, and by now armed with a plan discussed and agreed in the thirty seconds or so it took to ride the pit lane from our sunny spot at the other end. Needless to say the plan didn’t last any longer than the thought and preparation that had gone into it !

      To be fair the plan only really went as far as try and keep together up Druids and down that first descent, “as they take a picture of you on the way down and it’ll be good to be together”. Unless the fella had a really wide angled lens, I don’t think that picture will have been taken.

      A couple of laps of huffing and puffing, with some rather clumsy rotation on the front, and we got to see the faster Avanti teams who made the podium, albeit for a brief while.

      The third lap was a recovery lap of sorts, before our big push on lap four, where our monumental efforts were rewarded with a 1 second faster lap than our previous fastest on the day !!

      Across the line and back round to the car park, to begin the analysis of our efforts. Paul, felt sick, John announced he doesn’t like time trials, whilst Steve and I had (I think), quite enjoyed it. The data analysis was interesting to me at least, as Strava revealed we’d actually ridden the course in an identical time to that we’d ridden two years previously, being 28.26. Amazing really.

      Well done to team Saturday, it was great to be back out there with you guys again, and to all who took part, especially those collecting the cash prizes. Thanks to those involved in organising it. It’s a great experience, and I’d recommend it to everyone to try it at least once.

      Good luck to the Avanti teams today who are taking on the 6 hour event too.

      • #1021996

        Steve Rodgers

        Nick – that’s what I call consistency!
        After all that time away from Brands – to have identical times – must be down to super-consistent Saturday rides!

    • #1021990

      Simon Lumsdon

      Dennis ans Simon

    • #1021987

      Simon Lumsdon

      A few photos from the 4 up this morning, perfect conditions and a nice event now organised by the CTT

      7 teams from avanti an impressive turn out

      Please note Dennis and Simon, looky likies !

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    • #1021986

      Nick Patow

      Tell your stories here…..

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