Club Rides – TDF finale weekend

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This topic contains 9 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  Claire Clarke 7 months, 3 weeks ago.

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  • #1021661

    Simon Parker

    Prudential Ride London 100 – GS Avanti Mixed Team

    The GS Avanti mixed team consisted of Yvona, Sadie, Subhash and myself.

    Before we got to the start-line our plans started to fall apart. Unfortunately, Sadie had to pull out mid-week due to a family matter and then on the morning Yvonne suffered a mechanical issue with her super-duper Di2 gear-changers. Yvona dashed home to pick up her old bike with a plan to join the ride at Canary Wharf.

    So, Subhash and I made it to the start in Stratford with wet stuff falling from the sky. Ironic, as the organisers had circulated Hot Weather advice on Thursday.

    As we got south of the river the heavens opened and we were in for a soaking for pretty much the whole ride. By the time we reached the top of Newlands Corner, for our first stop, absolutely everything was wet. Despite the weather we were making good time, for a couple of G3 riders, by averaging 18mph.

    We then set off for the iconic climbs of Leith Hill and Box Hill. Both of us managed to haul our way up Leith Hill, where we came across walking cyclist, slow moving cyclists and super-fast cyclists randomly spread across the narrow lane leading to the top. On the descent, I was passed by a high-flying Yvona, shouting “Simon, I made it!”; that was the first and last we saw of each other. We then cruised through Dorking on our way out to Box Hill, where again the extremes of cycling abilities manifested themselves. I somehow mustered a second wind and managed to climb to the top in a new pb, working my way through the ensembled masses, only to lose Subhash. Having waited for a while at the top, I decided to carry on fearing, Subhash had already gone past.

    Then was the cruise off the back of Box Hill, towards Leatherhead, were I managed to drop my chain, before reaching the second planned stop of the day. Having refuelled and replenished water supplies, I departed just as Subhash arrived. I decided to continue on solo, as standing around while cold and wet was not doing me any good.

    The ride back from here was relatively straight forward, but with a number of enforced marshalling stops, along with the sting in the tail at Wimbledon Hill. I finally reached the finish line in an official time of 6hr 16mins and 59sec. Strava moving time was 5:55:36 @ 17mph with 5,481ft of up.

    Subsequently learned that Subhash completed the ride in 6hr 26mins and 29secs. Strava moving time 5:57:12 @16.8mph. Yvona’s Strava feed recorded 96.46 miles in 5:32:30 @ 17.4mph.

    Overall a cold, wet and windy experience, with a satisfying feeling of achievement, beating my 100-mile Personal Best in such crappy conditions.

    It has been announced this morning that a 69-year-old experienced rider from Chichester, had a heart attack on the approach to Leith Hill and didn’t survive. My condolences go out to his family and friends.

    • #1021665

      Claire Clarke

      Really well done Simon and the GS Avanti mixed team. Conditions sound terrible, but all those training miles you put in definitely paid off.

  • #1021659

    Simon Lumsdon

    Oops – second attempt to a ohoto

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  • #1021658

    Simon Lumsdon

    Dunwich dynamo weekend for me, headed over to London fields with a mate and met with my old neighbour and other for a quick half and a chat before getting underway about 7-30pm (sat). A swift first 58 miles to sudbury firestation for TWO burgers (this food stop is brilliant and much better than lrevious years). Underway again but at 70 miles hit a pothole whilst fiddling with helmet straps and went down hard. Amazingly nothing broken, bruised and heavy grazing bit decided to keep going, washed the blood off at Needham fishing lakes and arrived at Dunwich 4-30 for a well earned fry up. It wasnt too warm so after a bit we pushed on for a tough 30 miles to Ipswich train station. We had a 53 3rd cat join us who did some massive turns on the front and we atrived Ipswich 8am and swiftly on a train back to blighty.

    Accident aside i really enjoyed what is a tough 150 miles all in, how about an avanti possy doing it next year?

    • #1021663

      Claire Clarke

      Well done Simon, bad luck on coming off the bike, recover quickly.

  • #1021656

    Andy South

    OK, so not a club ride, but for my weekend fun I elected to once again get up in the middle of the night, converge on east London in the dark with thousands of other cyclists and take on the Ride London-Surrey 100. After three weeks of religiously watching the Tour, it was awesome to ride the traffic-free route inspired by the 2012 Olympic road race and pretend for a few hours. Who cares about a bit of wind and rain, ey? I managed to hang with the infernal pace set by the front group from my start wave all the way until Leith Hill, at which point the weight weenies disappeared in a cloud of watts per kilo. I was then mopped up by the rouleurs’ train and thundered back towards London, only to cramp up catastrophically at 86 miles. Alone again, I limped on to finally send the Avanti colours down the Mall and high-five my hardy, small and somewhat damp fan base. Several other Avanti riders were also out, with some cracking performances given the conditions. Good job.

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    • #1021664

      Claire Clarke

      Well done Andy, not the best conditions from the sound of things, glad to hear you made it road safely.

  • #1021655

    Andrew Spencer

    Sounds like it was a tough day in the saddle made even more challenging with the change in weather and road conditions.

    Certainly looks like a route I’ll be keen to try myself.

  • #1021651

    Simon Vaughan

    Cracking ride today, really enjoyed it. Thanks to all for the great company.

  • #1021650

    Nick Patow

    The Early Saturday Ride proved to be a select affair this week, with just six lining up for the KK taster route. Maybe the detail of the hills had put a few off, who knows ?

    Simon V, Steve B , Sadie B, Adam D and Grant made up our group with me today.
    First up was Rushmore, no more than a warm up really ahead of what was to come. The first challenge of the day wasn’t too far down the road, and after dropping down to Otford we soon arrived at the bottom of Row Dow. The pattern for the morning was set at this stage with Adam and Simon battling it out for the honours.

    What was apparent from the amount of gravel and general debris on Row Dow was that we’d need to take care on all of our descents. This was confirmed on the first of these across to Tinker Pot, and then all the other downhill sections along the way. There was even quite a lot of rubbish washed across Exdown. Be careful if out tomorrow.

    Down to Ightham we went, where Grant suffered a puncture (He brought it on himself, having mentioned the P word about 10 minutes earlier ). A rest in the sunshine set us up for Bates and on to Carter’s. Down to Sevenoaks Weald and across to Baileys we went next.

    Half way up Baileys our progress was halted by a big bit of tree that had fallen right across the road. Fortunately (I think ?), we were able to climb through it and continue the route.

    From the top of Baileys we only had Sundridge Hill to go to complete our climbing efforts for the day, or did we ?
    When we got there we found it had just been resurfaced in that wonderful sticky tar and loose gravel combination, so after 50/100 yards we aborted and headed along to Brasted Hill, lucky us. Down from there, all that was left was to enjoy the coffee.

    A very enjoyable ride with some really good company. Well done and thank you to all. Further thanks to Steve who bought my coffee.

    My ride came out as 68km with 1,100m of downhill at 14mph.

    Watch out for the gravel and debris on the hills tomorrow. Hopefully no more fallen trees though !

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