September 4, 2018 at 12:04 pm #1021947
Tony Le VeyParticipant
G2 to Tulleys Farm
What a perfect day to be out on the bike!
Five set off from the G (Chris D, Neale N, Hamish B, Toby M and yours truly), with Toby turning early for fear of incurring the wrath of the mother in law (or something like that – we’ve all been there…).
Ride-wise, with everyone sharing stints on the front, we made it to Tulleys (Via Cudham, Tatsfield, Blindley Heath and Copthorne – the usual route) in good time – in fact the place was virtually empty! After generous quantities of cake and an interesting discussion on which flag / emblem you would have emblazoned on your shorts, we pedalled off home, with Dutch Chris (Flanders Lion?) on the front, leading the non-scots Neale and Hamish and me, the pseudo-Breton / Channel Islander.
Much the same on the way back, with the fab four operating well as a group (only the odd second between us all on a lot of segments) and keeping up a tidy pace back through Turners Hill, Oxted, Pilgrims, over Polhill and home in time to cut the grass before the roast beef.
All in all, it was a pretty uneventful ride until we hit Pilgrims. There, a lady in a VW Beetle chose to overtake just as we came to a puddle, resulting in splashes all over the De Rosa and my new white shoes… some people eh… lucky she didn’t have any barbecue sauce…
A great route, great company and some very good, neat group riding at a perfect G2 pace for the terrain. Perfect weather, perfect ride.
One note: perhaps we need to look for a safe (safer) descent from The Ridge / Gangers in the winter as Tandridge Hill Lane is getting quite messy…
My imperial stats: 60 miles at 17.7mph and 2,840 ft of climbing.
(PS Great to hear of Patrick’s return to the fold after a really tough time!!)
- This reply was modified 2 weeks ago by Tony Le Vey.
September 3, 2018 at 12:02 pm #1021941
G1 Staplehurst loop with a difference.
The group consisted of myself, Graham, Dave, Gary, Colin and Martin.
Our less than triditional Staplehurst loop took us over and down Well Hill towards Eynesford then onwards to Knatts Valley taking in the now infamous Col Du Knatts 🙂 Taking it steady we descended Exedown and took a left and headed off via Wrotham to Loose via West Malling.
We picked up Matt Whale at Ryarsh then after a succession of even more hills and lumpy sections we headed for the flat lands for some decent thru and off drills for about 25km or so looping near Staplehurst before heading back northwards.
A very welcome coffee and cake at Teapot set us up for a slightly different return route avoiding Plaxtol but kept us busy with plenty or sections pointing upwards.
A great group and ride topped off with great weather. An ideal tester ahead of Flanders next weekend.
My ride – 74 miles – 17.1 ave mph – 4,859ft – NP 227 Max 932.
September 3, 2018 at 8:59 am #1021940
Thanks Nick for the Saturday Ride. As mentioned I “Lead” the other, what can best be named the “Laurel and Hardy” group with Adam actually leading 🙂 I found a nice comfortably spot towards the back. It was quite strange because there was a series of calls of “Left”, “Right” etc which were plain wrong, so I shouted out the corrections as required. We were all having a good laugh about this. Then as mentioned by Nick, I was going slowly down a hill (lost my mojo with fast descents after a close call a couple of weeks ago), when I saw them take an incorrect left, by the time I got there they were just a dot in the distance. I decided to wait, thinking that they will either return or the other group will turn up and I’ll ride with them. I sent a message to the Saturday WhatsApp, but none of my group were on it. After regrouping at Belmondos, it turned out that I was the only one that actually had the route. It all made sense now. Doh!
September 2, 2018 at 7:29 pm #1021938
First off – thanks to Nick P and the Sat gang for another great Sat ride. Nice route, for those who managed to find it!
As for Sunday – my turn to lead the G3 gang. Alan Else had once again provided me with a great route, which I studied carefully before going out, but still managed one wrong turn. Not a problem as realised straight away, quick U-turn and we carried on. Today I left the start with 9 followers (Claire W, Phil H, Ian S, Alan E, Ken I, Karl, Patrick N and 2 potential new members, Jamie and Steve). Patrick peeled off early, but it was great to see him out after quite a break away from Avanti – hope we see more of you soon Patrick. Then the remaining 8 followed me round the rest of the route (as Phil said!). The ride today took us out to Plaxtol and on to the flat lands beyond East Peckham and a figure of 8 loop, including the infamous ‘Magic Lane’! After about 68km we made it to Taepot Island where G1 had beaten us to it. Luckily they hadn’t eaten all the cake and we all enjoyed a nice break in the sun. Back via the Plaxtol climb and Polhill where it was nice to meet the G4 gang. Thanks to Phil for confirming we were still on course every so often. Thanks to everyone for good riding and company. I had 105km at just under 26km/hr (65 miles at 16miles/hr). Well done to Jamie and Steve, fitted very well into the group and seemed to ride round very easily. Hope we see you again soon. Cheers, Claire
September 2, 2018 at 4:16 pm #1021936
Good turn out of 12 for G4 on Sunday with two new riders (Brett and Ak). Given the numbers we split into two groups, Dave B taking the other. Didn’t work as well as it could due to varying speeds and there was an element of leap frog – I was overtaken at least 3 times by Dave’s group. Unfortunately, Brett had had a mechanical at home which rendered his preferred bike unridable – rather than being a no show he did the decent thing and turned up on his (heavy) mountain bike. In hindsight not a great idea but huge respect to Brett, he toughed it out and got round – although he may not be able to walk tomorrow!
A very pleasant ride out to Brookside via Plough Hill and return by Plaxtol. New rider Ak had no trouble with the pace and I’m sure could have gone quite a bit quicker if she’d wanted.
Both groups reassembled at the top of Polhill to be joined by G3 so there was quite an Avanti presence.
Huge thanks to all those who helped me out today.
September 2, 2018 at 12:54 pm #1021935
The early Saturday ride, being the second Avanti action of the weekend after the extra early Tunbridge, had 13 starters.
Simon and Claire C, Ashley P, Paul B, Simon P and Simon P (Parker and Pearson), Russ K, Adam D, Neale N, Andy Mc, Graham C and Gary P and I set off in two groups, Neale kindly offering to lead the first group away.
Paul’s “just back from service” bike caused a short delay when it was found he was limited to either the big or small ring, but not (as you might hope from a just serviced bike), both !!!
With this in mind the 7 of us thoughtfully climbed Rushmore then Back Lane with a steady pace. Yours truly staying in the big ring as a sign of morale support (it didn’t last though).
At the top of Back Lane we briefly met the lead group, at which point Simon P (Parker that is), elected to ride with us. A wise decision as it turned out, for those wanting to follow the official route.
After our regroup and a quick check of Gary P’s motors and batteries on his bike we set off again – seemingly they’d not been charging as they should, causing a “drag sensation” up the hill.
Having explained we were heading past the first left on Ide Hill, we set off down the descent, and just as we took the “straight on” left towards Hever we met with Neale, minus his group ?
They’d turned left towards York/Bailey’s and that was the last we saw of them until they blasted past me and my pit crew of Simon’s (Parker and Clarke), fixing a puncture just minutes from the coffee. A disaster for us, as there were no seats left when we got there !
Over to Hever, up to Markbeech and round to Penshurst via Chiddingstone Hoath the route took us. Everyone was riding well and enjoying the late summer sun and quite lanes. The signature climb of the day was Baileys where we all made good progress up before a regroup. Congratulations to Paul on is “big ring” effort, you really seemed to be enjoying it as I spun my way up :-).
A quick chat about how warm Graham’s longer shorts had kept him set us up for the Saturday’s regular route home from the top of Baileys. Down Britains Lane, over to Dunton Green then up Polhill. Graham was kind enough to take up my suggestion he pull me up Polhill in record time, but sadly I didn’t have it in me to keep with him. My effort however did result in a PB for Neale, nicely tucked in behind me !
Graham I can confirm your pacing was spot on, and would have brought me glory had I been able to hang on to you.
The quieter route back down Storehouse was chosen “by majority’ at the regroup, but sadly a pothole at the bottom resulted in a puncture for me, and as mentioned earlier cost us the seats over coffee.
For the record, My stats from G to coffee were 67km @ 16mph with 860m of climbing.
A really enjoyable ride, in lovely weather. Thanks to all for the company.
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