Club Runs – Week 3 of Le Tour

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This topic contains 11 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  Claire Clarke 9 months ago.

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  • #18654

    Simon Clarke

    A quick write up of G2:
    I think there were about nine of us that left the G including a couple of G1 boys who were not aware of the late change to an eight-thirty start. Graham had set a course that looped up down and around all over roads that are fairly close by. And we managed to follow the route well until a fork just after Limpsfield where I was confused by my Garmin and a lapse in local knowledge. So, apologies to all for the confusion and terrible turn at speed. My Garmin skill will hopefully be improved by Simon L’s link to the open source mapping.
    With flat roads and a resulting upturn in speed we soon came in and out of Hever and then met Graham coming the other way and informing us of the road closure ahead. this gave us the opportunity for our G1 colleagues to join their rightful group while the rest of us did a Tour de Bough Beech.
    That cafe at Chiddingstone does good cake, but it takes an age to arrive and with our late restart we decided to cut the ride short after Carter’s and nipped home via the back of Sevenoaks.
    Simon did a great impression of Michal Kwiatkowski to tow us up Polhill and we had a good burn up on the A21 return. So, back in time for the tennis. 95km of good riding by my GPS at a respectable G2 pace. Thanks to all for a good day out.

  • #18648

    Chris Dines
      Isle of Wight Trek

    Some time back I was planning to do the KCA 12 Hour TT. Thankfully (for me and my lack of fitness) it got cancelled due to lack of marshals. I then, speculatively, applied to enter the National 12 Hr TT which is in Cambridgeshire (so nothing too hilly) on 13 August. Rob G is planning to do it as well. Seems that I probably have a place. Gulp.
    So I am starting to take my fitness a bit more seriously, and concentrating on endurance. Finding the time to train to sit on a TT bike for 12 hours non stop, takes some imagination. I am trying to do 500km a week, but at the sustainable effort I can hope to maintain for 12 hours.
    So, that’s the background to me cycling to see some family in Ventnor on the Isle of Wight – and back.
    Sam very kindly gave me a route, which with a bit of tweaking, to avoid the big roads around Chichester, will be great (brilliant scenery).Part of the planned venture in late September perhaps?
    The route included a bit off road, and also the gravel track around the coast at Fratton/Southsea. The trip down was a struggle – I was carrying quite a heavy rucksack, had a non stop head wind and my chain kept coming off the lower jockey wheel. I also got lost cutting through Havant shopping centre – Garmin not coping with 60’s concrete architecture.
    My return was much better – side wind, plus I’d jettisoned various bits of stuff from my rucksack.
    Route Down – 183.4km, at 23.9kph and 1532m climbing. Average heart rate of 125bpm.
    Route Back – 177km, at 26kph and 1404m climbing. Heart Rate 124bpm.

    The heart rate thing is my way of ride managemet for the 12hr. On a G1 or G2 club ride I average 135- 140bpm, but with lots of spikes (up and down). My theory is that I am aiming to ride for 12 hours at that constant low heart rate, but at a speed of around 30kph (it’s flat, no traffic an I won’t have a rucksack – so ever hopeful)

    I had a day on the Island where I road up to the top of St Catherine’s Point – stunning place. There are llamas there as well. A few pictures below.

    The Isle of Wight is great for cycling, and they are currently investing in lots of road resurfacing.

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  • #18643

    Nolan Wilkens

    *Sorry if this appears twice did an edit and it disappeared

    I rode the the L’etape du tour as my ride london prep 😉 That was the hardest day in the saddle I’ve ever had. But it was a great day, good organisation, stunning scenery and ALOT of climbing (i.e. I could have jumped out of a plane and parachuted at 12,000 ft).

    It started in Briancon (or Brian Con as me and the missus call it) and the course warmed us up gently with a 40k mostly down hill through the valley start. I took it easy for the most part, I haven’t done a great deal of long rides, let alone train for what was to come….

    The first proper hill went ok, a cat 3 climb followed by a stunning decent by a lake… I found out I’m shit at descending, going fast down Ide Hill doesn’t quite match it! Then it was a long long long drag up of over 50k to the foot of the Col Vars a cat 1 climb. By this time it felt like 30 degrees and getting hotter. Wishing I had a dinner plate sized gear on my back wheel I grinded and gurned up the never ending switch backs and ramps until the summit, followed by another stunning decent and amazing scenery. Then it all unraveled…..

    What followed was another 30k of climbing, first rising through the valley floor, then getting steeper until reaching the village at the foot of the HC Col de Izoard which (was after 165k). By this point it was very hot and despite my best efforts to keep effort down not to over heat, I was near heat stroke and was starting to feel ill and getting cramps in both thighs. I stopped by a medical tent and sat down for 10 mins. I could see the fleet of coaches that awaited those who weren’t able to continue and resigned myself that I could never get up that friggin mountain and was about to join them… But the 10mins did wonders for morale and was followed by an ‘oh F%*k it’ moment. I got back on the bike and very slowly pedalled up the first few ramps until cramp set in again. There was still 10k to go so I had to do a ride walk strategy, 1k walk then 1k ride (or at least until cramps reoccured). After 180k I reached the top… a broken man. I suppose I was happy to have made it aswell! So what do you do when you’ve ridden 180k to a summit finish. Get on the bus back to the start… no, you ride back down the mountain for another 20k to the second finish line to get your medal!

    Now looking forward to watching the pros do it! Allez Allez.


    Here’s Gary Imlachs stage run down (Relive)

    • #18655

      Claire Clarke

      Wow Nolan, really well done, fantastic effort. I would have been on that bus, actually, I doubt I’d even make it to the start line! Enjoy a well earned rest off the bike now.

    • #18646

      Ian Soper

      G4 had 7 riders out on a warm but cloudy day. Regular G4 riders Peter, Brian and Charles, new members Simon and Miguel, and guest Jan from Germany.
      We rode out along the Pilgrims Way and on to Ryarch at a steady pace with group leader Ian using my new Garmin (well I got it for Christmas but I’ve only just got round to finding out how it works!) to try and keep to the advertised average speed.
      We made the Priory at Aylesford with no incidents only to find it crowded with Pilgrims, they seemed to mostly come from the Philippines, but we found a table outside and had lunch. I managed to fall into the hedge as we were leaving the priory, and as the hedge had just been trimmed it made a bit of a mess of my arm! I must think of a better reason for the wounds as falling into a hedge at 1 mph is not very macho!
      The ride back was a bit slower as our guest Jan was finding the hills of Kent a bit of a shock, apparently there are no hills in the part of Germany he comes from. At the top of Polhill we linked up the G3 at the end of their ride, good timing.

      Ride distance: 51.78 miles.
      Average speed: 13.9 mph.
      total climbing: 2663 ft. .

    • #18645

      Chris Dines

      Great effort Nolan – heat+cramp makes things both painful and frustrating. Really pleased for you that you got back on the bike and finished with that massive climb. You’d have regretted it if you hadn’t!

  • #18640

    Bill Fitzgerald

    Ride 100 prep miles meant another missed group ride today – I’m looking forward to getting back out and joining G1 or G2 when Ride 100 is done and dusted.
    Being short on time I headed out at 6:30 today and took in East Grinstead, Ashdown (Kidds Hill), GroomBridge, Tunbridge Wells then home via Tonbridge and Plaxtol.
    Started off not great with a squeaky bottom bracket on the summer bike and missing screws on my shoe cleats, so ended up with old shoes and training bike. Felt like turning back before even getting to Westerham due to no energy, but that passed and enjoyed some great roads today.
    Grabbed a nice coffee @ The VeloHouse in Tunbridge Wells (also buying new screws for shoes cleats yayyy) and headed home.
    One more pre-Ride 100 prep weekend left with some commutes to top up the miles.
    78 miles, 4hrs 22mins, 3,888 ft ascent, 17.8 mph ave.
    Some decent lumpy bits today, so happy with the speed and looking forward to hiding in groups on the Ride 100 event:-) LOL.

  • #18638

    Claire Clarke

    G3 today: Claire W, Steve C, Julian, Dave C, Alan, Ken, new member John, potential new member Yvona and me. We set off towards Speedgate via Eynsford and Mussenden Lane, where we encountered a large number of cyclists going in the opposite direction, seemed to be taking part in a sportive, not sure which one though. For the first hour or so we couldn’t get rid of them, seeing them again at Ivy Hatch and as we headed towards Hildenborough! We pushed on though towards Leigh, Penshurst and up towards Markbeech, where we somehow managed to lose Steve and Julian – very sorry guys. Alan and the rest of the gang carried on to the cafe at Four Elms while I went back to look for Steve and Julian. Couldn’t find them so I turned round and raced back to Four Elms to re-Join the others! I’ve since been in touch with our missing friends and everyone will be pleased to know they made it back safely – they took a right hand turn following another cyclist, then realised it wasn’t one of us so they made their way back to the Ide Hill cafe instead. We completed our ride up Ide Hill, down to Sundridge and the usual drag up Polhill. New member John slotted in well, as did potential new member Yvona – both strong riders, probably G2 material. Everyone going well today, thanks for the company, hope it wasn’t too hilly, I will try to learn some of the flatter routes! Although we lost 2 riders we did pick up another 2 at the cafe stop – lovely to see Gillian Else and Rob G, so it all balanced out in the end!! Rob effortlessly rode past us on Ide Hill, Claire had told him to hurry on home to get the kettle on!! Stats today: 97km at 24.6km/hr average and 1300m of climbing, (that’s roughly 60.5 miles at 15.4mph and 4200ft). Thanks all.

    • #18639

      Steve Rodgers

      Nice work Claire.
      Probably the Cyclopark Tour of the Hopfields:

      • #18644

        Steve Rodgers

        I had to bail out of leading G1 yesterday morning due to a spot of food poisoning.
        Eventually I was able to get myself moving and tried to head off G2 at Titsey Hill, but once I made it up there following the route from the bottom of Brasted Hill along Pilgrims I waited a bit but figured it best if I keep moving in case the call of nature arrived at short notice, so I tried to catch up with G1 who had left half an hour earlier.
        I followed the same route to Hever then headed straight to Chiddingstone – the cafe was just opening and nobody was there – I waited 10mins then headed on – figuring they might’ve skipped cake – and headed to ttry to catch them at Carters Hill – when I got there I had a txt from Graham to say that they had to reroute due to roadworks and had only just arrived at the cafe. Ah well – I headed on up Carters, followed the rest of the route with some extra around Wrotham and back home via RowDow.
        80km at 27km/h avg with some decent PBs – the power to weight ratio having been improved in the morning 🙂
        Hopefully I’ll get out and socialise on a group ride next week – we have a ride to Whitstable planned – early start.

        Oh and on Saturday, Marek and I took part in the San Fairy Ann open 10 at Harrietsham – Q10/22.
        It was a tough, rolling course, but luckily with very little wind.
        It’s part of the same course we do on the 4-up down there so I had memories of how tough it was – especially after the turn. It didn’t feel any easier – I was thoroughly spent by the last climb but thankfully it was by the end where you are gifted a mile with a slight downhill run-in 🙂
        I managed a 23:19 and Marek just 8s behind me – we were never more than single digit seconds away from each other the whole ride.
        The winner Christopher Fennell – amazingly scored a course record (beating his own previous record) with 19:36!!!
        The ladies winner – Bronwen Ewing – beat the course record of Joanna Rowsell by 3s – in 22:34!

  • #18635

    Dave Barker

    Thanks to Nick for leading out the Saturday ride and particularly moving up and down the group checking all was well. A good blend of riding today, ticking along at the pace the whole group were confortable with, plenty of chat and socialising and a bit of fun up Ide Hill and some of the flowing lanes. A rare thumbs up to the traffic too along from the G who allowed the Saturday peloton to flow though to Belmondos for their well earned coffees.

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 1 week ago by  Dave Barker.
  • #18633

    Nick Patow

    The Saturday ride attracted a group capable of moving at a brisk pace today, with Lee S, Dave B, Gary P and Tim B representing the engines that would keep us rolling along. Completing our peloton were Clarie C, Mick C, Steve B, Alistair D and myself. The fab four however were to be kept waiting for their opportunity by virtue of yours truly posting a ride that was slightly different to that described on the ride event earlier in the week. The uncertainty this caused meant there was a need for the ride leader to lead from the front, at least for a while. My punishment for My slight admin error was to puff my way up Cudham Lane at the front and over to Tatsfield with everyone sounding in good spirits behind me. Having seen my “two” routes merge at the bottom of Gangers on Tandridge Lane, and allowed a few miles to pass to reassure all we were on track, Lee and Gary moved to the front to power us across to Hever on the nice smooth surfaces around Lingfield. A quick check through the group on the lanes towards the castle confirmed we were all good to continue without the need to ease off the pace. The creep up the hill from Hever and Bough Beech towards Ide brought Dave, Alistair and Tim through to form the A team for the climb up Ide itself. In a keenly contested battle to the village hall it was just one second that was to separate the first two riders Dave and Gary (Official timing source – Strava), with Lee, Alistair and Tim finishing closely after. Note, I had to paint the picture of what happened there from strava, as the rest of us weren’t quite in touch to witness it first hand ! That said we all put in decent efforts of our own, with recognition due to Mick who set one of his many new PB’s there today. After a little rest, and a bit of assistance for a rider whose saddle post was loose ( why was he riding with nothing at all to help himself, not even a tube from what I could see ?), we went up to the top of Ide and down towards Dunton Green. Again the big engines hit the front and more PB’s were duly set, before Lee lead us up Polhill. The discussion at the regroup confirmed an intention for a final push along the A21, rather than the more leisurely roll along Stonehouse. With an appetite to peddle hard undiminished by what had gone before the group pretty much stayed together to the Rushmore roundabout, before the smell of coffee for the boys on the front led to a surge of acceleration that proved too much for me and the other mortals. That said the traffic further on meant we all arrived at Belmondos pretty much together, and sat down to enjoy the well earned coffee.
    Well done to all today, and thanks to all who shared the turns on the front.
    My ride today was just over 40 miles at a little under 17.5mph, with 2400 feet or so of up.
    NOTE : Please do not be put off from joining a Saturday ride on the basis of the average speed today, as it will always ride to the abilities of the attendees on the day, not to any pre planned or previously attained pace.

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