Central London CTC blog

Ride reports, maps, pictures, announcements and other news …

Archive for October 2006

The purple peloton storms Stevenage

Posted on Tuesday 31 October 2006 by Camille Savory

Dinkily numbered and purpled-up, the mob converge (trains not withstanding) to start the End of Summertime 100k. Those organised or unconfident had blagged early start times but we built in some nifty handicapping. Put the etapers and esteemed on fixed, get mile-eaters riding 50k to the start, and give Inez builder-itis. Finally set Simon to hare ahead with the racing clubs to prove that purple can pace-set, until he gets tired of their showing off.

The route was straightforward, a litany of familiar names, and rolling enough (flat – pah) to be interesting but not enough to swear (pardon, Nick?). The weather could not be bettered, with only a splash of autumnal mud, and the controls were just that (those dinky little numbers weren’t solely for effect). The Hare Street halt saw us beginning to congregate, and at the Saffron Walden turn a plan was hatched. Then, at Reed, the pre-arranged signal (‘Hurry up and finish that cake’), a wagon train formed and the 11-strong purple peloton set sail in full glory.

So it wasn’t a perfect echelon, and a couple of overshot turnings testify to the slowness of our democratic decision-making… But a solid swathe of purple black and white, complete with fixed outriders, sweeping past ancient churchyards was a suitably awe-inspiring if gothic sight. Admiring, nay envious, comments were many – it was obvious that that diverse pack in pretty purple have more fun.

And thanks to little green riding, we were piloted safely back into Stevenage (then we got lost in the park) just as the sun was sinking. Indeed, the sole down-side to the day was the end of summertime. Roll on spring.

Of AGM and Audaxes …

Posted on Monday 30 October 2006 by Nick Bloom

On Friday night, over 30 Central London members, plus assorted other interested parties, squeezed into the Calthorpe Arms for a somewhat fraught AGM – the anuual festival of ‘The Picking of The Nits’. But sanity prevailed. matters were sorted, and we moved to a second meeting, at which we did at last decide to seek DA status. My heartfelt thanks to all of you for your support and timely interventions. We can now move on to that which we do best of all – promoting cycling.

As if in celebration, 16 turned out for the Stevenage End of Summertime Audax – amidst a field of 359. If the trains, as usual, worked against us, the weather was perfect – the early chill soon left as the late autumn sun warmed us up. The controls processed riders at speed, even the Saffron Walden cafe queue was manageable. If we were a ragged group before lunch, the long gradual grind to Geat Chishill and on to Reed split us further. But we managed to gather a fine group to ride in to the finish together. Maybe not a true Purple Peloton, maybe more an intermittent stream of purple p…, but for a while it looked great.

PS the Central London ‘Winged Wheel’ stickers are now ready. I’ll be selling them on rides, or send me an SAE and a cheque (£1 per sticker)

1* ride, Nearly Flat Essex.

Posted on Tuesday 24 October 2006 by Nick Wells

Following a last minute, nightmare scare scenario of a “special service” listing on train to (start at) Ingatestone, it was arrival OK. With not a bus to be seen. With Denise and Dave King (a new rider) in tow, it was a middling jaunt, on open lanes, to pass on by Mountnessing Windmill. Effortless cycling. So effortless in fact, this leader forgot he was leading, and missed a turn. Luckily, the next turn had us shortly back on track, to go through Doddinghurst, with its stone and timber distinctive Church (can one say New England type Church??), one of many of this type in area. Progressing on to Kelvedon Hatch -with giant rocketship shaped telecom mast- to our rain beating 1st café stop at the Secret Nuclear Bunker. more »

3* South Downs Stirrup

Posted on Sunday 22 October 2006 by Mark Waters

It suddenly occurred to me that my time would be better spent writing a report on today’s scintillating 3star ride than cogitating on whether to re-join the Tandem Club for a fourth year of total uninvolvement.Any sane person seeing the weather forecast for today would not have bothered to get out of bed this morning. But we CLDA – sorry CLCTC – types are made of stupider stuff than that, which resulted in five of us meeting at Godalming station at 9.50 with ambitious plans to ride to the South Downs and then up them to the top of infamous Billy Bignor Hill. We were Roger and Kay (in-liners rule) Bettis, George (Mr Click) Ong, Dr Goodguy Bob (Davis) and Mark (er, I’m not quite sure where we are) Waters (ride leader).

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