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Clubrun Reports, 6 Jan 2013


By twarwick - Posted on 13 January 2013

The first Sunday of the New Year provided the usual mixture of club rides:

Rod MacFadyen led a Brisk ride:

A good turnout at Market Place despite a cool, foggy, damp morning. Riders who accepted my offer of a brisk to Thame included Darren, Stuart W, Mike F, Paul M, Paul E, Tim, Fred, John a young guy in Bristol Uni colours, and someone whose name I didn’t get in a grey top on a Genesis Equilibrium.

We headed out on Peppard Road then made a left in Sonning Common to take the gentle climb to Stoke Row. Several of us had red LED lights flashing; Fred’s was startlingly bright and almost painful to be behind. We cut across to Woodcote, descended Catsbrain hill then via Crowmarsh Gifford and through RAF Benson we wended our way to the south portion of the Great Milton circuit, regrouping somewhat after Clare Hill. Turning right onto the A40 I surmised that that section had been recently flooded, judging by the grit and silt on the road, and indeed one puddle still stretched the full width of the road. We made a left for Thame with Mike riding strongly at the front and were at the back of the Coffee Pot cafe just before 11am.

The back room of that cafe is unpretentious enough to be suitable for a room full of mud-spattered cyclists and we were served promptly and the food just as promptly eaten. We were riding again before 11.30, straight towards Chinnor with some gaps appearing on the upwards ramp, mind you we were passing other cyclists of whom there were many out this morning including a quick view of Joe Harris going the other way. I didn’t drag us up Bledlow, tempting as it was, but did direct us up the increasing slopes of Kingston Blount. Slightly more traffic there than I had expected but I guess it’s a shortcut for locals. Genesis rider had confessed his legs were ‘toast’ before the hill, I’m sure they were even more so afterwards.

Along the top of the Chilterns we were in fog, my shades misting up, and the Genesis rider dropped off the back. As he had said he knew where he was and it was mainly downhill for home we kept on going although I think Darren waited for him. We dropped down past Stonor deer park and towards Henley on the Assendon valley and then the Fairmile. Having been quietly surprised at our lack of flats to that point, Stuart suffered a rear puncture but said to go on. Mike stopped with him. In Henley it was clear that the river level has dropped a lot in the past few days. Fred headed towards Sonning Common as Paul E attacked the little Harpsden climb with vigour. He turned off towards Binfield Heath leaving a reduced group to spin into Emmer Green, noting that the daunting flood near the town sign has finally subsided.

I was home for 1pm with 96km @ 29.1 kph and 900m of climb.

Rod MacFadyen

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Ranjit Bahra led a less Brisk ride:

Dear RCC

Certainly felt great to be back on the saddle, same old rubbish weather though.
Thanks to Rod and Malcolm for taking other groups, there was enough variety for everyone to take a pick suited to their ability.

I left with thirteen riders, looking rather dubiously at me wondering what's on store. I rode to Redfields on Friday and decided to cut out one or two back roads awash with floods.

We had a great ride, enjoyed by everyone, even Eamon who appeared to be suffering, well done (not for suffering but for your effort!).

Route out: A4-->Loddon Bridge Rd-->Moat House/Mole Road--> Aborfield Cross-->A327-->St Neot's-->Bramshill Rd-->Hartley Witney-->Charter Alley-->Roke Farm-->Crondall-->Ewshot-->Redfields.

Stats out 34 miles at 16.1 mph (55km/26 kph). Variety of tasty, well portioned cakes, after which the general consensus was to take a shorter then planned route. I agreed (as the minority vote but not aggrieved, with hind sight a good move for me) to knock off 8 miles or so from the route. Half of the group left in one direction led by Ian and I took five others my way, 8 miles less-->Back up towards Ewshot-->Dora's Green-->Crondall-->towards Well (here I would have taken the road to Lower Froyle, Golden Pot and back via Lasham along Bidden Road)-->Long Sutton-->Odiham-->Back via Hartley Witney & Heckfield to Risley.

Good half day of exercise (in preparation for the Reliability Ride, sorry meant race!), overall stats (as promised for intermediate) 62 miles (greater for some living further afield) at 16 mph (99.8 km/25.8 kph)

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Malcom and Sue led a Steady ride:

New Riders: Lara Wainwright (other sport rowing)
Tony Swiss
Gareth Saunders
Mark Simpson
Emma Smith

New Members: Daniel Benford (16yrs with parental permission)
Patrick Tynan ( other sport Tai-Kwando)

Others: Cayley Ennett - Tim Harris - Russell Barton - Kevin Marshall - Robin Jenkins - Malcolm & Sue Nichols.

A disappointing start for New Rider Tony Swiss, with Emma Smith and Russell Barton, a troublesome puncture saw us leave them in the shadow of QV with directions to the GC.
Eleven crossed Caversham Bridge where soon after Chazey Heath Robin's freehub lost drive on a few occassions, eventually he decided he should go home. We were now ten riders heading for Woodcote and Catsbrain Hill, descending to the B4009 and on through the Stokes where Malc punctured, being fortuitous for our three riders who we left behind at the start.

Now thirteen, we pressed on behind Cayley through Wallingford, Shillingford and Stadhampton to elevenses at Nottcuts GC, where Mark Lyford's Spanish Holiday Group arrived simultaneously from the Clifton Hampden direction letting us know about the flooded flat-lands around the Thames which they had just negotiated. 25miles

Everyone seemed happy chatting over T&C not knowing that the return journey was to be a bit more arduous. Soon we were heading to Clifton Hampden where we too negotiated the flooded flat-lands and on to Long Wittenham and the Moretons. Revisiting Wallingford we took the Ipsden climb, continuing on the narrow lane when a 4xWD approached us much too fast, Gareth signalled for him to slow down. The 4xWD stopped and reversed seemingly looking for confrontation, but we all carried on and left him to it!.

'Furniture' Hill was the climb of the day, some finding it harder than others, however Lara's trainers, without cleats on her clipless pedals, was unable to utilise her power to good effect. This she'll rectify with a pair of cycling shoes. We emerged nito the fog in Checkenden, Daniel punctured, Kevin assisted and Cayley and Lara continued on home. Mark then left for Pangbourne at Wyfold Lane leaving ten heading for Gallowstree Common and Kidmore End where Sue Punctured. Here Kevin, Tim and Daniel departed with Gareth shortly afterwards. The remaining six split in Caversham with Emma joining M&S along the Thames cyclepath to Prospect Park where we said goodbye. 53miles. 8C. M&S

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