Sunday 28 October 2012

Insider knowledge

My fixed wheel bike has been hanging from the rafters in my garage all year, unused but not forgotten. I needed to be punished for not using it and today was the planned torture day. 110PSI in the old Vittoria Pave tyres, a quick wipe over, a splash of oil on the chain and I was out on the road at 8:15am.

I had decided to tag along with the Beds Road CC and rode out to central Bedford to join their club run.  I covered the 10 miles to the start a bit slower without gears and the descent of Ampthill hill was done on the brakes - my legs reluctant to agree to spinning at more than 28mph.

At the start point beside the river Great Ouse there were several other Beds club riders and I said my hellos and listened to their discussion on the planned route, a 42 mile circuit finishing in their Cardington club rooms for coffee.  It wasn't quite what I had planned and another rider and I decided a better plan would be to ride out into the headwind, towards Newport Pagnell to find a good cafe.

The two of us set off, riding along beside the river and then out onto the lanes.  I had previously met my pedaling buddy through other cyclist friends and I knew he was a British Cycling Commissaire, so of course the topic of conversation during our pedal was racing.

The stories, the details you don't get to read about, his perceptions of racers, races and routes were all fascinating.  I loved every mile and even the stop to fix my puncture went quickly whilst listening to anecdotes of long lasting tyre recommendations.

50+ miles and my fixed wheel bike gave me a reasonable workout and I realise that I need to use it a bit more to get my legs spinning faster throughout the winter.

I also worked out what magazine subscription to buy - none, just try to arrange more pedals with Trevor who is a lot more insightful.

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