Friday, 26 November 2010
It's getting cold out there so if you are heading out this weekend be sure to stay safe.
I've suggested that we take a weather reading on the Evans ride of dec 5 just in case the cold snap is still around. I know the route and it can get pretty icy.
I'm all for year round cycling but discretion is the better part of valour and all that.
As I have booked a slot on the mountain bike based Adidas frame launch on December 16in Cannock Chase it might be a good opportunity to get out and try a bit of mountain biking. I'll have to ask Luca for tips.
Wednesday, 17 November 2010
I've been enjoying the ride to and from work recently thanks to some road works. Just down the road from me some utility work has escalated to the point where the works have closed the road. Not much fun for car drivers but great for cyclists as it empties the route either side.
It's simple just slip inside the barrier and pick your way through.
This week I had an interesting schedule. Cycle to work, leave bike at work to visit optical client, Tuesday train up to London for the FMO, back to work end of day cycle home.
As the nights are dark it's not too easy to see what is going on so as I reached the roadworks I trained my super light ( Cateye Tripleshot) onto the road to see what was going on. I stopped double quick when a 6ft deep trench right across the road loomed into view. Luckily the metal plate meant to cover the hole hadn't been dislodged completely so I just needed to make a sharp turn.
I shall be even more wary of roadsigns in the future.
Be careful out there.
Friday, 12 November 2010
Here's a report from Matt Dorling on his recent rude introduction with the tarmac.
Out for an early evening ride a couple of weeks ago, all was going well. It had been a couple of weeks since I’d had time to do a harder or longer session on the bike so on the last 10 minutes home decided to push on as I want to be at least able to keep up with the group when we go to Sweden next year!! On the last couple of miles to home there is a lovely smooth piece of road where I rode close to maximum effort just to finish off the ride.
As I merrily panted along lady luck decided to make things interesting! A car coming the other way clipped the side of a rock bigger than my fist and sent it flying across the tarmac just as I was riding by, hitting my front wheel knocking the bike from under me and sending me crashing to the ground( I was doing about 27mph at the time). Sitting on the ground dazed I was trying to work out why I went from happily rding along to now sitting in the road with lots of pain. Luckily a number of people in cars following stopped, wrapped me up in jackets and sent for the ambulance, as well as helping me phone my wife. Off to the hospital I went, having an excellent experience on the pain relief gas enroute, to be informed that I was now the proud owner of a broken collar bone and that riding my bike is out for 6-8 weeks.
So in summary I have now had confirmed:
1) There are more decent people out there that are willing to help a stranger than I thought.
2) Wearing a helmet on a bike is a must. If I had not been things could have been very different. (see pic)
3) Carbon replacement pieces for bikes are expensive.
4) My Oakley Transitions will never be the same again. (see pic)
5) Carrying a mobile phone “just in case” is a must.
6) I’m a very poor patient, and spend most evening’s trying to come up with ways that I could ride my indoor trainer whilst my arm is in a sling.
I'm sure you will join me in wishing Matt a swift recovery. Be careful out there.
Thursday, 11 November 2010
Paul Maxwell and Jon Walford takled the Nottingham Evan's Ride It event last weekend. One their own as it turns out.
Well Nottingham came and went, actually it ended up being Mansfield, and although we signed up to 60 miles, when we arrived it was actually 69 miles.
So Jon (Iron Man) Walford and I headed out. All looked good, overtaking lots of riders and onto open road! However after about 10 miles and no signs, we realised that we had gone the wrong way.
After meeting up with the local riding club and showing them our map, they sent us on our way, in a round-about route back to the course. By the first rest stop 20 miles on the route, we had completed 44 miles, great! Cramp set in, which for me was a new experience. Clearly I pushed too fast too soon and ran out of energy in the leg muscles!
I continued to follow Jon as we duly got lost again finishing the course after 90 miles! All in all 5.15 hrs of riding and 30mins of stopping so I could keep trying to stretch out my cramp! What a nightmare.
But it was a useful lesson learned, 300k is a long way, take it slowly and take in lots of energy fuel.
The 2.5 hrs drive home gave me plenty of time for legs to cramp (difficult to push pedals and not advisable according to our Health & Safety bods) and the bottom hurt even on the soft car seat! After a hot bath on Sunday,Monday dawned less painful and I could start to walk again. By Tuesday I was back up and running -- thank goodness.
Wednesday, 10 November 2010
There is a god.
An invitation arrived in the Optician office this week. It was to the launch of the new Adidas Evil Eye Halfrim mountain biking sunglass. In a break with the tradition of launching optical product to the press by post, or in an anonymous hotel somewhere in London, Adidas has decided to do someting sensible.
To celebrate the launch of the Evil Eye Halfrim Adidas, or its PR outfit, Dust, is getting out on the mountain bikes the eyewear was designed to work with and inviting the press to Cannock Chase in Staffordshire to try out the frame in the field ( or should that be forest).
There seemed little enthusiasm for the trip from my younger colleagues so it has been left to the old guy to get out there and hopefully not break anything.
I shall be asking Luca Conte of Transitions for MB tips.
All I have to do now is convince the rest of my office to change the date of the Christmas party.
I am officially excited -- hope it doesn't rain.
Wednesday, 3 November 2010
Fresh from my broken chain and the endless adjustment of the replacement chain and cassette I have managed a new problem.
A broken spoke --arrrgghh.
It's amazing how a humble piece of wire can cause so many problems. First you have got to limp home on the bike, then you have to go to the bike shop and buy a new spoke. Then you have to go back to the bike shop having remembered to take the old spoke in with you. Then you have to figure out how to carry a spoke on a bike. Sellotape it to the crossbar is my tip. Then you have to fit it and true the wheel. then all you have to do is worry about all of the pinging noises coming from the newly-tweaked wheel.
It won't be like this in Sweden