Saturday, September 27, 2014

National championship winning time trial bike for sale

For those of you who are thinking of doing a 12 hour time trial here is the 2008 winning bike on ebay just waiting for you to bid. It's so very different to what is ridden these days and the advert has an interesting report on what Ian Cammish thinks of the event.

Click here to see advert

Friday, September 26, 2014

The Cycle Show

Maggie and I went to the Cycle Show today, to see what's going on.  It was pleasing to see that the show is a growing success; some of the earlier ones in Birmingham had seemed a bit flat after Earls Court, but there is little doubt now that it has found its footing and is growing steadily.

The major trend I would pick out is that it's all about the road.  Mountain bikes are still there, but fewer in number.  The trade is still banging the drum for e-Bikes, but I'm not sure if the UK is listening.  Utility bikes are there in numbers, but the emphasis is on fancy, high-end road-bikes.  That's what's selling, as five minutes on Box Hill will confirm.

The Trek stand was worth visiting - the Emonda lightweight showed what you can get for a lot of money - c. £10,000.  A bike, with a warranty, that weighs less than four kilos - eight pounds or so.  Less money gets you more weight, but you still get a very light bike.  That's real progress.  The Trek stand also illustrated the other major trend - disc brakes are here.  Many models, from many manufacturers, could be had in either rim brake or disc brake versions.  As far as I was able to tell there was no difference in weight or handling between them - it was just your choice.  I'd take the discs every time.

Perhaps of interest to Wayfarers is that Condors also follow this trend, and their Heritage and Fratello Touring/Audax frames can be had in disc versions.  £699 for the frame, if I recall correctly, so a very good basis for a solid - and handsome - all round bike.

Interesting stuff from Campag - electronic is the way ahead, they say, and they had a captive bike where you could experience the joys of EPS shifting.  But for 2015 there's also a new range of Super Record,  Record  and Chorus that are entirely mechanical (and substantially carbon fibre).  Bets well hedged at Campag.  The other handy bit on their stand was a climbing version of their very widely used Bora carbon wheels.  Made for Nairo Quintana, and in the shops in November.

It was good to see that Chris Boardman was on the Boardman stand, and that he'd brought his Lotus bike with him.  More than twenty years old, but still unbeaten.  The queue for autographs snaked into the distance.

And blow me if Van Nicholas didn't have a Rohloff version of their Yukon on display.  I ordered one of these a couple of years ago when it was first announced, but it never turned up.  Normal availability now, apparently.  Have to think about that one.

Lastly, a novelty item that I thought was a good idea.  It's a rear light, made of bright LEDs, about 6" by 4".  It displays, flashing red, the speed of the bike.  The intention is that if drivers, or fellow riders, have an idea of your speed, then they can behave appropriately.  It will only work, of course, if the following car realises what the numbers mean.  It certainly draws attention, which is half the battle.

A good show, with lots to see, and we enjoyed our day out.  


The 12 Hour TT - A helper's perspective

This year we had Simon Trehearn and Simon Waller riding the Kent CA 12 Hour, fighting it out for the 12 Hour Trophy and more importantly, the Club Championship.  Whoever cracked first could hand the Club Championship to the other.

Sunday starts with a 3am alarm and I pick up Simon Trehearn at 4am from Leatherhead and then drive 60 miles to Bethersden, south of Ashford in Kent.   The early morning was very misty, such that the organisers delayed the start by 30 mins to 6.01 first man.

Simon Waller’s girlfriend Jeni travels with me, with food and drink for all four of us, and both Simon’s spare wheels and early on we are confused by which Simon is where as they both wore black skin suits and the main difference was Simon T’s white overshoes.

Eventually the mist clears and we start to tell who’s who.   After some 60 miles both Simons are close on the road making handing food and drink quite interesting!  Is Simon Waller pushing too hard or is Simon Trehearn not going well?  By late morning the Sun is up, it’s getting quite warm and SW needs a clothing change.   A different crash hat also confuses us as we now can’t remember what colours to look out for.  Jeni found it very amusing when I tried handing up the wrong drink to the wrong Simon.

By lunchtime ST is feeling sick and having his 2nd stop, longer than the stops I used to have! and is complaining that he can’t drink enough and doesn’t think his food is going to stay down.  Then SW rolls in and lies out flat on the grass and complains that he has been sick and doesn’t think he can eat anything else.   Oh what joy!

Mum and Dad Powney arrive and our intrepid Simon’s are off for two more laps of the afternoon circuit and they both return for another break.  This time SW needs a full leg massage and the discussion starts about who is going on and where can they finish.   After a bit of cajoling from the “older Pownies” and a few long distance cycling stories, I’m thinking that’s long enough, Simon T decides it’s time to head for the finishing circuit, and catches Simon W out by promptly disappearing up the road.

Simon W decides to head off as well with the clear intention of calling it a day at Time Keeper no 3 on the finishing circuit, or did he say Timekeeper no4?   Once we’ve sorted ourselves out we head off in two cars with Ron and Doreen dispatched to collect Simon W when he stops and Jeni and I to Timekeeper 1, the start of the finishing circuit.

On route we pass Simon W looking “one shade of grey” clearly not enjoying the afternoon sunshine!  We make it to TK 1 and stop.  Simon T has already arrived and is on the circuit, Ron and Doreen go through and then Simon W joins the finishing circuit.  Great we’ve got both our riders to 160 miles!  Now the fun started.

After a while Simon T finished his first circuit and pulls up and gets in my car.  Not looking his best and certainly not keen!   “Am I ahead of Simon W?” he asks.  “Yes and he was talking about packing” is the reply.  After about 30 minutes Simon T has decided my car seat is one of the best and he’d like to stay.

Then Jeni spots Ron and Doreen pull up and Simon T is suddenly alert and the questions fly.  Simon W is not with them and they have waited for half an hour at TK4 and not seen Simon W.  Neither have we and if Simon W arrives at TK1 now he’ll be on the same distance as Simon T.

Simon T then says “Oh no, if Simon turns up I’m gonna have to get back on that bike and do another lap.”  “Well it’s all about where you two can pack and still remain a winner.”  This conversation was one of the strangest periods I have known in a 12 hour.  The past 3 hours was about who could get away with the shortest distance!

Having decided we have lost Simon W (we worked out later that he had packed at TK3 and then cycled to the HQ – off the course – and Ron and Doreen had been waiting at TK4), Ron and Doreen go round the finishing circuit to HQ and Jeni and I go the wrong way round, also to HQ.  This meant we talked Simon T back onto his bike to start another lap as technically he was still racing as he had not yet packed.

The two cars miss Simon W and arrive at the HQ only find him propped up against the wall inside the HQ, under some blankets looking worse than before.  After making sure Simon W is generally ok, I head back to the circuit to find Simon T.  Stopping at TK 3 to be told he’s 15 mins up the road I move on and same again at TK 5.  Surely he can’t be riding at the same speed I’m driving at!

Eventually after completing one full lap of the finishing circuit, I find Simon T at TK 4 having completed his 12 hours and amazingly he declares, “Sorry Brian I was feeling a bit better once I got going again so I kept going!”  Yeah yeah whatever.

Anyway they both recorded a distance, down on what they would have liked but they finished and we made it home for 9pm.   So if you think their 12 hour distance is beatable, get training for next year’s event.
By Brian Powney

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Cranks - do you have the correct length?

I'm on holiday for a few days at home so I thought that I would share something with you.

A few weeks ago one of my brake/gear levers broke, so I decided to check the rest of the bike before I ordered replacements. I found that my chain had stretched so it needed to be replaced. The teeth on some of the gears had become hooked in shape due to wear so I decided that the cassette and two of the three chainrings needed replacing. I then thought about whether I should change the lengths of the cranks rather than just the two chainrings. Well after doing some research I found a very thorough explanation prepared by a bike fitter which provided me with some useful guidance and recommendations for the correct crank lengths in respect of different height riders. His article includes the results from several researchers and also feedback from Graeme O'Bree. I hope you find this useful too together with the case studies as it will give you something to consider when you next change your chainrings.

Click here to read the article: Fitting Guide for cranks

So I have now shortened my cranks from 170mm to 165mm. Clearly the saddle will need to be heightened as the maximum distance from the saddle to the pedal is now shorter. This will affect my riding position as the saddle is now higher than the handlebars so I will let you know over the next few weeks if I find it more or less comfortable and if I now fly up the hills more easily.

If anyone has any opinions please comment below.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

A new lighting system

I found this product on the web. It is a prototype designed by a couple of American cyclists who are now using Kickstarter to find funding to put it into production. They are inviting people to make an advanced payment of $40 plus $10 delivery to the UK. The payment is only taken if they receive funding which exceeds their target. 

So for less than £35 you could have a water bottle which holds just under pint of liquid with your front and rear lights built in. To read more and see their video click on this link: aqualight-water-bottle

Monday, September 22, 2014

Consolation 25 (Ten) Photo Finish

Well a photo finish for Philip again but not this time by Rachel but a very well deserved win by Lynda in Sundays final club event of the year. At first Frank had computed that Philip was beaten by a mere 4 seconds but later found out that Lynda beat him by the narrowest of margins "1 second!" Well Philip the moral must try harder and you have been improving at the end of the season. Maybe the beard should come off!

Good to see Jake who was resting her knee, sharing a laugh with Lynda and also great to see Amanda, we have missed you so much I hope you will be able to race next year!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Consolation 25 - start sheet


No  NAME             VetStd   START
1   Tony Tugwell      32-00   09-01
2   Angie Launder     33-18      02
3   Ken Williams      33-50      03
4   Lynda Gale                   04
5   Samantha Pickup   27-33   09-05
6   Rick Opie         27-07      06
7   Mike Morley       32-46      07
8   Matt Schutz                  08
9   Steve Rigby                  09
10  Jim Burdett               09-10
11  Mark Cawood                  11
12  Rachel Watkins    30-16      12
13  Joe Bertorelli    28-12      13
14  Jake Dodd         29-48      14
15  Phil Todd         26-06   09-15
16  Steve Hillier     28-52      16
17  Simon Trehearn    25-30      17
18  Philip Burgin     30-16      18

1st, 2nd & 3rd Hcp - All Sealed Handicap
Winner on Hcp to hold the Consolation Trophy (subject to not having won any other Club Trophy this year)

Simon Trehearn - Club Champion
Jake Dodd - Ladies Champion
Rachel Watkins - Women’s 25
Mike Morley - Handicap Trophy

Frank Cubis

Reminder that Pebblecombe is closed to traffic for those planning their route out to the start.