Sneak Preview with The Col Collective

by James T and James S

IMG_1620In an attempt to still concerns about cycling over 16 cols in five days, the Shannons and Turners headed for Lourdes – not (on this occasion) to seek a miracle cure for gravity, but to spend a few days in the care of Mike Cotty, of The Col Collective fame. Mike and his partner, Deborah, have bought a beautiful house on the outskirts of Lourdes, which they use as a base for exploring the surrounding countryside. Continue reading “Sneak Preview with The Col Collective”

Homemade Hilly Hundred

By James Co

IMG_13747.30am sharp (well, dribs and drabs, actually) fourteen of us reported to Mrs S’ kitchen for porridge and coffee. The chill was fading as we set off, a little later than planned, for our own re-creation of the Hampshire Hilly 100, ably guided by James S to the fore and Geoff “don’t worry about turning the walkie talkie on” Smailes as tail-end-Charlie. Inevitably, the tail end promptly got lost! Continue reading “Homemade Hilly Hundred”

Small talk on my bike

By Kate

So, I find myself on yet another training ride in the the glorious Meon Valley, only this time it’s threatening rain, delivering hail (its nearly May!!!) and bitterly cold.  As usual I appear to be somewhat inappropriately dressed – the shall I / shan’t I wear thermals and a waterproof, or shorts and a vest dilemma is not getting any easier. The riding however appears to be…. Continue reading “Small talk on my bike”

From Mindfulness to Mind-the-Pothole

By George

It sounds disingenuous now, but I wasn’t that sure about the cycling. I preferred to run.

It was more about the shared cause, the challenge and the promise of legendary ribbons of mountain road, daubed with the names of greats, and about scenery which would leave you slack-jawed with its drama. Continue reading “From Mindfulness to Mind-the-Pothole”

A Treasure Trove of Online Learning

By James S

Having been a relatively new convert to the road end of cycling and despite being a quick learner and comfortable with almost anything mechanical or electronic, there’s a huge amount of knowledge to learn and absorb. Whether it’s techniques on the bike, kit attached to the bike, the right clothing to wear on your body or ways to shed weight from it, there’s a myriad of information needed to be assimilated rapidly in order to approach our challenge with an adequate level of fitness, safety and preparation in the limited time available before our event. Continue reading “A Treasure Trove of Online Learning”

New Forest Spring Sportive

By Jason & Kate

I had ridden the Hampshire Hilly Hundred twice before. Kate, having just reached double figures for the number of outings on her new road bike, did not know what to expect. However, neither of us anticipated the number of participants taking part on the day which I believe reflects the continuing growth in popularity for cycling and also an unseasonable hot day for the time of year. Continue reading “New Forest Spring Sportive”

Commuting for Cameron

By James T

Today is a day of firsts for me, and all to squeeze in some extra training time.

To backpedal a little, I started cycling as a student in London in 1989, on a fat-wheeled mountain bike.  It lasted about 3 weeks before it came off worse in a late-night collision with an Austin Montego on the Old Kent Road.  Scorched buttock eventually healed, I was back in action on a similar beast (Specialized Hard Rock Comp, if you’re taking notes) about a month later, eventually trading up to the Marin Indian Fire Trail that, over 20 years later, I still own.  Although I swapped the knobbly tyres for slicks, that was as racy as my daily commute ever got when we lived in London. Continue reading “Commuting for Cameron”