Stragglists Blog

Posted 11/8/2018           


 That's f****d it! Dave acts as bike stand while yours truly sorts out Roy's derailleurs.

           Emma, Phil and Charles enjoy the entertainment. Roy takes to the drink.

                   The groups gather in front of one of the handsome Peaslake houses

Hi Stragglists,
What a wonderful sport cycling is? Unlike loads of other sports – running being one of them – riding a bike through the heat of summer creates a cooling breeze while you cycle along, enjoying the views of an arid Surrey countryside.
Of course that all goes into reverse when climbing the hills but on the descents you catch the wind and cool back down again. Brilliant. Because it was so hot last Sunday we started off half an hour earlier than usual and reached Peaslake when it became silly degrees Celsius. But if you think the recent temperatures here have been hard to cope with, fire patrols have been stationed along the Vuelta a Portugal to spray the riders with water as they battle against the stifling heat. In fact, several of the pros have had to retire after suffering from heat exhaustion and dehydration.
Cycling can also bring out the good Samaritan in us, especially if you’re a Stragglist. As we were about to make our departure from Peaslake, a lady from the Chevalier Cycling Club collared Mike who, in turn, beckoned me over. She told us that a few weeks ago she was dropped by her group around the Windsor area and was left to ride alone. That was until a small group of Stragglists came along and slowed down so that she could latch onto their wheels. She was all for tearing up her club jersey and throwing it in the bin but her faith was restored by the three knights of the road. I could be wrong but, asking around those Stragglists who venture out on a Saturday, it was Duncan, Duong and Phil. Whoever it was, Michelle wanted to express her sincere gratitude for their chivalrous assistance.
An Interesting Fact  
I’m sure that most, if not all of you followed the Tour de France and during the three weeks an event called the Etap du Tour is held in which thousands of amateur riders tackle one of the tough mountain stages a few days before the pros do it. It was on this stage of the Tour that the big names of the sprinters – Mark Cavendish and Andre Greipel amongst them – who, understandably, find these stages really hard work, just made the cut off time by 28 seconds but were all faster than the winner of the Etap event. It puts it all into perspective doesn’t it?  
Useful Riding Tip
Mike, who has completed a road safety cycling course, gave us a good tip when stopping at a road junction. When coming up to the give way lines on the road, it’s best to place yourself in the middle of the carriageway (not the middle of the road but in the middle of the carriageway). This will prevent a vehicle coming alongside and if it turns left but you’re going straight on or right, it could possibly put you in danger of a collision.   
Velo South Entry 
Jacky Balfour has an entry for the new closed-road Velo South sportive that takes place on the 23rd of September. She is offering the entry for £50 but transferring the entry legitimately expired a couple of weeks ago so if you want to take up the offer it will have to be a female rider and you might have to take paperwork to convince the organisers that you’re Jacky. Hmm. Contact Jacky on  
New Kit Order 
I have started a list of club kit as several Stragglists have expressed a desire for new items. On offer are short-sleeved summer jerseys, long-sleeved fleece lined jerseys, gilets and (providing enough people want them) shorts. If you have been thinking about replacing old for new or want something for the first time – don’t keep it to yourself. Let me know.
Sunday’s Rides
As I mentioned last week, Mirella is going to take her group to Winchester for a scenic route to Eastleigh, making a stop at one of the tea rooms in Romsley. This will happen next Sunday on the 12th so if you would like to join in, these are the details: Winchester is accessible by train from Esher. The 8.36 gets there by 9.45 with one change or 9.09 arriving 10.26 with two changes. Coming back from Eastleigh to Esher depending on the train can involve 1 or 2 changes Contact Mirella for more details
We’re going to go for a trip to Tan House Farm in Newdigate and as the weather has settled down and is now into warm sunshine interspersed with heavy downpours we’ll go back to the normal time of meeting at the Angel at 9 o’clock. Not wishing to be thought of as anything but confusing, the BBC weather forecast app shows Sunday morning to be sunny at times whilst, on the pc, it shows light rain all day. That’ll be sun cream and spray jacket then.  
Happy cycling,

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