Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Chris - flies up Blackstone Edge for 1st place

Just logged on myself to remind everyone about Season of Mists this coming Sunday but I see I've been beaten to it - expecting a good turn out from the Condor who should be well represented throughout the field. Its a shame it clashes with quite a few other local events this weekend (Mills & Hills Sportive, Calderdale MTB Marathon, Spagers Ride) but the Mist's will, as always, be Condor's main event.

Now for the serious stuff, a big congratulations to Padiham Chris. He had a comparatively quiet weekend with only 2 races. On Saturday he rode the Rossendale RC climb up Woodplumpton Road to Crown Point taking 8th place.

He was obviously saving himself for the West Pennine climb up Blackstone Edge on Sunday where he was fastest, his first win in open competition, well done Chris.

Yes, I know its not Blackstone Edge but its the best I can do.

Season of Mists - 11 Oct 2015

With no club ride being posted up last weekend, I'd better get in early with a reminder that this Sunday it is the Season of Mists ride from Mytholmroyd Community Centre - meet 8:45 for 9am start.


A hilly 100 kilometre ride from Hebden Bridge, into the Ribble Valley, with a  generous time limit based on a minimum speed of 12 kph and a maximum of 24 kph. So that's at most 14.9 mph. Suits me.

Monday, September 28, 2015

3 Peaks & 4 Climbs

Excellent result from Robin in the Peaks, especially considering the puncture and the fact he was 'taking it easy and enjoying himself '. Can't wait to see how he goes on next year when he's going to prepare properly. Congratulations also to Adrian Lord who completed the race for the 5th time recording 5.24.16, 10 minutes faster than his partner Nerys Rolinson who was representing Tod Harriers. Todmordens Stu Horsfall, who several Condors will remember from our ride round the Mills & Hills route a few months ago had an excellent ride recording a time of 3.58.35 despite falling victim to 3 punctures. It really was a perfect day for the event, competitors and spectators alike.
On the hill climb scene Chris' preparation for the National Champs at Jackson Bridge at the end of October continues at a pace. He kicked off his Saturday on the Rivington Pike climb near Bolton with a 3rd place overall before making his way back to Luddenden for the Halifax Imperial Wheelers climb up Stocks Lane.
Chris, off number 17 in a 32 strong entry powered up towards Mount Tabor in a time of 5min 51secs and finally had to settle for 9th place overall behind the winning time of 4.57 recorded by Tom Bell of Fluid Fin Race Team (whoever they are).
On Sunday he chose the Lancaster CC 2 Stage Climb on Conder Bottoms and Jubilee Tower where he returned to the podium with 3rd overall.  Well done Chris, the mere thought of riding 4 hill climb races over one weekend tires me.

3 Peaks report

Peak is oft used as an adjective for performance, but yesterday it just meant the end-point of steep slopes of grass, or of rock, or of a rock/grass mix, all of which shared the common quality of being interminably long.

I set off with Jamie (from that there down South with all its well appointed refinements) in what must be one of the warmest ever starts of the event. With admirable restraint, showing the wisdom of my years, I took the start as a prelude not a finale. Jamie shot off, and was next seen going down Pen y ghent as I was ascending, still in my 'prelude' mode, though now apparently knackered despite having been assiduous in my commitment to easy rider-dom. Strange that.

In between I had managed to take some time off the 'racing' to look over the inversions marking the valleys beneath Ingleborough. The restful mist felt quite alluring in contrast to my gel-fuelled, stuttering movement. Then down over soggy turf, watching riders take 'headers' into hidden sink holes and somehow avoiding such myself, up the steps of Whernside whose differently spaced risers were clearly there just to piss you off, down the rocky drainage ditches and along sneaky pathways to one side or other that avoided all the sharp edges and sharp tongued expletives, along the road to the foot of Pen - y - Ghent having been gathered into what seemed like an Ilkley Club cycling train complete with a very clean engine, then, after seeing Jamie coming down, pretty much coming to a halt myself as cramp (first time ever) set in.

More gels sorted that out, then descending up top at a rocky bottle neck I got a rear puncture (tired rider error of course) which at least meant I could rest a few minutes whilst fumbling with canisters that stuck to the skin (forgot about them being so cold). A rather too cautious descent down the remainder of the hill (the slight paranoia of a repeat puncture) found me coming into Helwith Bridge at 4hrs and 20 seconds, 156th.

Jamie had been 'in' a good while, but had the patience to be waiting to introduce me to his mates who had a picnic hamper at the finish replete with olives, stuffed sun dried tomatoes, knäckebrød and mackerel paté, which was pretty empty by the time we finished with it. I guess any watching Condors had long since flown by then. Onto next year now, where I will have, I think, a different strategy from 'taking it easy'; advice welcome as to what it should be: 'train for it properly'; 'don't bother ...'; 'ride with a smile'; etc. etc..


We were there. And have a picture to prove it. You were even seen and noted at the finish, Robin, but looking rather a wizened and hollow husk. You went straight past your cheering clubmates, pints in their hands so unable to applaud, perhaps headed toward the promise of olive-stuffed tomatoes and whatever else it was you mentioned - I don't even have those fancy foreign letters on my keyboard. Anyway it was a fantastic warm dry day for this time of year and we all had a lovely time. Ian.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Helwith Bridge - the second wave

For anyone who feels that Peter's proposed ride is a tad too early and/or a smidge too far we'll be setting off an hour behind - 9:30 from Keighley - for a more direct route.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Saturday 26th & Sunday 27th

 Busy weekend coming up, its the Imps Hill Climb on Saturday on Stocks Lane (2pm). I understand there are about 30 entries including 6 or 7 Imps and our own Chris Smith. I'm hoping to be on the hill to give Chris some verbal encouragement and joining him afterwards in the Lord Nelson for the usual formalities. Not content with one hill climb he's down for the Lancaster 2 stage climb on Sunday, Conder Bottoms at 10am and Jubilee Tower at noon. Good luck Chris, I hope you're having a few days rest beforehand.
On Sunday its also the Classic 3 Peaks Cyclo Cross. Adrian Lord is once again representing the Condor and is joined this year by Robin Holt.  Adrian had a great ride in the event last year so here's hoping it goes as well for him this year. Robin was talking down his ambitions when he was out on the club ride last Sunday saying he intends to take it easy and enjoy himself. Sounds like a good strategy but not easy to stick to when you're surrounded by 650 who are racing. May the Gods smile down on both of you. 

I can only think that the above photo must have been taken before the start of the 1995 event judging from the smiles and the clean kit. Lots of the same names can be seen on this years start sheet that were also taking part 20 years ago (but not the 3 in the photo who are not just older but also wiser). The 1995 event was won by Andy Peace in 3.08.00 (Andy also won the 3 Peaks Fell Race in 1995 in 2.52.52). A 20 year old Rob Jebb finished 5th in 3.21.43, Rob has since won the race a record 11 times and is favourite again this year.

As last year we are meeting at 8am Denholmgate or 8.30 Keighley to ride up to Cold Cotes to pick up the race. This worked well as we got there just as the leaders came down to the road from Ingleborough. We'll then be riding round to the finish via Chapel le Dale & Ribblehead giving us ample opportunities to admire the athletes in action and see the finish whilst enjoying a sandwich and a beverage at Helwith Bridge.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Weekend Report

Chris rises to the challenge.
Above picture taken last Saturday evening at the Hardwick Hall Nocturne Hill Climb. Chris tells me it was a great event with floodlighting, loud music and cheering crowds. All sounds a bit too exciting for me. He says he felt strong recording a time of 1.46 against the winner Peter Cocker's time of 1.24.

Grimpy was also in race action at the weekend competing in the LVRC East Coast Road Race, the final counting event in the season long Percy Stallard Series. He finished 2nd in his age category to Bill Cotton, a result which means John has had to concede Series honours to the younger man.

The less competitive amongst us went on the Easyriders ride up to the superb café at How Stean Gorge. Due to the terrain it wasn't quite as easy as the previous weeks run up Wharfedale. The original plan had been to go straight up to Ripon and Masham on the fast but easy roads but the heavy traffic was spoiling the riding so at Pool we took a left and meandered up to Nidderdale on the back roads.
I'm delighted to report that Ian and Robin found their way to the start at Shelf to join Nigel, Richard, Oakworth Steve and myself. Mel joined in from the top of Pool Bank and we can blame him for leading us on a circumnavigation of Almscliffe Cragg through over a mile of fresh cow clap liberally coating the road surface (Robin was nearly in tears as he witnessed his beautiful new mauve coloured frame - and matching socks - and baby pink Rapha jersey, become splattered with blobs of brown). We even found a few lanes that Mel, our expert on that neck of the woods, hadn't been on before and arrived at the café well before mid day.
With 50 odd miles in before lunch we took a more direct route back to Calderdale choosing the lesser known Peat Lane to climb over to Wharfedale and thereby avoiding the dreaded Geenhow Hill. Richard, who had been lacking the super form of the previous Sunday, was unfortunate enough to puncture twice on the return journey but apart from that all once again enjoyed a super day in the Dales.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Easyriders - Sunday 20th Sept

 This coming Sunday, 20th Sept, as discussed on the easyriders ride last week, we're intending to go to How Stean Gorge Café for lunch. Meeting at Shelf Roundabout at 8.30am. The intention is to make our way out to Pool via Apperley Bridge & Yeadon, up to Masham and over the moors to Lofthouse.

Neil & Phil & friends on Nick o' Pendle for the Tour of Britain

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Easyriders Report

Having an Easyriders ride proved to be very popular. Simon and I were joined at Denholmgate by Mick Collins, Martin Gargett and Damien, the latter having recently returned from Spain where he he's been putting in his final preparations for the social season. At Keighley we found Nigel and Richard sat on the bench by the roundabout sunning themselves. We dallied there a while acknowledging passing cyclists and enjoying the esprit de corps our sport enjoys before we gave up any hope of Ian turning up; although, once again, as soon as we got the pedals turning I caught the sound of his deep section carbons drumming along the road behind me. It seems we're all easyriders now.
It was a beautiful early autumn Sunday morning as we sped through Skipton, the church bells heralding our passage and the slight incline up Grassington Road a pleasure that only Easyriders can appreciate. No one dropped off the back and all took their turn at the front. We were up to Buckden, round the triangle and back down to Madame Zarina's by 11am having been joined by Mel on our return journey to Kettlewell and having covered about 45 miles at an average of just under 18½ mph.
I thought the timing of the café stop had been well planned, between the breakfast & lunchtime busy periods, however others had obviously been thinking along the same lines and it was bursting at the seams. We were accommodated in the back garden where bacon, sausage & egg sandwiches of average - not bad but not great quality and size were eventually delivered.
The return journey was made down the back roads through Conistone, Grassington, Hebden and Appletreewick to the Cavendish Pavillion and Bolton Bridge where again our new easyriding approach kept the peloton together.
Being unable to face Keighley twice on such a lovely day we took the back road through Beamsley down to Ilkley where we sampled a pint of Mary Jane at the Bah't At. Keighley Gate had been discussed for the route home but with Damien being concerned for the welfare of his expensive Zipp's and Mick having cracked yet another frame (bb on his Van Nick Ti) we erred on the side of caution and went up the Cow & Calf and on to Dick Hudsons - and an error it was, these roads being used as racetracks by weekend motorists eager to keep within a few feet of the car in front ignoring the narrow roads, blind dips and bends.
Mel said goodbye at Burley Woodhead, the rest of us going over to Bingley and Harden and up Bents Lane to Harecroft where Damien showed us just how successful his social season preparation has been by blowing up big time, however in the true spirit of easyriding we waited and offered encouragement rather than the usual tactic of just riding off.
More of the same next Sunday ? How Stean Gorge has been mentioned.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Sunday Easyriders Section

I've arranged to meet Simon at Denholmegate at 8.30 tomorrow for an easy ride up to Buckden Triangle and back down to Zarina's for lunch. All welcome.

Well done to Chris who chose the Hull Thursday Hardriders 25 to debut his newly acquired disc wheel today. Despite windy conditions he recorded a time of 58.43 which gave him 5th place overall.

Saturday, September 05, 2015

6 Sept - Silverdale option

For those of us who don't know where Mirfield is, because it is way too far east from our home turf, we'll offer an alternative ride. Meet 9am in Keighley for a trundle up to Silverdale. I'd even suggest a lunch stop at the Falcon Inn in Arncliffe to get the social season off to a good start.

It looks like the Sutton Bank ride was well attended - looking forward to a full report. Meanwhile four more Condors met in Keighley at or about the appointed hour and took full advantage of the bright, sunny and warm conditions. The back roads to Settle were a pleasure and we had time for cofee in the sunshine, followed by scenic Silverdale. No pictures I'm afraid - there was no stopping these lads once they got going..

Then a rattle down Littondale with an increasing tailwind for a pint and lunch at the Falcon. Fuelled up for the ride home we even took in the pleasures of Addingham Moorside before tackling Keighley and the home roads. The picture below is in Arncliffe - I tried to get one outside the pub but then thought, for a change, of trying to show Condors on their bikes. As you can see, two of them tried to leap off again before the shot was taken.

Friday, September 04, 2015

Ravensthorpe Charity Challenge, Sun 6th Sept

This coming Sunday Ravensthorpe will be holding their annual Sutton Bank challenge ride. Its a 120 miler starting in Mirfield, 7.45 for 8.  The route can be seen at https://www.strava.com/activities/79230850 . There will be feed stations at Tadcaster on the way out and Wetherby on the return leg. A minimum donation of £5 is expected and all moneys raised will go to Kirklees Cycling Academy.  Condor's Simon Fortune (KCA Coach) will be there at 7.30 collecting donations.

Its always a well supported event with a wide range of speeds you're sure to find a group riding at the right speed for you. I'm hoping to get down to Mirfield but I'm not planning to do the full route.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

A bit of nostalgia - specially for Mel & Pete

Its nearly 40 years ago but I'm sure I won't be the only Condor who remembers riding down to Winnats in 1977 to give Melvin a cheer in the National Hill Climb Championships.  

It was cold and wet and we were probably glad to get into the pub in Castleton after the event for a few swift pints to give our legs the necessary anaesthesia for the ride home over Strines.


If you study the results list there will be many names that are known to fellow Condors, Mel of course, then Pete Smith who at that time was serving in, and riding for the Royal Navy. Pete was beaten by 6 seconds by former Condor Brian Jennings who was riding for the Imps. The Imps had a full team entered, Brian being backed up by Hoppy and Nick Boylan.
Jez Lindley led Huddersfield Star Wheelers to the team title, one of many won by the Star in the 60's & 70's. Jez is still seen out occasionally with 3RT. He was backed up by Phil Grimes & Chris Raw. Phil's still very fit racing with the Halifax Harriers and winning Vet.60 awards.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Arncliffe and Airton - 23 August

Away to Arncliffe and Airton

This Sunday Morning saw 5 Condors meeting at a bright and sunny Keighley
  • Ian
  • Steve Barker
  • Richard
  • Nigel
  • and Myself
A steady well paced ride led us out in the morning sun toward Skipton and Threshfield, where we were picked up by a large fast group. Varied Jerseys and numerous clubs but briefly looking around the peloton I recognized Bin Man Chris and Dewsburys long distance man Paul Ward.
Rattling on toward Kilnsey our band of 5 were enjoying the rapid pace but were quiet shocked as instead of bearing right to Kettlewell, the peloton was going our way, left to Arncliffe. Thankfully the young guns had to stop in a gateway (strong legs but weak bladders!). We pottered on up Brookes Lane to climb over to Malham quickly being enveloped by the chasing fast group.

The Cove Road

Nigel chatted a while to find out that these boys werent intending to stop at all and with this pace we bidded them adieu and let them on their way!
Descending to Malham was dicey after the previous heavy rain storms had washed a considerable amount of loose gravel and some sizeable rocks across the road. Nigel remonised about the days in road races where they'd employ " A stiff Broom on them bends!"
The cafe at Malham was looked to be at bursting point with folks enjoying the mid summer sun, and also busy with cars so we pottered on to Airton.
Sitting out in the sun we enjoyed lashes of tea and an almost perfect bacon and egg bap, which rated 5 on Ian's egg-o-meter! The Gentlemen of The Condor like nice baps!
Picking up a couple of riders on our way we approached Gargrave and Broughton. Through Carleton on low lying roads to tackle the Cononley Bastard!
Thanks to Ian for picking a sensible wind assisted route. After all Summer will soon be over, so lets make the most of it!

Chris Smith

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Sunday 23rd

My plan so far is 9am in Keighley for a wander up the Dales. The SE wind is forecast to pick up after lunch but I'm struggling for a route that would make good use of the breeze - ideas welcome. Ian.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Mountain Biking with Peter

Due to hols only two intrepid off roaders departed from Brighouse last night. Peter decided on a steady night with a route down the canal to Norland and onto Rishworth. Conversation started with Brian's amazing national veterans title wins in the last 2 weeks. Completing the 50 champs in a 1hr 50 and a week later winning the 30's championship. Even Ian Cammish congratulated Brian although he did point out the front carbon wheel he purchased was inserted wrong way round having the backend of the carbon blades hitting the air turbulence instead of visa versa.Still better than my Marie Townley loop challenge, which I managed to get lost my excuse anti clockwise loop instead of clockwise with Peter and Simon the week previous. Still whilst one hour down on fastest managed to come in 7th out of 45 finishers.  
Prior to the salterhebble basin I expected Pete to turn towards Clay House, to take the climb up to norland. Straight on, expectation then up to norland on the gravel road from copley? No straight on again seemingly Peter was taking me on a Paul Daly route? We arrived at the new road bridge opposite Lloyds data center crossed the bridge to take an immediate left and right under the railway bridge. 
Pete then took a left onto a bridleway like road. I pointed out the signs 'private no bikes etc.'Pete uttered 'no wonder we got abuse on this route with Paul' A sharp right led us to a bramble edged narrow climb heading in the general direction of what I would describe as the road below the once called blue ball pub. The first section was full of relatively large loose stones eventually the terrain eased and it was a pleasant pull in a low gear. After a sharp right we continued upwards. 
Initially I was maybe 10m behind Pete but gradually I brought him back when all of a sudden Pete keeled over in what looked an innocuous slow motion fall straight into the bramble bushes with his MB lying on top of him.Immediately I noted a large portion of skin was removed from his calve area leaving the muscle exposed. It was clean almost like you could expect from a surgical operation. How’s that happened? Looking for some sharp object none? 
Unfortunately Pete had fallen onto his chainring. I said better get down to find some transport so I departed with Pete following at a steady pace. Got to the bridge to realize I left my iPhone at home having been in iCloud land trying to load some data from my Mac.Pete arrived to organize ambulance support. Luckily he wasn't loosing much blood good job as he ended up giving the call center (thought it was in India) continual instructions on our location. 
Paramedic arrives at Copley old bridge, more discussions I’m organized up to the traffic lights to direct him. He arrives in a few minutes in his Skoda estate, pleasant guy even cycled? Peter meanwhile was coping real well after enquiring if he needed anything - Viagra? Blood pressure and heart rate monitored he was deemed fit to be transported to A & E. 
I contacted him this morning to find he had 19 stitches and unfortunately will be out of action for sometime. Indicating the Vuelta Espana starts on Saturday he said he closed the Eurosport account. I said he needed to contact father who used the Eurosport streaming player on his smart TV for £4 per month. That’s a turn up when you go to PG for PC advise?Anyway Pete’s s on the mend and wont be able to direct our Wednesday rides for sometime?  

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Sunshine in Slaidburn

Its back to road bikes this week for the sunny roads of Lancashire out to Slaidburn. 9am at the lights in Hebden Bridge.

It may have been decidedly chilly and autumnal first thing but the roads were indeed sunny out to Slaidburn. The only problem was that the dappled sun through the leaves left Robin unable to focus clearly on the road ahead under some trees, resulting in a snakebite puncture from a nasty hole. The next issue was that our intrepid companion had forgotten his tubes and pump, but we sorted him out. I suspect that he'd spent rather too long choosing exactly the right set of matching jersey, shorts and cap from an extensive wardrobe. Here's hoping that the modelling contract will follow soon:

Much to our amusement ...
BUTTY REPORT: a rush of orders lead to a long wait and service below the usual standard. Nigel had to wrestle the rind from his bacon and our search for a sufficiently study teacake* must continue. The Riverside cafe scores 5 eggs out of the maximum half-dozen for their efforts this week.

*We'd ridden so far that apparently they are now barms, or possibly baps, in these here parts.

Saturday, August 08, 2015

Mountain Malarkey

Taking inspiration from Peter's jaunt last week I'm going to play out on mtb this Sunday.

Meeting 9am in Hebden at the main traffic lights and take it from there.

Monday, August 03, 2015

Feizor - ride and cafe report

I'm glad that the mtb ride went well for Peter but what's with the 71.5 miles! I though the MT loop was only 40-odd. Maybe our intrepid colleagues took a wrong turn at some point? 

Meanwhile, the road runners had a lovely day out to Feizor as planned, going out by the 'flat' route over Attermire (taking great care on the descent into Settle) and back by the 'less flat' route down from Eldroth over Bowland Knotts, Elslack, Cowling Pinnacle and Slippery Ford.

Steve, Steve, Andy and Robin were out and hopefully had a good time. I'd say that the pace was rapid and unrelenting. Others might use less generous terminology. At least there were smiles when we stopped and had our photo took at the peak of our ride (note the clean and mud-free appearances). Soon afterward we met Dougie and John from VS doing the same ride but the other way round, so it was clearly the route du jour. The sky looks leaden here but the sun did come out closer to home.

Now for the most important bit - our ongoing series of cafe reports. Elane's Tearooms certainly gets top marks for location, friendly and welcoming staff and an inviting decor and atmosphere. The wipe-clean seats are a bonus should any muddy mountain bikers visit these parts. They sadly lost points for the quality of the teacake which was in no way up to the task and just instantly fell apart, and for the seemingly deep-fried bacon which repeated unpleasantly for the next couple of hours. So I'd give an 'egg-rating' of 4 eggs out of a maximum half-dozen.

Robin was keen on Tatham Fells next week, but that could be too much like a repeat ride?

Sunday, August 02, 2015

Mary Townley

I think if Ian had been with us today he would have changed his mind about the Mary Townley Loop. The route ticks all the mountain biking boxes and the weather today was just right, not hot, not cold, a light breeze. There were puddles in places from yesterdays downpour and we did get a little dirty but I'm happy to report that the muck washed off in the shower.
Grimpy, Simon and I left Callis Bridge at just turned 8am and were back there 6½ hrs later having stayed together throughout sharing gate opening duties equally. A perfect day really, no punctures, no mechanicals, no crashes, no getting lost and no 'bonking', the only downside being Grimpy's new mountain bike getting dirty.

May it all go as well for John next Sunday, he's entered the MT Loop Sportive - I'm going to stick to once a year.

Saturday, August 01, 2015

Fancy Feizor?

For the road ride this week we've arranged 8:30 in Keighley to go over Bowland Knotts via Feizor cafe.

It has of course been highlighted that this is the week when Peter is mountain biking in the upper Calder valley, but I think its is a tad damp on the trails and MT loop can be done too often. Once every 5 years is enough for me round there.

It would be nice to ride together one day but it seems that the upper and lower valley sections of Condor are instead destined to orbit each other like a form of quantum entanglement. Maybe it is something to do with the home (blue) and away (black) club jerseys?

Friday, July 31, 2015

Sunday 2nd Aug & bike for sale

Decent weather forecast for this coming Sunday so Grimpy and myself are meeting at 8am at Callis Bridge (where MT Loop & Pennine Way cross Hebden Bridge to Tod road) for a potter, in a clockwise direction, round the Mary Townley Loop. Its only about 46 miles with about 6000 ft of climbing but don't underestimate it, and bring some food & drink with you as refreshment stops are infrequent. There's been a distinct lack of interest from other parties so far which just goes to show that cyclists can be sensible.

Above bike for sale, Genesis Equilibrium Titanium/105 groupset, 56cm frame (see Genesis website for full spec.) Oct 12 vintage, £1000. (frame alone retails at £1400). Lovely ride but purchase of 2015 Equilibrium forces sale. Contact me on 07549 821349.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015


 It was a Sunday of 2nd places for our racing men with Brian travelling down to South Wales for the Vets National 25 Champs, his time of 56min 11secs giving him a plus 18min58secs faster than his age standard and earning the silver medal behind Deeside Thistle's Derek Stuart.

Grimpy travelled down to Braintree for round 3 of the LVRC Percy Stallard National Road Racing Series taking 2nd place in his age group behind Bill Cotton and ahead of former pro Tony Woodcock. Thankfully the services of the Red Cross were not needed this week as they were the previous Sunday when he rode the Vets National Mountain MTB Champs on the 2012 Olympic course in London (fell off on a drop-off). Despite the fall he finished 3rd in his age group and 7th in the over 60's category.
Meanwhile Chris stayed nearer home riding the Team Swift 100 mile Time Trial on a course in east Yorkshire coming 2nd by a mere 4½ minutes to Carlos Riise of the Shetland Wheelers (yes he'd travelled all the way from the Shetland Islands to deprive Chris of the 1st place cheque). A great result for Chris who recorded a time of 4hrs 6min 15secs on a cold and windy morning.

The mountain bike rides are still meeting at 6.30pm Thurs eves in Brighouse and this Sunday Grimpy and I are planning an assault on the Mary Townley Loop, meeting 8am at Callis Bottom, Hebden Bridge (if the weather doesn't improve its likely we'll cut it short).

Saturday, July 18, 2015

19 July - Way out west

For anyone who is not keen on the Bronte Sportive then we can offer you an alternative - 9am at Hebden Bridge for Waddington. 'Go West, young man, and grow with the country'.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Sunday 12th July

If anyone fancies a steadier day out than recent weeks I'm planning to take lunch at Knaresborough tomorrow and will be at Shelf roundabout at 8.30am, all welcome.

Next Sunday, the 19th, Oakworth Steve, Mel and me have entered the Bronte Sportive from Keighley, an interesting 88m route. If you're feeling super-fit its your chance to give Mel some pain, if not you can potter round with me. £20 to enter or £25 on the day with all the money going to Manorlands Hospice, go to http://www.sueryder.org/Get-involved/Events/All-events/2015/July/Bronte%20Sportive%202015  for entry and route details.

Monday, July 06, 2015


Thanks to everyone from the condor and imps who supported a successful event.
The only problem was an accident on a straight section of tarmac road coming down from buckstones in Race 2 which I understand was caused by a rider switching causing two riders to fall. Both riders (Lee Johnson & Stephen Wilkinson) ended up with gravel rash. Lee Johnson had significant lacerations; St Johns ambulance support vehicle attended and whilst they concluded that no breakages had occurred, requested ambulance support. We hope Lee recovers soon and is able to compete again in 2015.The paradox was on the rough road and off road sections no incidents were reported. The feedback from the racers was all positive. Yes its true
Anyway to prove a point I received an Email from mike twelves ( ex Pro) winner of race 2
Thanks to you and your collegues for an excellent race today, John. A great, imaginative course and really well marshalled and organized
Also an email from Karl Smith in race 1
 Hi John,
Must thank you and all the helpers for running such a fantastic event today.
You would not believe how many riders said how much they enjoyed the course and race today.

Thanks Karl Smith, Bott Cycle Team. A/B race.

Sunday, July 05, 2015

Weekend Report

Its been a busy weekend for the Condor. Steve, Mel and I had a full and enjoyable day yesterday taking part in the Dales Grimpeur, a route which makes the Dales Etape and the Fred seem like a walk in the park. Unknown to us at the time Heptonstalls Graeme Brown and his better half, Kate also rode but had been delayed getting there due to the thick mist, a champion effort on a route many a hardened cyclist is afraid of, by a couple who are probably better known as runners.

Whilst we were following a less pressured activity our racing men were putting themselves through it in the YCF 50 on a course based on the A19 around Thirsk. Despite it not being regarded as an evening for fast times due to the windy conditions, Brian ignored the weather and set a new British Age Record for the distance recording a time of 1.57.21 which gave him 6th place overall, an incredible achievement in open age competition. One place behind Brian in the overall standings, riding his first ever 50 was 'Padiham' Chris with a time of 1.57.56, a time and position anyone would be proud of.

Chris has had a busy week. On Tuesday evening he knocked 30 secs off his PB for the course whilst winning the Rossendale Hilly 10. On Wednesday evening he was feeling so strong and managed to snap his chain, fell heavily and injured his knee. Thursday evening he rode the Rossendale Whalley/Settle 21m TT, again taking 1st place. With the 50 on Saturday evening most would have considered that to be enough for one week but to the amazement of all he was due to face the timekeeper once again, at 8 o'clock on Sunday morning down in Cheshire for his debut 100 mile TT. Defying logic he recorded a great time on the sporting course of 4hrs 15min 22secs. Results are not yet available but when he left to come home he was topping the leader board.

Most of our members have been busy today helping at the Condor Road Race. I had to leave before the traditional de-brief at Greetland Community Centre but I'm sure Grimpy will update the blog with full details.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

A few updates

 I've been interrogating the web hoping to find out what our racing men have been up to over the weekend but with no success. With Chris being tied up with his sisters wedding over the weekend and Oakworth Steve being otherwise engaged on the BAM Tour of Holland it was left to Mel and myself to fly the Condor flag at the White Rose Classic sportive on Sunday.

It was not a great day weather-wise. Heavy rain and high winds were forecast and that's just what we got. I was optimistic at the start, it was dull but dry with the temperature being 14° at 7.30am and I expected it to get warmer not colder. The high winds and drizzle started on the approach to Greenhow and riding north from Grassington it was looking black in Upper Wharfedale. The rain got harder and the wind stronger over Fleet Moss but at least the thick mist disguised the climb although precipitation in the eyes (or on the lenses) made the descent down to Hawes an adventure in itself.
The weather just got worse for the Coal Road, 10° and blustery winds for the narrow winding descent down  to Dentdale. From Ribblehead we picked up a tail wind and by Attermire the weather was improving. By Airton the roads were dry and on Langbar climb it was getting too warm. At the finish Mel and I chilled in the sun on the verandah at the magnificent Ilkley RUFC, having a pint of Mary Jane and swapping stories of the day with fellow survivors.
Melvin had a magnificent ride finishing 3rd fastest with his time of 6.39.14 being very similar to previous years despite the weather. I had been happy with my progress but lost time with fatigue over the last 25 miles or so recording a time of 7.51.04 to give me 28th fastest overall, there were over 200 entered for the long route but many did not finish or transferred to the shorter routes.

We had an early start for last weeks mountain bike ride but this coming Thursday we are back to a 6.30m start from Brighouse.

1 comment:

  1. That's 4 WRC rides with the same time within a minute for me - regardless of weather or companion ! Like Pete I was pretty much on my own, the big guy from Ilkley I started with had a battle with the climbs and faded by Helwith Bridge. The beer was good though

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Reminder Condor Buckstone R.R. Sunday 5th July  Your Support Please

Hi Everyone, I have just completed the Race data and start sheets. Today we have 80 starters in the 3 events. We need your kind support and assistance. The HQ is Greetland Community & Sporting Association, Rochdale road (B6113) HX4 8JG.
The building should be open from approx.8.30 am.
All Marshalls and support should kindly be at HQ from approx. 9.00 a.m.
Riders are scheduled to leave at 9.45 for the race start at 10.00 am in Barkisland village on saddleworth road (B6114) approx. 200m above the scammonden crossroad.
The event is neutralized until beyond scammonden Motorway Bridge.
The circuit is the same as last years event which is briefly up to Buckstone Moss tee Jnt. Turn left onto the A640 and then sharp left down hey lane, right under the motorway then immediately left onto Yorkshire water (YW) service road. Across scammonden embankment, up the steep climb to exit YW. Turn right on lower road passed finish area then left onto short road to meet saddleworth road to complete one circuit. Events 1 & 2 complete 5 laps and event 3 (O60’s) complete 4 laps.
As a reminder ignoring lead cars my risk assessment shows we need 15 Marshall’s. I look forward to your kind support and assistance for a successful and safe event.  As guide the circuit is approx. 8.25 miles long so allowing for start section I would expect all races to be complete for approx. 12.30.
pea & pies will be available at HQ from around 13.00.

Cheers Grimpy