Falmouth Wheelers
Wednesday September 28 2016 
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A hair cut, or a close shave? - OGIL ride 21st September 2016
Sep 23, 2016, 2:24 pm

The community speed team were out at Lamanva again, this morning, but try as we did, we could not get above the 30mph speed limit. Bernie had put on a bit of a sprint and was well ahead of Kath, Phil1 and myself. An OTS coach had tried to slow him down, like totally, by pulling out of a junction at about 0.1mph, but you know Bernie, he saw the funny side of it and wasn’t a bit f-ing and blinding. Phil3 was back from his travels and was waiting at the other place with Bryan and guest rider, Keith. Kath suggested Portreath, as she needed to be back by 2 for a haircut by Jill Prior, so it was agreed that she should lead. Now, I learnt many moons ago that if you are going to lead a ride it helps if you know the way, and, this is equally important, know that there are more than one OGIL potential destination that begins with the letter P. But we got there, eventually. A nice gentleman did cause some amusement when he overtook half of the pack before slowing and turning left into Burley Aquatics, and we did go via Porthtowan, begins with a P, resulting in a climb up Rose Hill. It could have been worse, Phil 1 thought we going to Perranporth. TD was loitering around the village when we arrived, there being at least two cafes frequented by the Wheelers, but we had settled on the one adjacent to the car park. The conversation was so stimulating that I have already forgotten it.

The repeated need to get back at a reasonable hour meant that we turned back, through Bridge, up to Redruth and on to Lanner Hill. TD left us soon after starting back and Bryan turned off somewhere near the Gold Centre. We stopped for a brief inspection of Bernie’s bonfire then pushed on home. I had forgotten to switch on Mr Garmin until Lamanva so the 41 miles shown was probably nearer 44. I don’t know where Phil3 had been on holiday but it obviously didn’t involve a lot of cycling. Dean

HILL CLIMB – β€œit’s a blur!”
Sep 17, 2016, 11:04 am

With a change of venue this year from Cusgarne Hill to Weir Hill at Restronguet Barton it was not clear whether the turnout would be as good without the promise of Theresa’s delicious delights afterwards.  The course was shorter at one third of a mile but with an ascent of over 50 metres (164 feet in £.s.d) there are two points where the gradient ramps up to 12%.  This is a steeper climb and one where an explosive effort from the off may well pay off. 

The turnout was very good with eleven Wheelers assembling at the waterside start line.  Caroline had brought the FW banner to mark the finish by Paul and Hilary’s house where top timekeeper Paul was installed at a table directly opposite the chalked arrivée line.  Down at waterside the chairman was doing his best to master the timing technology (as usual) and keep the contenders in order (as usual).  It was a perfect September evening.   What quieter location could you have for the Wheelers’ hillclimb?  In fact we had hit the evening rush hour as no less than four vehicles decided to assert their right to use our road as the first rider was on the point of starting and the clock had to be stopped for one minute to allow a pickup to continue his evening meander to the bottom. 

Carolyn was first off with Amanda chasing her a few minutes later. Richard was in a class of his own. At minute intervals they set off, increasingly rapidly as if the later riders had been seeded.  Last to go (with no witnesses but the watch, but it made little difference) was the chairman.  In hindsight he felt he had overdone his warm up a tad by riding the OGIL to Marazion that morning. Fastest up was Phil ‘the Blur’ Bartlett who nearly rode over Hilary as well as the line with after-burners full on. Robin was a close second, Ian a close third behind him. One husband beat his wife.  

At the Lemon Arms the results were announced which you can see below.  There was talk of some food next year if we could use the same venue again.  We all agreed it was a good venue and food is always appreciated.  Many thanks to Paul for timekeeping and Hilary for the photos.

Have we seen a changing of the guard or just a flash in the pan? Will the timekeepers’ decisions be challenged?  Will the club splash out on some stopwatches or must we make do with the club sundials? Will Ian remember to fit some extra gears to his bike? The eternal questions don’t change.



VOGIL category  - Richard 73 – 4:42

Women – 1. Caroline – 4:03

                  2.  Amanda – 4:06

Men -  1. Phil 4 ‘the Blur’ -  2:40

             2. Robin – 2:50

             3.  Ian – 3:00

             4.  Chris – 3:05

             5.  Phil 1 Conroy – 3:35

             6.  Steve Hudson – 3:56

             7.  Jim Middleditch – 3:59

             8.  Simon – 4:07      

Sep 16, 2016, 5:42 pm

As the years go by we are all getting older. This applies to the timekeepers who do such an invaluable job of work in ensuring that we run our events in the South West as smoothly as possible.  Timekeepers are in short supply and we need younger members to step up and volunteer to undertake this rewarding role.  For a number of years we have run a 3 hour (or so) session where we go through the requirements for timing events and the protocols to be followed so that there is minimum negative feed back after each time trial.

To that end it is intended to run a session lasting about 3 hours on Saturday 15th October at the Village Hall, Rattery, TQ10 9LD, starting at 09:30.  There will be no charge. Light refreshments will be available.  After the theory side there will be an opportunity for some practical work so if at all possible bring along any stop watches that you can muster from the club or from the already established timekeepers.

Anyone interested please contact the committee or come to the club meeting. This is a good opportunity for Wheelers to find out more about how time trials work. It will be valuable knowledge for the next club TT. 



Plastered over the crack
Sep 15, 2016, 12:25 pm

It was about 3am, by the light of almost continuous lightening, and to the sound of a heavy downpour, that I checked the weather forecast. Mystic Meg suggested that it would be a warm, sunny day. “Ha” I thought, and turned over to go back to sleep. When my 1980s Casio alarm awoke me, at the usual time, it was, indeed, the start of a sunny day, but only Bernie and Mike at Union Corner, Bernie arriving at the same time as me after a visitation from the P fairy and change of bike. Mr Garmin has asked me to point out that it was Phil1, and not Mike, who was on the OGIL ride last week, but as neither of them complained I guess they were as confused about what they had done that day as I was.

Simon and Bryan, the only Wheelers at Halvasso turn made our number up to 5. Simon suggested that numbers were down because of the hill climb in the evening. I thought that was last Sunday, Richard!

Bernie seemed set on us going to Marazion and with TD having already given his excuses; we were quickly on our way. The previous nights storm had not passed without leaving signs of its presence and calls of “gravel” changed to “Cobbles” as a blanket of stones spread across the road in numerous places. One, just before Porkellis, almost caused me to take a face dive, and another, at the 18 mile mark, just after Trescowe, which caused me to stop and change an inner tube. With 8 helping hands the job was soon (?) done and the tyre pumped up, except it didn’t. Second tube was better and we were on our way again, Bernie claiming it to be a new OGIL record, at 24 minutes, and a bit. Excitement point 3, for me, was when a woman decided to drive across my path into the Marazion Car Park. I stopped, just, and we exchanged pleasantries.

Jordan’s beach café was busy with tourists but room enough for us. Simon’s negotiation skills over purchasing just half of a sausage baguette were not successful and our stay was a little delayed whilst he did justice to the monster presented to him.

It was Simon’s turn for an unscheduled tube change on the way back and we were further delayed by an almost impassable stretch of muddy road near Blackrock. We sent Bernie on ahead to check it out. I was the only one of the 5 with mudguards and so the others were well decorated by the time we got back into home territory. Simon especially had (insert title).

After the previous nights rain the day was a bonus and the destination well chosen. There may not be many Wednesdays left in the year that we will get the chance to do this distance, 54 miles for me, although arriving home at 3 o’clock put the ride into the VOGIL category. Dean

Proposed Ireland Tour May 2017
Sep 14, 2016, 3:20 pm

Who is interested in a trip to Kenmare in the West of Ireland next year? I'm proposing we leave on Saturday 13th May and return on Sunday 21st . There will be the same iconic rides to the Beara Peninsula and Killarney along with new routes we've recently discovered.

For those not familiar with these holidays we will be staying in self catering “Holiday Homes” within the Kenmare Bay Hotel complex and can avail of the hotel's facilities including bar, gym, sauna and swimming pool. Each house accommodates four to five people and has one double, one single and one twin bedroom. A buffet breakfast is served in the hotel and makes for a good start to the day.

You need to able to ride between 45 and 50 miles a day, not a considerable distance given that we have all day to do it in – though some will want to ride substantially further. If you are uncertain about the riding it might be helpful to ask one of the “ladies in pink” - Liz, Sonjia, Paula or Gill.

The cost of our stay in the hotel has risen over the last couple of years as has the price of the ferry and the cost of fuel. However, we would hope to keep the overall price close to the £450 we have paid in previous years by being a bit careful with the kitty! Certainly no more than £500. In the past years we have stayed two nights in a B&B – this year it will be just the one. You will only need money for lunch and any drinks.

Let me know if you are interested either at this month's meeting or by email – my updated contact details are in the members only pages.


The Chasewater Pathfinder Ride, September 11th
Sep 11, 2016, 8:25 pm
There was a good turnout of 26 riders for Richard 73's Pathfinder, including a new face, Theresa, who is keen to get back into cycling and bravely made her debut on this fairly challenging route.  It included plenty of hills, the first one being right at the start, up Cox Hill, giving us a taste of what was to come!  then over the A30 and past Wheal Rose, through Menagissey and Mount's Hawk.  The riders were fairly spread out, but with frequent regrouping and the faster Wheelers making sure we took the correct turns, no-one got lost or left behind, despite Don having a puncture early on.  We turned left at the strangely named Goonbell village, through St Agnes and down to Chapel Porth.  The view from the coast road was magnificent, with big surfing waves crashing on the beach as we descended the hill.  Chapel Porth Cafe did a good job of serving all of us; they'd been forewarned, but even so, the long queue seemed to move along quite quickly.  It's the first time Falmouth Wheelers have visited this coffee stop as a group; one of the reasons we have Pathfinders is to go somewhere different and Richard's route achieved this - some bits of it were new even to Don Gunner, who has cycled everywhere in Cornwall over the years.
A steep hill  down means means a tough climb back up, but we were soon on our way back to Chasewater via Mingoose and the B3227.  The wind seemed to be against us but the sun continued to shine...a very enjoyable ride over an interesting new route, with a total of 40 miles for those who rode out and back from HQ.  Thanks once again to Richard for his excellent organisation. 
More pictures in the Photo Gallery.

Two lips are better than none.
Sep 9, 2016, 6:20 pm

Nobody seemed to notice my arrival at Union Corner. Mike, John and the Admiral were listening to Bernie’s tale about “passing the tulip”. This being a family website I shall discuss no more. Besides, I did not hear enough to be any the wiser. With a sense of timing second to none, and certainly not even a second to 8.50, Bernie, or should that be Mercksy from now on, completed his tale and we were on our way. Just Bryan and Martyn awaited us at the other place, Fred heading South, Simon half way up a Munroe, and Richard 2, I later discovered, out with the VOGIL. Kath had messaged that she had to go into work, the word work being used as a noun, rather than a verb, but where was Phil3, the Helston boys, or the M&Ms? No sooner had Helston boating lake been proposed I had forwarded the destination to TD and we were off again. Halvasso lay in mist, which thickened by the time we turned on to the main road at Longdowns. For several miles we followed the rear light of the OGIL in front. Some of them were even turned on.

As our route skirted Trevano I fully expected TD to appear but he wasn’t even at the café when we finally arrived. I later learned that he had taken a tumble near Gweek, misjudging the route we would take, but resulting in no more than bruises to his pride, and had limped home again.

The boating lake wasn’t exactly bathed in summer sun but it was pleasant enough sitting outside, and the waitresses were more than pleasant. A relatively serious, for OGIL, conversation ensued, about Brexit and the after effects. The conclusion I can’t fully remember but suffice to say it included a not too clean back-water and the absence of an implement to propel the vessel.

The route back was predictable, town, muddy lanes, hidden lanes, etc, but it does the job. Bryan turned off after Wendron cricket club, John at Crane garage and Bernie and Martyn at Argal crossroads. It was still misty at Halvasso; perhaps had been all morning. Only 33 miles for me. Dean

Wednesday 7/9 pub ride
Sep 8, 2016, 10:07 am

This evenings ride was the Seven Stars at Stithians. What a memorable ride it was. We had to wait ten mins for Chris to turn up at HQ. I was all for leaving early just to avoid him! I think 8 of us started the ride and we picked up Iron Man ( Steve ) on the way over making 9. On reaching the pub we were greeted with not only Richard73 but also Helston Trev which was an added bonus. Another bonus was the beer was only £2 a pint. What more could you ask for? Yes John and Chris had ordered food so we were able to grab some chips and onion rings.
These Wednesday evening rides are really great social events and it's a shame more Wheelers do not support them as they are the ones dictating which pubs we are riding to. It maybe a pub that is the the destination but you don't have to get p...ed. Have a soft drink you boring b.....eds and embrace the club for what it is - a drinking club with a cycling problem!!
Don't forget Sunday's pathfinder ride from Chacewater village hall organised by Richard73 who has put in the hard work for the benefit of club members

The Clay Pits are Calling
Sep 7, 2016, 10:28 am

After a little persuasion Ian, who had once again left his gears at home, joined the long ride to Mevagissey, making it a total of nine riders. One tandem, two Phils, two ladies, aforesaid single speeder, new member Jim and myself. 

At the Norway we met “£5 Jim” and introduced him to his namesake. We chatted for a while, but not for joining us, we left Jim to his shorter ride and made for the Ladock valley via Carnon Downs and the Old Coach Road. Once there we rode in four pairs, a small group seemingly getting considerably more respect from motorists than two people riding side by side. No one winding down a window and screaming, “single file!” Safety in numbers?

On to Indian Queens then under the A30 to St Dennis and our first glimpse of the “ mountainous” clay pits. It always seems right that we should be here during the Vuelta and a sharp right to avoid the main St Austell road led us up a pleasant climb to Cocksbarrow where it truly felt we were on top of the world. Here Amanda said she would be leaving the ride, stopping briefly for coffee at Wheal Martyn before heading home to pack for her hols. We were making for Mevagissey so it was a quick “au revoir” and off we headed down the exhillerating 3 mile descent to St Austell.

The Riverside Cafe in Mevagissey made us a delicious breakfast and it was hard to get going again. Some discussion about the way home but the gentler option around Heligan chosen to keep “ he who has no gears” happy. Then Tregony, Ruan High Lanes and Philliegh where Phil 4, Ian and myself were overcome with thirst! Emma joined the tandem, Phil C and Jim for the 14:50 King Harry Ferry. We would catch the next one. Or the one after that.

As we supped our pints in the sunshine an enormous traction engine quietly drew up outside, driven by a young women and towing, not one, but two trailers. Expertly parked, she and her blackened stoker joined ma and pa at an adjacent table for a pint and we exchanged merry banter, recognising an unexpected meeting of minds. Like cyclists, they too are an irritation for motorists! The young lady driver was spotless so it was clear that her love interest had kept to his work the entire journey from St Columb! Not sure whether that is Major or Minor. Oh to be in England!

Once more it was hard to get going but reluctantly we made for the ferry, where it came from I don't know, but common sense prevailled. At Devoran we were pleasantly surprised to see that the tandem had stopped at the Quay Inn and we joined Martyn and Margaret in the beer garden for a debrief. I don't use a computer but I imagine we covered a good few miles, made all the more interesting by chasing up the hills our very own Columbian mountain goat, Phil (Quintana) 4. Great ride, great company. Perfick day out!   Robin

Utterley Butterleigh Audax 04/09 report
Sep 5, 2016, 7:26 pm

With the weekend weather looking very ominous I headed to Budleigh Salterton in the hope that Sunday would be dry.  It was dry and stayed dry for the whole of the ride.  There were about 80 riders in total booked on to the 2 distances and the 100k group set off at 9.00am.  I rode with Dene, John,Sharon, Martina (Pz Wheelers) and Alex, the guy from behind the bar at the Feathers pub in Budleigh. 
The start was fairly hilly but good for warming up for what was to come later.  The lanes were nice and quiet and the views were pretty spectacular.  We did though go virtually to Exeter and cycled alongside the Airport which was very new territory for me.  We stopped for the first coffee stop at a cafe on the Canal at Tiverton which i remember from when I did the End to End.  Between there and Honiton there were a couple of challenging hills.  They were steep and long but with the reward of those spectacular views.  The ride was as promised 'Undulating Devon Countryside' of which there was plenty.  We passed through some really lovely villages with thatched cottages.
We reached the final stop in Honiton for further refreshments realising that the cut off time for the finish was at 16.04. - I'm sure they are usually later than that-.  With the knowledge that the final 18 miles was either downhill or flat we set off at a rate of knots and made it back to base at around 3.35.  I don't think I have ever cycled that fast for quite so far. Anyway we made it in time for tea and scones with cream and jam, the Devon way though.
All in all a brilliant day out with some fantastic people for company and I would recommend the ride.

If you would like to know more about our club or contact someone directly please email:

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We're a local group of cyclists of all ages and cycling abilities who enjoy meeting up to ride for fitness, pleasure and socialising.
We ride all year round and organise rides around Falmouth, throughout Cornwall, the UK and abroad. We strongly encourage beginners and will always have a ride to accommodate them and those who might not be able to go too far because of health reasons. Competent children are welcome accompanied by an adult and all riding is on road (apart from Tuesday night off-road rides). We welcome new members and hangers on, so if you would like to ride with us, think you can handle having the micky being taken and can buy the odd round, come and join us. After riding out 3 times with us you will be asked to join up.
Please email:
or refer to the 'FAQ's' page for further details.
 I wish I had said that...
"Marriage is a wonderful invention; but then again so is the bicycle puncture repair kit." - Billy Connolly
 I wish I had said that Pt.2
When I was a kid, I used to pray every night for a new bicycle. Then I realized that the Lord, in his wisdom, doesn't work that way. So I just stole one and asked him to forgive me. ------ Comedian Emo Philips
If you thought whizzing down Budock Water Hill was
exciting take a look at these London bike messengers
 I wish I had said that Pt.3
It never gets easier, you just go faster. -Greg Lemond
 I wish I had said that Pt. 4
"Whoever invented the bicycle deserves the thanks of humanity" - Lord Beresford

If you want to beg, borrow or steal any articles or our pictures (as if) we will take it as a compliment. No, really, we will.

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