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Eyewitness: how carpet tacks left Étape Caledonia race deflated
May 18, 2009, 4:25 pm
You might of heard that there was skullduggery over the weekend from some aggrieved Scottish locals.
 
One competitor said "I can't believe anybody would do such a thing. Hanging a little banner is fine but to take this kind of action is outrageous," he said. "They could have killed someone. It's not good advertising for the area. I cycled with a group from London and they said they would never come back."
 
Many of those taking part in the scenic but gruelling event, in which riders climb a combined distance of almost 2,000 metres, raise money for the Macmillan cancer charity.  For a full writeup of the incident click here>>> 
 
Stop Press... - 62 year old man arrested...>>>

The Tour Series visits Exeter
May 18, 2009, 4:08 pm
The Tour Series is a 10 round city centre cycling race series, which brings unique gladiatorial and exciting team racing to the streets near you.

Starting on the 21st May 2009, 10 teams of 5 highly tuned professional cyclists will engage in combat against each other to become the overall champions of The Tour Series.

In this new concept in cycle racing, never seen on television previously, the teams will aim each night to place their top 3 riders in the highest positions at the end of 1 hour of intense, fast paced and attacking racing with all the thrills and spills of any other speed sport.

The Series will generate excitement, fun and enjoyment for spectators and television viewers. This will provide towns and cities the opportunity for a day of cycling festivities.

For further information
click here>

Special Ride to Auntie Gill's - Sunday 9 o'clockers 17/05/09
May 17, 2009, 6:27 pm
One of Auntie Gill's smaller slices of cake....To everyone's surprise, and disappointment, today's ride was well attended by 16 souls. Surprise because it was truly atrocious weather for cycling -very wet and very windy. Disappointment because all admitted that they would have willingly gone home and back to bed if no one else had showed up. Anyway, we all set off and within 10 minutes we were all soaked but we couldn't give up because Auntie Gill (refer to our Gourmet Guide) was expecting us and we couldn't let her down. Plus, it's amazing how the promise of cake can strengthen one's resolve.
We kept to the high-hedged lanes in an effort to escape the wind and it worked to an extent. We then struck out at high altitude across the ‘back of Cornwall' plateau to Black Rock, and the going got tough. At this point Alan decided to throw himself from his bike and headbutt the road resulting in a nasty cut to his cheek, road-rash and bruises. Goodness knows why. Heroically, he limped on. (After all, we were going to Auntie Gill's.)
 

When we arrived at the aforementioned tea rooms Red Leader arrived at the same time - fresh from Falmouth but minus the 9.30 riders who were due to meet us. Perhaps sensibly, but undeniabily wimpily, they had decided not to risk pneumonia and curtailed their ride. Karen (Mrs Red Leader) had driven to Gill's and was saving our seats, and then Caroline and her extended family arrived too and we found ourselves having an impromptu club meeting. Auntie Gill was presented with a Golden Spoke Award (otherwise known as a ‘spokie') for having the best refreshment stop and she said that she was definitely going to show it to everyone that came in that very afternoon. (She didn't mention showing it to anyone the next day or any other day after that but I'm sure she liked it.)

Alan decided it was probably best to go to hospital as his face was now becoming alarming, rather like something from a horror film what with all the congealed blood and swelling. He didn't look good at all. Nurse Karen gave him a lift to casualty and Caroline stowed his bike in her car for later. (Stop press - Alan's okay.)
 
After consuming nearly a ton of cake (only slight exaggeration) the rest of us remounted for the return run. By now the sun had come out and spirits were high. Home was via Hayle and North Cliffs where a strong tailwind meant we could speed along at 34 mph(!) down to Portreath. Then it was the long, long haul back over Cornwall to Stithians reservoir Halvasso and home. A fairly challenging ride, 60 miles, 1383m ascent.

Pathfinder Ride - 11/05/09
May 11, 2009, 9:11 am

Lanivet, the start and finish.Quiet, undisturbed, Lanivet near Bodmin was where this month's Pathfinder ride, curtesy of Fred helped by Don G, started from. Only on this particular day it was also the base camp for a major time-trial event, so cars and cyclists from all over Cornwall littered the usually sleepy village much to the bewilderment of the locals.

Scalatchi, Ironman and Richard1 got up early and cycled to the start and rumour-from-the-saddle has it that 2 wheelers stayed in a local hotel the night before to make sure of getting to the start on time - and of course had to indulge in a slap up dinner and breakfast.

In blazing sunshine we 29 Falmouth Wheelers wended our way up and on along narrow country lanes taking in fantastic views along the way. Cars were few and far between but the drivers we did meet were very friendly. A horse rider even wished us all a “good ride”.

We went under the famous Treffry (aqua)viaduct in Luxulyan valley and skimmed the Eden Project where we then dropped down to St Blazey, past the Four Lords pub and down into Par where we completely took over a café for breakfast. (The ones who already had a hotel breakfast stuck to tea and cake.)
There seemed to be rather more hills on the way back and the only tandem with us, helmed by Red Leader and stoked by Karen, suffered on some of the steeper nips. Tywardreath impressed everyone with it's village green and church, and the lanes were lined with bluebells all the way. A most scenic ride -many thanks Fred! 18 miles. 714m ascent.

Just one more cog should do it... Sunday 9 o'clock ride
May 3, 2009, 5:46 pm

A fine body of men and women on Zone Point...Today's ride certainly put the ‘hill' in ‘hilly' as the profile below testifies. (Could it be the hilliest ride yet?) It was up and down all the way to St Mawes via King Harry Ferry and Zone Point - above where St Anthony's lighthouse is - where we all paused to take in the view, which was quite spectacular. Indeed there were several spectacular views to enjoy along the way and the expression "well, at least it's worth the view" was used quite a lot as we plucky 13 pulled up yet another nip in varying amounts of physical discomfort. Worst affected was Sarah who suffered some serious knee pain but she valiantly battled on, preparing for an End to End in August.

 

Some really, really bad pasties were consumed in St Mawes - and then it was discovered there were in fact some very nice pasties on offer, but we failed to see the sign. Shame. We also noticed everything is quite pricey in St Mawes, isn't it?

 

The return ride to Falmouth seemed a bit easier even though we had some cold headwind to contend with on the Roseland. A nice happy ride on a brilliantly sunny day, with Cornwall at it's best. 50 miles
 

To Camelot on our trusty steeds... - Sunday 9 o'clockers 26/04/09
Apr 26, 2009, 5:55 pm
With 20 club members away on a Brittany cycle tour, the '9 o'clockers' only numbered 8 today, including last week's new rider Lorna, who obviously wasn't put off. We were also joined by local tri-athelete Dave who promptly demonstrated how to fall off a bike (opposite Lidl's) without braking himself or the bike. Bruised but undaunted he bravely carried on without any complaint. Those tri-atheletes are hard.
 
Blue skies started appearing as we progressed along some lovely quiet lanes to Perranporth. This was all very nice but we did seem to take in an inordinate number of hills along the way as the ride profile below testifies. The Camelot café (see our Gourmet page) didn't fail to deliver the usual excellent and ridiculously cheap breakfasts after which it was onwards along the valley and up to Mithian Downs and then to Chacewater.
 
All the hedgerows were in full flower and looked stunning - there seems to be more Bluebells out and about this year, but that could be my imagination. After a very easy bit of the ride Fred then dragged us all up the ‘never ending hill' to Caharrack (amazingly no one moaned about it) and then we went on to Lanner, which, with the sun and wild flowers everywhere, looked quite fetching. Then it was around Stithians reservoir, Halvasso and home. A nice, relaxed 52 miler - we wondered if the weather had been as kind to our friends away on tour.
 

Sunday 19th April 9 o'clockers
Apr 22, 2009, 9:27 am
Nineteen riders left our Falmouth Packet meeting place including Lorna from Flushing who was riding with us for the first time. Trevor had a route planned, and full of energy, out we set and were soon up and passed Halvasso picking up £5Jim along the way. That made 20 of us - a good turnout.
 
 We made our way to Black Rock where we bade farewell to Parky and Hilary, on their Tandem, plus Jonathon who had to make their ways back home for various appointments. We carried on through Praze-an-Beeble, Leedstown to St Erth were we turned right then under the A30 towards St Ives then across Lelant downs to Balnoon. Here we went down through Cripplesease enjoying the splendid views, and took the back lanes ending up at the café at Marazion. Here we enjoyed a very welcome refreshment stop and basked in the glorious sunshine.
 
We then set off home via Goldsithney and Nancegollan to Black Rock where we retraced our route back home. A really lovely ride, in great weather. Thanks to all for your company. 62-ish miles. 
 

Easter Sunday 9 o'clock ride
Apr 14, 2009, 9:03 am
A tea stop at Coverack - beats changing tube trains at Gloucester Road...It was a clear and sunny, if a little chilly, start to our Easter Sunday ride. 12 riders assembled among them Dave, who Bernie had suggested should join us. The usual preamble of 'where shall we go?' took place and Roskillys was suggested so we set off through Budock to Mawnan then across to Four cross where Richard received an urgent summons to return home as help was on hand for heavy gardening duties.
 
The remaining 11 went on through Constantine to Gweek and up to the War memorial near Garras where Parky and Hilary returned home for family duties.
 
The remaining 9 souls proceeded towards St keverne with Roskillys in mind. However, at Zoar garage a detour into Coverack seemed like a good idea. It was Coverack at its best. Coffee by the Sea was a good idea and The Bay Hotel provided us with coffee, biccys and a wonderfull view.
 
Riding out of Coverack moans could be heard about needing more food! Dave was wondering whether he was with a Cafe touring club or a cycling club - it was a lazy sort of day. The Camel Farm was suggested so on we went, turning off at the junction, Ironman, who is not one for liking camels, went on home for his lunch. So now we are 8 and The Camel farm was closed!!! So back onto the main road and a quick dash to head for the cafe at the viewing enclosure at Culdrose - they're always open. They were closed too! "To The Grange" was the cry and they were open and in full swing with Sunday lunches. Can we have a coffee and a piece of cake, please? we begged. In the garden no problem, so we sat and enjoyed the view and a nice piece of cake and more coffee. Then it was home via Gweek, Lower Trelligan, Brill, and Treverva.
A lovely day and a great ride in cheerfull company. Thanks to all.
 

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