JUNE 2009 It has to be said (and it’s probably the Sertraline talking here...Google it and see what this thing’s doing to me!!!), we time triallists are probably our own worst enemies and I can understand why Britain's Biggest Selling Cycling Magazine hasn't had much to do with British Time Trialling over recent years (although How can anyone complain if it's improved recently don't you they aren't prepared to do anythink?). thing about it? There must be hundreds of very knowledgeable cyclists out there - guys who have stories to tell or knowledge to pass on to others but getting anything from you / them is like trying to get blood out of the proverbial stone (existing contributors excepted of course).
In this Issue Old Skool Series—latest news Team Swift 25 Peter Whitfield - John Watson’s 50 Dave Keene Ian Franklin - talks dirty Gambling ...on race marshals Lynn Hamel’s report on the Women’s National 10 Nino Piccoli’s superfast 10 Wilko’s Anfield 100 Who’s Hot and Who’s Not! Nice photos :-) courtesy Bernard Thompson’s Cycling Archive
www.cyclingimages.co.uk So...if anyone’s really bothAndy Sexton Enterprises ered, and would like to see Testing Times continue, how Nino’s dad about a bit of support and coAnd...YOU could have featured too if operation eh? you’d been i) VERY unlucky, or ii) craving for recognition and desperate Moan over. (I’m on medica- for attention—by mailing:tion - is it any surprise? So firstname.lastname@example.org I’m excused ok!).
SUPERSTAR SEXTON - INSIDE!
LOST - BBAR CONTENDER SAID TO ANSWER TO THE NAME OF BRAD! WHAT FLOATS HIS BOAT LAST SEEN UNDER A PRIMER COAT WANTED : CONTRIBUTORS WITH OF MOISTURISER AND THREE TOP A WARPED SENSE OF HUMOUR COATS OF FACTOR 15. RUDDY / TO MAINTAIN WHAT IS RAPIDLY ORANGEY COMPLEXION. BELIEVED BECOMING A TRADITION TO HAVE HEADED TOWARDS DESPITE OUR BEST ENDEAVOURS. FRANCE. NEWS OF HIS WHEREMAIL email@example.com WITH ABOUTS AND ANY RESULTS WOULD YOUR BEST OFFERS! BE MOST WELCOME. S EE
THE OLD SKOOL SERIES NEEDS YOU! PAGE 22
OLD SKOOL SERIES ROUND 5 TEAM SWIFT 25 Round 5 of Planet X’s Old Skool Series recently moved on to Yorkshire. Several of the main contenders for overall honours preferred to keep their powder dry - however, the event was still no formality for the Jammy Dodger though…. If any cyclist has had more than his fair share of luck over the years it's got to be Ian Cammish - Planet X. Let's face it, he's had so many late starts and "hit" on so many float days over the years it's hardly surprising he's won as many National Championships and broken as many records as he has is it? Well this incredible run of luck continued in Round 5 of Planet Xs Old Skool Series the Team Swift Old Skool 25 which was recently held on a wet and windy V232 in Yorkshire. His main competition for overall honours, Colin "The Power" Parkinson - South Western RC and the honourable Mr Perkin - Godric CC, chose not to enter this latest clash of time trial titans leaving the door open for another front-runner Phil "the Bullet" Barnes - Lancaster CC to get one over the "silver fox" (aka "the Jammy Dodger"). Unfortunately for "the Bullet", and at great expense to Cammish (one would assume), North Yorkshire County Council's road "technicians" were being paid double time to carry out
Still finding “Old Skooling” hard to handle - Cammish en route to a short “59”. Photo courtesy www.cyclingimages.co.uk essential maintenance works to the Skipton bypass on the day, and at the time (strangely enough), he was planning to use that stretch of road en-route to the event. Major traffic hold ups occurred in the area and "the Bullet" was unable to reach Boroughbridge in time for his 2-33pm start.
tions Cammish gave were the most direct is open to question but Sklodowski's 1-36-32 suggests there may have been a bit of "gamesmanship" involved somewhere during their lengthy and animated conversation which was witnessed by at least a
“….after all the running I've been doing (up to 100 miles at a time!) this'll be the proverbial pieth of pith" The Jammy Dodger, who was off number 35, couldn't believe his luck (or could he?) when he rolled up two minutes later to learn from timekeeper Betty Philipson that "the Bullet" hadn't started. To add even more icing to his cake, during his warm up Cammish stumbled across another Old Skooler (Henry Sklodowski - Halifax Imperial CC ) who was having problems locating the start. Whether or not the direc-
dozen other competitors on their way up to the start. Sklodowski finally took the initiative and followed one of them! So the event itself boiled down to a two horse race between Cammish and his minute-man Neil Ridsdale - Bridlington CC. Although Ridsdale is diminutive in stature and a novice as
far as open events are concerned, he is a veritable man-mountain in the world of ultra (running) marathons having completed several as part of his build up to this event. "Pah….after all the running I've been doing (up to 100 miles at a time!) this'll be the proverbial pieth of pith" he was heard to mutter under his breath during his 60 second count-down. And with that, the 51 year old coalman from Driffield was off on his Speedwell Titalite (the ultimate in old skool bling) to stake his claim to a share of Old Skool immortality. So far this season, only the honourable Mr Perkin has officially managed to complete a full 25 miles going Old Skool. Many have shied away from such a daunting prospect but the lure of a new old bike (first prize in the series) is proving too much for a courageous few. The general feeling is that 25 miles Old Skool is too far - but the real hard men out there disagree and continue to put their reputations on the line to prove it can be done.
Neil Ridsdale (above) taking a superb “runner-up” spot in his first “open”. Photo courtesy that very nice man Martin from www.cyclingimages.co.uk
By the time the dust had settled, three more hardy souls had joined the honourable Mr Perkin, each one having survived the 13 mile headwind return trip and the tortuous headwind finishing straight on the old A1 alongside Dishforth's windsock where the finish timekeeper George Barker officially confirmed that history had been made. Times are irrelevant - the many thousands of spectators that braved the elements to cheer their favourites around the course are highly unlikely to witness that many Old Skoolers complete 25 miles, all in the same event, ever again - unless of course the unconfirmed reports of a good entry for the Hitchin Nomads 25 are true! All the Old Skoolers deserved a prize for finishing…..which they got (courtesy of Planet X and Continental). PowerBar kindly donated free bottles and PowerShots to every rider who signed on. The young daughter of Simon Beldon (the event organizer), who was seen to be dishing out the goodies with her mates, commented how much they liked the cola flavoured chewies. "Yummy!" was the general consensus of opinion. Beldon
Snr has let it be known that several long-standing records for the delivery of newspapers in the Adel area of Leeds have since been broken. Beldon Jnr has logged Beldon Snr's interest in being involved in any future PowerShot promotion. For the statisticians the full result (of the Old Skool event….not the newspaper rounds): TEAM SWIFT 25 - V232 - 16 MAY 2009 1. Jammy Dodger - Planet X 59.47 2. Neil Ridsdale - Bridlington CC 1.08.49 3. Henry Sklodowski - Halifax Imp - 1.36.32
Henry Sklodowski - Halifax Imps—had problems finding the start..and at the first traffic island (so rumour has it). Still salvaged third on the day though. Photo courtesy www.cyclingimages.co.uk
Plenty more events to come...loads more Planet X goodies, chewies (courtesy of PowerBar) , Conti tubs (courtesy of Continental), slow times, thrashings by women, pith-taking etc etc...be there be square!
DAVE KEENE, CHAMPION OF THE WORLD – DAVE WHO ? by Peter Whitfield If cyclists are a strange breed in the eyes of the world, tricyclists must be even stranger. In the street the trike rider is regularly taunted by kids calling out, “Can’t you ride a twowheeler yet!” If only they knew how difficult it is to control the three-wheeled demon, they’d hold their tongues. Over the years there have been a succession of great trike riders who have amazed us with their bikehandling and speed, from Crimes and Arnold through to Eric Tremaine, Dave Pitt, Dave Gabbott and Ralph Dadswell. When you are going flat-out and a trike man comes cruising past you, you know it’s time to stop the mickey-taking. Today’s representative of these three-wheeled supermen has to be Bristol’s Dave Keene, and he certainly upholds the tradition of strangeness: now aged 49, he is a former lumberjack, a heavy smoker, an asthmatic so bad he had to be hospitalised, a man who only started racing seven years ago and is now a world champion, and who took up cycling in order to get a few hours’ escape from his mother-inlaw, who had planted herself in his house and wouldn’t leave. World champion? Yes that’s right: since 2005 Dave has travelled to France or Belgium each year for the Three-Wheeled World’s, and he’s won every year. It’s either a time-trial alone, or a time-trial combined with a road
race and decided on aggregate time, but either way Dave has come out the winner four years running. These events are organised by the Tricycle Association, but they are held abroad because they need a venue where they can be sure of closed roads, with a big nearby
one who gets over the hurdles best, loosing the least time. You might get a rider who was better than you in terms of sheer speed, but you could still beat him on technique. I don’t think that could happen on two wheels. But it’s not easy: most people the first time they test-ride a
“Road-racing on a trike can feel like the chariot-racing scene from “Ben-Hur” campsite. As well as the British contingent, they get entries from France, Germany, Belgium and America, and the locals love it – it becomes part of the town fete. “Road-racing on a trike,” says Dave, “is definitely hairy, and it’s not something you get a lot a chance to practise. The only safe place to be is at the front, and even then it can feel like the chariot-racing scene from “BenHur” – only without the blades on the wheels. The time-trial is held over a very technical course of 15 miles, and my winning time has been around 36 minutes – 25 mph.” But how really does he explain the appeal of triking to an outsider? “It’s just a magic feeling – poetry in motion, something like that. You really have to steer a trike, you have to become part of the machine. I’d compare it to sailing a boat or something of that kind, you are aware all the time of the feel of the trike as it’s moving over the road, especially in cornering. Every corner you take you think “That was good”, or “Damn, I could have got round that one a lot faster.” Or it may be a bit like hurdling compared with straight running: it’s partly speed and partly technique. The best hurdler may not be the one with the fastest absolute speed, but the
trike, climb straight off and say, “Not for me”. If that’s so, how do you make the transition from two wheels to three? “I suppose everyone’s got their story about their first trike ride. I started my cycling by going out for social rides, with my wife Eileen, but I was giving her a hard time, so I got the idea of using the trike to slow me down a bit. That’s how it all started for me.” Since then the trikes and the tandem- trikes, as well as the boring old two-wheelers, have multiplied nonstop in the Keene household. Most riders might tell you that they have four or five or six bikes, but in Dave’s case he literally doesn’t know how many they have: he doesn’t have a garage, so in every corner of every room a couple more seem to lurk in the shadows, or stick out of cupboards, or hang from the ceiling. Dave’s years as a lumberjack in wildest Wales must have built up his strength enormously, because he claims not to train like a madman, as you might expect from his times, and he still enjoys a lot of social miles. His must be a natural talent, for he has got down to a 50:53 for the 25 on two wheels, compared with his best of 55:19 on the trike. By the time he was riding at that level incidentally, it’s not surprising that his asthma was completely cured.
Known and feared throughout the triking community, the only time Dave’s name hit the wider cycling public was in June 2006, with his incredible 100-mile ride of 4:00:01. This smashed the existing trike comp record by more than ten minutes, but surely he must have been heartbroken by those missing two seconds that cost him a unique place in triking history? “Not at the time, no,” says Dave, “because to be honest, I was so smashed that I couldn’t think of anything except getting off – and getting off a trike isn’t so easy when your whole body is locked solid: they had to prise me off a bit at a time. It was in the BDCA event on the A50, up and down the concrete mountain. I had the idea beforehand that the
don’t ride many 100s, and my best 12 is only 236 miles. On the day of the record I remember Andy Cooke caught me for five minutes at 75 miles, then went and put another five minutes into me in the last 25. I also remember being held up by a car at the very last roundabout, and that is definitely where those two seconds went. But then you have to admit that you get an enormous amount of help from the traffic on that course, so I can’t blame it all on that, can I.” As it gradually sank in how close he had been, did he feel bound to try again? “Yes I suppose I did, and I tried it on the Cirencester by-pass course, but the 75-mile jinx struck again and I slowed to a 4:08. In fact
Dave’s wonder years, and he teamed up with Baz Charlton on the tandem trike to set new 25 and 50 records of 50:13 and 1:43:46. Last year he took a bit of a break and eased off. This year though he’s fired up again, thinking again of that four-hour 100 as a piece of unfinished business, and maybe a 49-minute 25 on the tandem trike. Teaming up with Eileen he has recently done a 58, so with Baz on the back who knows what the limit is. And in three weeks time he’s off to France again for a crack at a fifth world title, although he knows he’s the man everyone wants to beat now – that’s the price of becoming a legend. Offer up a little prayer from him 20 June, and watch this space for news of what happens. WHO’S HOT IN THE WORLD OF DOMESTIC TIME TRIALLING! (If Cycling Weekly can do it..so can we!!). Dr Hutch - Quick Gear innit? - still the man of the moment. Superfast 10s and 25s left right and centre. National 10 mile champion to boot. Red-hot. Nino Piccoli - API-Metrow/Silverhook Chemicals—joins the elite group of sub 19 minute 10 milers. 10th in the National 10…..still suffering from jet lag from his 18-51. Pretty hot!
Andy Wilkinson - Port Sunlight Wheelers—one of the most gifted and classiest riders ever! Another Anfield win….another Anfield record. As hot as Hutch (if not hotter)... if he wanted to be.
Dave Keene - Bristol South CC 100 was the one trike comp record that was vulnerable, and I had heard all about this course. I had a schedule for four hours written out on the back of my hand, and kept fairly close to it. But I admit I do have a problem beyond 75 miles, because I can't eat when I’m racing, I simply can’t force it down, so I’m relying just on liquids. That’s why I
I’ve never been inside four hours even on two wheels, so I felt I could achieve that, but again it didn’t happen. It was on the A31 FarnhamAlton course, and I was doing it, but I punctured at 95 miles with no spare, so that was that.” 2006 and 2007 were undoubtedly
Pnut Arnold—API-Metrow/Silverhook Chemicals - continues to stack in the miles and knock spots off his personal bests and clapped out former BBARs. If he doesn’t overcook it ...a top 12 BBAR certainty.
Testing Times’s contributors - without doubt worth more than their weight in gold!
LYNN HAMEL’S BLOG by..urm...Lynn Hamel! Looks like we’re getting involved in the transfer market here! Ben and Darryl have gone… BUT ... we’re being graced with input from the Women’s 2008 BBAR Lynn Hamel (what a nice young lady!). Lynn has just won her first National medal of the season in the recent 10 mile Championship. She lets us know how she did it...
Well, what an eventful weekend the National 10 was. My coach Neil, team mate Diane and I made our four hour trip down to Wickham at 11.00am on Saturday. The weather was somewhat of a heat wave in comparison to the last couple of weeks up in 'The Lakes'. At 4.40pm, Diane and I went for a spin around the course. I was reasonably happy with it, though was questioning the tactic for the steepest climb around the first 2 mile point. I went round in the big ring to get a feel for the undulations, however we had to stop 3 times because the gears were terribly out of line. We stayed over at a b&b in Wickham village. It was a nice spot with an 8 feet deep swimming pool in the back yard! The cooked breakfast wasn't terribly great though, the sausages were a bit over soggy and I awoke to the sound of the moggy (not a rooster!), 'Meowwww',
meowww, meowww!' went the 15 year old black cat in such a low gruff voice I could not believe it was a female! (I was making my energy drinks up and yakking to my mum on the mobile, when she says 'What in the hell is that sound?!' ) The owner of the b&b was obviously animal mad. As well as a cat and fish she had two very sweet love birds who were very entertaining over breakfast. There was a little yellow ball balancing on top of the cage and they were sliding it across the rungs and knocking it off quite a bit. Neil said 'David Beckham that chappy'. At which point I corrected him with, 'No David Peck'em!' The race itself was held in brilliant sunshine, albeit a tad warm, with not too much of a wind—quite a contrast from last year's 10. The venue was different again and so was the course from last years dual-carriageway version! Glad it was a dry one, the HQ could have been a bit boggy and miserable otherwise.
This is Lynn! The Editorial team and that nice Martin from Cycling Images couldn't decide if the photo on the facing page was of Lynn (well it IS difficult to tell innit?)...so we had to ask her!!! So...if anyone wants to buy her a cup of tea … or congratulate her on her rides...this may make it that much easier!! :-)
have to manouever out then in again, which may cost around 5-10 seconds! (At least it didn’t cost me the win!) Out of the roundabout and up the long drag through the previous village again. On about knife’s edge all the time, push it too much and blow, back off slightly and drop off twice. Wish it was a bit cooler,
“On about knife’s edge all the time... push it too much and blow... back off slightly and drop off twice”. '5,4,3,2,1,GO!' Off I go. Setting out briskly but not overly mad. 1.5 miles and it begins to bite. Up the first proper banking and the worst in terms of steepness. Then damn! Into my easiest gear and it drops itself into the small chain ring! Well at least I don’t need to get out the saddle! Back into big ring at the top and trying not to be phased by it. 2.8 miles and 2.8 miles (!!!), the magnet must have slipped, oh well. At the downward section before the slight rise on the way to the roundabout two cars in front slow, because ahead of them are two club riders stupidly riding SIDE BY SIDE down the course! So I
it's hard to acclimatize up north! Not far now, through a couple of forested sections and the odd cr*p piece of concrete. A bright yellow sign on the left reads '1 MILE TO GO'. 'Push it up the last banking' My head’s screaming, nearly there. Down the last hill and a swooping bend to the finish, which seemed to go on a tad. 22.37, reads the finishing time on “the box”. Hmmm...a bit down on what I thought I could pull out today, thought maybe a short 22 to a 22.20. Final result back at the HQ reads
22.39-silver! Excellent, my first medal this year and at my weakest distance. What a stunner by Julia Shaw (that's for sure!), 50 seconds up, that's some ride this weekend. A lady with so many hat tricks she could qualify as a magician! Well done Julia! Another great ride was that of Lynn Taylor who really is proving herself in short distances as well as the long distance events right at the other end of the time trial scale! Well done! Congratulations to Sarah Story who took the bronze. She was racing down on the track in the world Paralympics at the end of the week, so will perhaps be sticking her feet up the next day or two!? And finally to the 'A3crag ladies' for taking the team award. They certainly looked really chuffed!
Lynn Hamel (right)..we think!! On her way to a 56 minute 25 in the Team Swift 25. Photo courtesy www.cyclingimages.co.uk
WHO’S NOT (HOT)….
COMING NEXT MONTH Another issue...if we can be bothered! If you can’t be, why should we?
People who slag off what little coverage British Time Trialing gets in the Cycling Press but aren’t prepared to do anything about it themselves. We are...are you?
Peter Whitfield tracks down another legend….or two. Ian Franklin continues to polish his machine and gives “another sider’s” view on cycling! What’s “another sider” fgs? Gambling….on whatever takes his fancy (and...maybe something extra!).
Former Testing Times contributors who just can’t be arsed anymore. 400 words once a month is hardly onerous is it?
The Old Skool series returns...The Power v The Jammy Dodger in the Hitchin Nomads 25….and more! More spelling mistakes and grammatical cock-ups than you can shake a PowerBar Ride at.
People who make promises and don’t deliver. Where are the race results and articles I’ve been promised / asking for? The Jammy Dodger….
And….we might have some good news about finding out what is REALLY aero and what isn’t! We’ve got more bare-faced cheek than those Australian Sheilas in Ladettes to Ladies and might have been able to blag our way into a wind tunnel. News on that next month—maybe!! Nobb off...
GAMBLING ON… ON RACE MARSHALS Mick Gambling contributed around 5000 articles, race reports, interviews etc for Cycling Weekly, formerly Cycling. They encompassed a 40 year period, 1965 – 2004 and half that period, to 1985, included lighthearted pieces. Many were topical for the period, although some are still relevant to the present time. A taste of these will be produced on a regular basis. Mick is still alive and pedaling in Norfolk.
Before the letter box of Cycling is filled with broadsides from enraged readers who have stood half a lifetime on draughty corners, may it be said that race marshals are indispensable to our sport; and that I have served in that capacity on many occasions and some of my best friends are regular marshals. It is an unsung, thankless task, in often bad weather, involving traffic problems and riders who vary from the studiously over-careful to those half-crazed with adrenalin. Never an easy job and frequently a difficult one. It is in the direction of riders that marshals vary from enthusiastically definite to motionless apathy. A rider really appreciates a marshal who is wearing a fluorescent waistcoat and clearly indicates the correct direction with his arms. This is important to choose the best line and keep the mind on racing and other vehicles. Any indecision or worry costs vital seconds, often the difference between victory and defeat. Breaking the concentration of an Eddie Adkins or a Roger Queen is like digging up a plant to see how it is getting on. At my level it isn't so important but I'm
afraid that doesn't mean I am less critical at the time. Very well, I recall a time trial last summer where a turn involved an underpass, a roundabout and two slip roads. This lot was entrusted to a trio of young lads without any particular instruction or identifiable clothing. When I arrived they were already tired, as schoolboys quickly are when bored, and were sprawled in the long grass with
distances at increasing cost and it is those visitors who are most likely to need help. If a marshal has agreed to do the job and turns up on the day, then he ought to do it properly and get satisfaction from doing so, rather than complaints from cyclists on a personal best when directed into a field. A marshal who misdirects is advised to go straight home and not visit the clubroom for six months.
This month’s competition. “Spot the marshal”. Photo courtesy Bernard Thompson’s Cycling Archive. only their heads showing. "Stand up and use your arms!" I yelled, widening the generation gap with breath needed for an immediate climb. Three riders before me had surprised themselves and shoppers by entering a busy town centre at racing speed. Two hours later they still had expressions of shock. True, the start sheet explains the route and the onus is on the rider to stay on course, but modern roads, especially dual carriageways, are complex and it is unreasonable for an organizer to feel his duty finishes with the dispatch of the buff envelopes. Remember, riders travel long
The marshal who is intended to take you off a main road is vital. If he merely stands with arms folded, in a blaze of indifference, on the left where the slip road starts, he is no assistance at all. He looks just like any other spectator. He should be at the kerb of the slip road, with left arm barring the main road and right arm pointing into the slip road. Riders don't become meaningless specks that way. At one race a marshal was later heard to say, "I shouted at them after they went wrong". I recall approaching a seven-exit
the event. Then I found that Mick Ballard and company had ridden a further mile to the real turn. These problems arise less in road races, where circuits are used, but I once saw a two-man "break" misdirected and when they returned to the correct road they were a minute down and continued to lose time on the bunch, after going "eyeballs out" to catch them. From then on they had two chances - slim and none. The crowd was clearing its throat to hurrah their two heroes when the bunch sprinted in, followed some three minutes later by the "break" with a high reading on their outrage meter. Without repetition they explored the rich stock of adjectives in the "Cyclist's Thesaurus". A lovely story was recalled by my club-mate Simon Gordon when he was a fledgling triallist. He approached a deserted early roundabout, saw an arrow and followed it to a "Hot Rod Meeting!" Being under Marshaling par excellence! strict instruction from his seniors to Photo courtesy Bernard Thompsonâ€™s Cycling Archive. finish he returned to the course and came to a marshal at a road junction who stared stonily at him. "Which roundabout on the outward trek and the marshal on the second one, which the next way?" he yelped. "Where do you only marshal was there to send riders marshal could see, and when a couple of want to go?" she asked. on to the finish. Racking my race-worn riders turned early she went there, leaving brain to remember the frighteningly the vulnerable turn undefended. Arriving To the many marshals who possess complicated start sheet, I took the third at the third and no one about, I assumed I the patience, goodness and efficiency exit and emerged on the south-bound had to continue. Two riders close behind to qualify for apostledom, I say thank lanes of the M6, but I was travelling followed and half-a-mile on we ran into a you. To prospective marshals I ask north! Getting off must have put me suburban cul-de-sac. In fact, I roared into you to try and make racing foolproof, within 30 seconds of a nervous break- a private drive and as I turned round, the down. Back on the roundabout my other couple arrived and we milled around for we fools are so ingenious. curses shook the atmosphere like an air on the gravel, to the considerable surprise raid. To make matters worse there was of a man cleaning his car. I uttered words a gale and rain - one of the worst days I will not repeat because my mother reads I've ever been to. Later I found the fel- this magazine. low who claimed to have been there. "I was standing under the tress - it was A few years ago at the end of the seadrier there". son, the autumn sun was just mopping up
...he came to a marshal at a road junction who stared stonily at him. "Which way?" he yelped. "Where do you want to go?" she asked. The most amusing marshalling incident in which I featured was a "25" with about nine roundabouts. At the third we were to retrace. There was no
More Gambling in June!
the mist when I came to a cyclist who waved his arm in a circular manner, after I had been riding nearly half-anhour. Briskly I turned and retraced to win
OLD SKOOL UPDATE ….. (IT’S HARD!) While effected riders continue to submit themselves to time trial purgatory by persisting with the Old Skool ethos, one of the competition's riders Ian Cammish - Planet X explains just how bad it is.
May has been a pretty quiet month as far as the Old Skool series is concerned - which “We thought Swine Flu was probably isn't a bad going to be the big problem this summer but that all thing because it allows pales into insignificance us all to "regroup" a compared to bit, draw breath and reOld Skool Fever.” cover from the major “I've taken some real bendings in the impact it's had on all of past but never experienced anything like this…ever! I remember riding a 50 on our ways of life. Boro one year when I was with the GS BIG changes have been made to the way people are approaching their training and racing as Old Skool fever has been officially declared an epidemic by one of the country's leading Health officials. "We thought Swine Flu was going to be the big problem this summer but that all pales into insignificance compared to Old Skool Fever. We've never seen anything like it. Reputations have been blown apart…there's absolutely no doubt about that. Former fast men have been reduced to middle-of-the-field mediocrity and we're finding that 99% of the riders effected are shadows of their former selves. There are one or two exceptions where some are performing above expectation but generally it's a downward spiral I'm afraid. It's such a shame because there's no known cure…you've just got to let it run its course and it'll slowly work its way out of the system. The only bright-side to the whole sad scenario is that we'll see the end of it by mid-September….thank God for that eh?"
Strada. Phil Griffiths had managed to get hold of a fully plasticised skinsuit from Assos, one of the team's sponsors, which I couldn't resist trying. In those days we never used to carry bottles because it was the first sign of weakness wasn't it? The day of this particular 50 proved to be one of the hottest of the year. I'd taken checks on all the main contenders during the ride and was going well until I completely blew apart in the closing miles due to dehydration bought about by that blasted skinsuit. I was told I lost 15 seconds to Roger Iddles in the last mile alone for God's sake! That was hard…but not half as hard as an Old Skool 10. Then there was the time I rode the Icknield 12 hour when I only needed 250 miles or so to get into the top three of the BBAR. I maybe didn't take the event as seriously as I should have. Big mistake! I got 6 hours into the ride and felt ruddy awful. I was still ahead of schedule though so had to press on. I'd told myself I'd only pack if I wasn't going to achieve 250 miles. Unfortunately I never
got that slow! It was a living hell….6 hours hanging on…ticking off the miles...the hours...an absolute nightmare. Yep…that was hard…but not half as hard as an Old Skool 10. And of course there was the infamous Boggle-Hole weekend - two days over the North Yorkshire Moors with the likes of Wayne Randle, the Ginger Avenger, Spencer Smith, Thomas Hellreigal and Simon Smythe. Grown men were reduced to tears. Some caught the bus back. Others have disappeared off the face of the earth altogether. Those that made it back say it was hard. Well believe me - it was nothing compared to an Old Skool 10. On the face of it I suppose I must be quite resilient as I keep coming back for more but my heart really goes out to those guys who have tried one or two of the events but have found out just how hard they are and, as a consequence, aren't going to complete enough events to qualify for the overall prizes. They've got the Fever for goodness sake - what long term psychological effect is that likely to have on them? I just can't help myself. I accept that it's in the blood and I'm effected. Same goes for "the Power" and Gavin (Hinxman). We'll see it through though - I'm sure". Footnote: "The Power" Parkinson's interests in the Planet X Empire increases with each and every event he rides. Sooner or later he'll have won so many vouchers he'll be able to trade them in for a major share in the Company. South Western RC…Planet X...then total world domination. It's inevitable!
Real men enjoy nothing other than to relax with a copy of Testing Times. Word is getting about. Spotted in Italy this Cool Dude getting to grips with Nob Off… From Carcroft Enterprise Park to Capri - who’d have thought it eh?
ITALIAN STALLIONS RELAX BY READING TESTING TIMES - OFFICIAL!
Gavin Hinxman Welland Valley CC - an Old Skool regular, models the latest line in synagogue shufflers (sandles!) circa 1975 (ish) and a 1980s Gibbsport Manchester Wheelers skinsuit with the obligatory knackered zip. Hinxman has threatened to complete the distances and challenge for overall Old Skool honours. Photo courtesy Andy Sexton Enterprises.
NINO PICCOLI BECOMES THE NINTH FASTEST EVER 10 MILER! 18-51 ON HULL. HOW? sprints thrown in. He did some intervals too (which he “likes”). A typical session would be something like 5mins SST (wossat? -Ed) to warm up the fluid turbo and to get the body ready then 4 – 6 x 3 mins (85%MAP) with the last interval being “flat out”.
Nino Piccoli - API-Metrow/ Silverhook Chemicals joined the exclusive 18 minute 10 miler club when he stormed round the V718 course at Hull during City RC Hulls promotion on 19 May 2009. We could do a lot of cut and pasting here to draw the story out but to cut to the chase have a look here for Nino’s review of how it went (oh the beauty of the dot./com era eh?) http:// www.timetriallingforum.co.uk /index.php?showtopic=32984 To summarise? Ok so it’s a fast course and conditions were “pretty” good but there aren’t many people who have gone that fast. The pedals still have to be pushed and you have to be in it to win it etc! So what’s the secret?
internal politics etc decided a move back to his old club, API, would be in his best interests. The training on the other hand was going well. The immediate build up to the 10 included a few quality rides, like 2.5hrs ish at 19/20mph with a few
He says there hasn't really been anything special this year except that he’s trained more. The last few years have just been May to September. This year was November onwards - although though he did have some 6 weeks off over the new-year period due to a virus – which probably hasn’t done him any harm whatsoever (if his recent results are anything to go by!). No Power Meter..no Pulse Monitor…just a stop watch (on this occasion anyway!), gearing of 39, 53 x 11-23. 175mm cranks, vittorio cronos tubs, vuelta front wheel (60mm) and corima disc.
Nino’s in a gap year from University. He finished his aerospace engineering degree last May and is now doing some part time work, such as tutoring maths and physics, to pay for 'living' expenses. He intends returning to University to read for a PhD but in the meantime is going to make the most of the time and the form he’s got. The lead up to the 10 wasn’t ideal as far as Nino was concerned. He’d had some disagreements with the “management” of the BMC team (who he started the season off with) and rather than get distracted with
SUPERSTAR SEXTON TO TAKE ON THE WORLD...MAYBE! Andy Sexton, Planet X's Mr Nice-Guy, stunned the cycling world by beating Graeme Obree to win the Procycling Hot Lap competition, the "blue ribbon" event, at the recent BikeRadar Live weekend held at Donnington Park near Derby.
ously available on the open market— including their world renowned Profiteroles which took Sexton’s team mate Ian Cammish to countless victories during 2008.
Selby road in 2007. No-one has since been considered man enough to handle its speed ... until now.
Obree himself has recently announced his intention to retake the world hour record later in the year this shock defeat may come as a saviour to Obree as the pressure has been passed firmly on to the shoulders of Sexton who is to fly the flag for Britain in a hastily arranged attack on the figures within the next few weeks. Sexton and his Planet X entourage are believed to be shunning the razmataz associated with the superfast velodromes around the world preferring instead to base the attempt on the Castle Donnington circuit on mid-summers day (21 June) - because Dave (the boss) thinks that would be a nice day for a BBQ. Sports scientists at Planet X’s Research Laboratories are confident that Sexton is in the form of his life having monitored his training and form over the past few weeks. Carcroft Asda canteen dieticians have been working closely with Sexton since the end of last season and believe the feedback being given by Sexton over the winter, and during his intensive training regime, has enabled them to produce sustenance superior to anything previ-
The Mondo 121 which Sexton hopes to power to a new world record bears a striking resemblance to Obree’s latest offering - two wheels and“unorthodox.” Discussions are taking place with UCI officials to ensure that the colourway falls within UCI regulations. “Slicks” are on order in the event that “knobblies” are deemed to fall foul of the regs.
Ray Eden, Planet X’s Chief Aerodynamicist, and world renowned technical boffin Brant Richards (formerly of Planet X), are delighted to announce that Sexton will be using the infamous Mondo 121 for his attempt.
Testing Times is delighted to be associated with Sexton's attempt and has been granted exclusive rights to report on it.
Dave Loughran who is to fund Sexton's attempt has said of the Mondo 121 "this is without doubt the best ever bike never to have gone into production". The world became aware of the Mondo 121’s potential when Richards himself powered it to victory in the annual Planet X staff "10" held on the
JOHN WATSON AND THE MIRACLE 50 by Peter Whitfield In the 25 years from 1945 to 1969, competition record for the 50 was broken 25 times – once every year. It wasn’t quite that simple of course, because in some years it wasn’t broken at all, while in others it was broken two, three or even four times. But even so it’s a clear, steady progression, coming down from the 2:2:32 of Albert Derbyshire to the 1:47:38 of Dave Whitehouse. But then in the next 23 years – from 1970 to 1993 – there were only two record-breaking rides. This amazing contrast can only be put down to the fact that when the record was broken, it was smashed into little pieces, blasted so far into outer space that it took other riders more than a decade to catch up. To be strictly accurate, the record was broken four times, but on two of those occasions the first new record was up-dated again within minutes, so it was the second time that carried the day. One of these great rides was of course by our majestic editor, big Ian himself, in June 1983, when he consigned Lloydy to the outer circles of hell by grabbing the new record that he – Lloyd – had put up just ten minutes before. The other one, the record they both beat, had become a legend in the timetrialling world, for John Watson’s time of 1:43:46 had been on shelf for 13 years. Achieved on the Boroughbridge course in August 1970, it carved an incredible four minutes from Dave Whitehouse’s existing record. No less than three other riders were also inside Whitehouse’s time that day, but by one those quirks of time-trialling, only Ian White’s name appears in the record book because the others finished after Watson. Jeff Marshall was second, over two minutes down on Watson, followed by
three had formed three-quarters of the Team Time Trial squad at the Mexico Olympics in 1968. There was a degree of north-south needle between the Clifton and the Hounslow team, the other dominant BAR club of that time, but underneath it they had immense respect for each other. Watson had taken the 100 championship in 1967, but probably the biggest disappointments of his career came when he lost by seconds in his epic battle with Roach for the 1968 title, when both riders finished three minutes inside Frank Colden’s record. Hugh Smith and White. When news of the ride spread – around the result board and through the cycling world as a whole – there was a sense of amazed disbelief that four minutes could be wiped off the 50 record like that. To give some idea how far ahead of the others Watson was that day, Martyn Roach did his personal best of 1:48:54, and Watson caught him for five minutes. Afterwards Watson himself commented modestly, “Well I thought I might do a 1:45, but I never expected to go this fast!” Nor did anyone else: people felt it was one of those time trialling days that would be talked about for a long time to come, but they could never have guessed how long. Watson, a tall, smiling Yorkshireman who worked in his dad’s building firm, had been at the top level of racing for four years, and he had road-racing ambitions too. But in that golden era of the late 60s, he was already one of the time-trialling elite, capable of winning national championships and breaking competition records. In 1969 he had set a new 12-hour record of 281.8. miles, which was destined to stand for 10 years. He was a member of the powerful Clifton CC, and with Roy Cromack and Pete Smith he had already taken the BAR team award twice. Those
“I came from a traditional cycling family,” recalls Watson. “My dad, Tom, was club champion for thirteen years in the Clifton CC, and my mum, Madeleine Gallagher, set RRA tandem records with Ann Caley in the late 1930s. I was lucky to be involved with the Clifton because they were an elite racing club, with riders like Pete Smith, Roy Cromack, Ian White and my older brother Pete. When I was starting racing in 1966, Vin Denson had just left for the continent and I bought my first bike from him. Pete Smith was an inspiration, a really outstanding rider in my view, and terribly unlucky never to win the BAR. He finished eighth in the 1969 World Road Championship, and was the strong-man of the GB team time trial squad. A lot of my training was with Smithy, especially the 90-100 mile runs at the weekends all through the winter. We were also starting to learn about interval training then.” “I had ambitious plans for the 1970s season, but they certainly didn’t work out, and the BAR
wasn’t in my thoughts at all really. The Milk Race was the big target, then if that went well, the World’s at Leicester. But everything started to go wrong in mid-April, when I fell off a roof at work. I had severe bruising all round my ribs and back, and had to rest completely for a week. Then I rode the GreenallWhitely international two-day race, and suffered my worst- ever crash. I broke a crank and went sprawling all
over the road, bringing down six or seven others riders, every one of whom managed to hit me! I was stretchered to hospital, where the doctor saw my first lot of bruises, and said sarcastically to the nurse, “This lad doesn’t seem to have much luck, does he?” The Milk Race started two weeks later, and I struggled through it, hanging on most of the time, and finished in 28th place. Realistically I shouldn’t have ridden it, but I think those miles turned my season around, because I went straight over to the Isle of Man and came second in the International behind Gary Crewe. I went and lost the 100 championship by half a minute to Alan Creaser – that was my own fault, I just never thought of
getting checks on him. But soon after that I won a 50 just seven seconds outside comp record, so I knew I was going well again. Getting left out of the team for World’s at Leicester was real blow, but I suppose if you look back at my season it was a reasonable decision. But it made me think I really must do something special that year, and I felt that the 50 record could be vulnerable. I targeted my own club’s 50 at the end of August, trained like mad, and prayed for a good day. “Five days before the race I did a 90-mile bash in under 4 ½ hours, feeling very strong, then short fast work for the rest of the week. It was clear and sunny on the Sunday morning and I felt really focussed. I chose some 4-ounce track tubs, and the sound of the silk on the road really got me going. In those days most of us only had one racing bike, but three pairs of wheels – one pair for training, one pair for roadracing and another for time-trialling. My bike by the way was a Jacques Anquetil special, imported exclusively by Ron Kitching. The only trouble was they were made by Raleigh! They had to use Ron to market them in order to build up the continental image! Beryl rode one too for a few years I remember. “The race itself flashed by pretty quickly, and I don’t have a very detailed memory of it. I always think
there are three things you have to get right: the legs, the breathing and the bike itself, and this time all three felt perfect, and that’s a rarity. It was more or less dead calm, and I knew I was onto a special ride when I reached the 26-mile turn in 52 minutes. Then it got a bit harder, before I managed to get the 112 gear turning again. I do remember catching Martyn for five minutes around the forty-mile mark, and I certainly enjoyed that! Afterwards I admit I was as surprised as anyone at my actual time, but most of all relieved and elated that everything had come right at last. I rode home with the lads in a big bunch, with a kind of floating feeling – at first. Then the speed went up – there’s always someone who wants to race when the race is over – and I suddenly took a parcel, and found I was getting dropped! I had to scrounge some food, and got the rough end of everyone’s tongue. That’s one of my clearest memories of that day: Yorkshire people know how to keep your feet on the ground, don’t they? A week later I rode a 3:53 in the Yorkshire Century 100 on a windy day, and then I took the 12 title with 279 miles, so the BAR was a certainty. “After 1970 I never raced seriously again. Why? Well I got married, and became a partner in Dad’s building firm. Also Pete Smith had turned pro by then, and I suppose I felt it was time to move on to other things, and that it was best to go out on a high note. I was only 24, and there were times when I was tempted to plan a comeback, but then I’d just lie down until the feeling wore off! No, I never imagined the 50 record would last that long, and I can’t explain why it did. Griffiths should have got it, or Engers maybe. I suppose it must have been ahead of its time to last that long, and it must just have had Cammish’s name on it. He broke it on the same course and on the same sort of day as I had, and by almost exactly the same amount, so it made a nice piece of time-trialling history didn’t it?”
ANOTHER CLASSIC ANFIELD 100 - WILKO SMASHES RECORD ‘Classic’, a word used less is miles apart but the results are similar. the perfect ‘100’ to smash Andy BaOn a course starting at Shawbury, the son’s record from 2008 by 2min and less around the current leg out to Prees and back provided the 13secs, before Andy Bason himself Time Trial circuit, many riders with a good road surface and a went 1min 30secs better than last chance to settle into a rhythm before year. I think it would be fair to say events worthy of this title having to complete three laps of the re- that Andy ‘B’ was the prerace favourhave now disappeared. nowned ‘Shawbury Triangle’(Ian knows ite after the Mids ‘50’ result, and with this circuit well, he literally lived on it in a first half of 1.49.33 he looked very However, up North in deep- the mid 80’s), where the road surface smooth and in total control, leading est Shropshire, on roads leaves a lot to be desired. Ideal for a Wilko by 1min 25sec and third placed Bike I hear you say, enter ‘100’ mile ‘virgin’ Andrew Allan by which drove Mr Cammish, Mountain 5min 27sec. Bason’s fast pedalling Wilko! arguably the best 100 miler of all time, back to the Wilko maintained his pace, completing his second smooth flatlands of Cam- ‘50’ only 4 seconds slower than the first....and piled bridgeshire, (not before on the agony by gaining another 34 seconds in the last 4 miles winning it himself in 1987),the Anfield BC ‘100’ After a 10 year absence from racing, style helped extend that lead to 2min carries on the tradition of 2008 saw Wilko drift back into competi- 05secs at 72 miles and at that point tion while helping partner and wife to be producing an event which is (20th June, day of National ‘50’), Jill, in the average bystander might have it was all over bar the shouttalked about for many years her quest to compete in the Florida Iron- thought ing with the fat Lady exercising her last October. With little ‘training’ vocal chords! to come, this edition being man he managed a couple of half decent rides and now brings the same laid back apHowever, Wilko maintained his no exception. On an almost perfect morning, second only to the day in 1982 when Dave Lloyd did 3.47.10, the event produced a battle which left 80 of the 82 entrants fighting it out for 3rd place. Blue skies, warm temperature and a very light south easterly wind meant spectators were wondering if the event record, shattered last year by Andy Bason may be in danger this time. The reason, one Anfield legend and winner of 7 consecutive events between 1990 and 1996, Andy Wilkinson was on the startcard. The question was, could he turnaround a recent defeat in the Mid Shropshire Wheelers ‘50’ , into a successful return to one of his favourite races? The contrast in preparation, equipment and style
proach into this season. Although focussing again on helping Jill prepare for the Hawaii Ironman later in the year, he has discovered that he is going better than expected and has put that form to good use in some local events. For this particular challenge though he knew that he had to do his utmost to get to the start line in good shape. He has total respect for his challenger Andy Bason and if he was to be beaten there would be no excuses. For the first time in a long time the leg warmers were off and the legs shaved. At a wedding function the day before, he even took his own food, reason being his intolerance to dairy produce and the effect it has on his performance. There is an old saying, ‘Form is temporary, class is permanent’. I think this applies here as Wilko rode almost
pace, completing his second ‘50’ only 4 seconds slower than the first, while Bason blew badly, losing the advantage and another 9 seconds at the 96 mile point. By this time he was looking tired and the pain was evident, while Wilko piled on the agony by gaining another 34 seconds in the last 4 miles. The spectators, of which there were many, had witnessed the most exciting Anfield ‘100’ for as long as I can remember, which is 40 years! With the top two places done and dusted the ‘minor’ places were still up for grabs, and producing a spectacular debut ride of 3.55.36 was Andrew Allan, New Brighton CC. He claimed third spot after a very well controlled ride, made up of a 1.55.00 first ‘50’,
only seconds slower than his efforts in the last two local ‘50’s, and a 2.00.36 second half. Although this may have surprised a few people outside the area, it came as no surprise to the Merseyside ‘Tifosi’, who remember his Dad, Dave, winning this event way back in 1974, with an event record 4.4.49 and then again in 1975. Andrew himself had already proved his worth as a talented Junior, medalling in the ‘25’, attending the 2000 junior worlds as part of the GB Squad and winning the prestigious Peter Buckley series, before succumbing to ‘normal life’. Last year he made a tentative return to racing but is now rediscovering some of his old form.
ever winner of this event in 1958 was Mid Shropshire’s Brian Morris, who at 18 years old did 4.21.24. 51 years later and old enough to know better, he returned a sub 5 hour ride of 4.55.45, with a look of bewilderment as to where all those years had gone! Fastest of the Females was former BBAR Carole Gandy, Kent Cycles RC, who made the long journey well worthwhile with 4.33.36, setting a new National Age record for a 64 year old. Jill Hume, Port Sunlight Wheelers, improved 24 minutes on last year with a new pb of 4.43.45, all good training for her Ironman ambitions. Some would say she is about to tie the knot with an ‘Ironman’: remember the Hercules
End attempt, as riders by-pass Penzance. She was here at the Anfield to renew friendships and witness the drama. That is what makes a ‘Classic’. At the presentation, it was announced that the first place prize money had been doubled to £200, due to the new record , a precedence that was set last year when Andy Bason did what was thought to be impossible, by breaking Lloyd’s 26 year old record. Records are like Buses, you wait ages for one then two come along together! As the crowds dispersed and aquaintances said their goodbyes it was time(and it doesn’t take much!) for me to reflect on what all this means. Respect, friendships, appreciation, memories, for me 40 years worth, marshalling, competing, watching and just being totally obsessed by the world of Time Trialling and the ‘Classic’ that is the Anfield Bicycle Club ‘100’. In 1971 I saw the late and great Alan Creaser, Hull Thursday RC, set the then event record of 4.8.39, shaved head, bronzed and powerful, he made light of the tough Shropshire terrain and set my dream of one day winning this historic event which I did in 1977. Lets hope that today someone out there is inspired enough to go on and emulate Wilko, and Andy Bason who gave their all for the dream.
Result A Wilkinson—Port Sunlight Whls 3-42-00
Andy Wilkinson during his Anfield “epic”.
With no other sub 4 hour rides, the top 6 places were made up of very creditable performances from Chris Asher, PCA Cyclos Uno, 4.4.04, Ian Udall, Seamons CC, 4.5.55 and local boy from the Mid Shropshire Wheelers, Anthony Hough, using his local knowledge to good effect with 4.6.29. Other rides worth a mention are those of current West Cheshire BAR Dave Williams, Fibrax-Wrexham RC, who improved his previous best of 4.7, done at superfast Etwall, to a 4.6.49 as he attempts to defend his title. The youngest
challenge back in 2003? As this epic day drew to a close, the HQ filled to discuss the day, drink copious amounts of tea and hope that next year is as thrilling. Furthest travelled of the spectators must have been the remarkable Elaine Hancock, who at 92 years of age, had once again made the annual pilgrimage from Penzance, accompanied by son, Syd. For those of you who don’t know her, Elaine’s is the first face to be seen on any End to
A Bason—Wrekinsport CC
A Allan—New Brighton CC
C Asher—PCA Cyclos Uno
I Udall—Seamons CC
A Hough Mid Shrops Whls
D Williams - Fibrax - Wrexham CC 4-649
Report by Alan Roberts
Of Dirty Bikes that Fly by Ian Franklin Have you ever pushed off at a club or open time trial? If you have you may have been amazed at the difference between the bikes you have to handle – some are spotlessly clean and others are, well ‘heaving’ is the best word I can use here. To relieve the monotony of pushing off 120 riders at one open event a few years ago I tried to work out if there was any relationship between speed and cleanliness – not just of the bike but also of the riders themselves. I did not come up with any firm conclusion because, as usual in cycling, it takes all sorts. There was the odd rider from whom you’d have to back off whilst pushing – you know the type, it’s the end of the season and they’re still using the same (unwashed) skinsuit that they started off with in March. Others spray themselves with Tesco’s best male perfumes. I’ve never worked out whether it’s to hide their nasty natural body odour or whether it’s to prevent faster riders going past them by creating an impenetrable aromatic aura. Indeed these smells are reminiscent of the old and much-loved Q8 of the ‘sixties. One of the dead turns was just past Bachelor’s dried soup factory (ugh!) which was situated right next door to a perfume factory. The mixture was
Okay...so maybe no “more dirt than usually seen in a farmyard”….no soft worn tyres etc but don’t judge a book by its cover! Future World Champion at work….maybe! Photo courtesy Bernard Thompson’s Cycling Archive. enough to make even the least sensitive rider throw up. Riders and the state of their bikes has been an obsession since the evening a few years ago when a rider turned up to ride his first ever club event. He was wearing a pair of sandals from which
as eccentric – pannier racks, more dirt than usually seen in a farmyard, soft worn tyres and so on. Fortunately for me that night I was timing, not riding, so I was not subject to the humiliation that was to follow. New rider was set off number two out
One female member of the club said she saw everything – and since then has been running a campaign to abolish traditional tight cycling shorts. I’m not sure why! emerged the hairiest legs you’ve ever seen outside of a zoo. These legs disappeared into a pair of wide and baggy football shorts which left little to the imagination. (one female member of the club said she saw everything – and since then has been running a campaign to abolish traditional tight cycling shorts. I’m not sure why!) His bike was equally
of a field of 10 on our infamous ‘5’ course. This was so that he wouldn’t feel alone, wouldn’t get lost and could watch the style of his future clubmates as they came hurtling past him. I set the 10 riders off and then hurried across the road to clock them coming in. I barely had time to set up my timing station when I saw a rider bomb-
ing down the finishing straight towards me. Just in time I stopped the watch, deducted 2 minutes and came up with the astonishing time of 11.52 – just shy of the club record for that course. Yes, you’ve guessed it – this was new boy. Respect! Forget the bikes, the sandals, the shorts and the rest of it. Here was a star of the future. As the weeks evolved New Boy realized that he was actually quite good. He turned up a few weeks later with a rudimentary road machine, some tight shorts (much to lady club mate’s disappointment) and a club jersey. He had some nice clip-on bars, a decent pair of mountain bike shoes with SPDs and Shimano 105 all over his bike. He was on his way.
light up the whole M1 motorway, attached this stuff to the tri-bars and toddled off. With my legs astride this famed 50minute machine, the first thing I noticed was the extraordinary humming sound. The faster I rode, the louder the sound became. Near the brow of the first hill I noticed that I was now travelling at 28.37mph. Some speed when you consider the gradient, the groupset, the weight of the lights and, off course, the rider. But hang on! This may have been unchartered territory for me but this machine had re-
the frame and equipment. This led me to the next part of the test. The bike was placed on a turbo and whilst I closely inspected the flies, I had my 9-year-old pedal like fury until the speedo went to 20mph. At this point the flies started to flap their wings in unison and the humming sound started again. The faster they flapped the faster my small son pedaled until the computer was recording in excess of 40mph. So that was the answer! The reason
This rider shall remain nameless but he did go on to claim club records, win open events and generally do some astonishing times. What was interesting to me was that he did all this on a bike that was never cleaned and didn’t match up to all the fancy equipment generally seen at CTT events. This inevitably led me to the next big idea – which was to take this machine and write a review of it to submit to Scything Workly as an antidote to the endless boring bike reviews that populates its pages. By the time I could lay my hands on this hallowed machine it was near the end of the season. The first two things that struck me were the groupset and the dirt. A 50-minute man on Shimano 105? Can this be real? What would Clyking Wookly’s bike testers say about this? More to the point, does this stuff actually work? And. . . why is it that such a fast rider has the muckiest bike whilst the slowest rider in the club* always has such polished equipment? As a Campagnolo connoisseur – and Record at that – it was something of a climb down to be seen on this equipment by the usual spectating sheep, so I was forced to test this bike under the cover of darkness. The first requirement was a good set of of lights. As there are no lights within the Shimano 105 groupset, I borrowed enough kit to
Ian Franklin - no flies on him...or his machine. cently held more than this speed over the full distance of 25 miles. This machine really flies! When I stopped at some crossroads I noticed, uncanningly, that the humming sound stopped too. This phenomena really needed to be investigated. So without delay, I got back to the layby, loaded the bike into the car and returned home. I lovingly removed the bike from the car, dismantled the 36 lights, car batteries and other floodlighting paraphernalia and took a long hard look at the machine. That was when I noticed the flies. Hundreds of ‘em. All stuck to the down tube, head tube and other bits of
top riders travel so quickly in their weekly duets with carriageways is because of this outside assistance! Have you noticed that most time trial bikes these days appear to be black? But they are not, they are covered in flies! As for the Shimano 105 groupset, it’s good solid stuff but an upgrade to the flydeck system would make the bike go faster still. Having discovered the secret of speed, you may well wonder why I, the club’s slowest rider, didn’t utilize the same fly-by-wire system on my bike. Well, old habits die hard and after years and years of polishing . . . .
CLASSIC ARCHIVE MATERIAL. Frank Southall was the most famous cyclist in Britain in the years between the two world wars. Multi-champion and record breaker, he won the first four BAR titles after the competition was set up by “Cycling” magazine in 1930. He then turned professional for Hercules and set a crop of new RRA records. He later managed other riders such as Ken Joy and Eileen Sheridan during their pro careers. This picture is just one of a much larger group that will be published later this year in a joint collection called “Southall and Joy: Two Cycling Legends”. Peter Whitfield has a hand in it so it promises to be good! Watch out for it. Southall on the line at the start of the Etna 50 in 1928. This event was the forerunner of the Charlotteville 50. "Thanks for these pictures to the Norwood Paragon archive and Alan Bristow."
For those who like to start at the back….
NOB OFF...the back! THE EMPEROR TAKES TIME OUT WITH NOBâ€™S BIOSHEET Now for a great insight into my boyhood hero as I took up the nerve (all fingers & thumbs, sweaty palms) & contacted the Great Emperor, Triple 25 mile Champion Eddie Adkins who is still with us & racing as hard as ever when not bodging dodgy motor vehicles.
Eddie Adkins (right) starts the 1981 National 25 Miles Championship on the old F2 just north of Cambridge.
Most Embarrassing Moment?
Edward John Adkins (Eddie)
Hasn't happened yet, or did forget to put number on once! Who was your boyhood hero?
Height? 6ft & decreasing!! 75 kilos
Bobby Charlton, at least he only takes actimel! Cycling Heroes always let you down
Place of residence?
Biggest influence on your career?
Campagnolo or Shimano?
Bournemouth Arrow / Hotel Collingwood
Most Memorable Moment?
Phil Collins, Cyndi Lauper,Heavy metal bands
Getting Married & kids being born
Favourite Musical Group or Singer?
4 RSA's City and Guilds for apprenticeship Whatâ€™s the most trouble you have gotten into? Getting dismissed a few years ago, through no fault of my own Current Job? Motor Technician Current make of Car? Toyota Celica Married or Single? Married nearly 40yrs Best TV show? Mork & Mindy PAGE
Best Film? The Terminator Favourite Actor or Actress? Tony Robinson as Baldrick and Marilyn Monroe Favourite Drink? Anything Alcoholic!!!! Favourite Food? Rice Chocolate or Vanilla Ice Cream? Vanilla Is there anyone thing you would change throughout your cycling career? No Your Favourite Bike you would like to own? A New one would be nice Wet shave or dry shave? Wet What advice can you give to up & coming cyclists? Stay clean, try harder 10 years from now you will be…? Will be 70 or worse What can’t you live without? Riding my bike Who would you share a desert island with if marooned & why? Jan (my wife - for obvious reasons), but if she can't make it Donna Summer or my late departed cat Theunisse who was 19 years old in March. All lovely ladies!!!
Adkins in full flight during the 1981 25 Championship… (above!!!! That’s Sir Nob of Two Ghiblis below.)
Favourite clothing material (PVC, Lycra, wool etc..) This is a leading question, Lycra always looks good on a fit body (Nob replies: it’s meant to be open for any fetishes) Eddie, thank you so much for your replies & taking time to give us a little insight into your current state of mind. We can safely say you can have as many drug tests as you like to ensure you stay sane oops!! I mean clean J Enjoy the rest of your 2009 season.
Sir Nob of Two Ghiblis