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5th May 2013
Riders: Richard
, Rob, Tim, Rich Lonegroover, Schtevo, Lloyd, Wob, Terry, Adam, Andy & Paul
Pitch Hill
Weather: 17°C

Another dry week and with a Bank Holiday weekend there's loads of riding going off all over the place. Stevo and Paul rode on Friday & Saturday, I rode with my boys on Saturday and there's a planned ride Bank Holiday Monday too.

The trails are dry and dusty even with a smattering of rain last night and it's a great feeling being able to trust your tyres to grip as you lean into the corners.

 

We hit up the slightly re-modelled Mangrove Alley which features most of the mud on the ride but even this is bearable on a humid Sunday morning.

 

Steve has been out and about mid-week checking out trails and leads us on a tour of all the steep stuff with plenty of opportunities for Big Air.

 

I'm on the SX trail sporting my painfully bright Five Ten's that I bought this week for the Alps trip (61 days). They will replace the faithful Vans that are now well worn and hopefully give my toes a bit more protection than the canvas skate shoes. What is there to say about Five Ten's that hasn't already been said. They grip like shit to a stick, 'nuff said.

 

A new pair of shoes for me but Terry has treated himself to yet another new bike. I really can't keep up with his purchases, mainly Specialized he has had about twelve new bikes in the last three years. But this one's a beauty, carbon front end and Fox Van 36's on a Spesh Evo which soon has him putting into practice his Jedi mind warrior training and getting some air. Thrust yer hips forward Terry!

 

Lloyd is riding with us today, the first time since Summer 2011 and he's made the trek over by road from Worcester Park on his XC race frame. He tackles all the trails with varied levels of success, having a peek first at some of the trails and getting plenty of air although he has a painful looking crash on the 'chute' which looks like it might slow him down a bit. Hope you don't feel too sore this evening buddy!

 

We're also joined by Paul who has ridden with a few of the individual members of the team but this is his first group ride. What a great rider, I quickly promoted him to Steve-chasing duty in the natural order of descending that shakes itself out on the trails, I don't want him buzzing my rear tyre the whole way down a technical section.

 

 

 

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all photos and content copyright of Richard Sear 1999 to 2015

 


12th May 2013
Riders: Richard
, Rich Lonegroover, Schtevo, Wob, Ross, Shane, Ian & Beta Alf
Holmbury Hill & Pitch Hill
Weather: 16°C

There's been plenty of rain this weekend but the trails are still holding up well as we meet at Holmbury St Mary for 9-30. Well actually I'm a bit late due to an issue with a petrol station that didn't open until 9 a.m. but that's another issue. As it is I hate to break my golden rule of not keeping riders waiting for the start but everyone seemed happy enough and we set off a few minutes late with a group of eight riders.

Beta Alf (no I don't know either) has joined us having joined the forum recently and decided to come along and see what it is that we do. He rides well and although I think he found the pace quite high hung on bravely and I look forward to riding with him again although tighten up those brake calipers first eh?

We also have Shane and Ian along too who we have only ridden with maybe once or twice since the Les Arcs trip last year.

And it's a day for faces as we bump into Danny Milner from MBR a number of times which is a shame as Steve rode a few trails with Danny on Friday and hasn't stopped banging on about it since then so that just fuels Steve's fire and it's all 'Danny this' and 'when I rode with Danny that' to add to all the texts he's been sending me since Friday (that's right, I'm just jealous Steve).

I also had a good old chat with Tharina a.k.a. Yoghurt Girl at the Peaslake Bus Stop about the generally bad weather we had in 2012, the never-ending Winter, road bikes and the joys and downsides of lift assisted riding etc. Here's a shout out for her cycling blog Tango Cycling; check it out now.

Which is quite topical as I was talking to my wife about motivation recently. Married 22 years and we still talk is a good start but this was three weeks ago when I was getting ready for my monster 74 km MTB ride to Leith Hill and back.

The Lovely Mrs 'S' (as the boys at work refer to her) was sitting in bed drinking the mug of tea that I had made her and she asked how I maintained my motivation to get up out of bed early on a cold Sunday morning to go mountain biking after all these years. She tries to go to Zumba once a week but finds any excuse not to go.

I had to admit that whilst I was a bit nervous about that day's ride; I knew it would be a long one and I wasn't entirely sure about the route and I had to get up even earlier than usual to get to the start point in time. But the motivation was that I still love mountain biking. I get a real buzz from riding and pushing myself to do these things. Longer, harder, faster and all that.

And the enjoyment is the key. I've mentioned before that I got very frustrated with the prolonged bad weather last year and lost the fun element from the riding which made it very hard. Which is strange as I also rode 13,000 km last year which is the most I've ever done in one year but a lot of that was on my road bike.

So after that little insight into my physche let's just say it was a geat ride today with lots of old mates and new mates too and may we have many more rides together.

 

 

 

Untitled Document

all photos and content copyright of Richard Sear 1999 to 2015

 


19th May 2013
Riders: Richard & Cas
Road ride
Weather: 14°C

It's fine weather for MTB'ing this weekend but I've not been out for a ride with Cas for months now and as he is now exclusively a roadie and I need to be home by a certain time to get off to Stamford Bridge this afternoon I roll up to Cas's front door at 9-20 a.m. fully lycra'd up and on my Specialized Allez Comp.

He's not quite ready and accuses me of being too keen for a Sunday morning but we are off and rolling by 9-30 and follow a familiar route up to Banstead, Headley Heath and onto Leatherhead, Fetcham and Effingham. I love that name by the way, except when I end up there having fallen asleep in a drunken slumber on the train. It's the end of the line and miles from Effingham anywhere!

We hook up with the Olympic road route and cover the climb up Coombe Lane. Cas leaves me for dead on the climb and has forgotten to brief me on which way we are headed at the top and he's not in sight when I appear. One way is a further climb and the other is a plummeting 120 metre descent to the A25 and I don't want to choose the wrong one. After a quick phone call it's a right and down to the A25 and on through Shere which is quintessential Surrey.

We carry on to the normal MTB'ers habitat of the bus stop at Peaslake where we stop for a break which includes a coke and pastry for Cas and flapjack and my current favourite a Boost bar for me. After saying a quick hello to TC we set off again up past the bottom of Barry Knows Best stopping for a quick pee in the bushes.

I'm a bit worried about time now. We are only 50km into a 100km ride and I need to pick up my mate and fellow season-ticket holder at 2-15pm. So Cas kicks on and sets a quick pace with me hanging onto his coat-tails drafting him the whole way home.

We fly through Forest Green, Ockley, Newdigate and Leigh before hitting the bottom of Reigate. up through Merstham and back into Bansteade and it's all downhill from there and I arrive at 1-55 p.m. before having a quick shower, chucking a sandwich down my throat and I'm out the door at 2-12 p.m. and on my way to the match.

What a day, thanks Cas and that completes a geat weekend as I covered 47km with Ben on Saturday afternoon as we increase his training rides in readiness for Le Tour in July.

 

 

Untitled Document

all photos and content copyright of Richard Sear 1999 to 2015

 


24th to 27th May 2013
Riders: Richard
Road ride
Weather: 19°C

A weekend away in Brighton sees me take the bike just in case there's some riding time. I had planned to ride down on Friday afternoon but the cold temperature of 8 degrees and rain all day put paid to that. But I still managed to get out once for a 40 km spin over the South Downs on what turned out to be a fantastic weekend both weather-wise and socially.

I then rode home and covered another 100km to keep that deficit denier (top right) turning over.

 

 

Untitled Document

all photos and content copyright of Richard Sear 1999 to 2015

 

Ride Archive

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all photos and content copyright of Richard Sear 1999 to 2015

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click to view click to view click to view Steve Neill Big Trev Orange Dave dialled bikes pewter headtube badge Dave and Dave outside LOMAC Dave on Summer Lightning A grinning Trevor Steve (again) Davebus and Neill on Stane Street Jason next to Denbie's vineyard Trevor struggles up the climb Dave followed by Jason on Stane Street Banstead Downs singletrack It was getting dark by the time I got back Richard (that's me!) Surrey Hills logo at the top of Coombe hill Gary dicing with the cars through New Malden Stag party Gary's Giant SCR 2008 model  A cheerful looking Gary part way round Richmond Park speed limits for cyclists! Kingston Gate, Richmond Park view off the side of Headley Heath Bianchi K-Vid carbon forks self-portrait whilst climbing between second and third hairpin on the Zig Zag Road, Box Hill Dave and Mat, the folly, Reigate Hill urban riding, Richard in Ashtead High Street a bit underexposed but a nice shot of the view from the North Downs Way Richard dropping in on Colley Hill No, not the Mediterranean, this is outside LOMAC, Ashtead High Street Richard showing off for the camera Mat and Richard, Stane Street Richard, Headley Heath Mat on Headley Heath Gary with our 'rabbit' in the distance Gary in the dusk Richard Gary chasing the yellow 'rabbit' in the distance Cas Cas Richard 'self-portrait'