Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Crossing Conic

Conic Hill on a 'cross bike. That was a new concept to me when my friend Sanny suggested it last week. Riding there and back along the Westie - yes, through the trails in Mugdock - yes, over Conic Hill - what?! It was just too tempting to say no to.

I must say that the carry up sections were much more shoulder friendly than previously with my 35lb mtb. However, the descent was just as enjoyable. But in a different way!

For a start, dropping the saddle, as I was told after asking, would've been considered 'homosexual'. So the flattish section along the top already had the feeling of a steep downhill!

The hill was pretty busy with walkers and almost all were friendly and full of encouragement for us, except for one near the top who told me to go and buy a 'proper' bike with suspension. Smiling, I shouted back, "I've got two!" Some people will just never get it.

Photo: Mark Forrest

Line choice on the descent would prove to be a crucial factor for us what with the masses of walkers heading in all directions and us having barely any stopping power. Brakes were serving less as a means of slowing us down and more in acting as a squealing warning of our impending onset!

We all made it down the rocky section (walkers and bikers intact!) and whooped our way over the grassy ridge, with some of us grabbing some air time too.

And then just as we were thinking , "All this descent needs is some slippy, rooty switchbacks...." They are all rideable (for some!) on a 'cross bike, but the rocky drop hidden by a gorse bush proved a shade too hardcore and that section had to be walked.


Finishing off on the lochside trails, a road ride to a grub stop at the Pottery in Drymen and a blast back along the Westie made for a superb 'local' day out.

Highly recommended.

Newbie




Hi, just to introduce myself to everyone. I already know some of you from before and have met some at the SCX series over winter. I'm hoping to get to the SXC races and some 10 Undser / 24 hour events this year, so hopefully I'll get to meet some more of you then.


So far I've entered into:

Avalanche Enduro (Ae)
Avalanche nduro (Vaujany)
Avalanche Cup (Oz en Oisians)
MegaAvalanche (Alpe d'Huez)


I'd also love to do the 3 Peaks and will try to get an entry when they go online.

Cheers!

Sunday, 24 January 2010

How it was.....



Listen to the names as they are called - legends of road and cross. Lovely stuff. I remember seeing the stills in Winning Magazine edited by no less a rider than Kenny Pryde ;-) Enjoy!

Entry.



Entered so far:
Ae Avalanche Enduro.
Bristol Bike Fest.
Kielder Montane 100.

On the probably list:
Brighton Big Dog.

On the maybe list:
10 Under the Ben.
24 hours of Finale.
Skye Sportive.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Trophy Time

I did a small race in Spain recently, it was the inauguration of a new timing system which has been set up on the Col de Rates. It was free to enter, there were trophies (even for the women) and free energy food. It was a good deal all round. 


Out of the many, many women who raced (me) I managed to win - but, hey, you've got to be in it to win it, and if Spanish people aren't willing to ride on days which are less than 20 degrees C then I'll happily take all the free energy food home stuffed down my top. I got a cool trophy. Here's the best pic I can find of me being presented with the trophy by the guy who sponsored the women's event. Oh, and someone else you might recognise stopped by to see what was going on - I think we can all see where Quick-Step got their inspiration for kit colour.




Thursday, 14 January 2010

End of term report

2009 felt like a long year, though as the last hours crept up it was gone. The realisation really hit home when clearing the snow outside the back door I found a bogging pair of Sidi's that had been dumped there after Mull, a reminder that the off season had begun.
VCM have now completed two full seasons and is starting to realise its identity and potential, not a vintage year with a few exceptions but a good one never the less, charactors have been built, ill health has been dealt with and passions have been stirred but good times have been had. We've seen the arrival of several new riders and lost a couple of of old ones, never easy to accept but that's the way it is, this thing called VCM can never be everything to everyone, everyday and so things change.
Goodbye first up to Anja, she was missed by all of us this year and most notably at the SCX, her influence on the team has been a big and strong one. Goodbye to Phil Moore, this guy is a stud on a bike, this year he fought through Lymes and came back stronger than ever, always pushing harder and always with a smile, good luck with Morvelo, our paths haven't finished crossing yet. Goodbye to Jac (Strachan) Marquis, Jac who was one of the first to sign up to VCM has moved on. Jac had a turbulent year with health after the epic Portugal race and has decided to have a rethink about her racing strategy for 2010. Anja, Phil and Jac, you are friends, good luck for the future.
And hello to, Lyndsey Carson, what a great season, her first full season riding cross and finishing 4th in the series, a great start. Lyndsey is a great all round rider and we look forward to hearing about her 2010 season.

And so to the awards.
thanks to all who took the time to nominate their favourites of the year.
Combatant rider of the year. Steve Halsall for his awesome ride at this years 3 peaks cyclo cross
Blog entry of the year, so much good stuff but a clear favourite, On a Whim was Mark's account of riding up to the Black isle, good lad tapping out a big ride on his own and blogging it nicely.
The Carp of Shame, John McCallum for driving all the way from Strathpeffer to Dundee for a cross race to discover he forgot his kit, an unforgivable sin.
Supporter of the Year. An easy one, Andy Wardman, the first man to draw blood from cowbell ringing! He set the standard for support but we look forward to seeing him back on the start line this year.

Ok folks, well done everybody.

See you all soon for the VCM Spring Classics.

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

get your quick on



The ERCs are running a crit series at Ingliston again this spring for Cat 2, 3, 4s and a support race for women and youths.

Thursday 8th April 2010 - Support Race 18:30, Senior Race 19:00
Thursday 15th April 2010 - Support Race 18:30, Senior Race 19:00
Thursday 22nd April 2010 - Support Race 18:30, Senior Race 19:00
Thursday 29th April 20010 - Support Race 18:30, Senior Race 19:00
Saturday 8th May 2010 - Support Race 13:00, Senior Race 14:00, Elite Race 15:00

Cracking, fast racing, can bit hectic at times, but well worth it if you fancy having a go at some road racing.

Omloop Het Moulin




April 11th
119 miles
Start and finish: The Motor Grill, Ballinluig
Pace. frisky reliability
Start time TBC

Monday, 11 January 2010

Goatee of Filth

After a successful first running last year, Goatee of Filth is back for 2010. Slight date shuffle this year, now on Sunday 4th April to coincide with Ronde van Vlaanderen.

80ish miles of Fife roads and lanes with as many cheeky cobbled sections as we can find. A wee bit of cake and coffee, then back to the riviera for moules frites and a brew whilst watching the pointy end of the RvV.

Start time and exact route tbc. Pace brisk to middling. Sprints to be contested.