Thursday, 17 November 2016

Trophy Season

What's that you say Steve? Is it trophy season.

The (probably not anymore) youngest team member cleaned up this year at League 2000. A 12 event series with skills, TT and a road race each night.

Felix's favourite thing.

Under 6 champion and he's got another year to go but will have a proper battle on his hands to retain the trophy as a friends daughter was catching up towards the end of the year. Wheel size doping may happen...

Flo was the youngest rider in Under 8s and not winning which does not put her in a good mood. A wheel size upgrade mid season saw her smashing big chunks off her TT best and getting upgraded into the longer 2 lap race. 4th female behind the only other rider to be staying in U8s gives her a sniff at trophy hunting next year.

Waiting for the finish of the 2 small lap race

Come rain or shine. Pushy parents? :0)

Biggest surprise on awards night was Felix won the trophy for biggest time improvement on the TT. To say he was chuffed was an understatement.

Monday, 14 November 2016

Can it really be November?

At the risk of poking the fallow blog, I raced again this weekend!

After missing out on a Three Peaks place this year I'd kind of put the bike on the back burner for the last few months. Keeping up the semblance of fitness was one thing but entering a race plainly daft. So it was at 11am on the morning of the race I was busily putting together a working bike for a 1pm start. Signed on with 20 mins to spare there was at least no time to waste on pre-match nerves.

Regulars on the NWCCA league had been complaining about the dry courses so far. Complaints no longer. I'd ridden here before in a bit of mud, but this time it was soggy as anything, with scarcely a dry stretch on the entire course loop.

Corners, mud, corners, roots, more mud, running turns to trudging. Only lapped once by the fast boys. Result. Grim and great in equal measure!

Meanwhile DS Mikey is having a great run in his new league – come on Mike, don't be shy – and it's up to the next generation of the Bateman and Levell family to represent the jersey with pride, doing great stuff in junior races in North Yorks/the NE. What have you been up to folks?

Saturday, 13 February 2016


Anyone out there?

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Three Peaks again....

I must be off my rocker eight times now I have dragged my cake laden body round the hill's of Yorkshire. Obsessive you might say ? Possibly but I certainly love the race. Needless to say I'll be back next year spending far to much time thinking about landcrusers, gearing and getting under 4 hours 
       Never will the weather be as perfect as was on the day. A real contrast to 2012 when I smashed the top tube on the bike, punctured twice, waded through waist deep water and was nearly blown from the top of each peak, that was proper rain too.
        It was a trouble free run round the route, yes I plodded up all 3 climbs and people marched past me. Had a nice chat with Shaggy then actually proper raced down the down bits and made all the time back again. Did a over the bars on boggy bit but that happens each year anyway. All done and dusted at 4h7min a PB so I was home in time for cake and tea. Found this rather good photo on the web page to buy. Happy days all round.

Monday, 28 September 2015

Three Peaks for beginners

I wrote this for my running club blog. I'm hoping Piers will pipe up with a report from the quicker end of the field. A little about one of the daftest rides in the world...

I'm not bragging or anything but would just like to mention 'the hardest cyclocross race in the world'. For anyone not familiar with The Peaks, the race makes little sense. It makes little sense to those that are.

It goes back to 1961, long before mountain bikes were a twinkle in the eye. Cyclocross bikes: they're a bit like road bikes with chunkier tyres, slightly beefier frames and lower gears. They are an utterly unsuitable vehicle for travelling the slopes of Ingleborough, Whernside and Pen-y-ghent.

In recent years runner Rob Jebb has made it his own, winning 11 of the last 16 events. It's a ride that suits fell runners — several of the elite of English champs were on the start-line, together with ex World Cup champ MTBer Tim Gould ...and me. No fear of troubling the leader board, but it's an absolute treat just to turn up and ride. I say 'ride' but there's a lot of carrying.

So anyways, Ingleborough is mostly a brutal and steep climb via Simon Fell, suited to knotty runner's calfs, followed by a moorland traverse to the top. Dib in, turn around and after a tricky running section through the rocks to leave the summit and then a fast and rutted grassy descent (wrong bike) to Cold Cotes and the first of the road sections (wrong bike again) through to the next climb of Whernside. This is mostly rocky steps and the reverse of the descent on the fell
race. Dib on the top and then the trickiest section of the whole race, down to the iconic Ribblehead viaduct familiar to all steam enthusiasts. Flags, drainage bars, rutted moorland tussocks and lots of rocks doing their best to attract punctures (wrong bike).

More road down to Horton and the out and back climb of Pen-y-ghent. A bent rear mech by now making a nuisance of itself all the way down the road, the final hill taking a long time to draw close. Tired now and even the tiny road climbs are tempting cramp.

Because this last hill is out and back you get the extra pleasure of seeing the fast folk flying down towards you as you're suffering like a dog on the way up. Cowbells, whistles shouts of 'rider up, keep left!' raise your game was a lot quieter when I came down and the support had mostly gone home. Hit the road for the final couple of miles into the finish and both legs lock solid with cramp. Stretch, no that doesn't work. Pedal, no that hurts. Soft pedal, sort of works. It passes and eventually I'm back, just sneaking under 5h for a pretty mediocre performance. Still, top 500 In The World!

38 miles (4 classed as unrideable, I'm asking for a recount) 5000' of climbing. 2 litres, 3 gels, a 9-bar and half a squashed banana.

An utterly, utterly unique event.

Sunday, 16 August 2015

VeloCake 2015/16 Season kit.


The time has arrived, after 2 years in the wilderness we are relaunching the VeloCake performance athletic apparel programme.

In layman's terms, that's new jerseys and shorts.

Yes you read that right, VeloCake jerseys are BACK!

These two aren't professional models, it's Tom and Jon.

The Details.

  1. Choose your clothing at custom clothing section.
  2. Submit your order to 
  3. Pay us money
  4. sit back and wait.
  5. receive jersey, wear jersey, look amazing.
Be a winner! it's what you deserve.

it really is as easy as that.

small print: be aware the prices on Endura site DO NOT include VAT.

VeloCake performance cycle clothing is bought to you in association with: