Sunday, 13 November 2016

Remembrance Ride 2016

Over the last two years our club remembrance ride has been the highlight of our Sunday club rides. We cycle to sites of significance, particularly the airfields of Northamptonshire and Cambridgeshire where so much brave endeavor took place on our behalf. It's important to remember and I feel this ride is a fitting tribute to the fallen.

I nearly didn't ride at all today due to a very emotional and stressful week. In hindsight, perhaps I shouldn't have ridden at all. You can never tell when riding 'emotional.' Sometimes you are inspired to a great ride and other times your legs are just dead with nervous exhaustion. Today my legs were dead. I was cramping on hills after just 30 miles and after 50 miles I gave up and called for help. The magnificent Mrs Lindsley came and rescued me at Thrapston!

So what has been so bad? Well for starters we lost Ben our Black Labrador on Monday. He's been with us for 13 years and the kids don't know a life without him. We had no warning really other than his advancing years. The picture above was taken on Saturday, two days later we said goodbye. As Dad I'm trying to hold it all together but it's not easy. We loved that dog! There will be dog lovers who understand and others who wonder what the fuss is. All I will say is the hurt we feel today is nothing compared to the joy he brought us for all those years.

Okay let's get back to the ride. One of the gems I found this week was that another cycling blogger has blogged about visiting the places we went to today! Check out the link below:

On arrival at C&D Cycles there was the largest group I'd seen gathered since...well probably since the last remembrance ride. Steve was our leader but others had downloaded the route that I had prepared from Steve's interesting instructions! Notable in her absence was Nat, who overslept apparently!

Riding conditions were excellent. We had a dry bright day. The roads were still damp from the day before but in light winds we could not have asked for better.

First stop was at the lovely old tree in Mears Ashby. Commemorated here was the crash of two American bombers. If being shot at wasn't bad enough, it appears that accidents also happened. Miraculously some of the airmen involved walked away uninjured. The rest however were not so lucky and lost their lives.

The commemorative board

Ooh I say!


Banter is compulsory even on a serious day like today. Little did the cockwomble know that naughty plans were afoot. 

Steve was having a mare and this is the repair to his first broken spoke. Heather had usefully packed a cable tie for this on road bodge. At this point the naughty plans started as a novelty chocolate condom slipped undetected into Steve's back pocket. He discovered it at the next stop and the cheeky game passed to Mark. It's unknown if he's found it yet but Mark, if it gets you into trouble, please use this blog to prove your innocence. In any case its a standard size so it would never fit!

The next stop was at Poddington or 'Santa Pod.' Some of these wartime airfields have been turned into places for other activities. Santa Pod is now one of Europe's most famous drag racing strips. In a similar way, Grand Prix circuit, Silverstone, was also a wartime airfield. Here's some additional info on RAF Poddington

From Poddington we rode to Chelveston. The war memorial here is, I think, the best that we've visited. Even better still we discovered that the poppy and C&D Cycles keyring we left last year was still there! Steve decided to call it a day here because with two broken spokes his rear wheel was seriously misbehaving.

Another new visit for this year's ride was RAF Molesworth

After that stop I was shattered and massively holding the group up. They kindly suggested my bike was letting me down due to a rear brake that kept sticking but that was just the straw that broke the camel's back. I'll have much better rides. My bike does need some TLC so, before I put her away fro the winter, is definitely time to go and see Andy at C&D.

Parked up waiting for the queen of cakes

The sock excitement continues. This week no one knew I was wearing these bobby dazzlers!

I won't be riding with the club next weekend but I will be riding for it and for my other club KCC. We have the KCC cyclocross at Glendon on Saturday. SuperSam will be riding and some of us older chaps will be entering the novice race. I'm really looking forward to this both in terms of participating and also to support a fantastic event. I know the KCC coaches have put together a great course, so...roll on next weekend!

No videos this week but I have found some every interesting articles. Firstly there's a company aiming to build carbon frames in the UK. That has to be good for us all! Then there's the amazing Detroit custom cycles show. Those bikes have to be seen!

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