Riders of the Months
Here's Audax UK member Geoffrey Sharpe, celebrating his 300th Randonnée (the Devon Delight) in the best Audax style - with a cake!
Eighty year old Geoff didn't start Audax rides until he was 52 so that's pretty good going. During those rides he's completed an SR series as well - and hopefully will be celebrating many more successes in the future.
Geoff first rode Audax 30 years ago when he and his ife entered a couple of National 400s, but after completing a few more 300 & 400 km events the arrival of a dog put an end to Audax. Since selling most of his bikes he is trying Audax again on his Brompton- the latest was ‘A Bit Dented’ which because of the strong winds was tough.
Bromptons are great but not very fast, so Geoff was always chasing the clock
A Quintet of Debutants to 300km rides, from West London share the AUK Rider of the Month for April, conquering the 3Down from Chalfont to The New Forest and back together. All five have recently taken up Audax and two are targeting LEL.
West London Cycling also specialise in short distance online e-racing. Who would have thought that short distance static bike riders would end up embracing the delights of long distancing Audaxing!
This month we have a family group. Azur (8) has toured extensively with his parents, and has now completed several 100km Audax rides. This picture is on an ACME Winter Series ride - four 100km rides, and you can earn an ACME anvil by completing the set.
Cake of the Month!
Congratulations to Mark for completing his fifth Randonneur Round the Year, and good to see that the traditional RRtY cake has made a comeback (a few were featured in Arrivée a while back). If you fancy the challenge, have a look at the RRtY page - it seems easy on a fine summer's day, but not so much on a freezing wet day in January!
Fiona successfully completed her first 300km ride recently – and choosing November for the first is a bold approach (especially as she is partially sighted so night riding poses a challenge)! From her blog:
Epic organisation and control teams by Great Western Randonées. I was the person who spent the longest time by far in the saddle. The jelly baby reflux lasted several days. Am I imagining things? Did I say "next time I’ll do some training" rather than "never again...?"
As is well-known, Isambard Kingdom Brunel worked out the route of the Great Western Railway by reconnoitering on a bicycle. In doing so, he would have been in the running for becoming points champion, had AUK been around at the time.
Audax Club Bristol and Audax Club Hackney commemorate the event with a 400km ride, from Bristol to London and back (ACB) or London to Bristol and back (ACH). In the picture Ivan sports a classic Victorian cycling outfit, at ACH's half-way point.
Lucy joined Audax a few weeks ago and completed John Thompson's 200 km ride from Norfolk - Suffolk as her first Audax ride on the 4th Sept.
Lucy's dream cycling goal is to ride the Transcontinental race across Europe in a few years time.
"I absolutely adored my first Audax ride. The weather was perfect and the route was beautiful. The riders and organisers were very friendly and welcoming... and I haven't been so excited by earning myself a sticker since I was five!"
Simon Hodgson on the Steele Roads and Woolly Hills 400km on his venerable Dawes. The route "includes England's highest through-road, and a whole load of other rough-stuff classics that will make it a challenge".
"I love riding around the mountains of the north and with some dirt included how could I resist this Audax? A vintage Dawes Galaxy can do anything and descending the highest through road in England on a gravel track will live long in the memory!"
At last we have some riders! Here's Rufus (age 9) on the Air Mail 200 (helpers) in April 2021. His 4th 200 and his toughest so far. Surely a candidate for the Peter Tandy trophy here!
This month (actually several months!) we have brought you a ride rather than a rider. This DIY route was completed back in November by Louise but it seems very relevant again for anyone wondering how to complete a 200km ride within their "tier area".
Many congratulations to AUK member Marcia for her world record LEJOGLE ride (currently being validated) She started out on 23 August and was followed for the next 11 days by an army of dot-watchers. The weather wasn't kind, but she pedalled on and in doing so raised over £10,000 for Solent Mind charity. More about Marcia's cycling exploits here.
Sarah on a DIY version of Shore to Moor 200km in Devon. Having unfortunately failed to finish in time twice previously (first time it was too hot and the next "the hills felt like mountains"), she was determined not to be beaten when it was cancelled due to Covid. Riding as a DIY, this time she breezed round with plenty of time in hand, with supporting company including photographer Graham and co-rider John.
Rider of the Pandemic - In the absence of any real events, this month we are pleased to introduce Mousie, tackling his first Audax (and a 400km at that). Thanks to the talented Sarah Freeman for this wonderful animation.
Katie riding the "lockdown 200" on Zwift - no points, no brevet card, no validation .... just hot, sweaty and boring scenery! Check out Katie's YouTube channel and maybe relive some audax rides whilst you can't get out there for real.
A self-portrait from Phil Whitehurst on a very wet (53 mm rain that day!) Brazier's Run from Victoria CC. Their mission statement is "passionate about cycling, cake and coffee", which sounds like a proper cycling club!
Sporting matching Carradice, Mick and Rob from VC167 under a grey sky on Dean Clementson's Yad Moss/St Moritz 200km January event
Congratulations to Paul Whitehead, of AUK and Audax Club Portsmouth, who has just joined the 300,000 mile club. Not all Audax, but a fair chunk will have been. The photograph shows a younger version of Paul, when he was only 12,000 miles into the project. If you fancy having a go yourself, take a look at this website
It takes more than a bit of water to stop an audaxer! A tricky section on a very damp edition of Sarah Britton's Breakfast in Bampton ride, but lots of successful finishers and a good time had by all. Probably took a couple of days to dry out the cycling shoes though...
Dave Minter on a classic machine riding the Cambridge Autumnal - and making it look easy...
Why would it be hard to ride a tricycle? "Imagine riding a sailing catamaran on the road. Like a catamaran, the trike won’t lean into a turn, but will lift a side up into the air. Simple turns can become tippy, exhilarating stunts". (more at Classic Cycle)
From last month's PBP 2019 riders to a possible entrant for PBP 2031? This is Emily (age 8) on her fifth 50km DIY ride in Cumbria, and now the proud holder of a Brevet 250 award. Apparently she is already familiar with the supermarket car park picnic stop and has been known to say "it's not on Strava so we haven't done it yet"!
All those who took part in PBP 2019. As we can't publish a photo of everyone, here is an unknown rider on a misty morning on the final stage. Thanks to Graham Brodie for the picture (Graham completed the ride in 87 hours and still found time for photography!). Congratulations to all AUK riders who finished and commiserations to those who didn't.
Brothers Andrew and Jonty tucking into a Devon Delicacy (or three!) at the end of the Devon Delight 100km from Newton Abbot, organised by Graham Brodie. This popular ride runs on the same day as a 200km event with 3 AAA points. Not yet in next year's calendar but if you can't resist a scone keep a look out when the new season's rides are published.
Janet and Duncan on the Pino tandem riding through Cambridge on the first leg of Fenland Friends 600km (possibly smiling as they haven't yet encountered the endless cabbage fields). This was their second successful 600km and the last of their qualifying rides for PBP. Bonne route!
The women who rode London-Wales-London on 4th May - probably the highest proportion of women ever entering a longer AUK event, partly thanks to encouragement from organiser Liam FitzPatrick. Of course all the women then actually had to ride their bikes - a task not made any easier by the unseasonal cold weather overnight. Chapeau all.
Anita on Dean Clementson's Overground Underground 50km ride from Newby Wiske. Looks a little damp, but a good day was had by all. Dean's next ride is the 400km Great North Road, starting from Cockerton, Darlington
Or maybe this month's passenger? This is Chalky, on VC167's Ripon Canter 100km, with Vicki and Paul doing the work. March was unusually warm this year, which should have helped the riders, but on the other hand we had storms Freya and Gareth to contend with, which made things trickier!
Graeme Wyllie testing the route for his 400km Auld Alliance ride, which will run in April. This is taken on the road between Auchterarder and Dunning, but if you enter the event, you'll be doing this part in the dark! Graeme's description of his ride is on yacf
Bleak, misty and a bit mysterious - the feel of a winter Audax in the mid-Wales hills. This is from Andy Cox's Taith Mynydd Canolbarth Cymru 212 km. Andy's next rides are the The Towy & Ystwyth Explorer and Meirionydd & More, both starting from Aberyswyth
Audax stalwart Tom Deakins crossing the Bridge at St Ives with an Audax Club Mid Essex group on his Boudicca's Revenge 200 km perm. ACME was only founded in 2016 but already has a full programme of rides.
Ivor relaxing in an Audax Hotel on the Moonrakers and Sunseekers 300km ride through the night from Bristol to the coast at Poole. Organised by Great Western Randonnées with support from Audax Club Bristol
En route to Newmarket on the Cambridge Autumnal - not surprisingly Ian got home first. There was a big turnout for both the 100km and 200km events, which ran from Cambridge into Suffolk and back to the Arrivee in Girton Village Hall, with Ewa's now-legendary soup and baking. Ride organised by Cambridge Audax
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