I am, as Roger predicted in the last edition of this newsletter, ‘back in front of (my) computer’ and we now have, as you will see below, not only details from Sean and Angela of the ride scheduled for 24 July but also a message from Jim about meeting up with the London Clarion the following Saturday.
As I’m sure you are aware – it can’t only be me who is glued to the TV – the first week of this year’s Tour de France has seen some spectacular results, with 5 of the first 8 stages being won by British riders. I’m not getting nationalistic in my old age – it’s just that it’s only a few years back that this would have seemed the height of fantasy. How things change – and often, recently, not for the best. However the question posed by a recent edition of ‘Cycle Clips’ is whether races like the TDF actually get more people out on their bikes – which we would all agree is a ‘good thing’ whether or not we are interested in the races themselves.
“Arguably the greatest show on earth starts this weekend in Mont St Michel, as 198 riders compete for the Tour de France’s yellow jersey. Cycling UK asked Eurosport journalist Felix Lowe what’s the appeal and why it took him – a long term fan – so long to swap the sofa for the saddle. As we explored what the Tour meeans to Lowe he told us: “Cycling’s that unique activity whose stadia are public roads open to us all. Fancy a kick-about on Wembley’s hallowed turf? Good luck with that. What about a rally on Wimbledon’s Centre Court? In your dreams… But any of us can get on a bike and (well, at least try to) ride up the Col du Tourmalet.”
Well I’ve been up the Tourmalet 2 or 3 times – in a car. I think I’ll pass on riding up it for now.
As you’ll see from the ‘Future Rides’ list below we are – thanks to Helen and Julian – well catered for in August. But it’s not to early to be thinking about September.
On Saturday 30 July (not a normal Clarion weekend for us) the London Clarion will be riding from London to Brighton. It has been suggested that some of us could meet them at Ditchling Beacon, ride into town with them (all downhill of course!) and repair to a house of beverage. The Londoners will be returning on the train.
I will devise a route up to the Beacon, possibly following Sikka’s suggested route, and will send full details to Ian for the next circular. I will need numbers at some point of course, for the pub booking.