Monday, 3 December 2012

All the right hills, just not necessarily in the right order

Forgive the paraphrased plagiarism, from the late, great Erick Morecambe addressing Mr Preview. And kids, I was there and old enough to understand it, the first time around.

I've mentioned before how we could get some informal or impromptu rides going, riding some great routes based on our knowledge of the area within about an hour's drive of our Mendip base. Although we are not a formally constituted body, the ACG does have a certain level of organisation, some 3rd party liability insurance, and a team kit, albeit without any red, claret, blue or green in it.

Those failings aside, I have been planning for 2013. I intend to ride officially, at the same time as organised, and advertised, and have/will pay my dues for these:

  • Mad March Hare (because it's fun & I want to do it in the warm, ha)
  • Endura Lionheart (because I had a Facebook argument with the organiser, oh dear)
  • White Horse Challenge (my favourite, & I hanker after sub 5 hours)
  • Somerset 100 (I'll be 77 again, you can be whatever you want to be)
  • Tour of Wessex (all 3 days heaven help me! Please enter too, it's fun, honest)
  • Dragon Ride (it's a matter of principle)
  • Dartmoor classic (the best, without Tina Turner's help)

But, I am going to hold off entering others until I hear from you lot. I know lots of lovely nice routes, as do you, in other sportive territory, and I want to see if you will pt your wheels where your vague interest is. So, if I were to organise routes in the following areas under the aegis of the ACG, would you come?

  • Jurassic coast & the Dorset downs
  • Cranborne chase & surrounding countryside
  • New Forest
  • Exmoor & the Quantocks (I will rely on some local knowledge for this one)
  • Bath & Salisbury plain
  • The Mendips (obviously)
  • One or two others (maybe)

Rides would include a cafe stop, full Garmin-friendly route, parking at the start, shared lift co-ordination for bikes & riders, no mechanical support (other than our common sense and mutual sense of obligation) no motorbike outriders but also no idiots overtaking us on blind bends or over-priced feeding stations with jaffa cakes and expensive energy drink.

Routes would allow 5-6 hours of riding in stunning countryside, great company, and brilliant weather is guaranteed. If you are in the ACG they would be free (membership is £5 per annum) and if a non-member you can ride with us five times (I think) before you have to stump up or go ride elsewhere! (we don't turn people away).

It doesn't take a genius to work out that these are loosely based on some other sportives which I shall not name. We wouldn't do them at the same time as the official sportives, no-one gets dropped, we have a laugh and it costs us little. Certainly not an average of £33 which is what sportives are rapidly turning into.

So are you interested? If so (this is the participative bit) YOU HAVE TO TELL ME!

Things like, what, where, when, which etc. etc. More details the better, and I'll start some planning over Christmas.

Over to you peeps.

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