The real thing

For a while now we have been riding around the deserted streets of Worthing on a Tuesday evening. Over the winter it kept the legs going fast and provided some endurance interval work for the rest of the time. It was (is) a jolly. Lots of banter and few new misses and, with the exception of some over excitable idiots (light jumpers and queue filters), it is a celebration of cycling for the town.

For many of the participants it was simply a fun alternative to what we all used to do on Tuesdays: the Goodwood Gallops. After two years of wrangling a dedicated group has finally got the races back on. Southdown Velo cycling club based in Chichester are organising the new race series to be known The Southdown Velo Goodwood Summer Series. The series will comprise 10 weekly events commencing on 6th May 2014 followed by an event every Tuesday evening thereafter finishing on Tuesday 8th July 2014. Well done guys, great to be back!

Iconic Goodwood race circuit
Iconic Goodwood race circuit

Now if you thought that the Worthing Tuesday Thrash was fast and furious just wait until you try Goodwood. My average was 5mph faster, the distance just a little longer but the worst (best) is the fear. Coming into that last corner at around 30 miles an hour literally rubbing shoulders in the middle of the pack…. it’s what nightmares are made off. Speed, fear, crashes and working at max is what makes it so addictive. However, for any that think they have graduated to the big time please note that this is just a jaunt around Goodwood motor circuit – a short stroll in the park for the Elites and 1st cats. Still for a low life racer like me it’s nice to be hanging in there riding next to some of our local stars.

Early on there was a young kid weaving all over the place, I tried to get away but if you are riding at exactly the same speed inevitably we would be together. Entering the chicane I shouted a warning only to exit that dangerous bend with someone locked onto my bars. Oh no – I’m going down I thought! The trick is to remain calm and never do anything sudden. I just rode it out, looked over and saw that it was Chris, the mate I’d given a lift to!!! Thankfully we are both cool enough not to panic but it does remind you how risky it can be.

Well done to the organisers and the riders. I was pleased to finish in the bunch not so far behind the leaders which could mean that I was 30th out of 80. I have no idea how many rode nor where I came. And it was nice to be riding with the Blazing Saddles boys again who must be commended for the speed of the first four laps as we managed to keep away from the chasing bunch of Elites/1st/2nd&3rds . The winner? Justin Hoy – Chapeau Bro!

Here’s the ride, no point in going to ride this one. Clear summer skies, mild and, as usual for Goodwood, blowing a gale!

Bike: Scott Addict 10. Still the best fitting bike that I have ridden.


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