Nov 04

Road race training ride #5

The Fifth HTRC end of season training ride took place on Saturday 2nd November. The weather wasn’t as good as last week, yet we still had 16 riders showing up making it an even better turnout than last week and the best attended of the sessions so far.

View the photos on our Flickr account

We had George Leighton, Mike McAllister, Charlie Carruthers, Dave Walker, Neil Dean, Mandy Dean, Andrew Carroll, Will Thomas, Mark Walker, Chris Burton, Sean Nicholson, Harry Twitchett, Matthew Johnson, Rich Guymer, Chris Brown and Cliff (Sorry didn’t catch the surname).

I’d decided to cover part of the Newbald road race course to begin with, what with us race training I thought it would be a good idea to include the course that the annual HTRC road race uses.

With so many riders, I was anticipating splitting the group into three when it came to our usual through and off group riding. Unfortunately by the time we got to the top of Newbald Hill we lost a few. Mandy Dean had only anticipated coming out for a short while and Mike ‘Mr Photographer’ McCallister had relatives coming round so had to turn off earlier than usual. We also lost George Leighton, who looked like he’d eaten a dodgy plate of fish or something for his breakfast, as he looked somewhat under the weather, so he too, understandably left early.

After descending down Trundlegate and riding through Hotham we came onto Cliff Road and we decided to split into two groups. Group one contained Charlie, Rich, Chris Burton, Will, Mark, Matthew & Sean. With group two containing Andy, Neil, Dave, Chris Brown, Cliff and Harry Twitchett.

Group one was perhaps the pacier of the two with a strengthening backwind meaning speeds of 27 mph were reached. We cooled it down a bit after noticing our high pace, so we decided to operate around 21/22 mph.

Our progress was cut short though, as Shaun Nicholson took a right-hander motocross style due to a rear puncture. It meant the two groups came together before we hit Market Weighton and gave Andy Carroll the chance to take over photography duties from the absent Mike McCallister when we restarted. Looked like he was heading for the ditch at one point but he corrected himself to take some nice shots on the go.

I decided to split the group once again after we got beyond Market Weighton, so we headed down Kiplingcoates Valley in a through and off motion. Group one was working very well and it was encouraging to see how tight and efficient the group was working together.

Unfortunately group 2 didn’t have the best of luck. With it currently being Autumn there was plenty of debris on the road; it was therefore inevitable that punctures would occur. Unfortunately lightning struck twice for Harry as he ended up with two punctures and the to top it all Andy picked up a flat in Beverley on the way home.

Group one, unaware of the mechanical problems that had struck group two, headed back via Etton and Cherry Burton towards Skidby. The wind at this point had increased considerably giving us that feeling we were biking through treacle. Despite the wind and punctures we still covered 45 miles at around 17mph once we got home. It was also encouraging to see the improvement in technique in some of our regular riders.

For my rider of the day, I think I’m going to go with young Harry Twitchett. Harry amazingly came out despite been recently diagnosed with glandular fever, something he’s had since we started with the sessions. Most mortals with glandular fever would struggle to get out of bed, but not only has Harry come out but he has lasted the pace for every single one and today was no exception. It’s made me think what could he be capable of when fully fit. For his sake though, he should perhaps take it easy until he’s fully recovered.

For next week we’ll carry on in the current format and perhaps head beyond Market Weighton and take in the ride home via Hayton, Everingham and North Cave.


Mark Walker
HTRC Road Race Secretary