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CapeRoadie

Why did you start racing a bicycle?

And when?  And the highlights of your racing career?  Tell us all about it HERE.
paperman

To get to and from school is why I started, and later to get to and from work and college, racing in my childhood and teenage years was unheard of particularly in my area. So today I do mostly sportives, besides my work pretty much prevents me from all competition. I always kept and eye on cycling thanks to Kelly and Roche in the 80's. I cycled and swam to back up fitness for thai boxing and rugby and simply to enjoy an alternative recreational activity, then I got really stuck into cycling.
last km

Started going out with the CTC at 11, then racing as a schoolboy right through to a Vet......... I'd do it all over if I could, but with the knowledge I have now  Laughing
paperman

An I miss read the thread title, I took it as start to RIDE a bicycle  Embarassed   no harm  Smile
Bartali

Why?  For the rock and roll lifestyle Wink

When? 1976

Highlights?  Maybe some Cat 3 races back in the day, but nothing beats the elation of finishing my brace of Marmottes!
sheeponabike

Bartali wrote:
Why?  For the rock and roll lifestyle Wink


Very Happy
yes, I did for the drugs too
rob of the og

Re: Why did you start racing a bicycle?

CapeRoadie wrote:
And when?  And the highlights of your racing career?  Tell us all about it HERE.


It's always been a natural part of my life, living in the countryside my brother and I used to race the other boys to get to the nearest village to go to the shops. When I was about 9 I was in big trouble with my dad because one of the neighbours had seen us tearing around the wrong side of the roads round blind bends  Shocked  Sometimes timetrials, usually 'en ligne' races, up and down the 3 miles course to the shops, load up on sweets and Coke and race back again. Awesome.

A few of us took it up properly and joined clubs: the most keen two of us deliberately joined different clubs so that we could race against each other every week. The race result was irrelevant: the main event was who finished first out of us two, and there was more venom in the training burn-up on the Rhondda mountain roads than in any of the races. Me as Ullrich, the steady power-monster, my buddy as Pantani, light-weight attacker... in truth he was much better than me, and could maybe have reached a fairly high level if he'd had the breaks, but he had a lot of bad luck with crashes and non-cycling life-issues. Being a climber he didn't fit in to the track scene that dominates here, and he's drifted away from the sport. Big shame - I know that he still loves the sport itself but doesn't want to ride anymore and hasn't really found a way to still be a part of it.

My racing highlights have all come later on, as I approach 30. I've won two races recently, winning both the hard way after race-long breaks on tough courses. I've done 20min4secs for a 10m TT, and in my favourite mountain TT I've had 2nd, 3rd and 2nd again in the last three seasons. A big highlight has been helping to bring a very good junior into road racing, showing him the tactical and training ropes over his first year. It's really re-energised me for the sport.
Bartali

Re: Why did you start racing a bicycle?

rob of the og wrote:
...  load up on ... Coke. Awesome.


See ... Rob likes the rock and roll lifestyle too Wink

Seriously - nice story Rob and good to hear of your recent success!
CapeRoadie

Rob, great tale.  Where is the Og?
rob of the og

CapeRoadie wrote:
Rob, great tale.  Where is the Og?



Very Happy  Ogmore Valley, in the land of the flag in your avatar.

What I forgot to add was that on a few of our later battles up and down the valley roads we were joined by a 14yo girl who turned out to be quite useful on a bike. She's done alright since and is now World- and Olympic road champion.
CapeRoadie

rob of the og wrote:
CapeRoadie wrote:
Rob, great tale.  Where is the Og?



Very Happy  Ogmore Valley, in the land of the flag in your avatar.

What I forgot to add was that on a few of our later battles up and down the valley roads we were joined by a 14yo girl who turned out to be quite useful on a bike. She's done alright since and is now World- and Olympic road champion.


I happen to know who that is...  Very Happy

My time spent climbing Yr Wyddfa is a fond memory.  You people can sing, too!

Ahhh...

rob of the og

CapeRoadie wrote:

I happen to know who that is...  Very Happy

My time spent climbing Yr Wyddfa is a fond memory.  You people can sing, too!


hmmm, I'll stick to cycling not singing, it's better for all of us that way.

We have great roads here for cycling, the only problem is that it takes hours to get anywhere. I've actually only been to Snowdonia a couple of times, because it's a 5 hour drive on really windy roads. It's funny, when I'm on holiday I'd think nothing about driving that far to get somewhere... but when it's your home you don't go.

This is our local mountain pass, the Bwlch y Clawdd. You can see the road at the bottom, and also at the top-left (you can just see the cutting where the road goes). It's also one of the top places in the world apparently for hang gliding and model aeroplane flying; people come from everywhere to go flying there. It's only about 500m altitude at the top of the pass, but of course the sea is only a few miles away so it's a fairly sharp rise.





and at the top:
sheeponabike

great pics rob!
indeed - that must be good cycling country......
Sooty

Got interested in racing when I was really young - 10ish - read about it, saw little bits on ITV - put some "drops" on my little 24" wheel bike.  Parents bought me a Sun "racing bike" at 12 and I went on rides with a schoolmate and just fell in love with getting out and about in the countryside.  One day I saw a road race at West Hanningfield and thought it incredible - didn't think I could ever do it.  Hated sport at school 'cos I was such a weedy little child - but cycling seemed something else entirely.  Lots of touring, YHA, CTC b+b etc - happy times!  Started racing in 1970 I think.

Highlights - not really!  Scrubber as a junior, but got faster round about aged 20.  Best 25: 56.40, best 10: 22.37.  Won quite a few club events, mostly hilly TTs and hillclimbs.  Rubbish at road racing.  However I used to go out with the local hardmen on their chaingang bashes and realised how fast I was on the hills.  Shame I lived in Essex!

Looking back, although I enjoyed racing I wished I'd toured more - might not have knackered my knees quite so much, too many cold mornings on big gears I think.
last km

Pity you missed out on Road Racing.

As a schoolboy we were restricted to 72 ( was it 76) I think and 86 as a junior, so never really got into big gears.

On a Thurday night there was an Australian Pusuit where you would be riding on 86 as a junior until the first cats caught up, there would be some top guys in those races, Doug Dailey, Pete Mathews, Kenny Hill.

You sure learned how to twiddle in those events........
thunderthighs

i love speed.. ciao
Sooty

thunderthighs wrote:
i love speed.. ciao


That is absolutely perfect TT - sums things up wonderfully!! Laughing Cool

Rob of the Og - the countryside has a lot to do with the whole spirit of cycling, after all what would the TdF be without the stunning scenery?  
Sooty makes a mental note... "must visit Wales again sometime soon..... "
CapeRoadie

Rob, where's that middle picture?
paperman

thunderthighs wrote:
i love speed.. ciao


If you love speed, race with Valentino.................... ciao
Monty28

paperman wrote:
thunderthighs wrote:
i love speed.. ciao


If you love speed, race with Valentino.................... ciao


Isn't Rossi driving in the Welsh Rally GB next month? Chance to at least see the man for our Welsh posters, though probably not a great idea to go racing with him. Now if someone was to lend him a bke....
paperman

Monty28 wrote:
paperman wrote:
thunderthighs wrote:
i love speed.. ciao


If you love speed, race with Valentino.................... ciao


Isn't Rossi driving in the Welsh Rally GB next month? Chance to at least see the man for our Welsh posters, though probably not a great idea to go racing with him. Now if someone was to lend him a bke....


He sure is.
last km

As a schoolboy we were restricted to 72 ( was it 76) I think and 86 as a junior, so never really got into big gears.

Just in case anyone was wondering what I was on about, thats

48 x 17 as a schoolboy

48 x 15 as a junior  

it was checked before and immediately after a race ( especially if you got a "place"
rob of the og

CapeRoadie wrote:
Rob, where's that middle picture?


Looking back down the valley on the same climb. Cwm Parc is the village you can see, it's a side valley to the main Rhonnda Fawr. The virage in the middle picture is hidden behind the ridge of the mountain in the first picture.  You can see where  the road starts in the top of the picture and follows the opposite side of the valley to the village. The two pictures are from almost exactly opposite positions as the road snakes up the pass.

The south side, from the Ogmore Valley, is more spectacular to ride as it goes up a tight cutting against a vertical cliff face. It doesn't photograph so well though. I found this one, if you look at the top where the tree line ends in a diagonal line, that's where the road is going.



Watch out for the sheep wandering into the road... especially on the descents  Shocked
sheeponabike

that's enough rob, you're making us jealous  Wink
Bartali

Jealous of the sheep or the climbs? Wink
thunderthighs

paperman wrote:
thunderthighs wrote:
i love speed.. ciao


If you love speed, race with Valentino.................... ciao


i had a gsrx 750..with a 1100 kit that i installed.. wow.....

i watch valentino ride, yes he is good, but nobody is superman..

ciao
last km

Valentino is......... Cool  Cool  Cool he's the dogs
Ralphnorman

21st(i think) of June 2006. Thats when I started proper training for races Very Happy It's quite sad how I can remember when I started Rolling Eyes  Wink
last km

Ralph, do you have to ride restricted gears ????
berck

Bartali wrote:
Jealous of the sheep or the climbs? Wink


You're bad Barali, very bad. Wink  Very Happy  Laughing
sheeponabike

Bartali wrote:
Jealous of the sheep or the climbs? Wink

Very Happy  Very Happy
only just found this thanks to berck's post.
er, both?

had a great joke about a sheep, a sheepdog, a Welshman and a beautiful blonde but I can't find the piggin' thing.
Ralphnorman

last km wrote:
Ralph, do you have to ride restricted gears ????

I do in crits and RR's I think, but as you know Wink I'm a TT man, and I don't have restricted gears in a TT Cool
CapeRoadie

last km wrote:
Valentino is......... Cool  Cool  Cool he's the dogs


The dog's what?
sheeponabike

bollocks  Wink
CapeRoadie

...and one of my favorite low-class pubs in San Francisco.  I heard they just closed.

thunderthighs

junoir in canada.. 50x14..cadet 48x16... juventile senoir 51x13.. senoir..what ever you can push... i rode 54x12.. in fast crits..and 53x13 road served me well

23..21..19..17..15..13..  my favorite block...
kellyrocheearly

Started when i was 12 way back in 1990 and raced every year until end of 2003. Took 3 years off and started back again last year.
For gearing rode 42x17 at Under 12 and then 42x15, 52x17, 52x15 and then turned senior with a 52x13 through 21 block. After two years on that switched to 53x12 through 23.
First two bikes had down tube shifters and toe clips and straps.
last km

First two bikes had down tube shifters and toe clips and straps.

Wink me too, happy days.......and centre pull brakes
sheeponabike

Cape - sorry about the thread drift, but I thought you might appreciate this

CapeRoadie

thunderthighs wrote:
23..21..19..17..15..13..  my favorite block...


I rode:

12/13/14/15/16/17/18/19/21/23

I like the 18 cog.  That was new for me this year.
last km

CapeRoadie wrote:
thunderthighs wrote:
23..21..19..17..15..13..  my favorite block...


I rode:

12/13/14/15/16/17/18/19/21/23

I like the 18 cog.  That was new for me this year.


When I was a schoolboy, that would have required two blocks  Wink
Bartali

CapeRoadie wrote:
thunderthighs wrote:
23..21..19..17..15..13..  my favorite block...


I rode:

12/13/14/15/16/17/18/19/21/23

I like the 18 cog.  That was new for me this year.


Only 10 gears Cape?  Wink

When I was a kid I liked 13-21.  I could ride anything with a 42-21 back in the day.  These days its all compacts and 26 tooth granny cogs!
kellyrocheearly

Bartali wrote:
CapeRoadie wrote:
thunderthighs wrote:
23..21..19..17..15..13..  my favorite block...


I rode:

12/13/14/15/16/17/18/19/21/23

I like the 18 cog.  That was new for me this year.


Only 10 gears Cape?  Wink

When I was a kid I liked 13-21.  I could ride anything with a 42-21 back in the day.  These days its all compacts and 26 tooth granny cogs!


I still have a 42-21 on my winter bike.
CapeRoadie

sheeponabike wrote:
Cape - sorry about the thread drift, but I thought you might appreciate this



Is it any good?  I like the label.    Thanks, sheep.  I think it fits perfectly in this thread.  It's one of the reasons why some us started racing:  more beer!
CapeRoadie

kellyrocheearly wrote:
Bartali wrote:
CapeRoadie wrote:
thunderthighs wrote:
23..21..19..17..15..13..  my favorite block...


I rode:

12/13/14/15/16/17/18/19/21/23

I like the 18 cog.  That was new for me this year.


Only 10 gears Cape?  Wink

When I was a kid I liked 13-21.  I could ride anything with a 42-21 back in the day.  These days its all compacts and 26 tooth granny cogs!


I still have a 42-21 on my winter bike.


Anyone here pulling a 55-11?
last km

Anyone here pulling a 55-11?

Probably TT  Wink or me on the Tourmalet descent.......
Bartali

CapeRoadie wrote:
Anyone here pulling a 55-11?


Ha ha.  Them's TT gears!

I couldn't turn that sort of gear ...
Enchantress

By accident truthfully - started racing I mean.

I had been riding for fitness and weight loss. After a short while I realized I was quite taken with the sport.

It was a natural progression to first ride with a club then finally make the transition to racing about 3 years ago.

Best successes? A few wins in category 3.

My problem is one typical of women's racing in some smaller areas of america - with so few competitors and few flat races - it makes it hard for someone of my strengths to win. I've got a classic power profile of a strong sprinter with excellent anaerobic power but quite modest aerobic and threshold power.
CapeRoadie

Enchantress wrote:
By accident truthfully - started racing I mean.

I had been riding for fitness and weight loss. After a short while I realized I was quite taken with the sport.

It was a natural progression to first ride with a club then finally make the transition to racing about 3 years ago.

Best successes? A few wins in category 3.

My problem is one typical of women's racing in some smaller areas of america - with so few competitors and few flat races - it makes it hard for someone of my strengths to win. I've got a classic power profile of a strong sprinter with excellent anaerobic power but quite modest aerobic and threshold power.


Did you race this week?
Enchantress

CapeRoadie wrote:


Did you race this week?


Only against the deadline of having all my stuff in the moving van!  Sad
thunderthighs

55 x 11... thats a nasty gear the fatigue creeps very slowly ..but it KIlls you.. tryed that gear last year in a local ride.. when i went to he front, i killed the guys.. they cursed me.. 6 gears or plenty uless you are Lance..then u need many more....

ciao
Guiness

Started cycling because of my dad. He got me into bikes. I will always have fond memories of him and bikes.
SlowRower

Bartali wrote:
I could ride anything with a 42-21 back in the day.  These days its all compacts and 26 tooth granny cogs!


A compact with a 26 at the back is little more than middle-aged aunt, rather than a granny in my book. Grannies have at least 30 teeth, preferably 32. Smile
Guiness

Laughing  Laughing

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