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Sociable leisure rides for enthusiastic cyclists

Ride Reports

15SundayOCTOBER

Wye and Severn

131 km  x9  x9  x1
Ride Category
John Talbot
Andy Newell
Chris Walters
Dave McMillan
Jez Kent
Louis Hall
Lyn Taylor
Nick Stokell
Phil Stubbings
Nine riders plus special guests Colin and Simon from Beacon RCC in Birmingham gathered in the rather grey conditions at the start. Not cold though.

We used the cycle path to get to the A40 and over the River Severn and the short blast along the A48 before we joined tiny lanes.

An interesting incident on the level crossing which doesn't seem to like cyclists much and shut on us trapping some of the peloton behind the barriers. Unfortunately Phil took a tumble and then the barriers went up to let cars across. Bizarre!!

We continued but Phil dropped off the back. investigation revealed a smashed rear shifter and he made the obvious decision to retreat back to the start.

The rest of the riders continued to the rather busy A4151 up the climb and through Little Dean. Shortly afterwards Nick suffered the first of today's punctures. Whilst this was being fixed we were astounded to see Phil turn up! His shifter had miraculously fixed itself!!

The reunited riders climbed the second big climb of the day up to Coleford where we took a breakfast break at Kaplan's café. With most of the big climbs out of the way we continued to the glorious road along the Wye valley, a tight 2x2 peloton making life easier and safer for all road users.

The obligatory photo opportunity at Tintern Abbey and then the draggy climb punctuated by temporary traffic lights towards Chepstow where a meet was in full flow at the racecourse.

Soon we were at the garden centre for our lunch stop, note for future you are allowed to wheel your bikes through the shop to the bike parking by the café.

After refreshment we had the excitement of the Severn Bridge. Always a massive treat, especially as the Sun finally made an appearance. Gilets and arm warmers were soon removed as the temperature began to rise, this is October right?

After the initial lumpy bit to Thornbury Chris suffered puncture #2 and we were delayed again for a repair. After this we soon hit the flatlands of the Severn valley with sunshine and a lovely tailwind. We were zipping along!

I altered the route slightly to avoid one of the towpath sections, this involved a quick blast for a few km along the A38. We were delayed by a swing bridge at Frampton and decided as time was getting on to skip the final optional stop and head back to Gloucester. Just before the towpath section I felt my back tyre go soft but thought I'd hang on for a bit and stick some air in it, unfortunately shortly afterwards it went flat suddenly for puncture #3. A new club record for a ride!!

Most of the others continued on the last few km to the finish whilst I repaired and got back to the car park a bit later than estimated.

An excellent ride and excellent company :)

9MondayOCTOBER

Corallian CC AGM

 x19
Chris Walters
Adrian West
Alan Gale
Andy Butcher
Barry Gills
Dave McMillan
Des Higgs
Jasmine Talbot
Jenny Gower
Jez Kent
John Groves
John Talbot
Louis Hall
Mike Holmes
Nick Dunton
Nick Stokell
Phil Stubbings
Richard Preece
Terry Penn
We promised an hour and delivered - to the minute!

The slides from the evening will be made available, but here is the brief abstract - with the minutes to follow:

1. Current committee re-elected unanimously.

2. No motions were submitted

3. Suggestions / discussion items - all will be followed up at the next committee meeting:
- various social media / marketing / website suggestions

- growth strategy declared as organic and that we're not aspiring to become a big club for the foreseeable future

- ride ideas including a velodrome visit and some off-roading

- the committee raised the question of "are we appropriately diverse in membership" and the AGM told us: a) a direct attempt to increase diversity could be seen as condescending and that would be worse than being too homogeneous! and b) continue to make whoever turns up feel very welcome - that is the best way to foster diversity and inclusion. Thanks for such direct and constructive guidance!

- Christmas meal on a Saturday / Sunday evening a couple of weeks before Christmas

On the dot of 8pm, many attendees went over to the Fox for a very nice meal and some good banter.

Many thanks to all Corallian members for making our first year a success :)
8SundayOCTOBER

Morning Ride - Shilton

77 km  x14  x3
Ride Category
Chris Walters
Adrian West
Andy Newell
Barry Gills
Dave McMillan
Hugo Pile
John Groves
John Talbot
Louis Hall
Nick Dunton
Nick Stokell
Phil Stubbings
Richard Saunders
Tom Clayton
A cracking turnout and a cracking ride. 14 of us set off out to Uffington and through the Coxwells (remind me not to try and keep up with Dave up Fernham Hill - I'm still hurting now) to Coleshill. We kept up the good pace and tight formation right the way through to the stop at Bampton Garden Centre - yummy as ever!

Buckland Hill claimed a victim as Adrian's chain snapped - but assisted by Tom and Barry (thanks both!) Adrian managed to limp back to Wantage on a slightly flatter route with a bodged repair (the 9-speed powerlinks arrived just after the said repair had been completed).

All in all, a fantastic morning on the road - just warm enough, no wind to speak of, and a bunch of good riders doing some good riding.

1SundayOCTOBER

Corallian Crusade

105 km  x7  x3
Ride Category
John Talbot
Andy Newell
Chris Walters
Claire Newell
Dave McMillan
Jez Kent
Mike Holmes
The anniversary ride saw leaden skies and the threat of rain, thankfully we only had two brief bursts of rain.

Many of the smaller lanes were wet and mucky though and those who chose mudguards made a wise choice.

The route should make an interesting audax, it would be a pretty easy introduction to 100km rides.

I was conscious of the forecast predicting strong winds later on and I was keen to get to the lunch stop at The Talbot in Eynsham at 12pm to get orders in before the rush. It's very busy on a Sunday. This meant the pace was pretty high before lunch but we had a nice tailwind for much of it.

Lunch was served promptly and the food was excellent. I had a chat with the manager about the origin of the name!!

After lunch we had a brief flat before Tumbledown Hill into Cumnor. The wind made itself felt from here back to Uffington and the earlier high pace started to take its toll on some of the riders (including me!).

A very excellent way to celebrate our first anniversary :)

24SundaySEPTEMBER

New Forest Tour

81 km  x5  x6
Ride Category
Chris Walters
Andy Newell
Dave McMillan
Jez Kent
Nick Dunton
The group was packed with strong riders today, and the weather looked impeccable. The previous days' "rain at 3pm" forecast had slipped out to "rain at 7pm". A few discussions about the best clothing combinations were had, and then we were off.

The first leg to Beaulieu was dispatched with ease and fine conversation. The New Forest at this time of year is ideal - lots of cyclists, few cars, and plenty of wildlife roaming the roads. Our coffee stop proved to be warm enough to enjoy outside, which was a bonus.

Between coffee and lunch, the riding is varied to say the least - a couple of decent hills, some moorland, ornamental drives through the forest and a nice downhill with which to end (early) for lunch. Lunch was an unhurried affair, but most convivial and tasty.

Eventually we tore ourselves away from our nook in the pub and tackled the afternoon - a short sharp hill immediately after the zero-speed ford, the long drag up Roger Penny Way, and then the final dash through the woods looking for pigs, which proved elusive on this trip. Jez tried very hard to take a young donkey home with him though.

As we reached the finish, Nick commented that he could do with an extra 20km. This signalled the immediate onset of rain (spot on 3pm!) and Nick was therefore put in his placed by a higher power, and we settled on another coffee instead.

A fantastic day of very mellow riding with a solid bunch of Corallians - loved it!