2019 was a record year for the tourers: 137 touring rides covering just over 4500 miles. That’s 17 more than in each of the previous two years and 34 more than in 2016.
Ideally, we should run 150 rides per year; that’s because we try to run three touring rides per week, on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. However, we sometimes have to cancel rides due to inclement weather. The fact that we’re cancelling fewer rides these days may, perhaps, have something to do with climate change. So, if we achieve 150 touring rides in a year, it may not necessarily be good news for the planet!
For now, the good news is that we’ve got 2020 off to a good start. Just as we did in 2019, our first ride of the year was to Molly’s Café on the promenade at Rottingdean. The route we take to Molly’s makes for a reasonably easy ride as it’s a round trip of 20 miles, starting and finishing at the Martello Tower in Seaford, and is graded as a 3B.
Our touring rides this year will largely be run in similar fashion to the past couple of years whereby the Tuesday rides will be about 20 to 25 miles, the Thursday rides usually between 40 and 50 miles and those on Sunday will be about 35 miles, give or take a few miles. However, we sometimes do longer rides such as to Littlehampton which is a round trip of 70 miles.
This year the Tuesday rides may have optional extensions to the route, after the café stop, which will be led by Dave Sutton. Dave is training for JOG-LE (John O’Groats to Land’s End) so needs to do the extra mileage. I’ll lead the shorter ride back to the finish.
I’m pleased to say that we have a third touring ride leader: Carol Bryant. Carol recently became a ride leader and is keen to lead some rides this year. In fact, as the numbers on our touring rides increase, we’re finding it useful to have two ride leaders on a ride with one leading and the other acting as Lanterne Rouge.
If you haven’t been on one of our touring rides then why not give us a try. The rides are sociable, always include a café stop and we cycle at a ‘moving’ average speed of about 12½ mph. That’s about the right pace for being able to chat with a fellow cyclist without getting out of breath and also to admire the scenery yet, sufficiently fast to get some decent exercise.
Our next ride will be to Horam on Sunday, a round trip of 31 miles. Details are on the Rides Calendar.
Happy Cycling New Year