By Don Andrews
There is a lot going on for you to take advantage of in addition to the Sunday club run. Here are some of the other ways to enjoy your cycling:
Sundays - club runs (or should they really be called club rides)?
Up to 5 groups with different speeds and distances are very well established and highly popular.
Mondays - Club nights at Fleetville Community Centre, Royal Road, St Albans.
The weekly social get together for a varied list of talks on cycling topics, discussions, meetings and shows of cycling related items, cheese and wine evenings etc. etc. Also a central point for members to meet or order/collect club clothing.
Tuesdays - A group of generally older VCC members meet at Vanstone Garden Centre for tea and very lively chat. Also a venue for the Lanterne Rouge who are an invitation only club to which some VCC members belong.
Also in the summer months the Tuesday 10 mile time trials take place on the Codicote to Hitchin road. A popular event with prizes awarded on a points basis.
Wednesdays - an impromtu group have a morning ride of around 40/50 miles to a wide variety of venues, often to places that the club runs don't go. Everyone welcome. Meeting at the bus stop in the center of Harpenden at 9.30am
Thursdays - a small group of retired members meet at the garden centre ‘Sanuk’, Potten End for tea and banter. Make your own way there and ride back as a group.
Friday - in the summer a great evening's entertainment can be had at the Welwyn track meeting with races for all ages on the resurfaced track (Lottery money!) Bikes for hire to try a ride on a bike with a fixed wheel and no brakes!
Saturday - winter miles mean summer smiles. Don Andrews takes a group for a round trip of 40 steady miles non-stop for a winter mile builder. Starts in January from Redbourn Church at 9.30am.
Also once a month Doug Driscoll runs a mountain bike ride which is increasingly popular. Great for families. Doug has an unrivalled knowledge of local tracks.
In addition the club organises other cycling events each year -
The Chiltern 100 Sportive held in June is a very highly regarded event which attracts an entry of over 1000 riders, the organization of which needs the help and involvement of a large number of members.
Ride4aReason held later in June is an opportunity for less experienced riders to sample the delights of cycling in the Hertfordshire lanes. Open to all with route suitable for families at three distances.
The club organised an open 25 mile time trial in July which was in its 48th year. Held on the F1, a fast course based on the A1, it normally produces some very fast times.
Also the club has members going abroad to ride sportives, randonnees, and L'Etape du Tour, a stage of the Tour de France.
Training weeks take place on an ad hoc basis in places with warm climates, normally early in the season.
Next year it is planned to have a Road Racing day at the Hog Hill circuit, Redbridge to give members a taste of mass-start racing.
There is also a trip to the Manchester Velodrome to see the World Cup Series and some real cycling stars.
Then there are trips to the Olympics to look forward to!
Anything else? Well the club is always open to suggestions on what it should take part in.