• Dr K. K. Doty
    Dr K. K. Doty “Cyclers see considerably more of this beautiful world than any other class of citizens.”
  • John F. Kennedy
    John F. Kennedy “Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of a bike ride.”
  • Albert Einstein
    Albert Einstein “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving”
  • Chip Brown
    Chip Brown “Like dogs, bicycles are social catalysts that attract a superior category of people.”
  • Mark Twain
    Mark Twain "Get a bicycle. You will not regret it if you live."
  • Albert Einstein
    Albert Einstein "I thought of that (the Theory of Relativity) while riding my bike."
  • Greg LeMond
    Greg LeMond "It never gets easier, you just go faster."
  • James E. Starrs
    James E. Starrs "Melancholy is incompatible with bicycling."
  • George W. Bush
    George W. Bush "I'm gonna show you a hill that would choke a mule." (said just before he fell off his bicycle)
  • Iris Murdoch
    Iris Murdoch "The bicycle is the most civilized conveyance known to man. Other forms of transport grow daily more nightmarish. Only the bicycle remains pure in heart."

iCycle for Distance

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Build stamina and duration for long distance rides with iCycle.

iCycle for Fitness

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Cycle specific training at iCycle, for fitness, core strength and technique.

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iCycle for Fun

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Social Rides and events at iCycle; connect with others & share experiences.

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Cycle challenges at iCycle. Sportives, audaxes, col climbs and etapes.

Eastern Region MTB Series

Round 3 – Tunstall, far east (some said Holland..!)

Nik had entered, but unfortunately couldn’t make it, so I was on my own this time.

Dismally winding and thinking of Rick and Karen doing the Norfolk 100, I was looking forward to a sheltered event in the woods, hoping the rain would hold off.

Arriving in time to do the warm up lap and take a look at the course for the first time, I had a leisurely loop around with most of the field in about 25 minutes.

As always, it’s a 2 hour event. The course was very dry but also very sandy. 3 big bombholes added some fun with hideous climb outs, and some sweet single track added up to a superb course.

As last time, I was looking at 20 minute laps,so 6 was the target, maybe hoping for 7 but see how the laps go.

The total field was about 250 in all and there were 49 in my category (Vet Males). About 5 of those were from “semi-pro” sponsored teams and they were looking sharp!


I lined up on the grid towards the back of the group (a bit of confusion from the organisers on the line upset the gridding a bit) and at just after 1pm, I was off. With a smaller field than last time, the first lap was flying from the start and feeling fresh from 2 weeks hols, I was flying and passing many riders. The first few bombhole exits saw most of them off, and that was my chance to steam on through.

Lap 1 was 20:10, and I needed to be sub 20 to start a 7th lap. Game On!


Lap 2 was holding the pace steady, making sure no vets came through if I could help it, until Whoosh, the top Vet flew by in a cloud of dust. Lapped!

Still a consistent pal though at 20:40.

Lap 3 saw a lot of tired riders. I was feeling good but got snarled up in traffic on 2 bombhole exits costing me valuable seconds.

Still a good lap all considered but slower at 21:03.

The same was happening on lap 4 and as others really tired, I was getting held up on the single track too. My passing skills are improving and getting passed riders, but still be courteous and waiting until there’s a hint of a space. I had early seen an elite rider flying pass a rider and knocking him off. That’s just not right, so I sportingly shout, wait and pass and you get some respect for it (good Kudos for the jersey!)

Lap 5, and I started to tire a bit. Knowing now that 7 laps was not on, the brain started to wander a bit, then on the last bombhole exit on the lap, I cramped in both legs, Ouch. Gulping down loads of isotonic, I kept on riding through the pain and after what seemed an age, it went. But 1hr 40minutes came and went and I hadn’t finished lap 5, so it was a definite 6 lap event for me.

So on lap 6, I settled in to a good pace recovering a bit and just made sure I held my position and didn’t get passed by Vets I had passed earlier, and then finally sprinting the last 100ft to catch the guy in front on the line (Leo would be proud) to finish an equal 30th.

Overall, a good event.

A great course and I’m definitely getting better

The results were as follows;


Winning time for our category and overall (yes, a VET was the fastest on the day)

Lloyd Bettles
Lap (1) 00:16:41, (2) 00:16:38, (3) 00:16:34, (4) 00:16:47, (5) 00:16:53 (6) 00:17:17, (7) 00:17:20 (8) 00:16:28
Total time 2:14:39

Trev
(1) 00:20:10, (2) 00:20:40, (3) 00:21:03, (4) 00:21:34, (5) 00:22:57 (6) 00:23:41
Total time 2:09:02
Final position 44th

Round 4 is on 24th July at Danbury, Chelmsford

Come and have a go. It’s tough, but it’s fun!

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