fiets cyclery

by Kyle Andries

Month: August, 2014

Save The Track Bike

So I always wanted to take up Track Cycling since getting into Fixed Geared bikes, you know Chris Hoy style on the velodrome etc, and now the perfect opportunity has arisen..

As part of some initiative to get more people involved in cycling, Bournemouth Council are subsidising a free 6 week Track Cycle Training for those aged between 18-25. The sessions started last week and it’s pretty awesome to be honest…!

I’m sure you’ve seen it on TV, but trust me the Velodrome is spectacular in person – the bankings are SO steep! How can a bike move so fluently at that kind of angle? Crazy!

Anyway, myself, Jacob and Stretch went along to the first session which was last week and it was really good fun. Jason Falconer ran us through the basics of the different lines on the track and what they’re for, riding in tandem and swapping positions and even cycling three abreast on the banking. Basic Track Bike control was kind of missed off as we’re all already used to riding fixed bikes, but that can be covered too if you’re a beginner!

I was quite nervous to begin with tbh as I’ve previously come off, on more than one occasion, on the banking when I tried it out on my Langster but was assured that the bikes we hired (Dolan Pre Cursa’s, available on site) were designed purely for using round the track. The cranks are measured at 165mm and will never hit the floor as you go round, plus the Bottom Bracket is placed higher on these, whereas I’m not so sure they are on the ol’ Langster.  Want to know something cool? I came off on my bike due to the cranks being measured at 170mm. So that 5mm difference was all it took. Madness!

Once we got the hang of things it was pretty good going, such a good workout considering all you’re doing is cycling round an oval but it really can be brutal – my legs were literally burning so bad at one point that I nearly stopped.  I just love how precise everything is though… I don’t want to sound like I’m making excuses, but here’s a few things I noticed… Last time I came, amongst skidding on my face, I had bad flat spots on my rear tyre (TOO MANY RADICAL SKIDS YO) which I would never have noticed riding on the streets. But come here and all of a sudden, I was bobbing up and down every few meters like a mad man. And the Wind!! There was none, seemingly, when sat on the grass having a quick briefing on what the training will entail, however after a few laps you hit the home stretch and BAM, headwind in your face which feels like your father strangling you as you try to run away. I honestly have a new found respect for the sport and really encourage you to come along, if you’re local, and experience it for yourself.

As said this is one off free training sessions which lasts up to 6 weeks and the more people that get involved, the more the Council will endorse these types of things so it’s a win win really. At the end I’m pretty sure you get a Velo license too!

Slades Farm Velodrome

Thursdays (Running 21 August to 25 September – subject to change though, weather pending and also if you start in week 3 perhaps?!)

6pm meet for 6:30pm start!

http://www.bournemouth.cc/

Massive thanks to Jason Falconer who does the coaching, Bournemouth Cycling Centre  and also those who made it possible.

See you Thursday hopefully!

 

 

 

Let me tell you a story of my situation. Part 5

Cars!

So yeah they’re pretty awesome! Amazingly convenient and as an invention arguably the most important… Shame they cost the earth quite a bit! Epitome of personal transport in modern day society though and I probably love them equally as much as I love bikes, to be honest… If it didnt take me 20 minutes to cycle to work compared to 30 minutes driving, I would probably still drive every day. But I’m really impatient you see, and sitting in traffic around idiots is not my ideal way of spending half hour of my morning. Plus people are so angry in rush hour. Like fuck… chill out! We’re all going to get where we need to go… Overtaking that bus that’s halfway pulling out of the lay-by is not going to shorten your journey by 30 minutes ffs!!

Sorry, but that impatientness (is that even a word?) and road rage is quite funny though.. We will always feel safe in our little metal box thing so we shout at others or beep our horns when we feel someone has wronged us, yet if you walked somewhere and someone perhaps walked in front of you, you’d think twice about shouting or waving your fists at them wouldn’t you? Think about it… Anyway, I do like cars. I like them alot. Jeremy Clarkson is quite possibly my favourite celebrity!

I remember as a kid my parents owned a Toyota Cressida and as soon as I found out it was a 2.0 litre, 24 valve engine with a Straight 6 engine, I was obsessed and had to find out more about other cars. I even looked down on lesser Toyota Cressida’s if they were anything below ours but I guess that’s just my snobbery coming into play. My family and where I grew up were quite car orientated though. Every weekend the neighbours would throw a braai and there would turn up a bright yellow Ford Capri, a 1964 Ford Mustang in red and a beige Ford Sierra XR8. My dad owned a Seirra too.. Now it’s all well and good liking cars, but I dont know if you noticed but all the pictures I’m posting are of cars atleast 20 years old bar one. There’s just something else in me that makes an older car more desirable, more attractive even. Like you know your original Golf GTI’s, your Open Astra GTE’s, and especially your E28/E30 BMW’s. I dont know why, it’s probably the old square shapes, and the fact that they are just so mcuh cooler than the stuff being churned out of the factories today. I mean take the difference between VW’s 1990 Scirroco and compare it to Vauxhall’s Astra of the same era, completely different cars. Yet the similarity between the two 2012 models is fucking crazy. They’re pretty much teh same car… Fuck off Vauxhall, Fuck off VW!!! Laziness to be honest. Corporate culture has kicked in and now everyone is driving around in the same thing but it must be amazing cus it has 10 airbags no?

So that being said, it’s only natural that I own an old Ford of some sort right? Wrong! Think more 1990 VW Golf GTI. In my opinion the best Golf VW ever made (but I would say that wouldnt I?!) and 24 years old as I type this, in fact I’m only older than it by a month… After I received my 6 points  on my license Diane always asked why I didnt sell it.. bitch be cra\y! I mean thats like me asking her to sell our dog, Freddy, who I’m 100% certain she loves him more than me, pffft! But yeah to give you an idea thats how it makes me feel when she asks that and I’m sure she’ll ask it again… I spent a good 2 years saving up for it, plus lets not mention how hard it is to find a good solid example these days. I even put a £50 deposit on one local in Ringwood but didnt return as I wasnt 100% happy.. that’s £50 I’ll never see again!!

In the end a 8 hour round trek to Derby was where we headed to pick up His Hurbertness, or Hurbert the Pervert!

This is probably a car I’ll own for life, so in the first four years of ownership not much has happened really. Mainly because I couldnt afford to do anything as adulthood quickly made use of all my disposable income. But I’m sure as I get older it’ll get more attention as I snap necks and cash cheques! Besides, I’m more than self sufficient for every day on my bike and tend to get most things done like food shops, seeing m8s etc plus Diane drives anyway if I need to go far places.

 

I’ll probably post regular updates here as if it were a “build thread”. I do frequent the forum Edition38 but dont really want to post a thread on there as I really dont like the idea of guys commenting “nice car m8” for 24 pages just because I lowered my car and bought some BBS RS or them telling me their opinionz. That’s just my 2p though!

Dont worry though, as I get older and have more disposable income (or does it not work that way?!) I’m sure I’ll still make time for cycling. I noticed that Michael 2 Pints has probably only been on 3/4 proper rides since his return from Paris as he recently passed his test and got his dad to buy him a VW Lupo. I wonder when the last time he cycled to work was eh Michael?! Also he sticker bombs so probably best not to have him hanging around with us, thats so 2009…

 

Anyways, bike post soon, I’m still on the lookout for a fixie…

 

Kyle