Tag Archives: bannister

saturday 31st oct – leach vs south

ride report by peter.


you know it doesn’t really look like that many people when we are all waiting around the car park, but once we get going, it is amazing how much room we take up on the road.  i estimated about 50 riders were out this morning and we even got split at the first set of lights leaving the car park.  the group was heading down canning hwy and we were to split just after north lake rd with the main group continuing on and the fast group taking burke drive.  the main group would pretty much reach freo before returning via leach hwy while the fast group would take the stock rd hill and then across to south street.  the map did actually say that we continue on to nicholson road but i got confused and told everyone at the start that we would turn at banister.  sorry my bad.

well before we got there, the group was split at pretty much half of every set of lights that we could hit.  there was a bit of catch up but we eventually got there.  as per last time, the split was going to cause havoc with the traffic.  with the group needing to take up both lanes for a very, very short amount of time, there was always going to be someone that was going to have to slow down for that 15 or so seconds.  sure enough, we got some abuse hurled at us as the cars sped past.

i would say it was close to a 30/20 spilt in favour of the fast group today.  i had noticed the wind had picked up a bit as we were riding along canning and i was wondering how that would affect the group.  inevitably, it had a dramatic affect on many a rider. 

the group seemed to meander a bit along burke drive with no-one really wanting to push the pace.  i was hanging off the back with declan discussing why he was with the fast group this morning.  “method to the madness” was his initial comment, but it turns out that he is training for the canberra ½ ironman which has quite a hilly bike leg, so he was wanting to do the stock rd hill too. 

well we hit the bottom of the hill and everyone took off like a rocket.  i used to do repeats of this hill as training, so i knew what to expect and set a steady pace for the first bit.  as we turned the corner and the hill continued, those that had burnt all their matches on the early slope, were slowly drifting back.  some of the fast boys managed to go hard on both the initial pinch and the rest of the climb so i didn’t make up more than half the field. 

i think the hill made the initial selection and some people never found their way back on by the time we crossed canning hwy.  along stock road there were a couple of small hills that made life tough for some riders and the wind made it hard to get back on.  by the time we turned onto south street, i think we may have lost a couple more.

there are many rolling hills along this section of south street and it is an opportunity for a strong rider to make an impact on the group.  steve has been slowly recovering from back surgery earlier on in the year and still feels that he is trying to find form.  well he took off on the first hill and the group reacted and started to splinter apart.  riders were falling off the back and those that had trouble on stock road were never going to catch up now.  i was wheel hopping from rider to rider trying to claw my way back to the front group.  once equilibrium set in, it was clear what the front of the ride now consisted of.  firstly there was steve fifty or more metres off the front.  then there was a group of about five or so riders containing ryan, brendan and others all swapping off turns trying to catch up.  trailing not far, but far enough to be hurting were a few others like judd, john and myself.  we were swapping turns ourselves trying to bridge the gap.  after us, there was a  lot of empty road and i had no idea where the rest of the group was.  later i found out that they got pretty much every traffic light along that stretch and were never going to bridge back even if we slowed down.

anyway, the front groups all smashed themselves for a good 5 kms before a set of lights at murdoch drv finally brought steve to a halt.  the rest of us caught up, but our group now numbered just ten and by the time the lights released us, there were still no others on the horizon. 

john commented that i really dug deep to help keep us in touch and i replied that my “spew-meter” was pretty much in the red.  he said that he was sure that there will be more opportunities to spew later.  the group took off the we started to roll through again and we picked up matty somewhere along this stretch.  with the wind coming across us, we rolled to the right and made it all the way to banister road with no incident.  the group started to change lanes to continue on but i called for them to turn left and we did banister instead.  it wasn’t until i looked at the garmin that it said “off course” that i realised the we were indeed, off course.  however, since i had said that we were doing banister from the start, it wasn’t so much off course, but a different course.

so with a slight tailwind, the pace picked up to well over 50km/hr and i opted to sit on the back rather than getting in the way at the front.  there were a couple of attacks and a sprint towards the end of banister but i wasn’t seeing much past judd’s bum in front of me and the sweat streaming down my glasses.

nicholson was pretty much the same and the group continued hard through cannington.  there were no attacks but the pace didn’t relent and i was glad that i was being a selfish passenger as i would have been out the back after a couple of roll throughs.  just as we came through east vic park ryan made a move just before the lights at the kent st intersection.  this is the usual launching pad as there is a slight ride after it.  unfortunately the lights changed and four of us were left on the wrong side of amber so watched the group sprint up the road.  we had them in sight at the narrows, but the lights conspired against us so we never came close enough to contest the sprint.

i wasn’t stopping for coffee as kate had some dental surgery yesterday so was not feeling 100%.  the rest of the fast group and the main group came in slowly after that, but everyone was pretty buggered.

track grand prix next saturday night, the golden spokes race on sunday with the tour de perth the following weekend so we are in for a couple of busy weekends.  make sure you pencil in sunday the 15th to come and support the club at the festival of cycling during the tour de perth.  we will post more info soon, but there will be lots of cycling related stuff going on at perry lakes reserve while the tour de perth race is going on.

saturday 4th oct – spr breakfast ride

ride report by peter.


which one will i ride today - my garage is finally how i want it
which one will i ride today - my garage is finally how i want it

i woke to the dreaded sound of rain this morning and the sound of cars swishing past.  normally this is not a problem, but this morning was our spr breakfast and a wet ride would mean soggy riders in my house.  the only saving grace was that the rain only lasted briefly and was over by 5:30am.  hopefully the roads would be dry by the time we started.


we had close to 40 people rsvp for the breakfast and we usually pick up a few more on the day, so i was expecting a decent turn out.  there are also those that will ride but not stay for breakfast, so our numbers were up over 50 by the time we headed off.  we were playing the amended banister road course this morning as we needed to finish in como rather than the city so the shorter ending meant we would extend the ride down to stock road.  back along south street and up banister before nicholson and albany hwy.  a detour along manning road would bring us to como rather than the causeway.


the ride started well enough, we managed to get caught at the lights quite a bit and it split the group as expected.  it was the usual disjointed start but we eventually found our way down canning at a leisurely pace.  the hill preceding the stock road intersection was always going to be interesting even at a leisurely pace it would be too fast for some riders and the group fell apart a bit there.  not real problem though as we regrouped at the red light.


along the rolling hills of stock road we maintained an easy pace and there was minimal damage to the group.  i continued to play the sheepdog roll and flitted between the front and back of the group to help it stay together.  once we turned onto south street, the rolling hills became a bit bigger and a few riders like stu and mike fell back to help some of the struggling ones get back on.  as this was a breakfast ride, i wanted the group to arrive as much of a group as possible.  a few friendly lights meant that we hit banister road as a pack.  it was also when the rain started.


when we left the car park this morning there was clouds to the north and to the south with showers pouring out of each.  we were dry but heading south.  looks like we caught up to it.


a sea of green in the lounge room
a sea of green in the lounge room

the rain wasn’t particularly heavy, but in a big group it doesn’t need to be as the spray from your own tyres, the rider in front and the one in front of that, all seem to be landing on your head.  the road was quite wet so the spray was probably double the actual rainfall.


the pace stepped up somewhat and riders began pushing to the front.  no real roll though, but more like a series of continuous attacks that drove the pace higher.  in the wet conditions it made for an interesting experience, but at no time did i feel like it was dangerous.  the aussie crates boys, brendan and steve, were forcing the pace along with the usual suspects like nick and jens.  the absence of ryan meant that there would be no last minute flyer up the side to blow everyone apart, but the pace was starting to take it’s toll.  i eventually made a move as i thought that we were coming to the end of banister road, but i miscalculated as we still had a way to go.  it was dryer at the front, however, until the aussie crates led the pack back around me. 


pretty soon we were at the end and from what i could see through rain drenched glasses, the crates boys got there first.  we slowed, or rather were slowed by the lights to allow the majority of the group a chance to rejoin.  a gentle pace along nicholson gave me a chance to drop back and help a few struggling riders. 


as we approached the lights at spencer rd i looked up to see a rider on the ground and a few others getting untangled.  the rest of the group were already up the road, so no real chance in getting them back.  it turns out that canadian bill, took off to fast and smacked into the rear wheel of jens.  canada came off second best in the coming together of nations as jens stayed upright, while bill ended up on the deck.  not real damage apart from a big can of humility, which has probably now doubled after everyone gets to read it on the blog. 


the group had gone, so mike, stu and myself got this litte group of about seven of us together and headed for home in the rain.  quite uneventful really, except for the dry roads around curtain uni, which showed that it had only rained around the canning vale area. 


more green
more green

the soggy group had started filing into the garage by the time i got home, and it was shoes and socks off and water wrung out of armwarmers and gloves before heading in.  lorraine and kate and jody had the place prepared and there was hot food and coffee awaiting.  the toasted ham and cheese sangas were a hit along with the big pot of hot chocolate which was not big enough apparently.  there were massive amounts of food and i am pretty sure that no-one went home wanting.  we had set up tables outside again, in the vain hope that the weather would have been nicer, but it wasn’t to be.  hopefully the next one in three months time will yield better results weatherwise. 


the breakfast entry also provided a ticket in the raffle and the two ritchey torqkeys went to doug and ryan.  the pump went to lisa and the conti attack/force tyres went to brendan, well actually his better half jody’s ticket won them, but he has the bike.


we then had the bike weigh in as people were dragging there bikes out of the garage.  the biggest surprise was the darren managed to whittle a bit more off his already exceedingly light bike to come in at 5.94kg.  well under the uci legal limit of 6.80kg.  fortunately for him, he doesn’t race so the uci will not be checking anytime soon.  after davina’s superlight specialized (the benefit of being sponsored) there is a massive glut of cervelos, with four r3’s coming within 100 grams of each other.  there may be some weight saving coming up before the next breakfast between these guys to see who can get the upper hand.  with this bulk of lighter bikes grabbing the top positions, my 8.34kg (forgot to reweigh mine) seems rather heavy.  that is till we chucked phil and noel’s 10+kg monsters on the scales.  these guys are carrying the equivalent of 4-5 full drink bottles of extra weight when they ride.   i think i can see a good purchase for that christmas bonus this year boys.  in the meantime, it will only make you stronger.

a couple of intruders in the house - the crates boys, brendan and steve
a couple of intruders in the house - the crates boys, brendan and steve


so another successful breakfast (in my opinion anyway) and it gave everyone an opportunity to catch up a bit more.  lorraine (and kate) did another outstanding job on the food and the doggy bags didn’t go un-noticed even though they were stuffed down the font of a few guys vests.  i now have enough evil brownies to last me a week, well a few days at least.  they will probably go straight to my hips.

saturday 19th july – special launch breakfast

what seemed like the shortest sleep i have ever had came to an end this morning at a smidgen before the alarm went off. the late nights of tour watching are starting to take their toll and last night also involved getting the house ready for the launch breakfast. this event was to mark the official beginning of our new group. we have been riding together for sometime, but the new kit now seals the deal as far as who we are. half of the kit had been distributed last week, but there were still quite a few that had not collected. it will look awesome when the majority of our riders are all matching.

a handful of riders were meeting at my place this morning as they were going to drive to and from the start. with the group ride finishing at my place for a change, i had a few friends to roll to the start with. the predicted overnight temp was dismissed as a bad prediction as it dropped to 3 ½ deg by the time we were underway.

quite a good turn out this morning, but as i had asked for rsvp’s, i kind of knew how many we would see. there were a few old faces making a return as well as some that had not pushed a pedal in anger for a while. on top of that, some new-ish faces were to be seen. the route would be an adjusted variation of a typical bannister rd sprint, but changed so that we finish at my place instead of the city. a easy roll down canning, along stock rd, up south st, sprint bannister, regroup on nicholson, swing onto albany, before detouring along manning and kent. with the only fast point being bannister rd, i was hoping that it would all stay together.

huddling together like penguins in the cold, the groups numbers swelled as the clock struck 7 and we were off. typically, ryan was still nowhere to be seen so we were hoping for a nice easy sprint along bannister. like some sort of permanently slow clock, ryan turned up like clockwork, just as we were leaving. as he lives around the corner, he can afford that extra bit of sleep-in. however, he is moving soon, so he better get his crap together when that happens.

we rolled down coode st and onto canning hwy. the pace was nice and easy and remained that way until we hit the first main hill coming towards melville. the riders found their own pace and soon the pack thinned out dramatically. i had already dropped back and was working my way through the debris of riders going backwards. i gave shazza a bit of a push, but she said to leave her as she would turn around and take a short-cut up risely. once we hit the top, the group had pulled over into a bus bay and was waiting for regroup. its good to see the group looking after itself.

stock rd was full of rolling hills and the group did it’s best to stay together. i was playing sheep-dog today and was trying to round up any strays from the back of the herd. dr greg was struggling big time and a rode with him a bit before he told me to go on ahead.

we turned onto south st and the rolling hills continued. lisa, bec and dave fell off the back and i was a bit unsure on my course of action. drafting wouldn’t have helped that much as the hills was the killer, rather than the wind. i ended up pushing lisa back to the group and letting the other two fall further behind. once we had been reattached to the back of the field and slowed again and waited for dave and bec. by now the road flattened out a bit and they could neatly fall in behind to get a draft back. we chased for a while and managed to get back on before we turned off onto bannister.

this was the designated fast section of the ride, and i could tell some of the boys were itching to go. chris lined up to go just as the lights changed to red so he sat back down again, his intentions known to all. he didn’t care though and as soon as the lights changed back, he was off up the road. a small group was on his wheel, but in true rouleurs style, no-one came around to help. i got down into time trial position and dragged the rest of the group up to an around the struggling form of chris. eventually i was overrun by riders and fell into step about halfway along the group. ryan had taken off and split the front of the pack up and gaps were starting to form.

it was beginning to look rather ugly, but then the saviour of the backmarker appeared in the form of a very, very big truck. well, the truck wasn’t that big, but the load it was carrying was massive. it was a steel truss for a bridge or building or something very large and it covered the two lanes we were in, the medium strip, the two opposite lanes and was still in the driveway. the driver was trying to negotiate the corner without brining down a light pole when he turned. as get smart would say, “he missed it by that much”. it was close. we debated turning around and heading back up another road, but then some bright spark remembered that we were on bicycles and we bypassed it via the footpath.

after that, i assumed wrongly that the group would just stay together as there was not much of bannister rd left. like a shot they were off and people were scrambling to get on board. i looked back and saw dr wally trying to help lisa and bec, back to the group. chris and i jumped on in front of them and started trying to pull the gap down.

with a favourable wind, we were not doing it too hard, but at the same time, we were not making up any ground. the group stayed that couple of hundred metres in front of us before we hit albany hwy. here we started to get the lights and this widened the gap and i thought we would have no hope of catching them.

a stroke of luck for us had out hope raised when it was obvious that half the group had missed the turn to manning rd. they went past but realized their mistake so came back through hamilton st. i thought we would cut them off, but they got a good set of lights and stayed in front of us. we were now split into three groups, but as the middle one contained all fast (but navigationally inept) boys, they quickly made up ground to the people who can read a basic map.

our group, unfortunately caught the set of lights at leach hwy. when they changed, we took off after the group kind of knowing that we probably would stand a chance of catching them. bec told chris and i to go on ahead, but i didn’t want to leave them on manning rd in too smaller a group. the undulations took their toll on our chase and soon we had broken down from a tight drafting pack. i got bec onto chris’ wheel then fell back to grab lisa. dr wally jumped across to chris as well and i dragged lisa across the final few rollers.

surprise, surprise, when we approached lawson st lights, the pack was waiting to turn right and was caught in the turning lane. we blasted past them asing what were they turning there for. they were quite a bit early and the super map reading skills said that any old road would do.

the main pack split apart and chased us down to be all together by the time we were at the correct turn up kent st. this would be the final run for the day, as we were turning up back streets to get to my place after this. i was not sure if people would know were to sprint too as we had not past by here before. it didn’t matter really, as they just needed an excuse to stretch the legs. ryan and co stepped it up and i managed to move forward a bit but stayed mid-pack till the turn. not sure of the final result as i was more concerned about getting the group to the breakfast on time and in one piece.

we rolled into the garage and there were already a couple of bikes parked inside. it turned out that sharon had found her way along south st and was waiting for us to catch up with her. dr greg eventually did catch her and told her that the pack was long gone. they took a shortcut and made it to breakfast before us.

with all the bikes packed into the garage for safe keeping, we ambled in to find a remarkable spread of food already set out and waiting for us. lorraine had catered well and people were eating the drinking in no time. the outside table was left bare as the heater was cranking inside and everyone was huddled around it. luckily it had not rained this morning so we weren’t too filthy by the time we turned up.

once we were fed and watered, i handed out the remaining cycle kits to those that needed it. we then raffled off a few of the prizes that lorraine had managed to aquire for the group. dannika, one of the girls that davina has been training, won a subscription as did anthony and paul. the “major” prize of a pair of euro optics sunglasses with four lenses, went to michael. the raffle was drawn by my ben so that it was obvious that no favorites were to be had. thanks to euro optics, ride media and bicycling australia for their contributions.

those that then wanted to, could have their bike weighed as we had james’ swish weigh scales. some people were not happy with their results, but i have been assured that these scales are more accurate than the cheaper bike weigh style. i will update the results on the blog soon.

so a very successful day today, with our inaugural social occasion being received well by all. even kate said that we should do it again, but probably when the weather gets a bit nicer.