Tag Archives: canning vale

sunday 28th feb – transitional group – armadale & canning vale

ride report by peter.

after being off the bike for two weeks with firstly a cold and then a knee injury i arrived at the sunday hills ride ready to not actually do any hills.  the physio had given me the all clear to start riding again, but only as long as i go with the easier groups.  luckily that meant that i could still do a sunday ride as the transitional group allowed me to not have to stress the knee too much.  i had taken the transitionals out the previous day so was beginning to remember a few names, but forgive me if i get them wrong in this write up.

we had about 37 or 38 riders turn up this morning which made up the three different groups heading out.  the plan is to always get them riding together as a group for the first part and then split apart at the appropriate point.  in this case we were all heading down to gosnells and riding across to the bottom of the kahuna.  from there the advanced and intermediate would take the first climb together while the transitional group made a quick turn to avoid the climb all together. 

the first part of the journey went quite smoothly even when nicole got a puncture along manning road.  for any of the riders on the sunday ride, please make sure the group know that you have a puncture as we will stop to wait for you to fix it.  nicole pulled off to the side and was overtaken by most of the group but there was no call to halt the ride.  a few of us hung back to help her out while a couple of others sprinted up the road to stop the group.  we quickly got going again thanks to the intervention of a gas bottle.

no other incidents and soon we were at the base of the kahuna.  we bade the other groups farewell and watched them head up the hill while we traversed the flats at the base of the escarpment.  the road was undulating slightly and we sat at a nice even pace dictated by whomever was at the front with me.  there was about 10 or so of us which included doug and shun to help us along.  not that these guys really needed much help as we were ticking along quite nicely. 

we made it to kelmscott and headed back out to albany hwy.  one of the riders (insert rider #1 name here) turned off home at this point as she lived at the base of mt nasura very close to the f_ckenberg.  her husband rob was on the advanced ride and he has come out quite a bit in the past so good to see that we can now offer something for everyone.

back onto albany and as we went up the hill past the brookton hwy intersection, the group split up a bit.  doug and shun stayed back to look after those that had been split off while i headed up the road to make sure the group was on the right path.  even in the advanced group, this little ride before the turn to carawatha can often break the group up a bit.  the damage was mostly done by steve who astride his colnago decided to up the pace to see who would hold on.  there were some takers and pretty soon there was a group of about 4 up the road.  as i bridged across i grabbed nathan who was stuck in no-mans land and gave him my wheel.  we made it just before the crest of the hill and told the pack to keep going as we would regroup at armadale rd.  most impressive in this little pack were young jamie who has been out with us for a while now and a new girl alex who was about 16.  alex and her dad jeff usually ride with a freo group on saturday but were looking for a sunday ride and were told about us.  a couple of strong young riders which is good to see since the average age of our group would be well and truly north of 35.

as we waited for the lights at armadale rd, the backmarkers caught up so we were off straight away.  as planned, this stretch contained a very nice tailwind.  jamie and i sat on the front quite easily ticking over the k’s at around 40km/hr.  occasionally looking back, i checked that the group was all together and everyone seemed comfortable and revelling in the tailwind assistance. 

i was riding with one eye on the garmin as i know we needed to to make a turn to get onto ranford road.  i had not actually ridden or even driven out this was before so was just going off the map.  luckily google had done it’s job properly and all the roads were where they said they would be.

along ranford road, i swung off the front and sat at the back with doug and shun.  i told the guys on the front that they were responsible for maintaining the speed as after all it is their group.  this means that you must have an idea of what the rest of the group is doing.  there are two ways to do this and both need to be employed.  firstly, don’t just ride with your head down.  you may think that you are putting in a nice hard effort for the good of the group, but in reality, if you have gapped the rider behind you, then they are working just as hard as you.  secondly, pass the message along the group if a rider falls off the back.  often, a rider will not call out if they are struggling as they don’t want to cause a fuss or feel like they are holding up the group.  we once you are on the ride, you are committed so it is up to the rest of the group to make sure you get home in one piece.  it is sometimes up to others in the group to point out that a rider has fallen off the back and you all need to slow down to wait.  it often just takes one person to say something and everyone will slow.  be that person and look after the other riders in your group.

as we crossed the tonkin hwy and entered the “kennel zone” john (i think rider #2) dropped his chain at the lights.  i stopped to help him get it back on but we then had to chase to catch back up.  the group had slowed, but even that had split the group apart somewhat.  it is important that the group stays together as much as possible as this means that we don’t take up as much room on the road and piss the drivers off as much.

away again and we had a fairly uneventful trip into canning vale.  as ranford road became south street, so did the rolling hills that we needed to negotiate to reach stock road.  close to murdoch, jamie got in a bit of distress. he thought that something had bitten him on the back so we pulled over into a bus stop to investigate.  sure enough when he pulled up his top a bee fell out sans stinger which was still embedded in his back.  i dug it out and asked him if he was allergic.  he didn’t think so as he had been stung before so we kept going and would just have to wait to see if he died or not.

coming out of the north lake road intersection the hill totally blew the group apart.  steve took off again so i  bridged across to have a chat to him.  i told them to keep going as long as we regrouped at the top.  pretty soon a couple of others including the young ones had joined him to keep the pace on.  there was no regoup at the top but rather we were all together by the time we turned onto stock road.

we were pretty much on our homeward stretch but the rolling hills and the distance were starting to take a toll on some of the riders.  we crossed canning hwy together and made it onto burke drive for the final drag to raffles.  most of the group had stuck together, but emma and john were in trouble so steve and myself set the pace and broke the wind for them to try to get back on. we almost made it by the time we hit the applecross section, but a few more riders were struggling by then.  i jumped across to the main group and told doug to take them the normal route while we took the others along kintail instead.  steve, shun and myself each had a rider in tow and paced them towards raffles where we regrouped with the rest of them.

the final push back to the carpark was a bit disjointed, but we eventually made it and a few of us stopped for coffee at the boatshed.  i think that when i map these rides i make an allowance for a coffeebreak about ¾ along the course.  maybe i am too used to the more advanced groups where the distance and terrain would not pose an issue to the group, but the way that some riders were struggling, a rest would have allowed them to enjoy the last bit of the ride a bit more.

overall though, i think that everyone enjoyed the ride and even though nathan still hasn’t cracked the 30km/hr average for his rides, by the time he got home it was over 100kms on the clock.  depending on the physio visit this week, i may be back with the transitional group again this week.  if not, i think that there are some good riders there that will be able to look after that group.

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 8th aug – canning vale and welshpool

ride report by peter.


i checked the weather this morning and it said that it was 14 degrees.  i checked the radar and there were generally clear skies with maybe the odd shower.  it was all looking good and i was set for an excellent morning ride.  the roads were a little wet but not saturated and you know that it had only been a light shower as there were dry spots under the trees.  must be those little bits that i saw on the radar.  not a problem.

not really sure how many we had at the start but i would say close to 40.  the threat of weather had scared away the novice group so we were down to just the two that would split up later.  we had quite a few new riders out with us this morning so it was good to have them along.  especially young alex who was only 12 and managed to keep up with the main group ok.  it was also good to see steve back on the bike after a bit of back surgery had him laid up for a while.

the course was a fairly new one as we had only done it once before.  a common route past booragoon and onto canning vale before splitting at nicholson rd.  the main group would take nicholson back to albany before crossing it and coming home via welshpool rd.  the fast group would continue on and take warton up to welshpool.

we wouldn’t have made it 500 metres up the road before the rain started coming down.  not just the light showers that were predicted, but a decent soaking.  at least being at the front meant that i also did have to endure the road spray as well, so i only got rained on once.  we also managed to get every set of lights once we hit canning hwy so by the time we were heading up risely, the group was a tad splintered.  the easy pace meant that the stragglers could regroup but it all came to a halt when dan’s tire spectacularly went bang while as we took off from the lights.

we pulled into murdoch drive and got off the road while melvyn and i helped him change it.  there was a fair gash in his back tyre and we tried to cover it with some spare rim tape that i had with me.  new tube in, a quick lesson on how to use a gas bottle and the tyre was up…and bulging all around the flesh wound.  not good.  we sent him on his way as there was no way it would survive a fast paced effort in the rain.

up and running again, the group meandered along to south st and headed towards canning vale.  the group splintered a bit along the way and i had to get the boys to ease back a bit.  i think that they were just trying to stay warm.  pretty soon we were at nicholson rd and the group split quite evenly. 

a bit of crappy driving from a local, who couldn’t use the accelerator, found the group split in two with a car in the middle.  she had ample room and time to come around but didn’t before the road narrowed and made it impossible.  it soon widened out and we got a roll through happening.  all this time the rain seemed to be intermittently coming down, but combined with the road spray, it was pretty much a constant thing.  we turned up warton rd and the roll through involved almost all of the group.  stu is training for a mtb tour of timor and as such had the fat wheel beast out with us today.  unfortunately he was a bit short on gears and couldn’t keep the pace up when we were really hammering.  he did manage to sit in quite well for a lot of the ride though. 

a couple of intersection and roundabouts played havoc with the group and we needed to ease back a bit to allow the group back together.  it was a pretty hard slog but we finally reached the end and turned onto crystal brook rd.

a slight downhill and tailwind made this section a lot more pleasant and the group hummed along quite nicely.  we passed another group and one of the guys that we know from it came up for a chat.  resplendent in my yellow jersey today, i was content to act as protected rider and hang back to catch the draft.  i managed to sit in this spot for the majority of welshpool rd and onto shep rd and had a few good conversations in the meantime.

the rain got a bit stupid along shep rd but at least it was double lane, so cars were giving us a wide berth.  the lights made sure no attacks went on this section and we all rolled down to the causeway together.  it was great to see the group stay in the lane at the lights and no-one tried to slip around the cars for and early break. 

contador3the pace started to pick up as everyone was anticipating the sprint along riverside drive.  jerry went early and had a decent break by the time we veered off the causeway.  the group started to string out as they chased him down and at one point i though he may have gotten away for good.  i was jumping from wheel to wheel coming from the very back of the pack and was soon sitting about midpack.  about then the group caught jerry showing lots of compassion for his efforts, sat on his wheel instead of coming around.  this caused the group to bunch up and spread across the lane.  i looked back twice to check for traffic (a sure sign of a move coming) and then hit the accelerator.  this was not a stand up sprint but just a power down seated time trial.  someone called out that i was going, but no-one responded and i got a decent gap.  running scared i looked back a couple of times, but i had managed to put enough space between myself and the chasers to allow me to be first to the stop lights.  if is was really thinking straight i should have done a pistol in the air salute like contador (since one of john’s kids thought i was riding in the tour this year).

no stop for me as i had an appointment and i was too damn wet to want to sit still for too long.  the rain cleared later in the day to reveal much better riding conditions and to mock us for being so stupid.  however, i had a good time even if my bike now needs a damn good clean.

saturday 25th july – canning vale

ride report by peter.


cold mornings seem to be the order of the day. however, after enduring a week or so of rain, it was definitely easier to accommodate.  the rain had coincided with me coming down with a cold, so my butt had not seen a bike seat for over a week.  i was debating which group i would ride with today but settled for the fast group and would just sit on the back.

the route would take us on the tried and true roads of canning vale after taking stock and south street.  the main group would head along banister road while the fast group would head around to nicholson.  this time we would take the correct route and go straight through the roundabout rather than turn left as we usually do when heading along that road.

a few new guys and girls came along today and it was good to see especially in the middle of winter.  i think the tour de france is sometimes that little bit of incentive that people need. not sure of the total numbers but plus 40 anyway with most of the regulars out for a trot.

we had a nice and easy start and headed down canning hwy to stock rd.  dr paul and crew peeled off early to lap the river instead while the fast and intermediate groups took the first hill up to the stock rd intersection.  the lights were good to us today and everyone made it up the hill and around the corner.  once we hit south street i went to the front to let the group know that the fast group could have it’s head of steam.  i slunk back to the back and waited for the fireworks to happen. 

it took quite a while but once the rolling hills started the pace certainly picked up.  the selection was soon made and the fast group separated from the rest.  this didn’t last long, however, as a lights change meant that we were all back together.  normally this is a good thing, but in this case, it meant that the main group tried to hang onto the back of the fast group and may have splintered it a bit over the remaining south street kms. 

we hit the banister rd intersection and the group split in two as quite a few of the main group had made it that far.  the fast group continued up towards livingston marketplace to take the left hander onto nicholson.  i was hanging onto the back of the pack and didn’t do a turn at all.  i knew that i would be spat out the back straight away if i tried and i really wanted to make it home with the group today.  the group worked quite well together and swapped out turns at the front and even had a roll through going at some stage. 

we hit the roundabout and went straight and into unchartered territory for us.  the road wasn’t too bad.  not double lane, but not as much traffic so we could still power our way along to spencer rd.  still happy to be on the back of the pack at this stage.

a right turn back onto nicholson almost had snuggles taking a left and heading back towards canning vale.  he claims he needs a garmin as they do seem to be breeding and have popped up on quite a few handlebars in our group.  the group slowed quite a bit heading through cannington but i knew that it would start up again once we past welshpool rd.

a few attacks went off the front on shepperton rd with lisa and jerry both having a tap.  the group was together for the roll to the lights at the causeway and everyone started looking for a wheel to hide behind ready for the sprint.  lisa was back on the front and no-one seemed eager to come around as we approached the bridges.  knowing that i had no sprint, i decided to bury myself and went to the front.  over both bridges and onto riverside drive where, for a change, the lights didn’t hold us up.  i motioned for the group to go through and sat up to cruise the last bit home.  not sure what happened in the sprint, but i did hear of some lane changing going on.  try to keep it in the left lane and if you need to come around, at least look behind you to make sure that there are no cars coming.  no accidents to hear of so off to coffee.

unfortunately, the grinder broke down again, so coffees were a bit slow.  cold too as we sit on the shade side in the mornings.  any suggestions, leave it in the comments…

saturday 6th june – canningvale

ride report by peter.


i was scheduled in to take the novices this morning so i decided to cut a lap of the river beforehand.  with the state time trial championships the following weekend, i took the tt bike to do some efforts.  unfortunately my young lads conspired against me and delayed my start by about 15 min.  this meant that i was running hell late by the time i reached freo so had to go to plan b and ride straight back up stirling hwy.

i had pushed fairly hard so was looking forward to the nice easy pace on the novice ride when dr ronny came up to say that he would take the novices for me.  my brain said yep, my legs screamed wtf.  my brain promised my legs it would release some more endorphins and so we were off to chase the fast boys.

both the groups stayed together along canning hwy and stock road where we managed to get split a number of times by the lights.  a small group got ahead at the lights at leach hwy so managed to stay ahead as we turned onto south street.  luckily, they kept the pace down until the group was totally back together and i announced that the fast group could then take off.  the pace picked up immediately and group split into their respective speeds. 

the fast group started to roll through to keep the pace high and we started to drop one or two riders.  not a lot of time to catch up but at least the option to join back into the main group would be available until we past banister road.  our next challenge was to encounter another group ride heading in the same direction.  we were catching them but being on a busy road i didn’t want to take over a second lane so we had to single file it past at speed.  i think we may have lost a couple more who latched onto that group for comfort and security. 

we reached the turn to banister rd and few turned off to ease the pain a bit.  we continued on with the group rolling through up to nicholson rd a where we turned left to skirt past livingston shopping centre.  i was starting to miss more and more turns by this time as my legs were pretty much over the promise of more endorphins and were filling with sweet, sweet lactic acid.  we managed to reach the end of nicholson rd and swung left to head towards albany hwy.  julian commented to me that he thought that we were supposed to go straight.  no, i thought we were on the right track as this was the way we always went.  then my gps started flashing up on the screen that we had gone off course.  ah, maybe julian was right.  didn’t matter.

we past by the end of banister rd to find the main group waiting at the lights, so we managed to sneak past them.  we had a lot of trouble when the two groups got caught up a while ago, so i am keen to keep them apart as long as possible.

coming back in along albany hwy the pace was still on but we managed a few lights to catch our breath before swerving onto shepperton rd.  no big attacks so on the last rise i managed to just surge when i was on the front and got a gap which brendan and lorraine bridged across to.  once back on the flat near the causeway the group had caught up but we had also caught the early escapees that had not been caught by the main group when they turned off.  i jumped back onto the front and did some more time trial training across both bridges and onto riverside drive.  i was so buggered by this stage that i needed to change down gear to negotiate the minuscule rise that the road takes to cross the bridge.

i continued to lead out, knowing that i had no sprint and needed the tt practice.  no-one was coming around so i just kept the pressure on as long as i could.  once we crossed the lights the first set of lights i felt a rush of air as ryan took off with brendan fixed on his wheel.  the rest of the group then also took flight in dribs and drabs according to their ability and remaining fitness.  i was pretty buggered by now so cruised the rest of riverside drive.  ryan managed to hang on to the sprint, but not without a major rub of wheels from brendan, just so he knew he was there.

saturday 14th mar – canning vale & welshpool

ride report by peter.


after a day trip up to the pilbara yesterday which included 3hrs of flying and about 3hrs of driving and about 3hrs of meetings, i was keen to expend a bit of energy today.  i managed to get out early enough to be the second one to arrive at the carpark and sat around in the dark waiting for the nominated hour.  there was a chill in the air which belied the expected top of 33 today and a number of riders were wearing vests.  the dark and the cold made it seem more like winter than just leaving summer. 

i didn’t think the numbers were too large today but decided to still split the group anyway.  it has been a bit of a mess when we don’t so i think we may have seen the end of the one big group.  maybe next week for the breakfast, we might stick together and take it easy.  especially since it will be raining.

the common course took us out canning hwy down to risely and up past garden city shopping centre.  we made our way to south street and the group was generally taking it easy and getting a good conversation in.  a bit of a lane change mix up had us dodging a few cars near where we normally hang a left into banister, but all up not a bad start to the day.  as we approached the intersection of ranford and nicholson, people began to move into their respective groups.  this would be our split point and the main group would go left up past livingston marketplace shopping centre (home of livingston specsavers – for all your optical needs drop in and see sharon (i will invoice you for the advertising later sharon)), while the fast group would go straight.  hopefully someone will enlighten us to the adventures of the main group for that was the last we saw of them for the day.

as soon as we headed through the lights i knew we were in trouble.  there wasn’t much wind when i was tucked in the back of the pack during the ride out there.  now we seemed to be riding straight into it.  i got the roll through happening and got to have a look at who was riding with us today.  most of the usual suspects but some others that were giving it a crack today. 

we turned up warton rd and immediately got hammered by the fierce cross-wind.  we continued to roll through but i felt we were doing it the wrong way as the wind was on the fast side of the line.  however, in a non-race situation, rolling the other way while trying to keep out of traffic can be hard as the group seems to migrate across the lane.  thankfully for some of the riders, there were enough sets of lights to allow a regroup along the way.  we continued on and the wind seemed relentless.  after we passed albany hwy the distance started to take it’s toll and the group really splintered into little survival packs.  i had only one or two riders around me and we were trying to bridge across to a pack of four containing judd, jerry, davina and james.  the rest of us continued were just trying to keep them in sight, but big judd and his diesel engine just seemed to power through the wind.  i really have no idea who was riding around me at this time as i was sending all my blood to the legs rather the head and was just trying to survive.

judd in full time trial mode
judd in full time trial mode

as we hit tonkin hwy the lights allowed us to catch the front group which had now shed james who was back training after his fall in renae’s race.  as the lights turned green, everyone did a “ryan” and seemed to have trouble clipping in as they didn’t want to go to the front.  this allowed judd to take off and gain a big gap.  davina tried to chase him down but he is a big strong boy and was setting a nice pace.  the rest of us caught up and jerry and myself came around to help out at the front.  even though there were at least three of us doing turns at the front, we just couldn’t put a dent into the gap judd had over us.

the pain finally ended when we turned onto crystal brook rd and gained the full advantage of the tailwind.  quite a few of the group had caught up back at the lights and we now had a fairly solid group to chase judd down.  we were pushing 60km/hr along crystal brook and onto welshpool, but unfortunately for us, judd was going just as fast.  he managed to get the lights as we crossed back over tonkin and that was the very last we saw of him.

with our bigger group we tried to start to roll through again, but it just didn’t seem to work.  everyone wanted to go faster than the last person and this meant that the pace just went up and up until the group started to splinter.  we also tried to single file and pull off the front when you were done, but this also proved fruitless and we just seemed to go back to a couple on the front and a little bit of roll through when we could.

the rail lights were flashing along welshpool and we slowed to get behind the traffic.  suddenly a ute in the right hand lane put his indicator on as he wanted to turn left after the rail crossing.  he just started to push his way into the line of bikes.  jerry banged on his window and asked what he was doing.  he pointed that he wanted to turn and so therefore that was excuse enough in his mind to try to cut us off.  as the traffic got going again, a few choice words and some single finger waving from both parties had us happily on our way again. 

we turned onto shepperton road and made our final approach into town.  the rolling hills always provide a springboard for attacks but not today as the group pretty much stayed together.  the main split came at the lights before the causeway as some of the group ducked into the bus lane to get ahead of the traffic while the rest stayed behind the traffic.  as far as our group riding etiquette is concerned, we really shouldn’t run up the side of traffic at the lights when we have such a big group as the cars just have to try to get past us again.  in this case, the risk was that if there was a bus coming the lights would not have let you go, but you would have cut the bus off.  anyway, the lights changed and i was in the group behind and didn’t make it through the next set.  we watched the front group head across the causeway and out of sight while we just made our own way to the coffeeshop.

not really sure what happened as when we got there, most of the main group had already gone.  it was rally busy as there were triathletes everywhere for the national series tri that was in perth the next day.  some of our group headed around to south perth for a brew and others endured the long wait for theirs.

saturday 28th feb – canning vale (reverse)

ride report by peter.


after 2 weeks off the bike, and number 1 son giving me a cold in that time, i was always going to struggle on a group ride.  we had flown home on monday and i managed to slip a few rides in during the week but they were nowhere near the pace that i used to ride at.  a constant push was fine, but any surges tended to hurt and i didn’t have the capacity for them. 

the other big change over the 2 weeks is how damn dark it is again.  it is time for me to complain once again about how daylight savings sucks.  i know how i am voting come referendum time.  the street lights were on as i was riding to the start of a 7am ride.

anyway, as i approached the start point i did a quick head count and only saw about 35 riders.  within this was a severe lack of girls (i.e. none) and with some of our regulars down south for the race at pemberton there didn’t seem any point in splitting the group.  a few new faces on the ride today too and it is good to see more people wanting to come out riding with us.

so the route without the split would take us along good old south st and onto banister rd.  the aim was to make it as easy as possible until we got to banister then give it some stick.  i lead out with jack and i managed to get all the way to the hill before stock rd before i had to drop off the front.  a quick scurry to the back to see who was struggling and we managed to get everyone onto stock rd.  the last climb between leach and south managed to unhinge a few riders but most jumped back on once we were on south st.

as expected, the rolling hills along south played havoc with the back markers but mike and myself managed to pull a few of them back to the group.  the occasional stop light certainly helped us as well.  doug decided to join us along south after thinking that he missed us on canning hwy.  we had a delayed start due to a flat tyre so he thought we had already passed by so rode up to south st and caught us coming the other way.

once we hit banister the pace was on from the start.  the field lined-out almost straight away and i was content to just sit in and hold a wheel as best i could.  a few of the barista boys were in attendance today and were mixing it up at the front along with the usual suspects from the rouleurs.  it got a little messy towards the end as people were surging around the sides as traffic was in the other lane.  we need to keep that in check and at least look before you stray too close to the centreline.

brettonce we hit nicholson rd, the call went up to ease the pace back.  jack and a couple of others were already up the road with ryan chasing them, and so we just let them go.  maybe we should have split the group today, but we would have ended up with two small groups.

anyway, the pace varied a bit along nicholson but most people managed to get back on.  gregor slinked to the back to look for his mate who he invited out for the first time, only to find that he was off the back on banister.  the indecision of whether to wait for a mate, or hang with the group.  once we told him some regulars were back there with him and should know the way home, he decided to ditch his mate for the protection of the peloton. 

the pace seemed to steadily increase along albany hwy and the group started shedding riders early.  we were supposed to wait for the shep rd intersection and this is another reason why we will probably split the group every saturday.  the first set of lights and the group was halved as some managed to get through on the amber while the rest of us contemplated the chase.  as usual the long delay at the lights meant that any chance we had of catching was going to be up to how many sets of lights they caught and we didn’t.  it didn’t really play into our hands too well and our group was split again before we reached riverside drive.  with only 4 of us left, there was no sprint, just survival to the end.

the highlight of the final sprint came from brett who decided to be sneaky and slip through the t-intersection lights at victoria st.  unfortunately he was spotted by and unmarked police car who flashed his lights and pulled him over.  after a very stern talking too, and a threat of a $400 fine plus 8 demerit points (double this weekend) he was let off with a warning.  probably a good reminder about rolling through red lights for the group.  it happens sometimes, but you know we will wait, so just do the right thing and stop.  in brett’s case, all he had to do was head onto the bike path and he would have ended up at the coffee shop.

saturday 17th jan – canning vale + sth lake

ride report by peter.


what was i thinking?  after only nine kms of a nice and gentle pace we split up and did the remaining 42kms at pace.  a high pace.  the lack of this type of riding lately has meant that i was suffering and only barely holding onto the back of the group.  but maybe i should jump back about an hour and a half to when riding a bike was pleasant.

a nice turnout today with probably over 50 riders.  i had already posted the fact the we would split the group in two and had mapped out the routes that each would follow.  a few of the guys had stepped up to say that they would lead the main group which was great as i knew that they would be left in capable hands.  we also had a “sweeper” group where dr’s paul and wally were going to do the same course and pick up anyone that got dropped.  each ride started and finished on the same sections of road, but it was going to be a race to see if the fast boys could cover the extra 5 or 6 kms before the main group finished.

we headed out coode st and onto canning hwy.  as we made that turn a car decided to try to squeeze in amongst 50 cyclists and wondered why we just didn’t get out of the way for him.  apparently there was some words, but i was too far away to see or hear what was going on.  we made our way down towards freo but it wasn’t long before north lake road appeared on the horizon.  i rode from the back to the front trying to let as many people as i could know that this is where the group would split.  i was hoping that we would get the lights as this would have made it so much easier, but unfortunately we didn’t and there was a little bit of confusion.

the groups finally sorted themselves out and we headed south while the main group continued down to their turn at stock road.  i looked around our group to see who we had.  a few faces that i though would struggle, but i guess we would find out as we went along.  i think that we probably had about 20 riders with us and we set a very mundane pace for the first stretch to leach hwy.  i was sure that after south st the pace would pick up and it certainly did.  the group organised it’s own roll through and the pace picked up almost instantly.  we stayed together well through the rolling hills around the back of adventure world.  however, i do think we may have dropped dr carl somewhere around there.

we turned onto berrigan drive and into the wind, so for some reason the pace went up.  i had to stay near the front so i could bark out directions between gasps for breath.  the roll through was still going strong, but more and more people were sitting it out and just holding on for dear life.  we turned onto jandakot rd and almost directly into the wind.  little gaps were starting to appear and you had to sprint around to close the gap.  i was behind davina when someone started falling back fast.  she sprinted around and chased for a bit to make the junction, but i was a bit slow and a bit weak so got left out in the wind.  there were about three or four of us that were off the back and we worked together to try to get back on the train.  the combination of wind and rolling hills made it difficult as you would almost make it back on when the road would pitch up just that bit too much and you didn’t have the legs to close that final gap. 

we got back on but there was not much of jandakot rd left to enjoy as we quickly came to the end.  for that section of road (5.6km) we averaged 40kph with a max of 50kph and i had an average heart rate of 177bpm with a max of 185bpm.  it doesn’t seem a long way, but it seemed to take forever, and hurt like a bitch.

we turned left and headed towards nicholson rd.  the road was a lot rougher but i knew that it was in great condition a bit further up where the housing estates started.  we continued to roll through but it was hard as there were patches of very bad road with potholes and dodgy repairs.  we almost made it through to the end when there was that hiss noise that you just hate to hear.  we rolled a bit further to find a safe spot to get off the road and surveyed the damage.  jack from fleet cycles had hit the pothole hard and popped the tyre.  we decided to wait for him to fix it and it allowed a few of the other guys to catch-up.  dr carl passed us and continued on his way.  after a five minute repair job, jack realised that his tyre was actually split and would have to limp the bike home.  we saddled up and continued on our way.

the stretch from ranford road back to albany hwy was at a high pace and again we started to shed riders.  by the time we turned left at albany hwy, we were down to just 11 riders.  that stretch of road (11.2km) was taken at an average of 44kph with a max of 53kph.  i averaged 174bpm and maxed at 182bpm.  i also think that by this point i had lost about a litre and a half of sweat.

the trip down albany hwy and onto shepperton rd was very uneventful for me.  mainly because i was hurting that much that i couldn’t participate in the roll through and was only barely holding onto the back wheel.  john turned off at vic park for an early exit which left just 10 riders from the original 20 or so.

we came onto riverside drive and lined up for the final sprint.  as the moved started to go, so did my legs and i just did what i could to get to the end.  the main group was well established by the time we rolled in, but if we hadn’t got the flat tyre, i think we may have given them a run for their money.  i didn’t have a coffee, but stopped for a little bit to talk to lorraine and some others about becoming a club and what we need to organise.  our ad-hoc agm is scheduled for next saturday after the ride at the coffee shop.  i have received some nominations already, but if you think that someone would do a good job at running a club (and it is more than just racing), then put their name forward.  if you think you want to help out whether it is formally on the committee or just in general, i would also like to hear from you.


change we can believe in
change we can believe in

i have also heard that there are some concerns from the more recreational cyclists amongst us that we will become a more race focused group.  as far as the saturday and sunday rides are concerned, there will be no changes.  the group may continue to split like it recently has and the riders that want a good race type training session may opt for the fast group, but this is really just trying to cater for all the needs of the group.  from all reports (and i will wait for the blog) the main group performed really well today and kept a brisk pace without losing any riders. 

the only change that forming a club may bring is the extra security of insurance if you with to take it up.  if not, you can still join the club as a social member of the club and can therefore be included in club activities.  at the end of the day it is about promoting cycling and racing is just one facet of the cycling that we partake in. 

i hope that you all think that this is a move in the right direction since i will be relying on your support to make it successful.  as a group we already do more social activities than the majority of the formal clubs in perth and have a great culture that binds us together.  the formality of becoming a club should give us more stability as well as open up some other doors for us in regards to coaching, skills development and grants. 

we have come a long way in less than one year and i hope that this move will mean that the south perth rouleurs continues to be a group that people want to be associated with.  change we can believe in…

saturday 8th mar – canning vale (reverse)

ride report by chris

a nice day for a ride, not too warm, not too cold, it was just right. if a little humid.
pastor pete decreed we would follow the canning vale route today which always results in a little pain along bannister rd and today was no exception but we’ll get to that in a little bit.
pre-ride briefing over with the fast points nominated as a part of nth lake rd, bannister rd and the finishing stretch of shepperton rd and riverside dve to the cafe.

we set off down the canning hwy at a steady pace allowing everyone to have a bit of a chat. incident free down to the nth lake rd turn off when i expected someone to have a dig but it seems people were saving themselves for the blast down bannister rd. so i went to the front to wind cade up along the rise to south st. mission accomplished i sat up and let the bunch blow by. i figured without our pastor i had better make sure that the flock stayed together. nice excuse to have a rest at the back too.

the run along south st was supposed to be a steady cruise but we were up near 40km/h the whole way. probably shouldn’t have fired cade up ’cause we were all about to pay once we hit the fast stretch. i’m told it was he who fired of the front immediately we hit bannister rd. i was down the back after stopping to pick up a dropped light, thanks to mike b for staying back to help me catch back onto the group. sorry if i rolled over you too strong but i just wanted the hurt to be over.

so, no steady building of speed, it was straight to 48km/h and into the hurt box. luckily we got a bit of respite before the pace picked up again. we dropped a few guys along here and i’m pretty sure there was plenty lactic acid in the legs of everyone. my data tells me we spent around 12 minutes at about 40km/h. sounds great but to put that in perspective think of your average tdf stage where they average the same speed for ~200km over proper mountains. ouch!

the final regroup at nicholson rd, thanks to those who showed some restraint and called the front guys to back it off to allow the stragglers to catch back up. a little further along and mike b and the big chris were on the front, two strong fellows pulling well but the guys down the back were still recovering so i struggled up alongside and asked them to back it off a bit. i think big chris was happy that i made the request, mr bonner was hurting him a little. by the way mr b, i gather you did rather well at the pemberton race. i think there are a few team lamo boys who might be joining you for the fun of the tour de perth support race, should be well suited to your abilities.

a steady roll along the albany hwy as we all awaited the fun of the final drag to the coffee shop. the heat came on almost as soon as we hit shepperton rd and if anyone else was feeling like me it was a matter of looking after yourself for the final sprint. the recently married mr fynn was conspicuous by his absence from the front obviously out to avenge his recent run of losses in the sprint. this opportunity was spoilt by the meeting of our bunch with another at the causeway and the part road closure along the river front.

so an anticlimactic finish to a reasonably quick ride.

my stats say we averaged 33.7km/h for the 42.7km. for interest sake my average heart rate was 147bpm with a peak of 181bpm near the end of the run along bannister rd. And for those even vaguely interested my average power was 170W with a peak of 956W. pretty lame in comparison to graeme brown who, if i remember correctly, can top out at 1500W.

figuring i’d earned it i had the big breakfast with a mug of coffee. yumm!

the pastor was there to greet us with the up and coming ben to catch up with the action. nice to see him getting indoctrinated in the ways of the velo.

rumours: michael w missed today’s ride to taper for sunday’s corporate triathlon. He also missed the thursday morining thrash, the rumour are that one is he was at the pool having some remedial swimming lessons after nearly drowning at last years event.

editors note: if you want a good work out i suggest the following.
1. mountain bike
2. bike trailer
3. 14kg child plus all associated child traveling paraphernalia
4. mount st
5. repeated sets without standing.

i did just one taking the young lad up to sticky beaks playground in kings park and it almost killed me. harder than any saturday ride so far.

saturday 5th jan – canning vale

well it was a fast a furious ride today. don’t know how it happened either. the route (see below but reversed) took us down canning hwy to north lake road, left onto south st, left onto bannister rd, left onto nicholson, left onto albany hwy which turned into shepperton rd into the city.

it all seemed pretty straight forward.

we had about 40+ riders turn up which can always play havoc if we get caught at lights…..and we did. almost every single set. from the very start we lost half the pack.

as is the etiquette of our ride we slowed down and waited for them to catch back up. unfortunately this sometime meant that they would get caught at the next set as well. can make for a very frustrating ride. but that is city riding for you.

so canning hwy was quite sedate. once we hit north lake road and onto the small rises, the pace went up a bit. not excessive, but no longer comfortable anymore. probably for some of our riders it was excessive, but that is where you really dig deep to stay with the pack.

south st was a mixed bag as we got split at the lights again and slowed the group down to make sure we were all together. I got on the front with Michael B and we set a reasonable pace along the rest of south st to the turn.

once we hit bannister rd, it was all on. the squadra barista boys all got to the front and decided to smash it into the head/cross wind. i had my ring hanging out for most of bannister just trying to hold a wheel. there was no way that i was going to make it to the front to do a turn. this would have been the point where the pack pretty much disintegrated.

i would describe our group as semi-social. we like to have a chat early on in the ride, but eventually someone will crank it up and then it is time for breathing only and no talking.

anyway, nicholson rd was a bit better and albany hwy was definitely better as we had a nice tailwind back home. funny how the rides get planned that way.

doing around 50km/h in the group is certainly a nice feeling. I even had a crack at a late breakaway but got stopped at the lights as i got 50m down the road. anyway, back across the causeway onto riverside drive and nobody would come around one of the squadra barista boys to do a turn, so i decided to give him a hand. of course it meant that there was no way i would be sprinting, but i had pretty much run out of top end speed by then.

i don’t even know who “crossed the line” first as most of our group had come past me by then. everyone eventually limped into the coffee shop at the bell tower with some dribbling in a few minutes later.

to top it all off, the coffee machine then broke down so no-one got a coffee.
luckily for me they could still make hot chocolates.

Sth Perth Saturday Ride 04 (Canning Vale)
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