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Cycling Chat

A few days ago was the warmest day of the year, when the temperature reached 17ºC – in Aberystwyth of all places! So, as we begin to forget the rides cancelled due to icy roads, we can look forward to the cycling pleasures coming up soon.

Some of you will not have come across the CTC Triennial Veterans’ Century Ride. This is for the over-50s and the idea is ride 100 miles in 12 hours. That’s a leisurely pace and it is primarily a social occasion. It will take place 9th June and you are advised to book early to be guaranteed a place. Eve Thornton (mussieve@btinternet.com) is the organiser for Oxfordshire, ably aided and abetted by Eileen Johnson, Ellen Lee and Helen Beane.

The ride starts in Islip with three stops en route (all on OS Landranger map 164) for coffee, lunch & tea. The organisers are looking for leaders and sweepers (of any age!) to take care of a group of 10-12 riders. We will also need a marshal at the various stops – Weston on the Green, North Leigh and Steventon. Also perhaps someone with a van or car and bike carrier to act as a sag wagon. If you would like to help, please contact Helen. (Helenbeane@btinternet.com).

The launch of this website is a big moment for CTC Oxford City. We have waited many years for this modern look and improved functionality. There are about 400 CTC members living within just a few miles of the City, so we are hoping for a wide audience. We are grateful to our webmaster, Jo Munt, for bringing Oxford City at last into the 21st century.

Many of you will know that following national reorganisation last autumn, CTC Oxfordshire (not to be confused with CTC Oxford City) is no longer a “parent member group”, but instead has decided to take on a supporting role for the other member groups and to focus specifically on organising events (like the Tri-Vets) which are of interest to all. We have already contacted 1000 or so members of CTC Oxfordshire, promising to keep them informed about local issues and events. The response has been most encouraging. If you haven’t received a welcome email, please do contact me and I will be delighted to add you to the mailing list – info@ctcoxfordshire.org.uk).

Following the success of our weekends in the New Forest (October 2011) and Bourton-on-the-Water (June 2012), we are now organising a weekend near Yeovil in south Somerset, for the bank holiday 4th-6th May. Our centre will be Odcombe and accommodation, as before, will be either B&B or, for the hardy, we have found a handy campsite. The Masons Arms in Odcombe (http://www.masonsarmsodcombe.co.uk) has a campsite at the back (£14 for tent, car + 2). There are also a few rooms in the hotel itself. The Tourist Information Office for south Somerset has details of local B&Bs (http://www.visitsouthsomerset.com/) . Follow the link and on the right hand side of the web page you will see “Accommodation Search”. Choose “Guest Accommodation” and “Yeovil area” to see a good choice of B&Bs. I have phoned a few to check availability. The cottages look beautiful.

I’ll finish with an interesting statistic: the average age of death of 834 French, Belgian and Italian competitors who rode the Tour de France between 1930 and 1964 was 81.5 years against the 73.5 of those who merely watched the race. So keep riding, stay healthy and enjoy the better weather soon to come.