Weekly News 17/01/22 to 23/01/22

HCC Sunday Social Cafe Ride

I don’t know what the collective noun is for a group of cyclists. Peleton perhaps, but that doesn’t count really because it’s French and is best used to describe a large group. Does five people count as a large group? Not in terms of Gov.uk guidance on avoiding spread of the lurgy it doesn’t. But for a HCC Sunday ride it is quite big. Everything is relative I suppose. Anyway it’s not a peleton because that’s French so what would best describe a small group of cyclists. Without swearing that is. Well I thought Gaggle would do it. I’m sure there will be some species that has already claimed gaggle, hens perhaps or stoats ? Well tough, cos from now on it is also being used to describe not very large groups of cyclists.

Today’s ride as usual set off from the Golden Lion and as Peter rode along Dunstan Road for the meet up, he noticed quite a gaggle of cyclists waiting for the 9:30 start. Out today we’re Sean, Peter, Steve and two new lads that turned the small group into a proper gaggle, Matt and another Steve. (Two Steve’s, this could get confusing).

It had been decided to head for the Aviator but instead of going through County Durham (the hilliest county in the country) we had decided to take the low road and keep it flat. So we headed for Wolviston along the A689 and then through Wynyard, rejoining the A689 for a short while with Matt now pushing the pace at the front. We turned off at Butterwick and then into Fishburn. Then it all went wrong. No one had approached the Aviator from this angle before and we had to rely on a passing jogger to help us out with directions. Well, thanks mate is all I would say, cos obviously he sent us the wrong way. But we did get a tour of the NetPark industrial estate, which made up for missing out on the Aviator.

Having visited No 4 in Sedgefield last week, this week we headed for Hardwick Park cafe. Coffee and cakes were consumed along with bacon sandwiches and the seat inside was much appreciated.

The return ride was back past the racetrack and along familiar lanes to Wolviston. Sean then diverted us towards the Tees Road and by now fortunately the wind was on our backs and it was an easy roll back through Seaton.  A great ride by all!


Other HCC News

Alan Lang topped this weeks HCC Strava Leaderboard with 126.6 miles.  The Thirlwind was 2nd with 117.3 miles and Bryan Blakelock in 3rd place with 110.7 miles.  Another wet, cold week which seen 18 riders put miles on the board.  Well done to all!

Don’t forget the new season has begun and Club Membership fees are now due.  Please submit your forms/fee by Jan 31st, so we can update our members lists and ensure that your are eligible for club events.

Weekly News 10/01/22 to 16/01/22

HCC Sunday Social Cafe Ride

Outdoor clothing retailers have a slogan that they use as a marketing device. ” There is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothes”. So it was this slogan that had Peter thinking as he looked out at the grey murk of a January morning. It looks a bit damp he thought, can I bothered, he thought. Then he remembered the advertising and thought” what’s the point of buying wet proof cycling kit if you’re never  going to wear it”. And with that thought he decided to give it a go and set off in the drizzle to meet up at the Golden Lion.

Sean was the only other cyclist to turn up (also suitably attired for wet and murk). While stood at the GL in the drizzle, a short ride seemed like what was needed so Elwick cafe was the destination of choice after a little loop round the lanes.
The route was out towards Blackhall then up through Hesleden and Wingate. By now it was drying up so Sedgefield became the destination with No 4 as the designated cafe.

A seat outside was do able despite it being a bit murky, and Sean was dispatched inside to return with coffee and cake. There were another couple of cyclists also braving the elements outside the cafe and it turned out that they were also from Hartlepool so we had a bit of cycling chat.

After the cafe the route was back via the racecourse and Bishopton then down to the coast road from Wolviston and back into a strongish head wind through Seaton Carew.

A longer ride than anticipated, about 45 miles and the legs felt it on the drag back along Seaton front but both Peter and Sean agreed that it was well worth the effort.


Other HCC Rides/News

Many other HCC members were out over the week on Solo rides.  Well done to all for getting out over a wet, cold week.

Phil Wright topped this weeks HCC Strava Leaderboard with 133 miles for the week.  Bryan Blakelock was 2nd with 114 miles and Vanessa Cox was 3rd with 110 miles.



C2C 17th July

On Saturday 17th July, three members of Hartlepool cycling club – Richie Grant, Graeme Coates and Andrew Wilson will be riding the iconic coast to coast challenge in one day. They will be leaving from St Bees and riding the 130 miles back to Seaton Carew.

The lads are trying to help raise £500 to support a local school community in Hartlepool

Richies wife Karla (Head of School) said “We would love for all of our children at Stranton Primary School to be able to take part in our planned school trips in the next academic year. Trips to places such as Carlton Camp not only enrich the school curriculum but provide experiences the children will never forget. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has caused great financial burdens within the local community so we are looking to raise as much money as we can to help fund the cost of the trips for every child”.

Can you help Karla Grant raise £500 to support our local school community. Please donate to their JustGiving Crowdfunding Page: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/karla-grant-2?utm_term=57p55EyyA

Weekly round up

Weekly 10m tt Result

8. 23-06-21 Week 8 Result

Sunday club run  20-06-21

The forecasted rain showers were enough to put people off the idea of a bike ride this Sunday but not enough to deter Steve, Sean and Peter. Meeting up at the Golden Lion at 9:00 a route had to be decided but only after a full discourse regarding the plight of the English football team. Anyway, Peter suggested Durham, to try and find a new cafe somewhere in the woods near Hougall college. Sean didn’t look too keen as he had heard that Durham was in fact the hilliest county in all of Britain. Don’t know were he got that from but Peter and Steve thought it must be that fake news that is so popular these days. The route was up through Elwick and across the A19 at death crossing then onto the quiet lanes leading to Trimdon. There was a bit of a detour through Kelloe to avoid the Quarington Hill climb but the alternative climb past the landfill site could not be avoided. Along the way Sean was reminiscing about his days fighting the Hun in the first world war and had to explain to Steve who the Germans were, Steve is just a kid really and Sean’s tails were like ancient history to him. After Quarington Hill there was the fast descent into Durham with Peter leading them astray in search of the cafe in the woods. It was called ‘ the secret garden’ but even after asking the locals about it, there was no sign of it. It’s OK calling a cafe ‘secret’ but it cant really be much of a business plan to make it so secret that nobody can find it. Anyway this week they missed the sale of at least three cups of coffee(other drinks are available). Steve and Sean soon became impatient looking for a missing cafe and decided to head for the bright lights of Durham city. A cafe was soon found and artisan scones with fresh cream and jam were ordered to help the coffee go down. With the bridge in Durham centre shut the route back was along the main Durham road and up signing bank in heavy traffic so the turn back to Qurington hill was taken to get back on the traffic free lanes.  By now the threatened rain had given way to dull sunshine so all was well with the world until Steve’s worn out tyres developed a flat spot at the bottom. Upon further inspection it turned out that they had in fact punctured. Peter was soon at work with an old bit of sandpaper and some glue but Steve and Sean told him to stop messing about with the sheep and get the puncture fixed. The repair was soon done and all tidied away and from there it was straight home along familiar lanes. The ride was about 40 miles at 14 ish average and it seems like everyone enjoyed it. Hopefully we will try again next week.

Sunday club run 13-06-21

This Sunday’s ride had a definite aim, in fact not only an aim but a purpose too. Unlike the usual rides which Involve seeking out and assessing the cake, sausage sarnies and coffee (other drinks are available) on offer in cafes local to Teesside and the surrounding area, this Sunday had a proper purpose. A purpose that gave us a reason to get out of bed. That purpose was to act as marshals at the HCC 25 mile time trial (see above). The aim was to get to the half way turning point to do the marshaling in time for the first rider to go by.

Peter wasn’t too keen on having anything to do with helping people ride up and down the busy A19 but when Steve suggested riding there, which Involved some of Peters favourite lanes he was in.

The need to be there on time meant an early start and at 5:30 am Peter and Steve set off for the obscure destination of a junction on the A19 trunk road somewhere in the middle of nowhere. With the weather calm and warm and no traffic on the road it was a very pleasant start to the day. There was however a distinct head wind which soon made the going tough. So tough in fact that Steve was starting to get worried by Peter’s slow progress. Peter was worried too, they were just through Yarm and he was beginning to think that this ride was a case of biting off more than he can chew. With every peddle stroke the wind got stronger and the road felt like a constant hill. He eventually ground to a halt only to discover that the rear brake was binding and stopping the wheel from turning. A quick fix and they were soon on their way again,  heading for the climb at Bullamoor. Once over that however the road soon turned into a rough track but this didn’t last for long and then it was down hill all the way to Borrowby which is in fact the very centre of nowhere. On time as well so the aim had been achieved.

As for the purpose this involved waiting for the TT riders to come along and point them in the right direction. What would they do without us? Fortunately the event passed without incident and everyone made it back safe.

Peter and Steve were then free to enjoy the rest of the day and formed a vague plan for getting home. The route took them up Cotcliffe bank onto the ridge road through Kirby Sigston  and accross the A19 to Thimbleby. Then up the hill past Cod Beck reservoir. It was getting to be time for a cafe stop but the que’s at the Rusty Bike were too long. Next stop Yarm. Steve said he knew of a cafe and headed off in the direction of the Prison. Peter was held up a bit in traffic and by the time he had negotiated the turn Steve had disappeared. Not put off however Peter continued on to the Prison cafe. There was lots of cyclists there but no sign of Steve. Where could he be? Turns out that Steve knew of another cafe along the same road at a golf course. So after separate cafe stops the way home went through a very busy Yarm and as the Three Horse Shoes was open at Cowpen Bewley  it was time to have a stop together this time and enjoy a post ride pint in the sun.

All in all another great Sunday ride full of adventure but normal service will be resumed next week.


Weekly Round up 06-06-21

      The racing section of the club took part in the:

     VTTA (North)Coureurs /Cleveland 

  • Marcel Schubert (Darlington Cycling Club) saw off stiff competition to claim top spot in the Cleveland Coureurs 10-mile time trial in North Yorkshire, while Emma Matthews (Sowerby Sunday Club) came out on top in the women’s event. Hartlepool CC incorporated their Club 10m TT Championship and also the Handicap Championship  into the event with 4 members of the racing team taking part.Paul thirling winning the the Club 10 Championship 00:21:10 and Phil Wright winning the Club 10 Handicap Championship 00:19:26

See attached documents for results, well done to all the the guys taking part.




  •   Sunday 06-06-21 George Wilson and John Parsons were on a V-CC ride round Middleton Tyas with a social gathering at ex Spartan Wheeler 89 year old Maurice Bartle’s house and garden, where the star attraction was the huge collection of classic bikes.  Amongst them a well known West Hartlepool rider Tom Stevenson’s bike with his wife Olives also.  Tom’s old greasy cap still in the saddlebag!


  • This Sunday see the club host the   Hartlepool CC/VTTA (North)  Date/Time: 13-Jun-21 08:00:00  Distance: 25 Miles  Course: T252/3  with World Tour rider Harry Tanfield (Team Qhubeka Assos)  back in action during Sunday’s Hartlepool CC/VTTA 25.On an earlier outing this season Tanfield won the Hartlepool CC 10 clocking 19-44 and will be looking for a second open win on the out and back course near Middlesborough.Marcel Schubert (Darlington Cycling Club) could provide tough opposition with three wins to his name already this season, while Sophie Lankford (Jadan CycleSpace- Vive Le Velo) starts as last woman


Thanks to every who contributed content this week.