Weekly News 01/08/22 to 07/08/22

HCC Sunday Social Cafe Ride

After last week’s washout everyone was keen to get back out round the lanes this Sunday. Everyone being Steve, Sean, Peter and Matt. Paul S must also get a mention as he had set off from his home somewhere to the far north of Hartlepool only to suffer a tyre mishap which prevented him making it to the Golden Lion for the 9:00 start.

Peter had suggested trying a ride to the Locomotion train museum at Shildon but wasn’t entirely sure if the cafe would be open. Sean wasn’t keen on this for two reasons one being that it involved heading into Durham, the hilliest county in the country. The other being that he didn’t fancy riding 25 miles only to find the cafe shut when he got there. But sometimes you have to take life by the men’s bits and give it a good shake.   So, it was decided to live dangerously and go to Shildon to check out the openness or otherwise of the Locomotion Cafe.

The route out of town was the usual, up the hill towards Trimdon with the chat in the group being mainly of the various ailments being endured by the riders this week. It turns out that both Peter and Matt suffer from snot behind the ear and have now set up a support group for fellow sufferers of this much misunderstood condition.

After Trimdon,  it was through Fishburn and towards Ferryhill. But much to Sean’s relief, although it was Durham, it wasn’t proper Durham and instead of going up the hill the route skirted round to Chiltern and Midridge a nice-looking rural village where apparently someone has plans to set up a landfill site. Well, no! Seems to be the opinion of at least one inhabitant who has erected a large sign to make passing cyclists perfectly aware of his thoughts on the matter. And who can blame him/her.

It is a long tiering drag up through Midridge to the turning, down into Shildon and a niggly headwind made the going even tougher.  So, it came as a relief to get to the Shildon/Locomotion sign and the descent into the town. It came as more of a relief to get there and discover the cafe open!


Shildon was once a home to train building and the museum contains many examples of trains that have been made at some time in the past.
Of particular note was the Rocket, the first steam powered chariot, built for the Emporer Winston Churchill to help him defeat the Scottish dockers in the late 1600s. You can only imagine the shock on the blue wode smeared faces of the Pict hoards as this steamy beast came lumbering over the hill. Although there is some dispute as to whether this is the original the Rocket as it was painted all gaudy yellow. Whereas some say the original was green. The explanation for this is that the green paint was camouflage and it was painted yellow when pressed into commercial service being the first passenger Locomotion, touting it’s business between Stockton and Darlington up until 1975 when it was forced out of service by the arrival of diesel engines.  There are many more trains from the past at the Locomotion and it is well worth a visit if you are interested in that type of thing. The bacon sarnies are ok as well and the cafe is worth a visit.

Fortunately for the weary cyclist there is a flat way out of Shildon that goes all the way to Newton Aycliffe and this was the route taken on today’s ride home. With the wind from behind and the road mainly downwards and the sun starting to warm things up it was almost pleasant as the miles ticked away along now, well familiar lanes. Through Bishopton and Thorpe Thewels with just the climb at Golden Gates to get over before another stop at the Welly. Usually, it is just a case of getting up this hill but today, Matt had other ideas. He was going to give it his all to try and get onto the Strava hall of fame. Needless to say, he left the rest of the group gasping as he sped off up the hill like a man demented. Apparently, he was 20 seconds off the required pace, but the hill is still there for another go next time.

As the weather was clement a stop for beer at the Welly was called for and all the world’s troubles were soon sorted out. Then with the wind blowing from behind, it was a steady roll back into town with Sean heading straight on while the others headed up to Dalton via the scenic route.

The ride was around 50 miles in total at an average of 14/15 mph. The new start time at the Golden Lion is 9:00 and the rides are open to anyone that enjoys a sociable cycle ride.

Club/Racing News

On Wednesday night, two Hartlepool CC riders took part in the Darlington Club Tens (10 Mile TT) event.  Paul Thirling finished in 5th place in 22:38 and Steve Rhodes finished in 18th place in 26:17 out of 22 riders.  The event was won by Darlingtons own Marcel Schubert in 20.11 followed by an excellent ride and PB in 2nd place by Ryan Hall of Adept in 21:34.  Well done to all!  This event has proven to be a popular event.  Therefore if you are looking for a midweek TT this could be the one for you!

On Saturday, Phil Wright travelled to Keswick for the Border City Wheelers CC 10 Mile TT on the L1010 course.  Phil finished in 44th place in 27:22 out of 45 riders.  Liam Beaty of Hawick Cycling Club won the event in 19:06.  Well done Phil!

On Sunday Lee Morley competed in the Yorkshire VTTA 10 Mile TT on the V210 course in Dishforth.  Lee finishing in an amazing time of 22:40 achieving another PB over 10 miles.  75 riders were scheduled to start this TT but at the time of publishing this, the riders who started and the winner of the event has not yet been published.  Well done Lee on another great TT!


Strava Club Leaderboard

This week Trevor Jones claimed the top spot in the general classification with 209.7 miles, The Thirlwind was 2nd with 202.3 miles and Phil Wright was 3rd with 121.2 miles.

Trevor Jones also took this weeks King Of The Mountains polka dot jersey with a fantastic 9,321 ft of climbing and also achieved the biggest single ride of the week with 87.8 miles.  Well done Trevor, great week!

This week 6 riders joined the 100 mile club for the week – Trevor Jones, The Thirlwind, Phil Wright, Bryan Blackelock, Bob Stonehouse and Frank Elders.  Well done to all 6 of you, good mileage!

This week 21 riders put miles on the board out of 52 Strava HCC members.   Well done to everyone!

Achievements to note, well done to Trevor Jones for a great week of cycling, Bryan Blackelock, Frank Elders and Max Headwind for some big single rides, Lee Morley for a great PB in his 10 mile TT, Phil Wright for his continuous weekly efforts in various TT events around the country, flying the club colours, Also a massive well done to all other club members who are enjoying getting some miles in this season!  Be safe and most of all enjoy it.