Over the last few weeks we have been having much debate about the Vinghoe Velos, where we have been and where we are going!
Just over 2 years ago 3 of us, over a few glasses of refreshment, talked about getting people together to enjoy our own passions for cycling, certain things occurred to us and set the tone for what was then done
- This was NOT to be a club rather a group – none of us had sufficient time to administer a formal cycling club, which would require fees, insurance etc etc
- We wanted to encourage others to enjoy cycling
- We were to be fully inclusive
- Slowest rider rules
- Have fun and meet new people
- Support our HQ, the Rose and Crown
- Help tackle the growing problem of obesity in the country (not too successful in some cases!) – ok that wasn’t one of our founding principles!
And so the Vinghoe Velos was born!
We have been overwhelmed by what has happened and what has been achieved and from those humble beginnings where we have now got to. From 75% of bikes being hybrid/mountain bikes to 95% being road bikes. Many people taking on personal cycling challenges never considered before, just this year we will have seen:
- 3 people complete the London to Paris ride rasing money for Charities
- 1 person complete 5 mountain climbs used on the TdF, with the pinnacle being the Col de la Croix de Fer, a stage never won by a British rider in the TdF but conquered by our very own John Hegarty who hit the summit in plenty of time to cheer the ‘Sky Train’ through as Wiggo charged on to win his yellow jersey
- 10 intrepid members of the group taking on an endurance ride as they set off to Normandy in September for a wine tasting extravaganza interspersed with daily bouts of cycling!
- Sally Beezer’s Saturday Tea Rides proving a tremendous success
- Bike purchases sufficient to restart the European economy!
- The numbers of Vinghoe Velos jerseys ordered reaching nearly 50 (order due in next week!)
- The hanging of the group jersey on the wall of HQ
- 2 Tandems regularly competing for the ‘Jack’ (Stalker) award!
So where now, we ask? – Watch this space for a Social being organised by our very own Publican (not forgetting “the other one”) and renowned email raconteur, Gary (@turnoverdigger) Peter – yes there is a story there! The purpose is to openly talk about the good and the bad of the Vinghoe Velos and where it goes next, at the same time possibly having a couple of drinks and also welcoming any new people interested in joining us!
So to this weekend, the tea ride is out today at 10am and tomorrow we meet at the Rose and Crown at 0950 for a quick jaunt around the beautiful 3 Counties. Recognising that the ‘quick jaunt’ may not be for all, Andy Beezer has kindly offered to lead out a group aiming to average a much more reasonable 12mph.
The route! – 33 miles – not too hilly but remember its going to be warm, plenty of sunfactor 20 and water bottles filled!
Whilst some of the ride is repeated form last week this takes us further west before coming home – Andy Beezer may wish to shorten the route by heading back from Stewkley via Wing and Mentmore