Wednesday, 16 July 2008


Six o'clock starts have never been my thing (ever).  So God knows why I've decided that joining a cycling club would be a good thing - well, the only way one can get a racing licence is by joining a "registered" club and getting real interest from the unherded cats was not forthcoming and, hey, I built a road bike for speed and I'd like to be able to see how I go up against the weekend warriors so there weren't really many options.  I also can't really complain about the meeting point considering it's 2 minutes from my house.  In any event, rocking up in the pitch black to meet up with a bunch of riders in order to bunch ride with them isn't the way any sane person should be spending the hours between 6 and 7am.  On the Tuesday managed to find the Sydney Cycling crew without too much effort and was graciously allowed to hide in the back and try to decode the etiquette of bunch riding (it seems that it's de rigeur to shout a lot and point at things on the road - it also appears that red lights are for stopping [who'd have though???]).  Initial ride was not terribly taxing - a pretty fast dash out to La Perouse and back but I have to say that I prefer riding around cars than bikes.  It feels very sketchy to ride on someone's back wheel with only a few feet from the guy next to you - two tonnes of steel hurtling beside me just seems safer than 5 kilos of carbon.  Strange. 
Day II was even sketchier - for some reason I found myself jumping onto the back of the "fast group" - it just seemed preferable to ride with 2 people rather than a dozen - once again, keeping up wasn't really a big problem - the up hills weren't too bad but the descents were, quite frankly, terrifying.  Crappy roads and a handlebar stem that keeps slipping meant on several occasions I was riding brakeless for far longer than I wanted to be - one not so nice moment saw me taking a side street as an exit ramp when I was hurtling down South Dowling (I think it was South Dowling Street anyway).  But hey, that can be fixed.  Slight tension in the legs and nasty feelings in my chest from over exertion on the ascents notwithstanding all in all, feel pretty good.  Let's hope the courier nickname doesn't get resurrected.  Huzzah.

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