Only Girl In The Club

My cycling life

I was on my commute home from work, scrolling through Twitter and I noticed a Tweet from British Cycling. Without hesitation I found myself clicking through to the registration page and before I’d even had time to stop and think I was signed up for British Cycling’s South East women’s track skills session at Lee Valley Velodrome. …

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I was watching Bradley Wiggins wear the yellow jersey when I decided I would ride L’Etape du Tour. I was on my maternity leave and watching Le Tour had become my daily life. I started reading blogs from cyclists and one, in particular, caught my attention, they talked about the struggle, the adventure, the final climb, passing …

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A DNF (Did Not Finish) is a bitter pill to swallow; it’s one I’ve never tasted before. In the past I’ve always found a way to recover and fight back no matter how bad things have become. Despite putting on a very brave face the experience knocked my confidence and I was shattered. I’ve sat …

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The girl said drive your car to a town called Ardrossan and leave your car there, go over on the ferry as a foot passenger with your bike. When you dock on the island turn left and just keep riding, you can’t get lost. You’ll be climbing hills all day, you’ll love it. I was …

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There’s something I’ve wanted to do on my bike for a few years now. The time hasn’t been right in previous years, I was pregnant, on maternity leave or just not in the right place. I’ve been thinking about this challenge a lot recently and after my Grandad passed away this June it felt like this would be my year to enter L’Étape du Tour. My Grandad, Jules Tur was born in Casablanca, Morocco and raced with great success on his bike in the 1940’s. As a Frenchman, Le Tour de France was something he spoke of with such enthusiasm and high regard.

So I’ve got my registration confirmed and I’ve booked my accommodation in La Toussuire. My Mum, Dad, Savannah and I will set off on a road trip next July 2015. I will follow in the iconic wheel tracks of Sir Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome with a summit finish in memory of my Grandad.

It’s going to be a long, hard winter of tough training but that’s the bit I love the most. My cycling club has started a weekly night ride, we ride with lights and high viz. I hope to get out on that as much as possible and we still ride every Sunday whatever the weather. If I can keep up a few miles a week then all my hard work this year will set me up well for this challenge but I’ve never climbed a real mountain. I climbed to 902m recently on a club holiday in Portugal, Mt Foia but this is going to the next level and beyond. 142km and 3 mountains.

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A copy of my Grandad’s cycling club membership card from 1940 – 1941

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My Grandad lined up with his cycling team mates in Casablanca

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Cycling through the streets of Casablanca in 1941. I might be the only girl happy to inherit her Grandad’s legs.

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AVC nightriders winter training

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Sunday club ride to the Hub in Redbourne, Herts with AVC

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Getting ready to climb Mt Foia in the Algarve

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The 14% steep cobbles back to our villa in the Algarve

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Cooking up porridge for the boys (and me) each morning in the Algarve

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It was very cold on the way down from Mt Foia

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Climbing all day long in the Algarve

November 18, 2014

I was out riding with my club a few days ago, it was a beautiful Sunday morning. The sun was up in the sky, the temperature was about 16’. We were rolling through some beautiful country lanes at an average speed of 18mph. It was classic Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire countryside and just perfect for cycling. I …

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