The life of legendary television commentator Phil Liggett MBE is inextricably entwined with the history of professional cycling. During a career that has spanned five decades, 15 Olympic games and 47 Tours de France, Phil Liggett has been there for every key moment in cycling over the last half century. The heroic triumphs, the appalling tragedies, the scandals and the controversies; Phil has seen it all, and told us about it with passion, knowledge and his trademark wit. As much as anyone, Phil Liggett has shaped the way the world sees cycling.
His documentary has been released in Australia (as CV-19 restrictions have been relaxed) and has had fantastic reviews.
A release date for the UK is currently unknown but when CV-19 restrictions allow and cinemas are open it will be released.
Phil has also commentated on the Berkhamsted Revolutions Cycling Festival, other local races as well as a talk at BCC and Musette Cafe. Those of you that were at the BCC talk may remember a film crew also being there, the club is in Phil’s documentary film!
For a brief glimpse please view the trailer on YouTube below.
From the success of our 2019 Women’s Road Race and the great work of our outgoing Performance Officer, BCC plan to host a round of the 2021 British Women’s Team Cup Road Race. A men’s Category 3 / 4 race is also planned on the same day with prizes for both races.
The race will be dependent on COVOID-19 Government restrictions, but we really hope that it goes ahead.
Global Cycling Network (GCN) and Education First Pro Cycling intend to make a film documentary of the race.
The races are expected to be on Sunday 25th July 2021 on the Mentmore Circuit, Cheddington, LU7 0RU. Keep the date in your diary. Our new Performance Officer will update when further details are available.
Happy New Year from Berkhamsted Cycling Club. Some of our members got together a video for #PassTheBottleChallenge.
No bottles were harmed in the making of this video.
Each rider used their own bottles, in their own homes (or garage) socially distanced from one another by at least half a mile.
The club have had a intermittent year on the road. Here are a couple of pictures from some of our members enjoying the Chiltern’s in the winter whilst strictly adhering to Covoid-19 Government restrictions.
A windy Berkhamsted Cycling Club Time Trial on Sunday 27th September. A big thank you to all competitors, CTT Timekeepers, Marshall’s and Paul Gardner the race organiser. Putting on an event like this during a global pandemic is not without challenges. Thanks for everyone’s adherence to guidelines, your patience and understanding. Hope you had a good event and see you next year.
Photo credit Trevor Hill.
*Update* Women’s Junior Female Winner Ellen Bennett finishes 2nd in the 2020 National Hill Climb Championships.
British Cycling and Cycling Time Trials have returned to racing with strict restrictions for Covoid-19 social distancing and tracking. Berkhamsted Cycling Club have been racing in both disciplines.
The Bovingdon Bomber race series organised by Hemel Hempstead Cycling Club (HHCC) was one of the first BC closed road criterium races since March 2020. On Wednesday 5th August Heather and Sarah raced in the women’s category 3/4 event along with the sprint competition. Both had a great time and will be returning for the rest of the series.
The weekly 10 mile time trial (also organised by HHCC) started on Thursday 23rd July. Simon raced on a recently upgraded full-on TT bike and has been setting personal bests. Alan decided to give TT’ing a go and thoroughly enjoyed it.
At Berkhamsted Cycling Club we follow the rules of the Highway Code and always promote safe cycling.
The picture above from North Yorkshire Police shows the 1.5 meter clearance that drivers should leave when overtaking. Remember cyclists may need to navigate around uneven road surfaces, drain covers and other debris. Police forces are issuing fines and punishments to drivers that overtake under the 1.5 meter clearance.
Berkhamsted Cycling Club flying high following donation
Berkhamsted Cycling Club (BCC) have donated £1,000 to Thames Valley Air Ambulance (TVAA) from the proceeds of their annual Berkhamsted Spring Classic Reliability Ride.
The ride, which took place on Sunday, March 8 2020, before lockdown, involved more than 100 riders completing circuits of either 60 km or 100 km in length. Money from the entry fee was donated to the Air Ambulance this month.
BCC Chairman Mike Plowman said: “One of our members, Trevor Hill, had a nasty crash last year and was rescued by Thames Valley Air Ambulance. Since then it’s been a cause that has been particularly close to our hearts and we were really proud to be able to give them this donation.”
Katie Eyton, community fundraising manager at TVAA, said: “This is a truly amazing amount of money and we are humbled by the overwhelming support we are receiving from our community who have so generously donated during this unprecedented time. The spring and summer months are an important and busy time for our charity, so it won’t come as a surprise that we have been impacted by the cancellation and postponement of many fundraising events due to the Coronavirus pandemic – we are just so grateful that this event was able to take place and a huge thank you to Trevor and the members of the BCC for your ongoing support, we could not do what we do without you.”
BCC’s reliability ride marked the second time this event was run. Reliability rides are a British cycling tradition, the earliest dating back more than a century when cyclists would complete a long loop in early January without external support, as a way of proving the durability of themselves and their machines. Berkhamsted’s relatively new event is part of the “Chiltern Classic Reliability Series” of events, which take place each year.
It was the last major BCC event before the club went into its own form of lockdown, cancelling its group rides with members cycling alone or cycling indoors.
Many club members have taken to indoor cycling using Zwift to ‘virtually’ meetup with other riders ensuring that the Covoid-19 social distancing Government recommendations are adhered to. This is a great way to chat or message other club riders whilst maintaining fitness and getting in 1 hour’s exercise a day.
Berkhamsted Cycling Club have Zwift group meetup’s on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and Saturday mornings. If you would like to join in follow ‘Trevor Hill BCC’ on Zwift.
James completed the Paris-Brest-Paris 1,200km Audax ride in 85hrs 10mins 32secs. A phenomenal achievement for this ride that’s held every 4 years. Entry can only be gained by completing the Super Randonneur series of 200km, 300km, 400km & 600km Audax rides in 2019.
Chapeau from all at the club.
James held an online Zoom talk about his experience which includes details about the history of the event, his qualifying, training, nutrition and trusty bike as well as the ride itself. A fascinating insight to the highs and lows of long distance cycling. Click below to watch the video.
5 days 11 hours 38 minutes is how long it took Nick Clarke to complete the grueling Atlas Mountain Race in February 2020 across the unforgiving Moroccan landscape.
The unsupported fixed route race from Marrakesh to Sidi Rabat is a distance of 1150 km with 20,000 mtrs of climbing in the Atlas Mountains and 3 checkpoints along the way. The clock doesn’t stop until the end.
Nick was racing for Arctic-Aircon Racing Team, one of the longest running UK sponsored/supported race teams with 23 years in British Cycling. Nick is also a founding member of Berkhamsted Cycling Club.
He started the event in full-on race mode and was in the top 20 for most of the race. Nick had to overcome one or two setback’s along the way including a crash, loosing his water bottles, 5 snapped wheel spokes, failure of his bike luggage and saddle sores. However his legs held out fine.
Single-mindedness and determination saw Nick finish in a highly creditable 33rd position.
200 riders started the race and 123 finished with Pro-Continental rider Christen Mayer one of the non-finishers due to saddle sores.
Nick has vowed to return next year or take on another long distance race.
The AMR2020 organisers are broadcasting a video story of the race from Wednesday 20th May 2020 on YouTube.
Verulam Cycling Club have won the Berkhamsted Cycling Club Spring Classic Trophy for the 2nd year in a row. Leighton Buzzard Triathlon Club were in second place. Chapeau to all the riders and to the Committee (especially Paul Molyneux) and Musette Cafe for organising a memorable event. See you all again next year!
Photos of the day can be viewed and downloaded (free) from Flickr by clicking on the picture below.
When? The event took place on Sunday 8th March 2020, sign on opens from 8:00, first riders are off at 9:00.
What’s a reliability Ride? Reliability rides are self supported organised rides of a pre-planned course. Riders are expected to navigate the route themselves and to complete the course without external assistance, other than from other riders.
The Routes The event provides a choice of two routes through the stunning Chiltern countryside. Our objective was simple: create a route covering the best the area has to offer – a great day out on the bike. The longer route takes in a beautiful loop through the Vale of Aylesbury, past the historic Waddesdon Manor and then back via a challenging climb up Aston Hill. The shorter loop shares its outward leg with the longer route before splitting off at 35km and avoiding Aston Hill.
**IMPORTANT ROUTE CHANGE**
Due to emergency drainage repairs on the road to Wing both the Long and Short routes have changed. The updated Ride with GPS routes are below.
At the end of the event there’ll be a free buffet and bottomless tea. Musette will be open as usual selling their excellent coffee and cakes.
Event Timing The event will be timed via chip timing, provided on the day.
Interclub Competition The event will include a competition for the unique, handmade Berkhamsted Spring Classic Trophy. Each rider who completes the long route scores one point, each rider completing the shorter route gets half a point, the club with the most points will hold the trophy for a year, until the next event, when the trophy will return to be awarded again. BCC are excluded from the competition as the hosting club. Will your club be the winners?
Charity Partner We’re pleased that Thames Valley Air Ambulance is our charity partner for this event. A member of our club had an accident while out on a ride, TVAA were on hand to take him to hospital and he’s now on the road to recovery, we and many other people who’ve been helped by TVAA in their hour of need are hugely grateful for the service the TVAA provides. The TVAA receives no funding from the NHS therefore we’re proud to announce that all profits from this event with be donated to the TVAA. More information about the TVAA can be found here.
Things to know and remember The event will not be signed, you can download directions from the entry page, paper route maps will be available on the day.
There will be no support on the road therefore riders should ensure that their bike is in good working order and carry sufficient spares and supplies as necessary.
Third party insurance is provided by British Cycling as part of the cost of entry. Riders are reminded that they ride at their own risk.
All participating riders are required to wear helmets.
Riders should obey the rules of the road and ride with due consideration for other road users. Any riders observed not doing so will be ejected from the event.
Parking is available at the event HQ but is limited. If you’re unable to park at the HQ you can park of at Tring Station c.1km from the event HQ, charges may apply.
Please be considerate of residents who live close to the event HQ when arriving in the morning.
The storms have kept a lot of the club off the road but a few hardy souls have braved the weather for our Saturday morning club rides.
Some of the club have taken to two legs competing in the Berkhamsted Half Marathon and Fun Run organised by the Rotary Club.
The Chiltern Classics Reliability Ride series has seen club members out on the roads keeping in shape for the spring and summer months.
Berkhamsted CC won the Verulam CC Reliability Ride Inter-club trophy! This is won on a points system based on the club with the most riders to finish the event (excluding the host club). Chapeau to all the members that took part on a very windy day.
Musette hosted a great evening talk with Matt Stephens and local legend Anna Henderson (racing for Pro Team Sunweb along with team GB). The cafe have got a full calendar of events lined up this year. Check their website for details.
The club have won the Harp Hilly 100 shield for the 6th consecutive year.
38 BCC riders completed the shortened 60 km route beating Verulam Cycling Club with 18 riders. Due to cold conditions with ice on country lanes the organisers wisely decided to shorten the 100 km route. Mike (our Chairman) said ‘Well done to all who took part on a rather chilly day. I think I may have something in my eye or am I having another proud BCC Chairman moment?’
The Harp Hilly Hundred is in it’s 66th year, organised by Harp Road Club, Apsley, has been run in January every year since 1954.
BCC was formed 6 years ago and have dominated the Harp Hilly Hundred shield in recent years but still have a long way to go to equal local rivals Verulam CC, who have scooped the prize on 23 occasions.
Winter has arrived but club members have still been enjoying the odd glimpse of sun on our rolling Chiltern countryside.
Mountain bike rides have replaced a couple of our Saturday morning club rides as the roads have been too icy.
Our chairman Mike raced in a charity event at the Olympic velodrome in Lee Valley Velo Park where he managed to recruit a couple of new members (namely Victoria Pendleton and Sir Chris Hoy)!
The clubs Annual General Meeting was held on 15th November and was a great success with formalities speedily dispatched with followed by banter, beer (and wine) and fab food organised by Heidi our event coordinator. AGM slides and minutes can be viewed by club members by clicking here (you need to login).
The Wednesday evening winter turbo sessions managed by our coach Duncan have started in earnest at the Berko Cricket club. If you would like to join in click here to send an email.
Berkhamsted Cycling Club and Hult Ashridge Executive Education presents Ride With the Pro’s.
The rides were on Sunday 10th November from Hult Ashridge College, Berkhamsted, Herthfordshire with 5 different length routes for varied abilities with an off-road family fun ride. All the riders had a great morning on the undulating course with coffee and sandwiches at the start and coffee and cake at the end!
Hugh Carthy and Sebastian Langerveld of EF Education First World Tour Cycling team, Anna Henderson, Jenny Powell and Jo Simley of National Race Team Brother UK – Tifosi powered by OnForm rode with the groups.
We would like to say a huge Thank You to all the riders that have raised £700.00 for local charities.
For pictures of the day click on the Flickr link below. Free to download full size images.
Another busy few weeks for club members with riders finding winter sun in some far-flung places along with our weekly club rides around Berko.
Some of the ventures included… Majorca, Paris, Croatia, Côte d’Azur and the Italian Riviera, The Alps north-west of Avignon, France, Monpellier and Bellagio on Lake Como, Italy.
Our Chairman Mike competed in Ironman Lanzarote and has also collected the ‘London Classics’ by completing the three big 2019 events in London: The Marathon, Ride London and Swim the Serpentine. Chapeau!
Phil Liggett entertained us with stories of cycling, Africa and Save the Rhino.
The clubs ‘Ride with the Pros’ event at Ashridge College is on Sunday 10th November and we are expecting Education First racer Hugh Carthy (along with other EF riders) and Anna Henderson to be riding. Click here for details and online entry.
Local lass Anna Henderson (racer for Team OnForm) competed in the UCI Worlds in Yorkshire where GB finished 3rd in the Mixed Team Time Trial event. The first time this event has been included in the worlds. Anna was also in the road race and finished as the highest place GB rider.
The local Gazette ran a photo special on our 2019 Time Trial. Well done racers, time keepers, helpers and organisers Click here for online news.
So a gloomy September morning dawned on the day of the BCC TT around Mentmore, one of the clubs well used ride routes, heavy drizzle and standing water was set to greet the 62 brave souls signed up for the annual 10 mile dash, honours and bragging rights at stake.
Just as the cohort of hardy BCC volunteers started to arrive along with the riders the weather brightened, and we could swear blue sky was appearing. A number of riders cited ‘illness’ or an aversion to water so the field finally whittled itself down to around 45 riders departing with guinea pig, endurance junkie and chairman Mike Plowman starting off the affair, with the rest of the field chasing his yellow peril TT bike, a small ray of dwindling brightness up Mentmore Hill in the grey.
Apart from small spill by Simon Pearce by the duck pond who still managed a very creditable 5th overall despite the bumps and road rash the race was uneventful and duly won overall by Nick Clarke in a time of 22:08 at an average of 27 mph or 43.4 kph. For the women Sam Fawcett came home in a time of 25:13, an average of 23.8 mph or 38.3 kph and an 11th overall. (Provisional results).
Winners of the best 3 riders home in a team went to old friends Ashmei Musette Men and Lovelo Squadra Donne Women.
Very positive feedback from all and the HQ at Tracy’s Café put on some fine refreshments. Huge thanks to all the volunteers, marshals and timekeepers.