Tickhill GP Giant Sheffield Women’s Elite 1/2/3 Gallery

All image ©CyclingShorts.cc / www.chrismaher.co.uk

If you wish to order prints or high resolution files of these images please contact us for the price list.

 

GIANT SHEFFIELD WOMENS ELITE 1/2/3
1. TANYA GRIFFITHS                 Starley Primal Pro Cycling
2. GRACE GARNER                    RST Racing Team
3. HANNAH WALKER                Epic Cycles – Scott WRT
4. MELISSA                                   Matrix Fitness Vulpine
5. LOUISE BORTHWICK            Matrix Fitness Vulpine
6. NICOLA JUNIPER                   Team Echelon
7. CHA JOINER                            PEARL IZUMI Sports Tours International
8. GABRIELLA SHAW                  PEARL IZUMI Sports Tours International
9. CHARLOTTE BROUGHTON   MG Decor
10. KAYLEIGH BROGAN             Team Thomsons Cycles

Tickhill GP Giant Sheffield Women’s Cat 3/4 Race Gallery

All image ©CyclingShorts.cc / www.chrismaher.co.uk

If you wish to order prints or high resolution files of these images please contact us for the price list.

GIANT SHEFFIELD WOMENS CAT 3/4
1. Fiona Hunter Johnston
2. Kirsty Boak   –   Marton Race Team
3. Ann Walsham   –   Womens Cycling Sheffield Race Team
4. Charlotte Parnham   –   Womens Cycling Sheffield Race Team
5. Samantha Verrill   –   Marton Race Team
6. Jenny Eastham   –   Airedale Olympic Cycling Club
7. Natasha Morrison   –   MG Decor
8. Sophie Enever   –   Tyneside Vagabonds Cycling Club
9. Lindsay Atkinson-Wright   –   Albarosa Cycling Club
10. Elisa McDonagh   –   Team WNT

Buying a new bike – an alternative guide for women

I have noticed recently that there have been many articles flying around about women’s bikes, but so far nobody has given a review of a women’s specific design bike for racing.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that you can’t race on one – for the past two years I have been riding a female specific Boardman, which I bought from Halfords for £1,000, but I have always complained about the sub-standard groupset, despite the bike being very light.  I also don’t like racing on clinchers, so I upgraded the wheels that came with the bike and changed the saddle to one I am used to using.

Note the wheels – one of the key upgrades to the Boardman

So what are your options?

If you read the vast majority of articles on women’s bikes, you would think that there are loads to choose from.  That may be the case, but the majority of brochures for women’s bikes talk about comfort on long rides, and the women’s geometry is supposed to be more relaxed to compensate for this.  But if you’re looking for a bike to race on, this might not be what you’re looking for, so do yourself a favour and look at both the men’s and women’s options but bear in mind the main differences between men’s and women’s bikes, namely:

  1. Women’s bikes tend to have worse groupsets than their “male” alternative (although some manufacturers are starting to buck this trend);
  2. Men’s bikes tend to have wider handlebars, making control difficult for women who tend to be more petite in width;
  3. The top end men’s bikes are very light and very stiff – most women don’t benefit from a stiff frame as much as men due to the difference in power output.

It is possible to change components on the bike before you buy, you just have to be prepared to negotiate with the shop before you buy.  Some changes are easy to make, for example by asking for narrower handlebars or women’s specific ones, which tend to have a shallower drop.  Furthermore, many bikes have compact chainsets, with 50/34 chainrings, but you may prefer to change it for a double, with 53/39 chainrings, depending on who you are going to race with and what events you intend to ride.

My Top Tips 

Remember my top tips and get what bike you want:

  1. Research the bike you want before setting foot in the shop – if you have a top price in mind, try not to go above it;
  2. Ask fellow cyclists for their opinion, but remember that its your money and ultimately your decision;
  3. Remember that just because you’re a woman doesn’t mean you can’t ride a men’s bike;
  4. If you’re going for the full bike, ask to take it for a test ride;
  5. Remember that you can change components at a later date, although some are easier (and cheaper) to change than others;
  6. Take advantage of a bike fit;
  7. Don’t pick the bike because of the colour – get one that fits both you and the purpose you want it for (this also means that you have to be honest with yourself in order to get the right bike);
  8. Be prepared to negotiate with the shop to change the components;
  9. Buy what you want not what the shop assistant says you should buy.

Putting my own advice into practice

This year, I decided to buy a new bike.  I didn’t want to spend more than £3,000 (which still seems a lot considering).  The women’s specific bike that I was going to buy seemed to have weird sizing and I knew before I made the final decision that I wouldn’t want to keep the wheels (the majority of wheels that come with full bikes are not as good as the wheels that you would want to race on), or the compact chainset or the saddle.

My Giant TCR in its first race – note the same wheels as in the picture above

I have ridden Giant bikes for quite a while – men’s and women’s – and I like the compact frame (Giant call it “Compact Road Design”).  I had a look at the men’s bikes, as well as the women’s, and for £3,499 RRP I could buy a full bike (the men’s TCR Advanced and the women’s Avail Advanced), both with Ultegra Di2, but the women’s version came under the heading “Endurance” not “Performance”.  Indeed, it is described as a bike for “sportives, centuries, fast group rides and epic solo days” – no mention of a race.  This did put me off, as I was looking to upgrade my race bike.

The Decision

I decided to go with the men’s frameset option instead – the tag line for this bike is “if road bike racing is in your DNA, this is your machine” – well, it mentioned racing so that was a good start!  I was keen to buy a 10 speed double groupset (rather than a compact) before everything changes to 11 speed, and I was lucky enough to buy it for a really good price online.  I shopped around and got some slightly narrower handlebars too.  My local bike shop did a phenomenal job in building it up for me, even managing to get hold of matching bottle cages!

As for the Boardman, well that has been transformed into my new low profile time trial bike – there will be an article on that in the coming weeks.  Until then, enjoy your riding!

 

Wiggle Etape Cymru Hits 1000 Entrants and Welcomes New Partners Giant and Mavic

Wiggle Etape Cymru Hits 1000 Entrants and Welcomes New Partners Giant and Mavic
Following on from a stellar 2012 event, it comes as no surprise that places are being snapped up quickly for this year’s Wiggle Etape Cymru, having already passed 1000 entrants, a 145% increase against this time last year.
After taking ownership in early 2012, Human Race have worked tirelessly to ensure the Wiggle Etape Cymru is now recognised as one of the ‘must do’ events on the UK sportive calendar, with 98% of participants rating the 2012 event overall as “Good” or “Excellent”.
As well as the incredibly positive feedback received from participants the event has also been widely acclaimed within the cycling industry and as a result has attracted a range of respected cycling brands who have now partnered with the event, including the new Title Partner Wiggle.
The latest brands to partner with the event include the world’s leading bike brand Giant, who will be providing bike checks and mechanical support for participants from the venue, and Mavic who will be providing riders with a Tour de France style support experience on the route. As more respected brands look set to add their support the 2013 participant experience will continue to improve from the already extremely well received 2012 event.
The 2013 edition takes place on Sunday 8th September and once again offers participants the unparalleled experience of riding through the stunning Welsh countryside on traffic free roads.
Starting and finishing the Bangor-on-Dee Racecourse in Wrexham, the 92 mile route features some truly testing terrain. Passing through quaint Denbighshire and Wrexham villages, riders will be able to take in the spectacular views of the Clwydian range (an area of outstanding beauty), while tackling lung-busting climbs such as Panorama, The Shelf, World’s End and the iconic Horseshoe Pass.
Olympic medallist and Team Sky rider Geraint Thomas is the event ambassador and speaks of great scenes awaiting those who are lucky enough to get a place: “My home country of Wales makes me feel so lucky to be a cyclist. North Wales, in particular, is a really special area with quiet roads, tough climbs and the reward of spectacular panoramic views.”
He continued: “At nearly 100 miles, the Wiggle Etape Cymru is a grueling sportive but everyone taking part will be rewarded with a fantastic day in the saddle on stunning roads.”
Nick Rusling, CEO of Human Race said: “The Wiggle Etape Cymru is a wonderful event and it is great to hear that we have passed 1000 entrants so early on in the year. We’re delighted to welcome the new partnerships that will continue to improve the rider experience and quality of the event.”
Participants in the event will be encouraged to fundraise for the Official National Charity Partner Macmillan Cancer Support. The money raised will be used to help Macmillan support not only people affected by cancer, but everyone their cancer has an impact on, from partners, to children, to friends and carers.
Riders will also be supporting Local Charity Partner Nightingale House. The charity provides specialist palliative care services, completely free-of-charge, to patients and their families across a wide area stretching from Wrexham, Flintshire and East Denbighshire to Barmouth and the border towns including Oswestry and Whitchurch.
Entries cost £59. For more information on the Wiggle Etape Cymru, please visit:  http://www.humanrace.co.uk/cycling

Cyclodam

We’d like to introduce you to the Cyclodam Cycling Club, based in the beautiful city of Amsterdam and run by the lovely Hayley Davies and Monica Haydock.

Cyclodam provide all you need from a cycling club; catering for beginners to the uber experienced rider, all ages, men, women, boys and girls. They will show you how to use a bike for exercise, for sport and for getting you home safely from work. It’s a great social way to make new like-minded friends from all walks of life.

They break their club into three logical areas that make it extremely friendly and accessible, no need to feel out of your depth.

They also run a number of social events including weekly weekend rides, and workshops on all things cycle related like nutrition and bike maintenance and fun trips to visit some of the worlds top cycling races, this year they are going to the final stage of the Tour de France, so if you’re in Paris for the finish keep an eye out for the Cyclodam guys and girls!

The three levels are:
Love Cycling: Beginner or out-of-practice cyclist, you either don’t know how to ride a bike, or believe you’ve forgotten how (you’ve heard the cliché!). Join them to re-explore the art of riding a bike from the Dutch Highway Code, basic maintenance and how to balance your shopping while cycling!

Intro to Cycling as Exercise: Whether you’ve grown up watching the Tour de France and see yourself as the next pro or just realize the benefits of cycling, Cyclodam will help you get to grips with using 2 wheels as more than a form of transportation.

Cycling & Triathlon Club (CTC): For the enthusiastic cyclist, Cyclodam’s road and triathlon group, ride, train and compete together regularly. Why not join them out on the road? All levels of expertise welcome. It’s a mix of girls, boys, nationalities, ages and experiences. Training as often as work and personal commitments allow they meet regularly to better their swim, run and cycling skills. You can also find many of them at national and international competitions. New to road cycling or triathlons? Don’t worry – they welcome and encourage all new members, beginner or expert!

 
What Cyclodam say:
What can you expect from Cyclodam CTC?
As a member of Cyclodam CTC, expect to push your personal goals and achievements further. We work hard to make sure all individual training goals are met as a club. At the beginning of the swim, run or cycle session, we identify what each athlete aims to achieve and work together as a team to meet these.

Aside from training, you can also expect a range of benefits as a member from our main sponsor Giant, and the opportunity to wear team kit (we’ll be taking orders twice yearly). And of course, having fun at our superb socials!

How can you become a member?
Becoming a member is easy. We charge 25 Euros per year for each member. This is to cover our costs and to make sure we can keep the club running and provide you with the best offers from local companies. If you wish to join, please send an email to [email protected]

For more information please visit the website: www.Cyclodam.com
or Facebook page: www.facebook.com/cyclodam

 


 
 

What a difference 30psi makes…

Bike Tyre - Image ©Copyright Paul * (Flickr)

I’m a very happy man today – when I got the bike out of the back of the car this morning in preparation for the cycle leg of my commute, I spotted my trusty footpump nestled cosily amongst the pasty wrappers and empty milk cartons.  Whilst I wasn’t exactly early, I wasn’t late, either, so I thought… You know… What the heck – let’s check the pressure in the soft rear tyre. Crazy, I know.

It’s been awhile since I cycled regularly, and I never cycled that regularly even back then – if I had to guess how many miles I’d ridden in, say, the last five or seven years, I think it would barely average a couple or three hundred miles a year on my old slick-shod Orange mountain bike, if that. In the last couple of years, commuting from Birmingham to Banbury, the average had fallen further still – to all intents and purposes, I was an ex-wannbe-keen cyclist. That, let me tell you, doesn’t count for a lot.

We went crazy last year – my lovely Lucy and I took the plunge and opted for the cycle to work scheme, ordering bikes and even booking our summer holiday in the bike-friendly Ile de Re. Her Giant turned up, as it were, whilst I had to press-gang the sixteen-year-old mountain bike back into two more weeks of servitude. Come October, and a mere four months after I committed to the scheme, our company took the plunge and released the funds, and my new Kona hybrid was released from captivity.

It was a revelation. No serious off-road tool, it was happy enough dabbling with minor dirt track adventures, canal tow paths and little more serious than that, but the road ability was something else. I’d always fancied my rigid Orange, with slicks at bursting point, as a compromised but reasonable road tool – the 29” hoops on the Kona changed all that. It flew – the road miles that Orange nibbled at with unskilled enthusiasm, Kona bit great chunks out like a hungry orca. Makes me wonder what a real road bike would be like…

So in the spirit of fair play – after all, the Cycle To Work scheme is intended to be used for purchasing bicycles to cycle to work – come November I took the plunge and decided to take a crack at using the to ride to work, at least part of the 40 miles. It was, however, not a success -putting a hand in my pocket for a big wedge of cash for a train ticket from my nearest railway station to Banbury was a painful  way to start, and the amount of time it added onto the working day was just intolerable. Sorry – for me, at this time and with this commute, the train isn’t going to take the strain, it’s just going to add to the stress. For me, it seemed, the cycle commute was over.

But I had a brain wave about six weeks ago, and I can’t believe I didn’t think of it before – on investigation, the recent purchase of a new and slightly larger car means that I can just about bend the Kona’s gangly tubes into the back with the front wheel out without too much hassle, and a new concept was born; drive part of the way, cycle part of the way, it couldn’t be much simpler.

So this brings us back to where we started – day one, having barely spun a wheel since the end of the train experiment in November was agony, the miles that slipped effortlessly under the Kendas in November were a chore, it felt like I had to fight for every inch. The site of my trusty footpump peeping out at me from the boot litter on day two sparked a revival that blew a breath of fresh air into my whole cycling world – having your boots blown up to bursting point might make the ride a little lively, let’s say, but the pain in the backside that you get from rock-hard tyres is considerably less of a pain in the backside than the extra effort required to rotate flabby rubber.
 
 

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