Tag Archives: racing bicycles

Tour of Britain 2015 – King of the Mountains Stage 4 – a personal view

The Leaders come up Redstone Rigg, Tour of Britain 2015

The Leaders come up Redstone Rigg, Tour of Britain 2015

The Tour of Britain came through our patch this month, so loads of us wound our way up to meet on the hill. It was baltic (i.e. cold), waiting on the windy hillside, but good fun anyway. As  the race appeared in the distance I tried to unfreeze my wooden fingers, without success.

As usual the race was through in a minute or less. I’ve finally managed to sort out the video.

So for your enjoyment: Tour of Britain 2015, Stage 4, King o’ the Mountains section

I recorded the music(?) on a midi guitar so no pianos, harps, synthesisers or other instruments were harmed in the making.

Time to Upgrade!

Yes!!

I’ve had enough.

More than enough!

So time to turn to The Catalogue yet again (More on “The Catalogue”) and there’s lots of choice.

Well, will it be the High Grade 1902 model?

Well, will it be the High Grade 1902 model?

Now, this looks the job, not too pricy at this real knock down ticket, and I can get an extended warranty too.

Or is the Royal Roadster the one for me?

Or is the Royal Roadster the one for me?

With a regal name it must be good and just look at those modern rod brakes, just the thing.

Looks so good at full spec

Looks so good at full spec

Once fully kitted out it would be just right. By keeping the illustration I would know at a glance what all the important parts are.

Mind you the Royal Worcester is a looker!

Mind you the Royal Worcester is a looker!

But then there’s this Worcester, another regal design. It’s also got a three year warranty so it MUST be better? It’s got best Shelby steel tubing to so maybe, just maybe?And I can get a trade in too.And I can get a trade in too.

The Imperial maybe for a refined chap like mesel'

The Imperial maybe for a refined chap like mesel’

Then I spot this one, pricy at over 11 guineas, but made to my own order. Can I afford to though, but surely Imperial most be way better than Royal? I’ll have to get my pipe out and ponder on this one.

Or am I still young enough for a racer?

Or am I still young enough for a racer?

Then I spot this, a pure thoroughbred, designed for the job. Bound to be not as comfortable though, can I take the pounding? But look at that front cog thing. It looks so impressive.

Or I could go the patriotic route for my good lady

Or I could go the patriotic route for my good lady

Oh dear the prices are going up, and with a four year warranty too – must be the best. I couldn’t afford one for each of the family though, so better delve a little more.

Some for the kids as well

Some for the kids as well

Now these may be the ones for the kids. They are also “exactly the same in construction, as juvenile cycles sold to the aristocracy” so can’t go wrong here.

Or maybe a tandem for togetherness?

Or maybe a tandem for togetherness?

Maybe my good lady and I would be better off on a tandem, prices are good too. And the fittings seem to be of a high quality too.

Should I ask them to fit the racquet carrier?

Should I ask them to fit the racquet carrier?


What about the golf clubs?

What about the golf clubs?

Well, I’m all of a quandary. So many bikes, so many options. What is a bloke to do? Think I’ll sleep on it and see what’s what in the morn.

Toodle Pip and Nighty Night all.

Once upon a time or your perfect bike (especially for the Gentle Ladies)?

My dad was an inveterate collector of books.

We have been sorting some of them and found a couple of items that should(?) help us all with our cycling.

One is ‘The “Contour” Road Book of Scotland’ dated 1907-8, which seems to cover all the main routes in Scotland at the time, all 497 of them. It also has 500 maps and plans, with many of these being gradient profiles. It is amazing to think of the journeys undertaken by bike at that time, and the effort put in to collating this guide. But this is just a teaser. I’ll write a bit more about this at a later date.

Right now, it’s an earlier document from 1902 from which I’m going to outline some items. In these days of charging bike lights by USB, multiple gears, suspension etc. it is fascinating to look through a catalogue for bikes of the time.

So may I present the first snippet from:

Symonds' London Stores Catalogue

Symonds’ London Stores Catalogue

I just love the motto “What We Say We Do, We Do Do”

Among the many, many items of fascination there is an advert for Racing Bicycles:

Racing Bike 1902

Racing Bike 1902

They started at £5 and 13 shillings, which was ‘very light, safe and sturdy’ on which they place the celebrated W. & M. tyres! The top model was £14 and 14 shillings which “represents everything to be desired as a perfect road or track racer.”

But the best bit for me was the endorsement:

Ladies Championship Hour Race 1901

Ladies Championship Hour Race 1901

I can maybe imagine riding in a Royal Aquarium maybe, but wonder how Bradley Wiggins would have done on this bike?

If you cannot read the endorsement from (Miss) Monie Hardwood let me know & I’ll add a transcription.