For 2019 we’re launching a new gravel ride series. With the first ride to be announced soon, these rides will feature off road sections (as many as possible) and rides will be shorter in nature to take account of mixed terrain. We encourage wider tyres, ideally on a cross bike or a gravel set up, ideally 30c + width. Again, rides will be relaxed with a social no drop policy so if that sounds like your kinda thing, look out for email and joining instructions. See you on the browntop…
Here’s a nice pic of Alex Kim’s Road Plus machine, built to hit the tow path and be equally sure footed on the road. The frame is a Surly Midnight Special fitting into an increasingly popular gravel bike category niche, albeit the geometry is more road than a relaxed and upright gravel bike. With massive clearances for wider tyres it easily accommodates the Clement Ushuiaia 650b wheel set with the hugely popular WTB Horizon 47 tyres. This sort of bike increasingly makes a lot of sense even on the normal road ride, as wheels are relatively fast (for weight), comfortable af and also look freakin’ cool. With the crappy state of UK’s roads I’m happy to sacrifice some speed for comfort of a plush 40 psi ride and even though I’m not a tubeless convert, at these pressures it kinda starts to make a lot of sense. So, a new road plus project for 2019. Maybe, but for now, happy to ogle at Kimbo’s whip above.
To celebrate Connor Swift winning the National Road Race, Madison Genesis comissioned Rob Nicholas @ Colorburn Studio to paint a one off bike (and matching bike stand) for the champ. What a result and super awesome to see Connor ride this amazing machine in the Tour of Britain. The paintjob is unmistakably Colorburn and we are always pumped to see new work coming out of this Bristol paint studio. Kudos Rob, more on Roleur here.
THE FORMER PUB: "VELOLIFE"
Situated a short ride from Henley upon Thames in quiet and leafy Warren Row, this former local boozer has been revived and reanimated by cycling and the many local groups who use it as a base. This cafe is doing the basics right, with superb coffee and a vast selection of cake. Velolife also boasts a workshop and has started doing shop rides in a smart new kit by Le Col. With the Chiltern Hills in close proximity, this is a real gem of a location and a great ride stop on way back into town. Looking forward to the next visit already.
MARKET TOWN MARQUEE: "BICICLETTA CON VELO"
Saffron Walden boasts one of the more impressive cycle cafes as well as stunning lanes through Essex and Hertfordshire. This is another relatively young and independent business which has infinitely improved life for local riders. The shop boasts a large selection of bikes for sale from the italian classics, Colnago and Cinelli and lots of kit with a definite Italian vibe. It goes without saying the coffee is top notch and helpfully the shop stocks loads of savoury food too which is a welcome sight after a long stint on the bike. Ciao ragazzi!
Because life is too short for shit coffee, we like to search out the bike friendly places which are head and shoulders above the usual chains. Such establishments have started springing up all over the home counties, but only the best will feature in this short overview.
THE LOCAL HERO: "G!RO CYCLES"
Esher High Street has been immeasurably improved with the now, four year old, G!RO Cycles. It is a welcoming hub for locals shunning the Costa Coffee opposite (bleurgh) and is of course a coffee stop for the many local clubs, collectives, ride buddies and G!RO's own in-house shop team. To say the place is vibrant and buzzing on peak times, think Saturday and Sunday mornings, is an understatement. These guys don't offer any workshop services, but you can buy a tonne of cool merch and plenty of fresh threads from some interesting, hard-to-get brands. They serve booze and great variety of food, all of which tick a massive box in our opinion. Keep doing what you're doing guys, onto a winner! The G!RO Insta is also off the hook.
THE KENTISH BEHEMOTH: "THE VELO HOUSE"
Located on top of St John's Road in a former NatWest bank, the Velo House offers an environment like no other. We don't think it's amiss to use the word "curated" for everything housed under the roof of the Velo House. The beers on tap are the freshest craft ales, the bikes hanging off the walls are the latest objects of desire and the brands and equipment are definitely the discerning cyclist's choice, thought about carefully and selected with purpose. The award winning Velo House interior is also something else, it is a showcase of talent and design flair of SGS Interiors who occupy the top floor office of the same building. Finally, there's the food. The menu is extensive and well thought out and the cake is aplenty with vegan, gluten free options available. Needless to say the coffee is also spot on and it will always remain a pleasure to visit with the family or on the bike. On ride this is a tricky mid-ride stop. Its so damn warm and comfortable you may not want to leave, so we recommend to start and finish your ride there instead.
Pt II coming soon...
Join us for a drink and an off-the-bike get together to celebrate another great year of rides at the magnificent offices of Haskoll Architects in Harrington Gardens (5 mins walk from Gloucester Road tube).
We will be awarding prizes for reliability league high scorers and presenting a few other prizes so clear the diary and join us for a beer or two.
Ben's Dura Ace 9170 equipped Field road bike is a real head turner. Adorned with 100% Enve finishing kit and Vittoria Corsa G+ tyres it was featured at the Enve booth at the Berlin Bike Show 2017.
Field Cycles is a collaboration between a group of friends from various craft, design and engineering disciplines. The unique skill-sets of the contributors - a maker, a painter and graphic designer - have come together in a shared passion that treats the fabrication of a bicycle as an exploration of craft, aesthetics and function.
A glimpse into racing scene promoted by Black Sheep Cycling in Brisbane. We love grassroots cycling and BSC seem to be a channeling a less crashy Red Hook Crit vibe. We're thinking SEGRO could do this on one of their estates?! SEGRO if you're reading this contact us.
We have always been fans of Podia.cc so when Colourburn Studio took on another project we awaited the final product with excitement. From podia.cc:
When Podia and Genesis started talking about a partnership for Roadventures, the first step was obvious – custom painted Podia Genesis Volare bikes.
On each Roadventure trip, two experienced ride leaders guide guests around the Tatra Mountains. These ride leaders are a representation of Podia and so we wanted them to look exceptional. Thanks to Genesis they will use two custom painted Genesis Volare bikes.
Built with the outstanding Campagnolo Chorus groupset and Bora ONE Wheelset, the bike has 25mm Challenge Elite clincher tyres along with a Brooks Cambium C13 saddle and Brooks Cambium rubber bar tape.
Custom paint was carried out by the talented Doktor Bobby of Colourburn Studio. Using the upcoming Podia Club Colours 2017 jersey for inspiration, Bobby created a paint scheme for the frame, fork and stem. The first outing of the bike will be Berliner Fahrradschau 3 – 5 March 2017.
A new feature where we will be showcasing some of our members bikes and builders behind them. With this being the first in the series, it was only fitting we opened with Simon Jordan's Hartley Cycles custom build. I was lucky enough to be asked by Simon to be involved in this build and Caren Hartley who worked her magic after the initial and very detailed briefing with Simon. The brief was a classic steel bike, but with some special features, with paint finish discussed at length.
The end result is simply spectacular. From the bi-laminate head tube, to the amazing lugged seat cluster detail and the finish as chosen by Simon, is a true work of art. There are many fine and subtle details on the build which are only really appreciated by true bike enthusiasts (nerds). It is this detail and and artistic flair which really sets Caren apart from the many of London's new and old frame builders and has got her the recognition and awards which are well deserved.
The frameset is a Reynolds stainless steel tube mix, donned with full Campy Athena and polished Campy Record hubs on H-Plus Son TB 14 and Vittoria Corsa Graphene+ tyres. The build is a definite classic with some modern twists. The finishing kit is Ritchey and Brooks, continuing the classic theme.
I hope Simon is over the moon with his new ride and if I was looking for a custom build I would definitely be sitting down with Caren to discuss over a cup of tea.
Prizes, beer and pizza!
Invites are out!
If you're a Bristol local, check out the new bicycle lifestyle store Forever Pedalling, stocking very cool bits from Mash SF, Giro, The Athletic and Ortlieb, to name just a few. If you're not local, they also sell online. Check out the website @ www.foreverpedalling.com
The benefits of yoga are pretty undervalued and possibly misunderstood in cycling world. Who needs yoga when you smash out 2,000 watts on Zwift and all you want to do is lie on the sofa and watch that True Detective box set. Well, the folks at Omnium.cc in conjuction with Jasyoga have put together a few short videos which will guide you through some basic yoga postures, (all pretty easy) which deal with post-ride stretching, upper and lower body, pre-ride routine to gently warm up your body ready for those EPIC Richmond Park laps. They have also produced a video demonstrating moves to help with on-bike flexibility, so you don’t have ride with a foot-long spacer stack. I’ve been incorporating these videos pre/post ride and even prior to bed in a bid to improve my pathetic recovery rate and I’m pleased to report it seems to be working. Woot! The latest Trainer Road blog agrees yoga could be an integral part of an athletes bed-time routine to help lock down those gainzzz - as everyone knows - gains are made when we recover and not when we train.
Check out their blog at www.weareomnium.cc and their web-store selling the freshest cycling apparel from new and emerging brands.
We held our first CPD session at Rapha Racing HQ in Kings Cross, expertly guided by Simon Jordan from Jump Studios who worked closely with Rapha's own design team and board to deliver a truly engaging employee experience and possibly the most cycle friendly workspaces we have ever seen (if you think you have a better one, contact us!). Simon explained that the foundation of any such project is the end-user experience and they aimed put riders first. With a RFID controlled glazed entrance doors and a ramp which allows employees to ride into their cycle parking spaces, shower, grab a (free) coffee from the coffee bar (the barista pulls shots from a Rocket espresso machine) next to the reception desk, before heading up to their desk, this was an office space like no other. Big thanks to Rapha and Simon for their time. If this looks like the sort of CPD you may like going forward, hit the contact page and drop us a line.