Reporter: Steve Smith

For the 3rd week running the Autumn series has been graced with excellent weather – that’s next week doomed then! Gavin Ashfield described the conditions as “favourable” except the bit going uphill to St Paul’s Warden. They were certainly good enough for Gavin to set the fastest time of this season’s two Hilly one-lappers with a 22:16. John Watson rode a new steed and recorded a time of 24:24 to edge Stuart Auger (PTT 24:43) and take 2nd place.

David Summerell has now ridden all 3 Autumn events but was half a minute or so off of his ride from 2 weeks prior.

Timekeeping and pushing off duties were by Steve Smith.

Next week sees the final event of the Autumn Series back on the Briercliffe 10 course. Sign-on by 08:45 for first man off at 09:01.

Hitchin Nomads event:

Gavin Ashfield 22:16; John Watson 24:24; David Summerell 28:39

Private Time Trials:

Stuart Auger (TMG) 24:43


Nomads’ Records tumble – Time Trialling 2015

As Roy Castle may have said, “It’s a Record Breaker”. We cannot quite rival the former jazzman’s trumpeting fanfare but a daaa-da-da-da-da-daaaaah down a rolled up newspaper shall suffice for a bumper harvest of club records being surpassed.

John Watson and Leanne Cutler have troubled the engravers and note takers with respective record-beating in the mens’ 50,100, 12 hour, Best All Rounder and the ladies’ 25, 50 (scratch and VTTA standard).

Watson figures with Nick Hickman and Julian Pegg in setting the team 12hr record (which also claimed 1st place on the day in the ECCA 12hr). The distance of 748 miles will be very hard to beat.

Records can be viewed on the records page.

Chapeau to all….too many to keep up with!

Nigel Wilson (Records Officer), Simon Doyle (Membership Sec).

Time Trial Report – Autumn Series (2 of 4) on Briercliffe 10

Reporter: Nick Hickman

Eleven riders signed up for another try around the Briercliffe 10 course on Saturday morning, 22nd August.  On the CTT results sheet Time Keeper Frank Turner described the conditions for the event as “fabulous”.  So it was official.  Michael Webb pushed off in his usual fine style, ensuring that anyone in the parish who had not set their alarm clock was reminded it was time to wake up.

Stoker Meliné Fletcher jumped ship to the tandem captained by Chris Corney.  This was later described as “disgusting behaviour” by rival Captain Steve Smith, who is now rumoured to have instructed his press gang to look for new crew.  Meli expressed some disappointment not to have achieved a “long 27” but two stops for chain-related mechanicals put this out of reach.  Tom Clarke made his Briercliffe debut and caused some consternation by not following the unwritten rule that first timers must go off course.  Nick Hickman was pleased to have found his legs again after a 12hr induced season worst earlier in the week.  Gavin Ashfield was fastest on the day despite presenting a long list of excuses – too early in the morning, after effects of riding 60 miles in the heat the day before with only one bottle, offspring keeping him awake all night, etc.

For those not needing to rush back to other duties, coffee and buns were provided in Stanford by Jane Hickman.  Tali the Dog carefully inspected the buns and ensured all helpings were finished.

Hitchin Nomads Event:

Gavin Ashfield 24:16; Nick Hickman 25:18; Tom Clarke 28:44; Chris Corney & Meliné Fletcher (tandem) 28:49; Matt Friday 28:58; David Summerell 28:58; Jon Traynor DNF

Private Time Trials:

Thomas Weir (Swansea Uni) 24:19; Lindz Barral (Equipe Velo) 24:53; Stuart Auger (TMG Horizon) 26:53

Time Trial Report – Briercliffe 10 – 18 August 2015

Reporter: Nigel Wilson

It was the last day of the summer term at St. Briercliffe’s today, and the prize giving was presided over by headmaster Mr. Frank Turner.  The end of term party took place after at the White Horse in Southill.

The fastest Nomad was Gavin Ashfield who, along with Freddy Bulmer, Chris Corney, Mark Desborough and Nigel Wilson, received commendation for achieving their best times around the course. The tandem race was won by Steve Smith and birthday girl Meline Fletcher, despite rumours that their bike had been ‘sabotaged’ prior to the event.

Sam Hayes recorded the fastest time of the night with an impressive 22:59.

Thanks go to Mr Turner and deputy head Mrs Ann Collins for timekeeping, and to school caretaker Mr Geoff Perry for pushing off.  

Spring term commences on the first Tuesday in April 2016.  The “Autumn” series continues on the Southill course on Saturday at 9am.

Hitchin Nomads event:

Gavin Ashfield 23:06; Freddy Bulmer 24:02; Mark Desborough 24:37; Chris Corney 26:38; Nigel Wilson 26:45; Nick Hickman 27:14; Matt Friday 28:40; David Summerell 28:54; Meline Fletcher / Steve Smith (tandem) 30:58; Stephen Oliver 31:52.

Personal Time Trials:

Sam Hayes (Team Sales Engine) 22:59; Thomas Weir (Swansea Uni) 23:15; Neil Fraser (Stevenage CC) 24:16; Lindz Barral (Equipe Velo) 24:34; Paul French (Beds Road CC) 25:37.



Time Trial Report – Autumn Series (1 of 4) on 6Z/10

Reporter: Chris Corney

On a beautiful Saturday morning, a field of just 8 riders took to the 6Z/10 course as used in our Spring and Autumn Hilly events.

Frank ‘McCaskill’ Turner described conditions as “Windy F6 North, Bright 4/8 Cirrus”. I’m not too sure what any of this means, but it was a nice morning nonetheless.

Fastest time went to man-on-form Mark Desborough, with an impressive 23.32. This could be due to his new ‘aero’ mountain bike helmet (with the peak removed). A good time, also, by Tom Clarke on his TT debut with a 27.16.

Steve Smith was heard questioning why he’d just paid £2 to inflict so much pain on himself.  Possibly he was still suffering from some Greek holiday ouzo-related injuries. A fine effort by all 8 riders though. Thanks to Frank for time keeping duties and Mike Kitchen of Welwyn Wheelers for pushing off.

The next event in the series will be on the 1U/10 Briercliffe Course at Southill on Saturday 22nd August at 09:00.


M Desborough 23.32, T Durkin 24.56, C Corney 26.47, T Clarke 27.16, L Cutler 28.10, D Summerell 28.12, S Smith 31.04, S Oliver 31.5

Time Trial Report – Briercliffe 10 – 11 August 2015

Reporter: Paul Riley

On an evening that was remarkable only for the total lack of any wind and the late arrival of Andy Saunders due to a timing misunderstanding, 8 riders took on the intermittently moist Briercliffe 10 course. This was the first Tuesday TT of the year to be run in slightly damp conditions and in an evening of firsts, Ryan arrived on time, Chris Corney rode a rear disc wheel, Matt Friday rode the correct course and Mark Desborough bowed to the pressures of aerodynamics by tying his cycling shoes’ laces in a different way!

Fastest time of the night went to Ryan Withcell with a 23.04. Fastest Nomad of the evening was the ever consistent Mark Desborough with a 24.45.

Time keeping duties were handled by Frank Turner and Ann Collins, Nick Hickman pushed off and Paul Riley number spotted (while eating the Timekeepers sweets).

Hitchin Nomads CC Event

Mark Desborough 24.45, Chris Corney 27.19, Matt Friday 28.20, David Summerell 28.59

Private Time Trials

Ryan Withcell (Bristol University) 23.04, Tom Weir (Swansea University) 23.41, Lindz Barral (Equipe Velo) 24.47, Chris Braybrook 27.23

Time Trial Report – Briercliffe 10 – 3 August 2015

Reporter: Ross Thomson

On a standard blustery Tuesday evening, in the unique weather vortex that is the North Herts / Central Beds borders, twenty riders gathered for the Briercliffe 10.  These included the Robinson father-and-son combo on the Team Sales Engine tandem and two debutants at this discipline, Matt Friday and Ross Thomson.

The wind seemed to have dropped by the time everyone had slogged round, to be greeted by news that Justin Layne had smashed his own course record set just last week, with a blistering 21:12.  Despite being warned, the debutants meanwhile decided to do the longer, more scenic 10.3 mile route by missing the turn into Southill.  They have promised to return and do it properly next time.

Local wildlife featured this week.  Nick Hickman was grateful to narrowly avoid a suicidal pheasant on the run past Southill Station and so didn’t need to explain to Leanne Cutler the mess he would have otherwise made of the spare front wheel she had lent him just before the start (after he had punctured while riding out to the sign on).  Ross Thomson had to take similar evasive action to miss a muntjac deer on the finishing straight.

Thanks as always to Frank for timekeeping duties and to a very smartly turned out James Spence for pushing off.

Hitchin Nomads Briercliffe 10 Event

G Ashfield 23:19; A Saunders 24:13; M Desborough 24:49; N Morgan 25:00; J Pegg 25:20; N Hickman 25:33; C Corney 27:01; P Riley 27:47; L Cutler 28:58; D Sumerell 29:21;

Hitchin Nomads Debutants 10.3 Scenic Course

R Thomson 28:34; M Friday 31:45

Private Time Trials

J Lane (CC Ashwell) 21:12; R Witchell (University of Bristol) 22:45; S Hayes (Team Sales Engine) 22:59; L Barral  (Equipe Velo) 24:22; S & B Robinson 26:28 (Team Sales Engine – tandem); C Brabrook (CC Ashwell) 26:46; D Ledgerton (Team Sales Engine) 27:06