‘Clive Collins 5 mile time trial result’ – 22 May 2018

This was the launch of the new 5 mile course, named in memory of Clive Collins. Clive was a top Nomad tester, hugely supportive of others, especially the novices, and an inspiration to many.

A sunny yet gusty evening greeted 19 riders with a temperature of 17 degrees C wind 14 mph from the north 18 riders secured the guaranteed PB’s promised with one rider unable to decline the lure of the fastest route to the Blackhorse pub thus off course and not in contention (penalised by having to write the report).

In addition to the 18 PB’s there was talk of a veteran ladies record (Meline Fletcher), fixed gear record (Meline Fletcher) and fastest folding bike (Nick Senechal) over the new course.


Nomads – Women

Name Time
Ella Ruggles 15:44
Meline Fletcher 17:23


Nomads – Men

Ryan Witchell 10:51
Sam Hayes 12:04
Steve Robinson 12:26
Simon Doyle 12:34
Brian Ruggles 13:07
Nigel Tooke 13:08
Scott Horwood 13:11
Paul Wright 13:40
Nigel Wilson 13:46
Chris Corney 13:52
Matt Lippard 13:54
Nick Senechal 14:10
Roger Bamberough 14:57
David Summerell 15:33
Mark Loosley Off Course

Private Time Trials

Lindz Barral JEV 12:13
Ric Palmer TSE 14:06

Fastest Nomad of the evening was Ryan Witchell with a blistering 10:51 and fastest private time trial was from Lindz Barral with a 12:13.

Many thanks from all of the riders to the officials and helpers.

Course: Clive Five 1U5

Timekeeper: Leanne Cutler

Assistant Timekeeper: Frank Turner

Event Secretary: Leanne Cutler

Prop: James Cornell

Marshall and general assistant: Michael Webb.

Reporter: Mark Loosley.



Dave Gudgin “22” Evening Time Trial Results (1/4) –  15 May 2018

Fifteen Nomads and three guest riders took part in Round One of the Dave Gudgin 25 series on a revised course of 22 miles (abridged due to roadworks in Shefford).

Signing on incorporated a novel and compulsory questionnaire about zoos as part of young Ethan’s homework, somewhat spoilt by Simon Doyle’s apparent penchant for euthanasia as set out on the work sheet.

Continuing with the animal theme and on a par with the old school boy favourite “the dog ate my homework” the best excuse of the evening came from Paul Riley “a dog on the course held me up”.  No, not an unkind and totally unwarranted reference to prop Steve Smith and neither was it a little Shih Tzu.  But it was a bloody nuisance.


Paul Riley’s nemesis.

(Ed. references to euthanasing animals  are not so silly now are they….  ….other prophesies relating to Shih Tsus and the like will be generated on demand on a pay as you pray basis n.b. prophets are never recognised in their own lands).

Conditions were a warm 19°C with a steady northerly breeze providing a faster run through Southill and past the airfield without too much of a headwind along Growers.

It was a particular pleasure to see Sue Clifford-Smith-Collins and Mark Collins offering support and encouragement on their trip back to the UK.

Well done to Sam Hayes for the fastest ride of the evening (and now course record holder) and to Katie Harbon (unattached) as the fastest woman rider.

Simon Young deserves a special mention for grinding his way around the course on a mountain bike (Ed. with a bad finger, didn’t you know).

A full gallery of images from the evening is available from Michael Webb’s excellent photography site.



Nomads – Women

Catherine Jones 1:06:50
Helen Riley 1:24:52

Nomads – Men

Sam Hayes 0:55:18
Marc Diplock 0:57:02
Steve Robinson 0:57:39
Simon Doyle 0:58:02
Scott Horwood 0:58:17
Nigel Tooke 0:59:43
Paul Wright 1:02:59
Paul Riley 1:04:24
Chris Corney 1:05:27
Mark Loosley 1:08:03
David Summerell 1:12:32
Simon Young 1:13:42
Steven Oliver 1:17:34

Dave Gudgin Handicap Competition

Club Members qualify for the handicap competition if they ride at least three of the four Event series.  Nigel Wilson set the handicaps based on prior performances in the Competion or rider age and gender for those making their debut.  If anyone wants any more detail on how their handicap was calculated then please contact Nigel.  The winner will be the person with the lowest average handicap time based on their fastest three rides.  Handicaps for this first event were adjusted to take into account the 22.2 miles course.  The Competition is usually run over a 25 miles course.

Catherine Jones 00:39:17
Marc Diplock 00:39:38
Nigel Tooke 00:40:46
Scott Horwood 00:40:53
Mark Loosley 00:42:21
Chris Corney 00:43:05
Sam Hayes 00:43:17
Steve Robinson 00:43:28
Paul Wright 00:43:53
Simon Doyle 00:44:11
Paul Riley 00:44:28
Stephen Oliver 00:48:51
David Summerell 00:49:41
Simon Young 00:55:06
Helen Riley 01:01:10

Guest riders (Private Time Trials)

Lindz Barral (JCA-Equipe Velo) 0:56:48
Katie Harbon (Woman) (no Club / Team) 1:05:02
Alex Lubbock (API Metrow) 1:09:48

Thanks as ever to the support crew without whom this event would not have taken place, namely Frank Turner (timekeeper), Leanne Cutler (event secretary and assistant timekeeper), Steve Smith (prop) and Mike Webb (shouty man and photographer).

Reporter – Nigel Tooke

Briercliffe 10 – 8 May 2018

The task of writing up the Nomads’ Briercliffe time trial series events is one to be approached with gusto and verve.  The chance to embellish the parchment with the mighty quill to create a historical record to rival Magna Carta and Domesday, is often so much of a treat that literally nobody volunteers to act as herald.

This week was no exception.

Having been ‘volunteered’ (on the basis of some minor misdemeanour that was wholly unsubstantiated – Fake News indeed), this week’s scribe was given the task of having  to ‘be funnier than Paul Riley’, but also actually relay what happened. Being funnier than Paul is akin to being less silly than drinking bleach, but without the fuss of trying to get the lid off.

Editorial ‘steer’ from the event organiser (see credits below) comprised of ‘you must write the following’: Ruggles junior was not caught by Ruggles senior; Robinson was not caught by Hayes; Cutler was not caught by Robinson.  In effect, according to the organiser, nothing happened. Doubtless a career in the security guard/night watch industry or professional football referee in any European game that features the mighty Liverpool beckons.

In reality, all riders were faced by quite a buffeting (though not a buffet – although debris from several Scotch eggs were left in Webby’s car. Webby complained bitterly, as he’d not been offered one).

A westerly 11mph wind ‘provoketh’ as riders traversed Southill, however the same wind did indeed ‘taketh away’ nearly everywhere else. The cultured amongst the readership (I can but hope) will reflect on the reference to the ‘Scottish play’ in reverence to the eggs of the same  cultural origin. The rest of you can ‘Google’ Macbeth. (I didn’t ask for this job so don’t blame me, it’s challenging enough to make a list of names and numbers interesting as it is). I have no quotes that feature Irn-Bru.

‘So what did happen?!’ I hear you bellow!

Well, Cutler and Ruggles jnr created new course PBs and Catherine Jones went nicely under evens, thereby setting a target for the gentlemen who are yet to dip under 30 minutes. Chapeau ladies.

In the ‘Gentlemen’s and Ryan Witchell’s race for people called Ryan Witchell to win event’, Ryan Witchell continued  to demonstrate that youth is wasted on the young, with a simply superb sub-22 minute ride. If he got himself organised he could actually go quick. Well done Ryan. That nicely backs up the 19 from the weekend. Top riding indeed.

For the rest of the field (i.e. those who can actually remember what a Betamax video was and when bleach didn’t have a safety cap), Sam Hayes was second with another strong ride in the series.

Only the width of a carefully placed fiver in the timekeeper’s pocket separated Doyle, Robinson and Hickman. Doyle was in no way pleased that he beat his long-term sparring partner (and fellow former club captain), Robinson by a mere second. Mick Case of BRRT also recorded a time in the same bracket.

Nigel Tooke recorded a notable 27 on the nose with Chris Batt recording a slightly slower time than last week but in the 27 minute bracket nonetheless. 


Leanne Cutler 27.36

Catherine Jones 29.42

Ella Ruggles 32.35



Ryan Witchell 21.51

Sam Hayes 24.21

Simon Doyle 26.07

Steve Robinson 26.08

Nick Hickman 26.09

Nigel Tooke 27.00

Chris Batt 27.38

Manuel Manrique 28.01

Nigel Wilson 28.30

Brian Ruggles 29.38

Chris Corney 30.15

Steve Smith 30.41

Stephen Oliver 31.29

Mike Moralee 32.41



Mick Case BRRT 26.07

Bob Wright CCA 27.54

Graham Laming BRCC 28.27

Christopher Wilson BRCC 32.33


Thanks go to all those who contributed to making the event happen, during the preceding few days and on the night.

Timekeeper– Frank Turner

Genuflectiondemonstratorand propperupper– Paul Riley

Foghornandgeneral start-line larrikin– Michael Webb

ChiefPontiff– Julian Pegg

Organiser-she-who-must-be-obeyed– Leanne Cutler

Reporter – Some bloke acting as the Bard of Hitchin (Ed – surely is that barred from Hitchin?)

Next week sees the commencement of the Dave Gudgin series. Details of the course to follow.

Briercliffe 10 mile time trial – 4 July 2017

This week’s must see review.

A rather muggy evening greeted a dozen riders in this week’s episode of the “Briercliffe 10”.  The set was dressed beautifully with the addition of a great big Airlander Airship, which Michael Webb had designs on “taking out” in some form of “Independence Day” (spot the link folks – what date is it – come on, keep up….) special effect spectacular.

He was discouraged, on the basis that although “it was big” it was also “far away”.

Conditions were a bit “sticky” on the Growers but relatively quick in the approach to Southill and through the village.  It could have been a very rapid night, but it was not quite to be.

First on stage was Roy Robinson (1st claim TSE), clocking his quickest Briercliffe time for 3 years.  The ensemble cast then performed with vim and vigour, sticking to their lines beautifully daaaaarling.  Chris Brabrook put in a tour de force performance to crack the 26 minute barrier with Tom Weir (1st claim University of Swansea) claiming the curtain call for the HNCC riders.  Of the troubadours, who brought such panache to proceedings, Lindz Barral edged out Mssrs Doyle and Weir for increasingly favourable reviews in The Stage followed by Shampoo at the Garrick.  (Paul Riley did mention something along the lines of going for a bimble to the White Horse).

To cap things off, Michael Webb almost “did a Cutler” to a couple of bikes at the finish line.  Note to riders, do not lie expensive bikes sunny-side down in the long grass. The props department will have a hissy-fit.  Simon Doyle was then “informed” that he had volunteered to write up this nonsense.  So, in essence, if you want a sensible write up don’t leave it to me or Simon Young to do.

HNCC Luvvies
Thomas Weir 24.43
Julian Pegg 25.38
Chris Brabrook 25.45
Nigel Tooke 26.42
Chris Corney, 27.55
Manuel Manrique, 28.49
Paul Riley, 29.03
Derek Thom, 29.18
Roy Robinson 29.45

Private Auditions
Lindz Barral JEV 24.16
Simon Doyle, TSE 24.41
Mick Case, BRCC 26.21

Credits (cue music to Crossroads)

Executive Producer/Miss Dianne, Leanne Cutler
Equity generation, Ethan Dynes
Dolly Grip/Stunt Monkey/Benny Michael Webb
Script Editor/Brad Pitt body-double Simon Doyle
Frank, Himself.
Guest Star, Nick Hickman (still not managed to find his house and has been riding his bike for 327 hours now).

JEV = JCA Equipe Velo
TSE = Team Sales Engine
BRCC = Beds Road CC
USw = University of Swansea

Dave Gudgin 25m TT – 30 May 2017

The 2017 Dave Gudgin 25 mile time trial series sprang in to life tonight (30 May 2017). The annual 4 race series sees riders compete in a scratch (actual time) competition and also a handicap contest. Nigel Wilson is the resident handicapper, I am not sure there is still time to bribe him though for this season, but it’s always worth a shout.

Following a false start due to roadworks a fortnight ago, 10 Hitchin Nomads opened their accounts at the blue riband distance.

With one event cancelled this season the quickest aggregate times over riders’ best 2 races out of 3  (in both the handicap and scratch contests) sees the winner(s) take home the colossus of silverware that brings looks of dread to many a racing spouse. “It’s not going in the front room” and “Well I am not polishing it” are the perennial/Pavlovian reactions. To the victor the spoils and all that.  Currently Mrs Robinson is likely to be the subject of delicate negotiations as Mr Robinson took a series lead amongst the competing Nomads.

13. Dave Gudgin Memorial Trophy

The humungous Dave Gudgin Samovar (aka “the tea urn”)


Handicap results to follow. The beauty of the handicapping contest is that anyone is in with a shout of taking home a medal or trophy as ultimately you ride against yourself. The Zen of the Time Trial is there to behold.

Pushing off and signing on were Stephen Oliver and Steve Smith respectively. Snapping on the course, in a photograph sense, rather than Jack Russell sense, was Michael Webb (check out the Facebook page for images at some point soon). Time keeping were Frank Turner and Leanne Cutler. Cheering on riders were a retinue of Peggs. Thank you very much.

Regional fast man Justin Layne (CC Ashwell) was quickest on the night, with a sublime 55.36. Also ducking under the magic 60 minute mark were Jason Stuart (CC Ashwell) and Sam Hayes (Team Salesengine).  Well done guys, anything under the hour on that course is a storming ride.

Pictures – credit Michael Webb

James Cornell and Julian Pegg (on his road bike, chapeau!) took the 2nd and 3rd spots behind Steve Robinson. Julian did well to keep his legs turning following a great ride at the ECCA 25 on Sunday.

The next round is 13th June, 2017.

It is great to see representation from many local clubs. The Nomads Tuesday night TTs are open to all club members, whether they are experienced “testers” or newbies. Come and have a go. Next week it’s back to the shorter distance, 10 miler.


Nomad Rider Team Time (Scratch)
Justin Layne CCA 00:55:36
Jason Stuart CCA 00:58:54 @ 00:03:18
Sam Hayes TSE 00:59:30 @ 00:00:36
Simon Doyle TSE 01:01:44 @ 00:02:14
1 Steve Robinson HNCC 01:02:11 @ 00:00:27
Lindz Barral JCA EV 01:02:49 @ 00:00:38
2 James Cornell HNCC 01:03:18 @ 00:00:29
3 Julian Pegg HNCC 01:04:33 @ 00:01:15
4 Nick Hickman HNCC 01:05:04 @ 00:00:31
Mick Case BRRT 01:06:02 @ 00:00:58
5 Mark Desborough HNCC 01:06:27 @ 00:00:25
Jason Lee TMK 01:06:37 @ 00:00:10
6 Nigel Tooke HNCC 01:08:53 @ 00:02:16
7 Nigel Wilson HNCC 01:08:57 @ 00:00:04
Simon Young Unatt 01:11:42 @ 00:02:45
8 Paul Riley HNCC 01:12:32 @ 00:00:50
9 Chris Corney HNCC 01:12:44 @ 00:00:12
10 Mark Loosely HNCC 01:16:00 @ 00:03:16

Reporter – Simon Doyle

n.b. TMK – Team Milton Keynes, HNCC – Hitchin Nomads, TSE – Team Salesengine, CCA – CC Ashwell, JCA EV – JCA Equipe Velo.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Dave Gudgin 25 TT Report – 21 June 2016

In a wood just outside Shefford, on the evening of the longest day of the year, 17 riders gathered to contest the season’s last Dave Gudgin 25.

Warm temperatures free of the high humidity of previous days, were offset by a light wind, but not enough to trouble all but the most ethereal of fairies.

A brief period of confusion occurred when the organiser of our revels, Nick Hickman, found himself inexplicably in another part of the forest, but all was soon mended and we were off, timed by Frank Turner and Leanne Cutler.  The most fleet of foot and pedal was Ryan Witchell, who whilst not putting a girdle round the Earth in 40 minutes, was able to lap Old Warden three times in a magical 57:09.

The next to complete the course was Lindz Barral (1:02:01), nearly 5 minutes behind and narrowly ahead of Steve Robinson (1:02:06). A feature of this event is the rustic timed downing of half a pint in the second lap in memory of Clive Collins and to remind ourselves that we do this for fun. A slick 6.38 second performance by Nigel Wilson assured him of this trophy ahead on his way to a solid 1:09:52, easily beating Paul Riley (8.83/1:14:08) at both disciplines. John Traynor’s stumbling 27.72 hints at a need for further practice… (Ed – Jon should be good at this being a Duathlete type).

Whilst the night was free of mechanicals, (except the Crude Mechanicals in the Hare and Hounds), there were numerous adventures off course. Nick Senechal veered off onto Oberon’s causeway (the 30 course innit) until he realised he had done 25 miles but not finished, and Richard Cooke added his own variations, as did guest Julian Shepherd of the New Forest CC.

But these small matters faded into insignificance as those lucky enough to ride home turned their wheels towards Hitchin. The late evening sun shining over their shoulders turned the landscape to a magical golden world, or as Radu put it “the sun makes everything look more poetic” (Ed – except sun burn).

Times and riders.

  1. Ryan Witchell University of Bristol, 57:06
  2. Lindz Barral Equipe Velo, 1:02:01
  3. Steve Robinson HNCC/TSE, 1:02:06
  4. Peter Gell, BRRT, 1:02:51
  5. Mark Desborough HNCC, 1:03:41
  6. James Gomm HNCC/TSE, 1:04:23
  7. Nick Senechal HNCC, 1:04:46 (off course)
  8. Julian Shepherd New Forest CC, 1:06:46 (off course)
  9. David Ledgerton TSE, 1:08:26 (+ 35 Seconds Late start)
  10. John Gillham Tm Trident, 1:08:58
  11. Richard Cooke HNCC, 1:09:25 (off course)
  12. Nigel Wilson HNCC, 1:09:52
  13. Radu Chirvasuta HNCC, 1:12:29
  14. Dave Summerell HNCC, 1:12:34
  15. Paul Riley HNCC, 1:14:08
  16. Catherine Jones HNCC, 1:18:31

Jon Traynor HNCC, DNF

King of the Forest was Frank Turner, Titania was played by Leanne Cutler. And Simon Doyle was Puck. Well, we think that’s what he said.

As told to Nick Senechal.

Nomads place 4th in 2015 British Best All Rounder time trial competition

Hitchin Nomads have more cause for celebration with the triumvirate of John Watson, Nick Hickman and Julian Pegg stepping on the podium of the 2015 Cycling Time Trials, British Best All Rounder team competition.

The BBAR competition is the ‘Blue Riband’ of long distance time trialling with riders looking to place the fastest average speed from rides at 50 miles, 100 miles and over 12 hours. With Hickman setting the bar high in 2014, Club Captain Watson and new recruit Julian Pegg have formed a highly consistent team.

Watson, Hickman, Pegg post ECCA 12 hour TT and still standing.

John Watson’s times saw him record 1h 57m 52s for 50 miles, 4h 02m 36s for 100 miles and a staggering 260 miles for the 12 hour.

John Watson

Club Captain 2015, John Watson

Julian Pegg is one place behind John in the national rankings by virtue of 1h 54m 17s for the 50, 4h 05m 07s for 100 miles and 245 miles for the 12 hour.

Julian Pegg riding the 12 hour time trial

Julian Pegg riding the 12 hour time trial

Nick Hickman’s fine 12 hour TT performance of 243 miles helped to cement his and the team’s efforts, therefore adding to his 2h 01m 15s 50 mile time and 4h 19m 36s 100.

Nick Hickman

Nick Hickman

The team have a cumulative average speed for 1,098 miles of 23.46 mph. Super impressive.


Pictures courtesy Davey Jones.