And very welcome you will be, Mike - as will anybody else who fancies a taste of recumbent racing. We will have the circuit from 12:30 onwards. If you want to race, you'll need places to put numbers on the front and on the left-hand side of your bike, and a chainring guard.
We are a very small sport, and while there are some good athletes among our number, we concentrate on having fun!
Anybody whose curiosity is piqued by this thread might like to have a look at our website (the October 13th meeting is not listed there, as it is a late addition to our season).
Not been to a race for years, but caught up with BHPC crowd at York. A nice bunch. A chance to try out your new tailbox Bentmikey. Its also a chance to check out other machines and have good chat with like minded folk.
Thats a fascinating website Nick.....i have always admired the purity of recumbrants and their 'offbeat' riders..even though I admit to being apprehensive about ever trying one...have a long time ago been lucky enough to try out one of these:
i hadn't ridden my SWB recumbent since June of 2006. I took it out yesterday and got used the handling after just a few miles. relaxing your body helps. I find that setting off requires just clipping and going, but then you can bring back down walking pace no problem. You can t do track stands like an upright, but the more you ride one the more you get used to it. Different mode;ls have different seat heights and I find that both my recumbent bikes no problem when stopping and putting feet down.
Well, not all recumbents are faired, Gary; mine is as "pure" a machine as any upright, but even so is not allowed to compete against them (what can the UCI be afraid of, I wonder?)
I have never ridden a fully faired recumbent (a streamliner, as we call them) myself, but according to those who do it is a weird experience at first - all that speed and no wind rushing past, not much sound from the outside world, but various noises from inside the box - transmission, heavy breathing, and so on tending to be amplified. And they can be sailed just as much as pedalled, in the right wind conditions - which is decidedly unnerving to the uninitiated. We have a few who turn up regularly to our races. You tend to need to be an engineer to build a fully-faired recumbent bike; it's not really something that can be bought off the shelf (although fully faired recumbent trikes can be bought in Holland, Belgium and Australia...).
Yes, (unfaired) recumbents do feel different. The lower the bike, the less like an upright it is. Imagine trying to balance a pool cue on your finger - it's not too hard. Now think of balancing a pencil - it's much more difficult. The same principle applies to recumbents vs. uprights. Some people get underway immediately on low machines; others (like me) take a little while to feel at home; a few never master low bikes - for them, a wide variety of trikes is available
As for offbeat recumbent riders... well, perhaps we are just the anarchic end of the generally unruly cyclist spectrum?
I started riding a recumbent because my neck and shoulders could no longer cope with long rides on uprights. My first recumbent, a Kingcycle, saved my cycling life (and I still use it regularly now - it's higher than the Fujin, and IMO better suited to road riding). I never ride an upright for pleasure now - recumbents are so much more fun! Hence the phrase "recumbent grin".
Go on, try one - every cyclist should experience as many kinds of cycling as possible...
Yes, I've heard of him. I'm not sure what to make of him. Our mutual friend Derrick Jensen seems to like him, and he likes stirring things up which can't be bad in a society as content as America is with its record of genocide at home... but his academic career appears to have been built on a sandy foundation of political correctness rather than achievement and his Wikipedia entry strongly suggests that he has advanced that career by claiming a completely fraudulent American Indian descent. Which would make him a tosser.
PS Also completely OT, but here is something interesting to look at when not fully occupied with dandling... I expect redcogs would find it fascinating too.
Hallo Mike... Ah, the vexed question of BHPC classes (they are many, are subject to intense debate every closed season, and to understand their current structure requires a black belt in Venn diagramming - which I lack). Luckily, we already have one or two people who race Hurricanes, and we have decided that they come within the spirit of the Sports class when a luggage-carrying tailbox is fitted (as well as being in Open and Part-Faired).
But I wouldn't worry too much about race classes - in effect, you will be racing against whoever goes at roughly your speed regardless of what kind of machine they are riding. We divide up the field into races mainly according to anticipated speed, with the objective of giving everybody a good competitive race. It's slightly more complicated than that, because we also try to keep (e.g.) all the trikes in one race, and all the women likewise, so that they can have their accustomed ding-dongs. I can almost guarantee that some riders will be faster, and I am 100% certain that some will be slower, than you.
And going by my two years' experience of BHPC racing, I can absolutely guarantee that (if not taken too seriously) it will be great fun
Cool, thanks very much! I know I'm not going to be fast, since I haven't done much mileage on the 'bent this year, and I only commute rather than train, race or audax as well. I'm up for a bunch of fun though!!!
Just remind me, what time should we turn up again?
We have the circuit from 12:30 (Hillingdon Slipstreamers have it on Saturday mornings, I believe?). Signing on is likely to start shortly after that, and when you have signed on the circuit will be available for practice. If the weather is kind and the anticipated good field turns up, it is likely to take between an hour and 90 minutes to get the first race under way (there are quite a few organisational tasks to be done beforehand, as I expect you know from skating).
By the way, how did your skating race meeting at Hillingdon go? Do you have to be an expert to skate round Hillingdon at speed? And did you ever race at Eastway?
Nah, no worries with skates, we're very manoeuvrable, though sometimes it was a bit on the ragged edge round the hairpin. I've just posted that on the LSST forum, I wonder whether some of the fast boys will come along. Big Gav's always denying how I drop him when he's on skates and I'm on the 'bent, so a bit of a challenge for him. There's a big difference in speed and efficiency of course, but also a big difference in athletic ability as he's an elite level skater and I'm just an ordinary joe.