Saturday, 24 November 2012

What's in a name? (and other RTTC related business)

One of the more obvious changes that have occurred in British cycling in the last 50 years is in the style of the names of the clubs appearing on start and result sheets.

Please note this document is Private and Confidential. Love Yellow

In the fifties it was nearly always clear from the name of his club of the area or district  where any rider came from, e.g. Notts Wheelers, Barnet C.C., North Lancs. Wheelers, Norwich Amateur B.C. and so on.

There were of course the few exceptions like 34 Nomads, San Fairy Ann C.C. but as the 1959 RTTC Men’s Twenty Five Miles National Championship result shows these were a very small minority  

A few famous names from many parts of the Country. Love Yellow

It was always interesting to look at a result sheet and see which areas of the country were producing the best riders.

Having reached the stage when I no longer get start or result sheets, (because I no longer  enter events) I can only suppose from looking at the few results published in the Cycling Weekly that either all riders are now professional or choose only to ride for clubs with exotic names like Kinesis Morvelo Project, Scott-Contessa-Epic, or Biketreks RT. These club or team names give no indication of the area from which they attract their members.

Has anyone any thoughts on how this lack of local attachment has affected club loyalty and pride?

The above event was in the days before we had access to motorised transport so the day before the event my team mates I rode most of the way to Thrapston and after the event we arranged to meet up with about 20 to 25 other London clubmen, including Ken Craven and the other Crescent Wheelers,  Roy Savery  and Roger Wilkins of the Gravesend C.C. to ride  the 90 odd miles back down the A.1 Trunk road to London.

The group set out with bikes loaded with saddlebags and carrying racing wheels and despite being loaded up were soon exceeding 20 m.p.h.   After about an hour of purgatory we decided enough was enough so we said goodbye, turned off and went to Cambridge where we had a pleasant day out on the river before proceeding home by train.