Rod’s Show and Shine ride: Sunday 15th December, 2013: how to get lost in Eastern Park
Over twenty riders from Geelong, Melbourne and surrounds appeared on the morning of Rod’s end-of-year Show and Shine Day.*
There were high wheels, big wheels, small wheels, two wheels, three wheels, old wheels and new wheels. Style was the order of the day, both with wheels and attire.
After registration and a group photo of those where were at the start,Rod led the riders set off down to Garden Street for a circuit of Eastern Park. Helen (on the Bike Friday quick fold Tikit) and Kay, riding Pat’s vintage tricycle brought up the rear. As the old heavy single speed trike meant walking up the hills, the rest of the riders were lost in the distance by the time Helen and Kay turned into the park. It was easy going past the back of the Botanic Gardens before the long ascent beside the bat pines – another walk to enjoy the scenery. By the time the circuit was almost complete, there wasn’t another cyclist to be seen. After a foray back to the car park, Pat and Helen rode to the Botanic Gardens entrance where other lost riders soon joined them. Decision time – clockwise or anti-clockwise around the circuit again? Before a choice was made, Rod and the pedalton cam into view and the riders re-grouped for a historic time trial re-enactment. **
Rod’s record for the inner park circuit was at stake – 7 minutes and 1 second. Heather registered the entrants and Rod counted participants down at the starting line. The remainder of the riders became a cheer squad.
Some riders were very competitive, others more nonchalant. Some raced for the finishing line, others stopped on it. The cheering was, at all times, spirited and partisan.
It wasn’t long before the record was smashed. Times below 7 minutes came thick and fast, and with some breaking the six minutes barrier. Despite some controversy over timing errors, the fastest time was Shane on his stylish Brompton. Shane was the only rider to break the 5 minute mark. His time of 4:55 is the new world record at the time of writing.
A more sedate cycle to the waterfront followed, with coffee at the Beachhouse Cafe.
Thanks to Rod for organising the day, Heather for keeping the time trial records and John M for the idea of a Show and Shine event.
**At around 10am Stella and Nancy came to meet the riders – but alas, they could not find the group, so went their own way again. Clearly, communications were back in the days of Marconi rather than the i-era.