Allan’s Mystery Ride – On Ya Bike! 2019 -5: Wednesday, October 30th, 2019

Lucky thirteen!  That’s the number of cyclists who appeared for the final ride of this year’s On Ya Bike! rides.  It was beautiful sunny weather.  Summer was near, so it was time to ditch the ‘bird strike’ helmet with cable ties.

The last ride of the series is traditionally named “Allan’s Mystery Ride”.  No one knows the route till they get the start at Rippleside Park.  This year Allan had delegated ride leadership to Kelly, with Dirk as tail ender.  Allan had planned the ride, and rode the entire ride, including arriving by bike from Norlane West.

The route took the cyclists to the north, along the new Balmoral Quay path to St Helens, the on to the docks area.  As the riders turned right past the old Ford site, a motorist yelled, “You’ve lost someone!”  Dirk had a puncture.  He sent the riders on while he fixed it with the help of Paul and Allan.

The second incident happened on the ascent towards Geelong Grammar.  It was Clive this time – another puncture.  Helen went back to make sure he was OK.  He was going to fix the puncture, and then, with Dirk, join the ride.  Helen rode on alone past GGS.

Attack! Attack!  From nowhere a direct hit to the ear.  The magpie struck, not just once but four times.  With no cable ties, Helen was a pedaling duck, and the terrorist bird took full advantage!

Bulls eye on the ear lobe

The rest of the group were taking a break at Limeburners Lagoon.  Dirk, Allan and Paul soon rejoined the group.  Clive had decided that, with a slow leak in his tyre, his best option was to return to Rippleside Park, stopping a couple of times to add air.

A large wattle tree was across Hovells Creek Path at the Lara highway underpass.  Bikes were passed over, and the riders continued up Rennie Street to Old Geelong Road and rode towards Little River.  Helen left the group at McIntyres Road to ride a shorter route.  The main group continued on, without further incident, to Little River, returning to Lara via Mill Road.  Coffee was at Xpresso.  Helen rejoined the group for coffee.

The return was via the Hovells Creek Path to Rennie Street, and then, to avoid the fallen tree, via roads to Geelong Grammar and the waterfront path.

The final puncture was at North Shore – Don had succumbed.  His mate stayed to help with the repair.  The depleted group returned to Rippleside – Rick, Allan and Dirk peeled off on the way.

Despite the drama, it was declared a most enjoyable and successful ride.

Thanks to Kelly, ride leader, Allan, ride organiser and tail-ender Dirk.  Thanks to all cyclists.  We look forward to seeing you again next year, if not before, On Ya Bike!

(Helen’s magpie helmet will no return to service till December!)

On Ya Bike! 5 – Allan’s Mystery Ride

Ride maps – click to go to detail in Map My Ride

On Ya Bike! 5 – shortened route

On Ya Bike! 4 – Torquay: October 24, 2019

On a glorious day for riding (and for the Geelong Cup) Dirk led 20 cyclists on a ride to Torquay.

Horseshoe Bend Road is closed for road works north of Blackgate Road, so the ride route took Barwon Heads Road to Warralily Boulevard.  Barwon Heads Road now carries very heavy traffic, even with a public holiday in Geelong.  The closure of the bike lane for road works for some distance made for less than enjoyable riding.  However, the ride along the wide bike lane in W Boulevard is a delight.  Doug joined the ride at this point.

There was a mix up with a puncture which resulted in a mislaid rider (sorry, Hermann), but thanks to our wonderful tail-ender (who, having repaired his puncture, located Hermann and rode with him) the riders regrouped at Maccas Torquay for a refreshment break.  (Most Torquay coffee shops were closed for the public holiday).

The return trip was via the same route, except that the ride through Warralily was on a delightful bike path beside a wetland park.

Thanks to Dirk and David for their wonderful support as ride leader and tail-ender and to all those who supported the ride.

The last of this year’s On Ya Bike!  rides for Seniors Month is tomorrow, October 30th leaving from Rippleside Park at 8.30 am.  Please note the earlier start for this longer ride.  This final ride is “Allan’s Mystery Ride” – we find the destination and route when we arrive to ride.  The ride is, I hear around 65km, and to the north of Geelong I believe.  Riders need to be able to maintain an average (on the bike) speed of around 20kph for this ride. 

On Ya Bike! 2 – Geelong Circuit: Wednesday, October 9

Despite the wet, cold and windy morning, 14 cyclists attended the second On Ya Bike! ride, led by Helen.  Unfortunately, three more cyclists, who had planned to ride, were unable to – due to work commitments, punctures and transport difficulties.

The short circuit of Geelong began at Rippleside, taking in the new waterfront path at Balmoral Quay, Cement Works Rail Trail to the old Cement Works at Herne Hill, and the new path through Fyansford development to Fyansford.  While this last path is off road, it’s steep in places, and a little daunting, especially when wet.  However, everyone made it safely to the Barwon River Path for the short ride to Swanston Street.  Refreshments were at Little Creatures – most welcome after the convoluted ride so far.  The weather had improved so the group opted to sit outside, in sun or shade depending on rider preference.

The ride then continued along Swanston Street to the waterfront and returned to Rippleside via the waterfront path.

Thanks to all riders, and especially Dirk who did an admirable job as tail-ender.

Next week’s On Ya Bike! goes to Drysdale, via the Bellarine Rail Trail.  The starting point is the Rail Trail, corner Car Street and Tucker Street (near the Showgrounds entrance), at 9am.  This ride is mainly on an excellent shared path, with a short on-road section in Drysdale (to get to that essential coffee stop).  The distance is around 38km.

See you there On Ya Bike!

On Ya Bike! 2019 1 – Barwon River Circuit: Wednesday October 2nd

Cycling Geelong historian, Rod Charles, led 21 cyclists around the river path, with stops on the way for short talks about the history of Geelong around the river.  It was a perfect day for cycling.  This was the first of the annual On Ya Bike! series, run by Cycling Geelong as part of Seniors Month.

It was wonderful to have Maxine, who was an original rider in the very first On Ya Bike! rides, and a regular rider, meet the group at the start, despite not being able to ride.

Stops were near La Trobe Terrace (woollen mills), the Breakwater, Princes Bridge (Shannon Avenue) and Queen’s Park, before a final stop for coffee at Barwon Edge.

Thanks to Rod for once again leading this most enjoyable and enlightening ride.  Every year, not matter how many history rides I’ve been on, I’ve learned something new about Geelong’s history.

This Wednesday’s On Ya Bike! ride is a 29kmGeelong circuit, on roads and paths, taking in the old Cement Works Railway path to the Cement Works, the new path through Fyansford development, the river, Eastern Park and Geelong Waterfront.  This ride begins at 9am on Wednesday, October 9th, at Rippleside Park near the Adventure Playground.  There’s plenty of parking available.

On Ya Bike! Ride every Wednesday in October

You are invited to join Cycling Geelong for a friendly On Ya Bike! ride any (or every) Wednesday in October.

The schedule is as follows:

Date Title Starting time & Place Distance Grade and details  
Wednesday 2rd October Historical around the Barwon 9:00am

Balyang Sanctuary Car Park, Marnock Road, Newtown

20km Easy (all bike paths) Rod Charles
Wednesday 9th October Geelong Circuit 9:00am Rippleside Park (near Adventure Playground) 30km Easy (sealed bike paths and roads) Helen
Wednesday 16th  October Drysdale via Bellarine Rail Trail 9:00am Bellarine Rail Trail (cnr Tucker Street/Carr Street)

near Showgrounds entrance

36km Easy (mainly sealed bike paths) Doug Merritt
Wednesday 23th October Torquay South Barwon Reserve, entrance, Barwon Heads Road,

 

50km Medium Dirk
Wednesday 30st October Allan’s Mystery Ride 8:30am, Rippleside Park (near Adventure Playground) 60-80km Medium/hard (sealed roads) Kelly
    Riders need to be able to maintain an average of around 20kph for this ride.   

For more information contact Helen. 

Better than brand new: Trailer refurbishment

The trailer is transformed.  Allan and Kelly have spent many hours reconfiguring and strengthening the Cycling Geelong bike trailer.  This will not only make it safer and fix problems exposed in the original design, but will make the trailer much easier to load and unload.

Thanks to Allan and Kelly and their engineer welder mate for this wonderful transformation.  The trailer is now ready for this year’s Goldfields weekend which it based around Heathcote.

Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race 2019

One volunteer’s experience

The Elite Women’s ride – Saturday 26th January

As we arrived at Deakin Waterfront at 10am, there were already cyclists arriving back at the finish line after achieving the 35 or 65 km rides.

We were deployed into buses around the course for the Elite Women’s race.  My first position was on Boundary Road, about 100 metres past the official race starting point, which was on Boundary Road near Portarlington Road.  The whole group of elite cyclists flashed past in the blink of an eye, then it was off for us in the bus for a quick break at the Barwon Valley Fun Park (toilets, not playtime) before redeployment.  Our group was near Queen’s Park Bridge.  By sheer luck I was placed at the top of the course’s last short, but extremely steep hill, on Melville Avenue!  Flash past? – the cyclists did not!  The women’s race only completes one circuit, so the first riders up here had a very good chance of winning.  By this point, the race was very fragmented, with at least 10 minutes between the first group and the last rider.

They all had one thing in common – this was a hard climb!  Without exception, the cyclists were in their lowest gear and off their seats for the steepest part!

A small crowd of cycling fans and locals were assembled and cheered the riders, from first to last.

By the time we were collected and returned to the Waterfront, it was all over.  Who won?  We only heard later!

Sunday, 27th January – Elite Men’s Ride

As the elite men’s ride included the whole course to Barwon Heads, Torquay, Bells Beach and Moriac, as well as an extra 3 complete circuits of the Geelong course, marshals were bidden to be at Deakin Waterfront by 8.45am.  Once again, buses deployed us around the course.

My first placement was on Barwon Heads Road, in Marshall, opposite Barwarre Road.  A group of 3 had formed a breakaway, and, despite the closeness to the start, were already minutes ahead of the field.  The peleton showed no interest in chasing, and were cycling at a sedate pace – 35, 40, 45 kph – who can tell but, in Rod’s words it was ‘a whirr of many wheels’.

Our road closures removed, we were once again redeployed.

Once again, I was fortunate – marshaling pedestrians crossing Western Beach Road on the corner of Gheringhap Street – around 300 metres from the finish.  The cyclists passed this point four times, the last one flat out in the sprint finish.

Once again, it wasn’t till later that we learned the placings.

Elite Women’s Ride

  1.  Arlenis Sierra (Cub) Astana Women’s Team
  2. Lucy Kennedy (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott Women
  3. Amanda Spratt (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott Women

Elite Men’s Race

  1. Elia Viviani (Ita) Deceuninck-QuickStep
  2. Caleb Ewan (Aus) Lotto Soudal
  3. Daryl Impey (RSA) Mitchelton-Scott

Helen Lyth (Route Marshal)

Add to the CEGORR 2019 story

Cycling Geelong members, please send in your own stories and photos of the 2019 Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race and People’s Ride so we can share them on this website.