It looks like this blog has been bequeathed to me. No much has happened on the Malvern Star as I've been at uni, but the wobbly crank arm was annoying me so I took the bottom bracket off and have failed to put it back together. The real problem is actually the axle which has worn away and needs replacing. But where to get a new one???
In the last few weeks I've done some awesome rides including a ride through the Royal National Park (photos to come). Big thanks to Emma Power for lending me her Giant, as my bike was being repaired. Last week I also rode from Ashfield to Bobbin Head and back (see photo of my bike a the Empire Marina). This is a classic training ride for people on the North Shore. The roads a bit rough but the scenery is fantastic. Last Sunday I went for my first cycling club ride with the Dulwich Hill Bicycle Club.
We rode 60km from Marrickville to Waterfall south of Sydney and back again. The group ride was an amazing experience. I'd never ridden at such a hard pace. We averaged over 30km/h and hit top speeds of 60km/h on some of the downhills. I'm completely taken but the experience and plan to go every sunday morning. One of the amazing things about group rides is when you pass another large group of cyclists. You feel like your in this massive hunting pack all working together. Yes. its a very masculine affair. The other nice thing is taking over the whole lane and not feeling worried about traffic running you down. The ride speed up towards the end and slowly more riders dropped of the back of the group. I managed to stay with the front group for most of the ride but got dropped on a hill on the way back to Sutherland. Once the main group passes you, its like missing a train and it doesn't matter how hard you try its almost impossible to rejoin them. We finnally meet up at the 7/11 in Sutherland where almost 200 cyclists from all over Sydney converged to drink buckets of powerade. I wish I had my camera then but it was amazing to see.
This week I placed my entry form in for the Grafton to Inverell challenge. Its a 230km ride across the great dividing range and is rated as the toughest cycling event in Australia. A nice way to begin ones riding career! Of course I'll be riding with the slackers who'll leave at 5:30am in the morning while the real race will kick off at 8:30am. I think I can manage the distance but I really need to do some hill climbing in the next few weeks. Unfortunately one of the lesser charms of my ('crappy' old Trek) is its lack of gears. Oh we'll at least I've got some sexy new pink haddle bar tape and not every bike has that!