Banbury Star Cyclists' Club

January 2021 newsletter

A New Year, so make sure you know what's going on via all the latest news in this month's newsletter 

Presidential ponderings

Membership renewal process

New club kit provider

Club Trophies - 2020 Awards

2021 Club TT update #1

2021 Club TT update #2

2021 Seven Cols Competition

2021 Road Race

Can you help the club?

Club rides - latest information

Mudguards - now mandatory

Fancy riding a tandem?

Zwift sessions 

Yoga sessions


Club Blog

Club kit - winter garments

Forthcoming club events 

Don't forget, copies of all previous newsletters can be found on the club website:

Newsletter archive

Presidential ponderings

On the 10th April 1891 a group of cyclists met outside Banbury Town Hall, setting off for the inaugural ride of the newly-formed Banbury Star Cyclists' Club.

Banbury, and the sport of cycling has changed beyond all recognition in the 130 years since then but what has not just survived, but flourished, is the desire of the people of Banbury and the surrounding areas to get out on their machines and ride for the enjoyment of it.

If Covid restrictions are lifted we plan on holding a celebratory anniversary ride on Saturday 10th April, starting at the Town Hall once again and further details will be published in the coming weeks.

One of the highlights of the year is determining who should win the President's Award. It's our only non-racing trophy and is awarded to the member who has made an outstanding contribution to the club.

After looking into the tea leaves and considering our rather unusual 2020, I've decided the rather impressive trophy goes to the person who has led many, many Saturday rides over the last few years and helped turn new riders into full members and has also recently taken over the Membership Secretary role. That person is of course Andy Perry, congratulations!

It wasn't really a surprise that once again most of England had to be placed under more restrictions on movement and gatherings due to Covid and so we've had to suspend once again all club rides. Spring will soon be here and we've got an exciting and historic twelve months of cycling ahead of us so please be patient, pump up those tyres, lube that chain, enjoy some solo cycling and be ready for a resumption very soon.


2021 Membership renewal

Membership renewal for 2021 is now open and we've held the prices as the same as the last couple of years. In keeping with 2020 we are also repeating the early bird joining discount of £10 which extends to the end of January, after which rejoining will cost £30.

For the racers, we've dropped the price of the Time Trial supplement, you can purchase this at the time of rejoining for only £10 which gives you free entry to all of our Wednesday evening club time trials.

We've taken the opportunity to introduce a couple of improvements to the way joining is made to give us better control of your data. You'll still fill in a form on a website and then transfer the money to the club's account, what has changed is the database that sits in the background. Rest assured it remains fully GDPR compliant.

Membership Renewal

2021 Membership

We'd like to welcome Nikolas Tsoutsos who has recently joined Banbury Star.

All existing members will have received an email detailing how renewals for 2021 will be changed using a much better online tool called MembershipMojo that gives us greater flexibility in managing the needs of 200 members whilst still remaining on the right side of GDPR law. The overall renewal process is the same, you will fill in a form and then make a payment to the club's account via BACS and then your membership card will be delivered.

Please remember to complete your emergency contact details and any medical issues on the back of the card and also bring it along on club rides.

Membership subscriptions and any other payments to the club should now be paid direct to our Nat West account.

Sort code = 53-61-33

Account = 65953886

Having now moved entirely to online banking and contactless card payments no more cheques or cash will be accepted for membership or payment for club events. 

New Club Kit Provider

The club's Committee has decided to move to a new provider of club kit for 2021 and we are proud to have partnered with Kalas who already supply the Great Britain national team, Team Alpecin and many UK cycling clubs.

Kalas offer a much wider range of high-quality summer and winter items for recreational and racing disciplines with many size options for both men and women. The major advantage is a reduced minimum order count compared to Endura and a heavily-discounted replacement service if your Kalas kit is damaged following an accident.

Ordering and payment will be made via a dedicated online portal and the details will be emailed to all members in the next few days when the factory re-opens after the Christmas break.

Club kit

Club Trophies - 2020 Season Awards

For obvious reasons we were unable to hold most of our races during 2020 but for the few we did manage to squeeze in we were also able to award a few of our fabulous trophies so congratulations to the winners and fingers crossed for a full racing season this year.

We will try and get the trophies to all the winners as soon as we can. The full list of winners can be found on the website.

2020 Trophy Winners

2021 Club Time Trials: update #1

Oli Wright has been busy in the background preparing for the 2021 time trial season which is scheduled to start on Sunday 7th March with the 23 mile Hardriders event. This will be a full Open race and entries will soon be open on CTT's website. We have agreed a Plan B date for later in the year if Covid restrictions prevent it from taking place in March and if we do move it could well be the first time short sleeves and suntan lotion have been required making it more Softriders than Hardriders. Ice, snow and frozen fingers certainly won't be an issue for a race in June!

We start a full season of Wednesday evening time trials under TLI from March 31st onwards with the usual 5 mile loosener out at Gaydon. 

The full list of races will appear in the racing calendar which we'll make live in January once the last of the formal paperwork has been submitted and the various authorities have given us their blessing. You'll no doubt be relieved to hear that most of your favourite courses have been retained although we've had to workaround the loss of the K4/25W and K4/10W due to the on-going roadworks at the Kineton army barracks. But don't be disheartened as the 30 mile race will definitely still feature!

It goes without saying that all 2021 TTs will be predicated on the Coronavirus legislation in place at the time regarding inter-tier travel and group gatherings taking place and whatever rulings are passed down by cycling's national bodies. The experience we gained from running Covid-secure TTs this year will be rolled over to 2021 as we demonstrated how well we can run events which turned out to be hugely popular.

2021 Club Time Trials: update #2

Some additional information regarding next years TTs, particularly Wednesday TTs, is given by Oli Wright below

As mentioned previously, the Club’s Wednesday TT events in 2021 will be run under TLI’s rules and regulations, with the exception of the inter-club event which will be a CTT event so that we won’t have to ask other club’s members to join TLI.  In order to race you will need to be a card carrying member of TLI in advance of entering any events.  I spoke with TLI’s head honcho this week and he suggested that I let everyone know NOT to purchase TLI membership until the turn of the year.  Please therefore hold off doing so until then.  I’m sure with Christmas around the corner, you won’t be too concerned!
Entries for any CTT event will be as before, including the inter-club TT - for which you will need to pay the Club the sum needed to cover the cost of levies to CTT for that event.
The process of getting under way with TLI is well in hand, and although it seems a long way away, we can hopefully look forward to a very eventful season next year without the interruptions of 2020.  If you’ve been wondering about TLI, then here is the basic introductory information from their website.  You may wish to visit for further information:

With Keri stepping down from timekeeping and course setting duties next year, I will need a number of volunteers from the TT group to assist with running events.  I am hoping to race next year after having this year off, so next season will have to be a team effort.  I know we have two or three members and associates with some good experience already but we will need more of you to have a go.  I would be quite happy to run a lesson or two online over the winter so if anyone is interested then let me know please.’  

TLI information
Email Oli

2021 Seven Cols Competition

Over the years, many club members have taken on the Seven Cols challenge, a fiendish ride devised by Keri Williams, which takes participants up (and down) the major climbs around the ridge to the northwest of Banbury.

For 2021 we've decided to add a bit of spice by turning it into a competition, encouraging members to ride the route and record their times with prizes available at the end of the year for the fastest efforts.

More details are on the website including a slightly modified route (which now takes in Avon Dassett village so you'll need to download this new version to your bike computer) and the link to the entry form used to capture times. We will publish times entered on a regular basis as the year progresses.

Best of luck!

The Seven Cols

2021 Road Race

It was no surprise to anyone that our highly-regarded road races, held each May for men and women competitors, had to cancelled this year due to the lockdown legislation.

Mike Gillet has come forward to take on the running of the 2021 race after doing such a fantastic job in 2019, he'll once again be supported by a large number of volunteers who are always required to help with such a large event.

We've been in negotiation with British Cycling for next year's date and can confirm the 2021 race will be held on Sunday 23rd May following the same format as previous years with Category 3/4 men riding in the morning for the Cavalcade Cup and then Elite/1/2/3 women in the afternoon as part of the Women's Team Cup Series.

Of course this is predicated on some major changes in the legislation which currently don't allow for large groups racing for two hours on open roads - fingers crossed!

Count me in for 3 climbs of Edge Hill

Can you help the club......continued

As mentioned elsewhere in the newsletter, we've had a great response to the request for help from the membership in taking on responsibility with some of the things which keep the proverbial wheels turning. There are still a few areas where we need help, these being:

- Become a British Cycling-qualified Ride Leader to lead a small group on our weekend club rides.

- Become a time keeper to occasionally help run our 2021 time trial events.

- Be the focal point for our Rising Stars junior cycling scheme

If you are keen in helping in any capacity please email the club's secretary in the first instance and we can then sort out the details.

Yes! I can help my club

Club rides - latest information

With the recent announcement that the whole of Oxfordshire has been promoted from Tier 2 to Tier 4 due to a rise in the number of Covid cases, we've had to once again suspend all organised club weekend rides until further notice.

We hope this situation doesn't last too long and that we can soon return to getting back out in groups once more. When we get the green light, we'll send an email to all members and will resume rides as we were, so pre-registration and small, multiple groups of up to six riders.

Club Ride Information

Mudguards - now mandatory on club rides

A reminder to members that mudguards are now mandatory on all club weekend rides. The only exemption to this is if the roads are completely dry following a dry spell and no rain is forecast. This will now be confirmed by the ride leader in his pre-ride email.

The first two photos above, clearly illustrate the mudguard length and mud flap which is acceptable. Whilst the third photo of a bike which has new mudguards fitted, is not acceptable - the rider will be fine, but not those following.

The club rule is as follows:-

Club rides during the winter months, following the clocks changing in October until March, will encounter wet and/or muddy roads and mudguards are to be fitted to bikes as a courtesy to the rest of the group by preventing spray. The bottom of the mudguard must come below the line of the rear axle.

If you want to purchase a club mudguard extension they are available for a mere £8 and are very easy to fit. Contact Paul for more information.

Email El Pres here to buy one

Fancy riding a tandem?

Club member Brian Reid, the man behind vintage and classic bike dealer, Golden Age Cycles, is offering all members the chance to try a tandem for free. The only stipulation is that any damage is paid for in full. Brian has 3 models available to try - hybrid, road (similar to that illustrated) and even a TT version. Surely it's worth a go - you and a friend might thoroughly enjoy it.

Contact Brian via the link below if you're interested.

email Golden Age Cycles

Zwift resumes Monday 4th January

Did you get any Zwift equipment for Christmas? If you did and want to give it a go with your club mates, then our own popular Zwift turbo sessions are the way ahead.

Held every Monday evening, they resume after Christmas on 4th January. We also connect by Zoom video conference to allow real time chatting to take place.

All the latest details, session times etc., will be posted on Facebook.

If you're not sure what Zwift is all about, then click on the link below and read Race Secretary Mark Boyles summary and guide.

Zwift explained

Yoga sessions restart Tuesday 5th January

The last of the 2020 yoga sessions took place on 17th December which attracted a regular attendance of between 12 and 15 members. These were all run by the excellent Jackie Balchin, a qualified instructor, with sessions tailored for the cyclist and for all abilities and ages. There's no pressure to keep up with anyone, no one is watching you and it’s FREE.

The sessions restart in January, but will now switch to a Tuesday, with the first one on the 5th.

We use Zoom for the hour long sessions  and log-in details of how to join will be emailed to all members each week. 


We've been wanting to expand our social media presence to include Instagram as part of the goal to widen the club's online reach but just needed someone who knows the difference between a hashtag and a caption.

Step forward Harry, son of Club Secretary Dave Pittman, who has volunteered to run the account and communicate to the social media-savvy masses.

He's been busy advertising our activities and events so please follow us @banburystarcc or click this button:


Let's keep the club blog active this winter

Well, we've had four excellent blogs written by members in almost as many weeks recently, so let's try to keep this going over the winter months. Johnathan Pape wrote the club's 50th blog a few weeks back, which was a great example of something completely different, very inspiring and with a strong link to cycling.

So don't be shy, Johnathan certainly wasn't - tell us your story on any cycle or club related subject. Maybe you have an opinion, advice, recommendation etc that's related to cycling or the club's activities. Ideally, send your blog as a Word document, with a related photo if possible, to the contact below. 

Blog articles
email the blogger

Club kit - winter garments

As mentioned above we now have a new kit supplier in Kalas. The process for ordering is very similar and every member will receive an email with the log-in details.

Full details of club kit are on the club website.

Contact Dave Speck
How to order club kit

Forthcoming club events in 2021

Hardriders Open Time Trial - Sunday 7 March (hopefully)

130th Anniversary Ride - Saturday 10th April

Annual Road Race - Sunday 23rd May

Open 10 mile Time Trial - Sunday 5th September

For more details and other events please look at the calendars on the club’s website or Facebook group.

Follow Banbury Star on social media

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Banbury Star Cyclists' Club