Banbury Star Cyclists' Club

November 2019 newsletter

At last month's AGM we again asked for any comments, ideas or proposals regarding the contents of the newsletter. Is it too long, too short and are there any other topics we should be covering? We'd love some feedback from the membership, which can be sent to the Press Officer via the link below. Copies of all previous newsletters can be found on the club website - About BSCC

email the Press Officer

Presidential ponderings

I want to start this month's newsletter with a challenge to each and every member of your club, Banbury Star CC. I write "your club" because it really is your club. So why am I writing this and what is this challenge you may ask?

Only 22 members made the effort to come to the Annual General Meeting which is a very disappointing turn out given our near-record number of members, my thanks go to those who attended and to the half dozen who sent their apologies for not being able to be there.

Those who did come along to our great new venue missed a good summary of 2019 club life and subsequent discussion on where we are heading in 2020 and what could put a proverbial stick in the spokes of our plan. One word was repeatedly mentioned during the evening and that word was "apathy".

Due to a lack of interest we have already stopped running the turbo nights and the Pilates sessions. The monthly social night is being poorly supported and faces being cancelled altogether if a greater turnout for the November evening doesn't happen. Looking at our club rides, many previous requests for more ride leaders to come forward have been made but these haven't produced the number of leaders we require to be able to continue with five rides each weekend and our children's cycling scheme Rising Stars is at risk of being stopped entirely without more involvement from helpers and coaches. 

To paraphrase the great JFK "ask not what the club can do for me, ask what can I do for the club?". And here is the challenge I give to each and every one of you. If you want the club to continue organising a varied range of events it's essential more members make the effort to come along and support them, please don't assume that someone else will.

We've got a fantastic club and enjoy a well-deserved reputation for our club rides, time trials, the road race and off the bike activities, all of which are organised by a small, and dedicated team of volunteers. I hope you, gentle reader, recognise the need to support the club and commit to helping, even if it's just for an hour or so, in doing so your participation will help to secure the broad range of events for all and also spread the workload for those who do the organising.

Working together we can achieve a great 2020 and I hope all of you accept the challenge to become more involved.

Thank you.


2019 Club AGM - Main points

The 2019 AGM saw us move to a more central location - the Banbury Chestnuts Bowls Club which had the benefit of being a lot warmer than the previous hall and also a bar! Here are some of the highlights:

  • Reports from each of the club's officers
  • Re-election of all existing officers
  • The position of Social Secretary remains vacant
  • Annual road race to be held on Sunday 31st May
  • An increase in the membership fee from 1st Feb for existing members which is waived if renewal is made during January
  • The £25 TT supplement remains unchanged
  • A discussion on a significant overhaul of the membership prices for 2021 that recognises and rewards volunteering

Annual Dinner and Prize Giving

Thanks to great organisation and promotion by Ila Pearson, the club's annual dinner and prize giving is now a sell-out, with a reserve list in place. The event takes place on Friday 29th November at the Hook Norton Brewery, with doors opening at 7pm.

All deposits have to be paid by today - 1st November - and the balance of the £25 ticket needs to be paid by Friday 15th November to the club's NatWest account below. This should include your name and the reference AD.

Sort code = 53-61-33

Account = 65953886

As you will all know by now we are delighted that National U23 TT Champion Charlie Quarterman has agreed to be our guest speaker and present the club's prizes.

The club have already announced that transport will be made available to and from Banbury and if required you should make your booking via Facebook as requested.

Hook Norton directions

Autumn Reliability Ride

The 2019 Autumn Reliability Ride saw a very small number of club members attempt the 60 mile route down to Burford and back. Almost all finished within their estimated time which was a great achievement and reflected the weather conditions which were significantly better than forecast. Luke Sherlock once more proved he's up there with the fastest riders in the club by being the first back (although it's not a race of course!).

The Spring Reliability Ride will be held in March and is a great opportunity to demonstrate winter fitness and readiness for the summer season.

2019 Membership

A warm welcome to our newest members who joined during October:

Kevin Gatward, Annie Heaney, Steven van Niekerk and Caleb Smith.

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

Sort code = 53-61-33

Account = 65953886

Having now moved entirely to online banking no more cheques will be accepted for membership or payment for club services. 

Please note: The online Membership Form must be completed for all existing members when renewing membership. The joys of GDPR compliance!

Renew Membership

Derby Velodrome visit now 10th January

With only a limited number of dates available, we've now secured and booked Friday 10th January 2020 for our trip to the Velodrome at Derby. The session starts at 12 noon.

The 2 hour session, with coaches, limits us to 18 spaces in total. These spaces have now, as we write,  almost all gone, with possibly only 2 or 3 still available. Contact Dave Pitttman for the latest information.

The cost for use of the track for 2 hours, and a British Cycling coach is £18:50 per person and the only way to secure a space on this is by paying this amount to the club account. The reference should be your name followed by the initials VD. (ie: Matt Sleath/VD)

ACCOUNT: 65953886
SORT CODE: 53 - 61 - 33

Bike and Shoe hire will be payable by yourself at the Velodrome. (Cost is around £17)

It is essential that you only put your forward if you are 100% sure you will be able to attend and have transferred the money to the club account.

The reason we have taken this approach is that we need to pay a substantial non-returnable deposit up front. Last year's visit unfortunately cost the club money, as there were a number of last minute cancellations or no-shows. So please help the organisers and ensure that this doesn't happen again.

Keep your eyes on Facebook for more news.

Velodrome details can be found via the link below.

Derby Velodrome details

Mudguards for club winter rides

Important. Please remember that from now until the end of March, mudguards are now compulsory on organised club weekend rides.

The reason for this is to prevent the person following behind you from being sprayed with water, mud or worse and also to not upset our coffee stops by members sitting on furniture with wet/muddy clothing.

As we made clear last month, there are "mudguards" and then there are mudguards and it's essential you purchase and fit the right ones:

- "ass-saver" types are not acceptable

- clip-on seat post types are not acceptable

- mid-length types keep you dry, but not the person behind and are not acceptable unless the end of the rear guard is long enough to be below a horizontal line drawn rearwards from the hub.

- full-length guards are the best solution and keep your beautiful club kit and the rider behind both dry and clean.

If your guards aren't long enough to stop the person behind being sprayed you'll need to fit an extension flap, as illustrated on the above two photos. The club now has more stock of the Star branded variety, they are easy to fit, lightweight and give complete protection to the riders behind. They will be available from Broadribb's for a mere £8.

The only exception to the need for guards is if the weather forecast is good and the roads are already dry.

If wet, no guards = no ride.

Don't forget the Blog

Now the summer cycling season is behind us, it's good to reminisce on the great rides, races, TTs, cyclo-crosses and adventures we've had on our bikes.

We know a lot of you have been very active this year, so, it would be great to read some of your stories and perhaps inspire others to try something new. So, if  you've ridden Coast to Coast, climbed a Grand Tour mountain stage, entered a race on the continent, competed in your first road race, TT or CX, or just had a great holiday on a bike - don't be shy, let's here about it.

Send your blog to the link below, preferably with a couple of good photos and we'll do the rest.

email blogger

Winter TT series needs your support

Well, as we reported last month, a recent poll showed a demand for our time trials to continue during the winter months.

However, in spite of a dry and sunny day, the turn out for our first event on Saturday 19th October was very disappointing. Only 8 riders entered and 4 of them were from Team Cherwell - so not a very promising start. A traffic count taken on the day was well below that specified by CTT, so there were no issues there for racing on a Saturday afternoon.

Oli Wright has done some great work behind the scenes arranging this programme, which is planned to run every fortnight. The two dates for this month are tomorrow 2nd and 16th, so if you voted for a winter series, let's try and make this a success with a better entry. The K4/20 course will be used each time, with sign-in at Ludlow Drive from around 12.15pm with a 1pm start. Timekeeping and marshalling duties will be shared around the club. 

The one major change from the summer TTs will be the mandatory requirement for a strong flashing rear light to be fitted and it's recommended a front light is used too. Aside from that you can use any bike, mudguards aren't necessary and we'll only cancel if the weather precludes safe racing or marshalling.

Entry fees will be the same for the summer TTs so if you've paid the TT supplement as part of membership then there's no charge on the day, otherwise it's £3 for club members.

As usual keep your eyes on the Facebook group in the days before these TTs for any further updates or instructions.

Race Calendar

Race Squad 2019 review

Race Secretary Mark Boyles gives a brief review of the 2019 season.

After an amazing 2018 year for the club's race squad and racing, 2019 was always going to be a tough one to follow. Numbers for road racing and Crits were soft at the start of the year, but really gathered pace during the summer with regular attendance at the MK Bowl and other local venues.

One particular highlight was BSCC at the Warwick town centre races, watching Matt Sleath and Mel Seale in the 4th Cat race and then Tobi Ng's brilliant win in the 3rd Cat. There was lots of support from the club there including some juniors with cowbells. It was a great joy for them to watch Tobi win his race and move up to 2nd Cat.

As the road race season draws to a close the Cyclo-cross season is now in full swing with the juniors, inspiring the adults to give this tough, but enjoyable racing a go. We’ve had ladies and men racing from 5 years upwards. Look out for details on Facebook for local races when they come up.

The open TT races have been well attended and have achieved parity with numbers from last year, if you remove the what would have been entries at the cancelled Silverstone TTT. We've had record club entries this year at our very own Hardriders TT and the 10 mile Open.

Now Weston on the Green is again allowing juniors to race, the club has regularly had juniors racing there on a Tuesday evening,

Thruxton was the bookend to the open TT season with Stars (4 men and 3 ladies) racing, including junior Isabella Boyles, who took 12 minutes off her 2018 time. A special mention should be made of Lee Heron's efforts, as he managed to rack up 1000 miles racing TT opens for the club.

The club has recently purchased a selection of junior jerseys for the young members to borrow to help them feel part of the club when racing.

Look out for race Bootcamp details on Facebook, which will start in the new year.

Club casual kit

The club’s range of casual clothing is open for orders once more, with a closing date for orders of the 7th November to ensure delivery before Christmas.  The options include the previously ordered Hoodies and T-shirts, the latter in men's and women's cuts.  There is now also an option to order a softshell jacket.

Hoodies are as before in navy blue with yellow inner hood and strings, and the T-shirts are in a slightly lighter blue.  The jackets are navy blue.  All carry the BSCC lettering in yellow on the front only.

Prices will be as follows:

T-Shirts – £12.60

Hoodies – £20.40

Softshell Jackets – £27.00

Sizing is as follows:


S 38" M 41" L 44" XL 47" 2XL 50" 3XL 53" 4XL 56"

Hoodies and T-shirts:

XS* 34" S 36" M 40" L 44" XL 48" 2XL 52" 3XL† 56" 4XL△ 60" 5XL△ 64"

Anyone wanting to order or enquire should contact Oli Wright by the 6th November via the email link below,or leave a message on the club’s Facebook thread (started on Sept 30th):

Payments will need to be made in advance to the club’s new NatWest account No: 65953886  Sort Code: 53 - 61 - 33     with your name followed by ‘LC’ for Leisure Clothing – e.g. OliWrightLC.  

email Oli

Club riding kit

The latest club kit order for those members who ordered Roubaix long sleeve jerseys is due on or around 21st November. Dave Speck will advise all accordingly when they arrive.

Remember if at any time we get 5 orders for any one garment, regardless of size, or men's or women's fit, an order can be opened placed with Endura.

In the meantime, below is a list of club jerseys which Dave currently holds in stock:

Ladies Short sleeve jersey - Small
Men’s Short sleeve jersey - Large
Men’s short Sleeve jerseys - Medium

Contact Dave Speck
How to order club kit

Club ride etiquette update

Ride secretary and leader John Tustian mentioned in his report at the recent AGM how much our group riding technique had improved over the last twelve months. Particularly the ability of everyone to now ride in a close safe group. However, one area that still needs some attention is when the group needs to stop - particularly at road junctions. We should always choose a safe place to stop, with the safe and easy passage of motorists a priority. At junctions we should stop as a group and then if possible cross as a group. This can not always be accomplished, but what has been happening is that one group has crossed the junction and then stopped to wait for others, often causing a blockage or annoyance to passing motorists. We should always aim to clear junctions as soon as possible.

This is all set out in our ride etiquette booklet, a link to which is given below.

We also need more ride leaders. Our club ride survey earlier in the year produced replies from around 15 members who said they'd consider being a ride leader, but to date we've had no one step forward to volunteer. If you want more details and get some training, then please email John via the link below.

Etiquette booklet
email John

The 5 Weekend Club Rides

Five weekend club rides are now available, please make sure you pick the one to suit your ability and speed and don't forget the winter mudguard rule is now in force.

Have a look at the club's website and Facebook group for details of the rides, all of which have downloadable Garmin maps:

10am Saturday: easy café ride: 25 miles, 12-14mph

10am Saturday: intermediate café ride 35 miles, 15-16mph

9am Sunday: fast non-café ride 50 miles 18mph*

9am Sunday: intermediate non-café ride 50 miles 16-17mph*

10am Sunday: intermediate café ride 35 miles 15-16mph

All rides will start at Broadribb Cycles, meeting 15 minutes before the departure time.

* may be quicker depending on who is riding

Club rides calendar

Banbury Star CC monthly social evenings

Our next club social night is on Thursday 7th November from 7.30pm, at our usual friendly venue, The White Horse in Banbury, sponsors of our men's road race.

As always, dogs, family and friends are welcome.

Upcoming club events in November

Social night - White Horse 7.30pm Thursday 7th November

Winter Club TTs - Saturday 2nd and 16th November at 1pm. 

Annual Dinner and Prize Giving - Hook Norton Brewery Friday 29th November

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

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Banbury Star Cyclists' Club