The Golden Age of British Road Racing - A Meeting

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  • I'm thinking of organising a meeting which would feature a talk by three former Milk race / Tour of Britain riders from the sixties and seventies. The format would be a talk by each of the riders about their experience of the race and their racing careers, followed by a question and answer session.

    The venue would be the Hounslow clubroom at Staines Sailing Club (reachable from the mainline station at Staines), the time would be a Tuesday evening late this month or early December.

    This idea is only do-able if there is any interest from outside the Hounslow itself - let me know if you think you might want to come.

  • Would love to go, who do you have in mind to do the talks.

  • Likewise, I'd be interested.

  • Well, I did think that 'The Golden Age...etc' would be the sort of title that would attract attention here, but perhaps I was wrong.

    I had always imagined that there was an element of nostalgia in the very concept of bikes without variable gears and it is noticeable that many of you are interested in old bikes, so I just guessed that old cyclists, if distinguished enough, would also be interesting.

    It's only relatively recently that I've been aware of the term (Golden Age) being used in connection with cycling, but it strikes me as something worth thinking about. Naturally everyone who has an opinion on the subject will disagree with the next person about exactly when the GA was, but all the same there may well be certain common elements in most people's idea of what makes their age golden. If we debate and decide what those elements are we might be able at least to attempt to preserve them.

    For example, while it is not within our power to reduce the number of motor vehicles, we might be able to preserve the traditional cycling club.

    There must be some who believe that with Brits having done so well in the Tour recently we must be in the GA now, but I'm afraid that bike racing has developed a sort of super elitism which makes the ordinary enthusiast feel he has no possiblity of success as a racing man.

    This brings me back to my proposed meeting. Although never a great talent myself, I have often been on club and training runs with two of the speakers I had in mind (Martyn Roach and Doug Collins) and as I have mentioned in the Hard Day in January thread, my original mentor in the bike game was John Aldridge who rode the 1959 tour.

    As a young rider, talented or not, it's a great stimulus to enthusiasm to read that some one whose back wheel you were recently hanging on to has done well in the national tour. It seems to me that there won't be many people in this position in 2018.

    It's not possible to recreate those conditions today, but it is still possible to hear what these former giants of the road have to say. At least for the time being.

    I had hoped this was a chance people here would want to take - although lfgss is not the only source of potential listeners I don't think it will be possible to run the meeting without better support from this forum.

    So if there is anyone else out there, please let me know.

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The Golden Age of British Road Racing - A Meeting

Posted by Avatar for clubman @clubman