We ride with Bux­ton CC

With the Peaks at their dis­posal, we meet a club who love to climb

Cycling Weekly - - Contents -

"This is one of my most favourite roads in the world,” Bux­ton Cy­cling Club mem­ber Rhys Roberts tells me as we wind our way up out of the Goyt Val­ley to­wards the top of the fa­mous Cat and Fid­dle pub in the Peak District Na­tional Park, Der­byshire.

“In fact, I love it so much,” Roberts con­tin­ues, “I moved to the area be­cause of it!”

It’s a grand claim, but en­tirely fea­si­ble, as even on a driz­zly day it’s breath­tak­ingly beau­ti­ful here, with wa­ter­falls in full flow and a spec­tac­u­lar dis­play of forests and moor­land sport­ing full au­tum­nal fa­tigues. In fact, the only down­side is the rather bru­tal climb straight out of Bux­ton that we’ve had to con­quer in or­der to takein the vis­ual feast. “Liv­ing in Bux­ton has cer­tainly made me fit!” says Roberts. “This is my first sea­son rac­ing, I’m even giv­ing hill-climbs a go.” He cer­tainly seems at home in these hills, pos­i­tively danc­ing on his ped­als and con­tin­u­ally chat­ting de­spite the steep up­ward tra­jec­to­ries.

To be fair, ev­ery­one at Bux­ton Cy­cling Club is mak­ing these Peak District hills look easy. “A few of the club spent time in the Alps this sum­mer, and I’m just back from rid­ing the Pyre­nees coast to coast, so we’ve all got moun­tain legs right now,” laughs club mem­ber Julie Parker. “Al­though, my brand new bike is also help­ing — I only picked it up yes­ter­day. I was shar­ing a bike with my daugh­ter un­til now.” Parker then tells me that she and her daugh­ter found cy­cling via the un­usual route of the Girl Guides and now the en­tire fam­ily race reg­u­larly.

“I prom­ise, af­ter this climb, it’s all down­hill,” Fri­day night run leader Do­minic Smith tells me af­ter to­day’s cafe stop. To­day’s tour of the finest Peak District Na­tional Park climbs are be­gin­ning to show, and my legs are protest­ing. “Un­for­tu­nately it’s a 25-minute climb into a head­wind,” he grins. I get the im­pres­sion he’s rather en­joy­ing the con­di­tions.

“It’s just typ­i­cal of the rid­ing up here, you have to be men­tally strong,” says to­day’s run leader, Steph Han­shaw. “I think that’s why we’re good at rac­ing and un­der­tak­ing char­ity events.”

Han­shaw started her cy­cling ca­reer by rid­ing to Snow­don, run­ning up and down the moun­tain be­fore rid­ing back home to raise money for Ronald Mcdon­ald House in Manch­ester.

“The trip we took to the Alps was also for char­ity,” Chris Hallam chips in. “There were nine of us in to­tal and our ini­tial aim was just to ride up Alpe d’huez, so we did that, but by the end of the week we’d also rid­den up the Col du Gal­i­bier, which is even higher! We raised an im­pres­sive £1,700 for the Cure Leukaemia char­ity; it was an awe­some achieve­ment on all fronts.”

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