local hero

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no, not the classic Bill Forsyth film...

this guy...


i saw him on my ride yesterday, he was wearing an Action Medical Research jersey... he was grinding up the hill in Richmond Park with a bag almost as big as he is on his back. i pulled alongside and asked if it was to help his training or if he was moving house and he explained he'd ridden from Bristol ;) and was on his way to Euston having picked up his bag at Chobham. I thought he might be on his way to start the London-Paris, but he said he'd done that before... and had done the Etape Caledonia a few months ago.

when i got home i decided to try and find him and went through the list of cyclist on the Action Medical site and he was the only one down for the 100 and the Etape C. then i looked at his own site. pretty impressive achievents!!!

i donated some money to his efforts - mainly as his achievements are worth it, but also because he was a nice and friendly guy.

i'm no relation to him, or the charity (i work for a different one), but if you can spare some money, think of him.




New Member

My goodness, you're hard to track down. I googled yesterday and found your name on your charity site, but wasn't certain it was you. Then today I checked my web stats and found this forum.

I really wanted to thank you for your generous donation to Action Medical Research, and for chatting to me on the hill in Richmond Park. The surprise at receiving an email notification of your donation on Monday morning was almost too much, and my faith in humanity is restored.

For someone who I have never met before to go to all that trouble, and not even knowing my name is quite simply outstanding. Bravo to you sir ;)

You were the only person to speak to me from Chobham to Euston Station, and our brief conversation really lifted my spirits. I just hope you didn't think I was giving you the brush-off when I said I didn't want to hold you up.

As it happens my Garmin Edge conked out as I reached Wimbledon Common, and not being a local, finding my way to Euston with my tomtom which didn't follow my planned route meant that I missed my train home by 1 minute. Why are they never late when you need them to be? :sad:
hey Grant!

it was a pleasure to meet you. i was feeling a tad rough and i only did 40 miles on sunday... then again, i did forget to eat lunch, but that was my mistake. you certainly put me to shame afterwards i realised i should have offered you a 'tow', but i was starting to get 'bonk brain'. i also wondered if you'd prefer going at your own pace. i certainly didn't think i was getting the brush off.

i'd have no idea how to get to Euston! you'd probably still be circling south west london if i'd have given directions. had you been 11 minutes late the train would have been 10... it's the way they work. they see you coming.

welcome to the forum, the people here are quite friendly and some are even tame.



New Member

Calories are cyclist fuel, I always have a gel or two on me for bonk emergencies. I find Go gels particularly good because they're isotonic and so need no drink. Powerbar gels need at least 200ml of water to wash them down, but they do seem to last for more miles.

I normally ride at my own pace (I'm selfish like that), but it does start to slow considerably when I get "century bum" a bit like "bonk brain" only lower down, I averaged 16mph for the first 110 miles, and that average dropped to somewhere in the region or 10-11mph (not exactly sure) for the ride to Euston station from Chobham. Which I partly blame on the over abundance of RED traffic lights and full-width speed bumps in London (they are seriously painful when you've already done 7+ hours in the saddle) but was mostly due to me having to stop periodically to stand up and let my rear end recover a bit - oh how I wish I was on my Brooks saddle. Note to self: use touring bike next time.

Sure I was tired but my legs were good, and I should have been able to maintain about 14-15mph ave. It all adds to the challenge. Character building anyway (probably turn me psychotic eventually).

There's no shame in 40 miles, that's a nice Sunday ride, and what fantastic weather we had for a change. They say that the sun always shines on the righteous - which if true means that there are a lot of unrighteous Scots out there, because it rained for the first 40 miles of the Etape Caledonia. Which was the first time it has rained on me when I've been doing a charity ride.

Wouldn't do it if I didn't love it really. So when is your charity going to do some insane cycling events; Paris - Brest maybe ?


New Member
Oh yeah, directions to Euston Station just in case you ever need them.

Richmond Park - A3 Wandsworth -> Battersea -> Lambeth bridge and then go North. Got diverted due to a road closure and ended up going past Buckingham Palace and round Piccadilly Circus then up Tottenham Court Road and finally right onto Euston Road.

Watch out for pedestrians, they obviously don't know how much a 5'11" cyclist, backpack and bicycle will hurt when it hits them at anything between 10 and 20 mph.



Bird Saviour
This is weird init! you're being stalked Grant! LOL.

i did L2P this year Grant. had a great time. one guy did it with a false leg!
oddly, i had energy gel and bars in my pocket! i decided to head for home when i felt a bit bad... then decided to go a slightly longer way! instead of taking some energy, i just rode. really had bonk brain.

my charity has london-paris rides next year and a vietnam to cambodia one. they're not keen on cycling events, despite my pleas. The Ride Of The Falling Leaves is for us too, but not run by us - although i'd like to change that slightly. it does mean that i might have to ride that one.

i love Action's jerseys - they really are a good design and very noticeable.



New Member
While we're on the subject of jerseys, why are the L2P riders on your web site wearing old-style Action Research Paddington Bear T-shirts? Someone should at least photoshop them to pink and take the text off.


New Member
Congratulations Buggi, L2P is great fun, I'm glad you enjoyed it. Did you see the finish of Le tour?

I saw Lance win his 7th and final TDF, which was a great treat for me because he's been an inspiration.

There was a guy with a false leg in Richmond Park, but he was too quick for me (mind you I was stopped, resting my bum, at the time).
the one-legged guy in the park is too quick for most!

Grant, you're not meant to notice that we don't have any jerseys... or have had any other L2P rides before and are using shots from the people who organise the charity L2P trips!



New Member
laurence said:
and it's a huge backpack! it was the first thing i saw as i turned to go up the hill in the park. you looked like a two wheeled snail (but faster)


But that's my small backpack - 30L. My other one is 65L, and I once rode from Morchard Bishop to Exeter with that one because some railway Adolf ;) wouldn't let me on the train (that I had booked a cycle reservation for) because he said it was full.

You should see my touring bike, it must look like a two wheeled camper van. Yes it is tied down with the motorbikes on the ferry...

that's brilliant! thanks for that. i'll point them out to our sporting team and see what they say. i did offer to pose for pics at one point, luckily they didn't take me up on the offer.

are you sure the motorbikes aren't tied down with your bike? or to your bike!

at least you could use the bag as a tent, should the need arise.



New Member
Actually the bag contains a tent... pans... sleeping bag... bed mat... food... water... clothes... cooker... kitchen sink (only joking)...

1000 miles, 2 weeks in The Netherlands (should be called The Wetlands), Germany (didn't like Germany much - people a bit impolite) and Suffolk (the only place where the sun shone). The bikers were a fun lot, and couldn't believe their eyes when the ferry crew started tying my bike down like a motorbike, in fact I think one Austrian guy nearly p*'d himself laughing.

I think everyone on the car deck came and took a photo. Mind you I was made to queue up with all the cars at the dock too, it looks so stupid with all the cars, camper vans, caravans and transits with a bicycle sat in the middle of the queue.

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