Can you help? Volunteers Needed – 1 November 2020

VC Venta is pleased to be hosting the Parentini Wessex Cyclo-Cross League Round 2 on Sunday, 1st November 2020 at Sparsholt College. To make this event a success we need the help of as many members as possible.

We’re looking of volunteers to help with setting up the course the day before (31 October), then on the Sunday (1 November), signing-on, marshalling and removing the the course at the end.

If you can help, please contact the organiser Chris Hutchings on chrishutchings2@gmail.com.


Parentini Wessex Cyclo-Cross League Round 2 – Sunday 1 November 2020

VC Venta is please to host the Parentini Wessex Cyclo-Cross League Round 2 and offer Wessex CX riders the chance to compete in this difficult racing year. We hope you will support our event and enjoy the challenging but fast and flowing course (weather depending) we have planned for this year.

Please note all entries must be made via the BC website here BRITISH CYCLING and there will be NO ENTRIES PERMITTED ON THE DAY.

The event will be held at Sparsholt College near Winchester (SO21 2NF), where there is plenty of parking space and the course covers a large area. However, we ask that all riders respect that this is an active educational establishment with students on site. Please social distance where you can, bring your own hand cleanser if you can, although there will be cleanser available on site.

The races will be shorter than usual, in line with Wessex League protocols for 2020. This course will be similar to previous years, but there will be no pits and start and finish locations may change.

See the BRITISH CYCLING WEBSITE for full details and to enter.


Inter-Club TT – Saturday 26 October 2020

Congratulation to the VC Venta Time Trial team and a huge thanks to Stuart Gilmour for organising last weekend’s Inter-Club TT at Old Alresford.

It was bitterly cold morning but despite the weather, this annual event saw riders from Andover Wheelers, Sotonia and VC Venta battle it out on the HCC283 course, starting on Spiers Lane.

VC Venta retain the team prize with an overwhelming points victory whilst Nick Tarmey was fastest individual recording an impressive 21m14s, with Craig Russell from Andover Wheelers the only other rider to go sub 22 minutes.

Several riders were taking part in their first TT, with Brenda Hoult and Richard Lawrence getting special mention in the committed parent category.

Thank you to everybody who came out to ride, and for the selfless commitment of the organisers and volunteers without whom these events simply do not happen!

Andover Wheelers v Sotonia v VC Venta Inter Club TT Results

Combined Result (All Categories)
1st Nick Tarmey VCV 21m14s
2nd Craig Russell Andover 21m59s
3rd Jamie Plumb VCV 22m15s
4th Nigel Pratt Andover 22m16s
5th Darren Lyons VCV 22m33s
6th Jake Prior Andover 22m39s
7th Evan Jardine-Skinner Sotonia 22m45s
8th James Peckham Sotonia 22m52s
9th James Fox VCV 23m02s
10th Jeremy Hubbard Sotonia 23m12s
11th Ben Gibbs VCV 23m13s
12th Neil Adlem Andover 23m17s
13th Graham Harman Sotonia 23m33s
14th Paul Mustow Andover 23m39s
15th John Fradgley VCV 23m56s
16th Andy Moores VCV 24m02s
17th Dave West Andover 24m15s
18th Julian Gee Sotonia 24m25s
19th Ben Aspin VCV 24m32s
20th Philip Allen VCV 24m41s
21st Tony Hamilton Andover 24m53s
22nd Chris Hughes VCV 25m03s
23rd Will Sawyer Andover 25m05s
24th James Cooper Sotonia 25m15s
25th Hayden Gray VCV 25m42s
26th Martin Evans VCV 25m58s
27th Jon Legg Sotonia 26m44s
28th Hayden Kirk/Louis Kirk Sotonia 26m45s
29th Malcolm Cross VCV 26m49s
30th Oliver Starkey Sotonia 27m02s
31st Dave Morris VCV 27m19s
32nd Hedley Rhodes Andover 27m20s
33rd Robert Tutt VCV 27m29s
34th Gary Richardson Andover 27m37s
35th Nici Ferguson VCV 28m30s
36th Rachel Waite Andover 29m57s
36th Jack Reid/Izzy Wild VCV 29m57s
38th Oscar Hoult VCV 30m05s
39th Brenda Hoult VCV 32m09s
40th Samuel Hughes VCV 32m12s
41st Oscar Lawrence VCV 34m39s
42nd Richard Lawrence VCV 45m24s
DNF Sam Summers Andover DNF
DNS Nick Dooley Andover DNS
DNS Tim Laudon Andover DNS

Results By Category

Family 2 Up
1 Hayden Kirk/Louis Kirk Sotonia 26m45s
1 Oscar Hoult VCV 30m05s
2 Samuel Hughes VCV 32m12s
3 Oscar Lawrence VCV 34m39s
1 Ben Aspin VCV 24m32s
2 Hayden Gray VCV 25m42s
Ladies Road Bike
1 Brenda Hoult VCV 32m09s
Ladies TT Bike
1 Nici Ferguson VCV 28m30s
2 Rachel Waite Andover 29m57s
Mens Road Bike
1 Jamie Plumb VCV 22m15s
2 Darren Lyons VCV 22m33s
3 James Peckham Sotonia 22m52s
4 James Fox VCV 23m02s
5 Jeremy Hubbard Sotonia 23m12s
6 Ben Gibbs VCV 23m13s
7 Paul Mustow Andover 23m39s
8 John Fradgley VCV 23m56s
9 Andy Moores VCV 24m02s
10 Dave West Andover 24m15s
11 Julian Gee Sotonia 24m25s
12 Tony Hamilton Andover 24m53s
13 James Cooper Sotonia 25m15s
14 Martin Evans VCV 25m58s
15 Malcolm Cross VCV 26m49s
16 Oliver Starkey Sotonia 27m02s
17 Dave Morris VCV 27m19s
18 Hedley Rhodes Andover 27m20s
19 Robert Tutt VCV 27m29s
20 Gary Richardson Andover 27m37s
21 Richard Lawrence VCV 45m24s
DNS Nick Dooley Andover
DNS Tim Laudon Andover
Mens TT Bike
1 Nick Tarmey VCV 21m14s
2 Craig Russell Andover 21m59s
3 Nigel Pratt Andover 22m16s
4 Jake Prior Andover 22m39s
5 Evan Jardine-Skinner Sotonia 22m45s
6 Neil Adlem Andover 23m17s
7 Graham Harman Sotonia 23m33s
8 Philip Allen VCV 24m41s
9 Chris Hughes VCV 25m03s
10 Will Sawyer Andover 25m05s
11 Jon Legg Sotonia 26m44s
12 Sam Summers Andover DNF
Club Points
VC Venta 118

Andover    49

Sotonia      42


Inter-Club TT – Saturday 26 September

The annual inter-club TT between Andover Wheelers, Sotonia and Velo Club Venta is back!

Slightly later than normal this year due to Coronavirus, the event will be held on Saturday 26th September using the same course as last year, the HCC283 at Old Alresford.

Time trials have been the first events to return after lockdown, due to the ability to spread out riders on the road.  However, we are still organising events with Covid-19 restrictions at the forefront of our thoughts and planning, so we ask you to sign-up in advance with your club co-ordinator by Thursday 24th September.

What You Need To Know

When: Saturday 26th September at 08.30 hrs (Sign-On Open 7.30am)

Ride HQ: Christy Hall, Old Alresford

Course: HCC283 Spiers Lane, Preston Candover, Old Alresford

Cost: Adults £5.00, Juvenile/Junior or Full Time Education Free (Unfortunately we still have to pay levies)

Entry: If you want to ride, please email racing@vcventa.co.uk advising which category you want to ride in and you will be added to the start sheet.


Categories this year that will determine the overall club winners are:

Family 2 Up (one rider must be a juvenile with both riders from the same household)

Juvenile (Under 16) – Road or TT bike

Junior (16-18) – Road or TT bike

Ladies – Road Bike

Ladies – TT Bike

Men – Road Bike

Men – TT Bike


You can have as many riders from each club as you like in each category. The first three riders from each club will score points that will then accumulate towards the overall club total. Any rider not in the first three for their own club will be awarded one point each that will also contribute towards the club total.

As we have had very limited club activity in such a disjointed year, it would be fantastic to see as many riders as possible representing the three clubs with the TT season drawing towards a close.


If you want to ride, please email racing@vcventa.co.uk advising which category you want to ride and you will be added to the start sheet.

Volunteers Needed Too!

Of course, in addition to a peloton of riders, we will need some volunteers to enable this event to happen so if you or anybody you know can assist with marshalling (3) starter(1) or finish timekeeper and recorder(2) please get in touch also.

We look forward to seeing a good turnout and thank you in advance for your support.


Go-Ride Autumn 2020 – FULLY BOOKED

Due to the limited places available, the Go-Ride Series for Autumn 2020 is now fully booked. We have started a waiting list and will be in contact should places become available.

Hopefully, the new year will mean we can return to normal and run a full programme.

waiting list

Having been unable to run the Spring and Summer Go-Ride programmes this year, we are really excited that at last we can go ahead for the Autumn series. The series starts on Sunday 13th September and runs for 5 consecutive weeks, from 4 pm to 5 pm, through to 11th October. This will be held at the South Winchester Park and Ride and costs £20 per child for the series.

However, due to the new guidance from British Cycling we are limited to a group size of 30 participants (including all riders and coaches) this means we are limiting the total rider numbers to 25. Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis.

We will be following the revised BC Guidance issued on the 3rd August.


New Mountain Bike Coaching

New for 2020 we will be running a specific MTB coaching group, initially this will be open to riders aged 12 and over (i.e. born in 2008 or earlier). This will be run with a view to performing wheelies, drop offs, manuals and other core skills targeting riding off road. If you are interested in doing the MTB sessions then please complete the registration and email go-ride@vcventa.co.uk to secure your place.

Session #1 – Sunday, 13 September 2020
Session #2 – Sunday, 20 September 2020
Session #3 – Sunday, 27 September 2020
Session #4 – Sunday, 04 October 2020
Session #5 – Sunday, 11 October 2020

Strava logo


August  2020 results and GC position

August’s TT stage from Axford up to Herriard delivered some super-fast times over the bumpy and twisting 4-mile segment.

In the women’s competition Jools May led the pack with a new segment QoM and an impressive time of 10:43. Izzy Wild took the 12 points for second place with a time of 11:45 and Joanna Clarke was close behind in third place with a time of 12:05.

In the men’s competition, Ben Gibbs once again topped the table. His time of 09:40 came very close to the KoM of 09:28 and was the only posted time that dipped under the 10-minute barrier. Philip Hurst Jr and Martin Evans topped out the remaining podium positions with times of 10:24 and 10:31 respectively.

In the Women’s GC competition, Jools May jumps up to 75 points in second place, however Izzy Wild has now reached 114 points and is mathematically uncatchable for the remainder of this year’s competition, becoming the women’s GC champion-designate. There is still however all to play for in regard to the final podium position of third place, with only 10 points separating Nici Ferguson, Vanda Kyselicova and Joanne Clarke.

In the men’s GC competition Ben Gibbs continues to hold the top position on 119 points, and edges slightly away from James Cocker on 92 points in second place. James can still possibly catch and overhaul Ben, with 30 points remaining on offer this year for September’s and October’s final segments.

Christopher Purver remains in third place on 66 points and can still technically be caught by any of the riders in places fourth to sixth, position currently led by Jim Cascerini.

The segment for September is a short punchy double climb. here’s the segment link https://www.strava.com/segments/25526496

Results for August 2020 Segment


Position Name Time Points
1 Ben Gibbs 09:40 15
2 Philip Hurst Jr 10:24 12
3 Martin Evans 10:31 10
4 Daniel Mahony 10:45 8
5 Jim Cascerini 10:55 6
6 Barry Mullins 11:27 5
6 Philip Allen 11:27 5
8 Andy Watkins 11:38 3
9 James Locke 11:42 2
10 Dave Morris 11:52 1


Position Name Time Points
1 Jools May 10:43 15
2 Izzy Wild 11:45 12
3 Joanna Clarke 12:05 10
4 Vanda Kyselicova 14:45 8

2020 GC Ranking


Position Name Points
1 Ben Gibbs 119
2 James Cocker 92
3 Christopher Purver 66
4 Jim Cascarini 48
5 Martin Evans 43
6 Daniel Mahony 39
6 Philip Hurst Jr 39
8 James Locke 34
9 Pawel Niewiadomy 16
9 Andy Watkins 16
11 Ryan Seed 15
12 Philip Allen 14
13 Dave Morris 13
14 TV 12
15 Giles Corner 10
16 Chris Hughes 9
17 Richard Smith 5
18 Barry Mullins 5
19 Jack Broadfoot 4
20 Raf Izak 4
21 Adrian Baxter 3


Position Name Points
1 Izzy Wild 114
2 Jools May 75
3 Nici Ferguson 44
4 Vanda Kyselicova 34
4 Joanne Clarke 34


September 2020 Strava Segment

September rolls around again, this year providing a short segment for the Puncheurs amongst us to showcase their power over some rolling hills.

We begin at the start of Northside Lane, arriving from the South off the B3047 Bishops Sutton Road.

The first and longer of two climbs on this segment begins fairly gently before ramping up as you continue on, passing under the Watercress Line railway arch that marks the midpoint of the first ascent. The road curves on gently to the left, cresting the first hill and then dips as you collect some speed passing the footpath sign on your right before the bottom of the descent.

The road runs for a short false-flat before you then climb for the second time on this segment, making the most of your momentum as you push on past the small cluster of farm buildings on your left, as the gradient then rises slightly.

The 30 mph road sign marks the outskirts of the village of Gundleton and signifies the final run-in to the finish line. The segment ends safely a few yards later, just as the road is starting to flatten out, as you pass the entrance to a housing development on your right.

At less than a mile in length, with only around 200 feet of total climbing over the two hills, this will be a quick segment, requiring a full-gas effort from the very start. Please stay safe and remember to stick to the current rules around social distancing and responsible riding.

As a reminder, the rules of the competition can be found here.

Here’s the link to September’s segment https://www.strava.com/segments/25526496


New Club TT Record for Nick

Last weekend, VCV member Nick Tarmey posted up yet another amazing feat of endurance cycling in the National 12 Hour TT, creating  a new Club record by  more than 12 miles.

Here’s his account. Nick, we salute you!

National 12 Hour TT Championships 2020

When I heard the National 12 was actually going ahead after COVID, the immediate excitement I felt told me I had to go for it. I had wanted to try a “12” this year and had done quite a bit of dedicated endurance training before the pandemic messed up everyone’s plans in the spring. Since then, I had mostly been riding my road bike for fun and all-round fitness – a nice mental break from my work in the ICU.

After entering, I had six weeks to prepare, which mostly consisted of long rides on my TT bike, building up to some sustained 4-hour efforts on the aerobars. These taught me a lot about how to tolerate the position, keeping my neck and shoulders as relaxed as possible. I used the same basic setup I use for all TTs from 10 miles upwards – prioritising aerodynamics over comfort.

The event was held near Wrexham, on 3 separate road loops of about 10-20 miles each, with marshalls moving riders from one to the other as the day went on. The goal was pretty simple – just ride as far as you can for 12 hours!  I managed to rope in my wife, Alison, to support me. For her, this meant standing by the side of the road for a very long time, ready to pass me bottles of water or gel when I came past every 30 minutes or so. Her day was grimmer than mine, especially with the strong winds and heavy showers we endured.

From previous long rides, I had an idea of the pace I could sustain for 12 hours, with a firm plan for max power and heart rate for the first 8 hours. But once I got going, I felt so strong and positive that I couldn’t help pushing on and chasing down other riders – all the while knowing that I would pay for this later on. Right enough, reality came knocking on the finishing circuit and the last 4 hours were spent in a bit of a daze, just trying to squeeze out what I had left and bring it home. Seeing Alison and Mike Anderson each lap was a huge boost, as was the knowledge that the Venta club record was within reach.

At the finish I flopped onto the grassy verge with huge relief, 16th place overall and an official 272.23 miles in the bag at 22.7 mph. I was more than happy to put 12 miles onto our club record – and perhaps even happier to have Alison drive me home while I tucked into fried chicken and chips. If anyone else is thinking of doing a 12, I’d say “go for it!” – it’s a unique experience and great insight into the world of long endurance racing.

Cycling nerd stats, for those that like this sort of thing:

  • 272.23 miles (438.1 km) at 22.7mph (36.5 kph)
  • 2,425 m climbing
  • Normalised Power 219 w (68% of FTP 320w)
  • Average HR 146 bpm (LTHR around 170 bpm)
  • Stopped for about 5 mins total (1 pee stop, plus two sets of traffic lights)
  • Carb loaded for 2 days beforehand with about 650 g carbs per day (a lot of rice, pasta and bagels)
  • Ate 53g/hr carbs while riding (25 gels + 4 bars, a bit less planned as feeling sick)
  • Burned about 8,500 calories vs 2,700 calories eaten


Rob and Ed Take on King Alfred’s Way – In A Day!

Rob Carter writes of his challenge with Ed Gurney to ride the new Kind Alfred’s Way in a day! Chapeau guys!

Rob Carter and Ed Gurney
Saturday 18th July 2020
223 Miles (approx.)
4,420 metres of ascent (approx.)
Start 00:00
Finish 23:14

Ed and I were supposed to be taking part in a seven-day mountain bike stage race in Italy, but like everything else, it had been cancelled due to COVID-19.
We needed a challenge and something to train for so taking inspiration from Rob Colliver (SDWx4etc) we decided to give the soon to be released King Alfred’s way a try.

It’s a circular route from Winchester and the route we used is still a draft version with sections being updated before its official release in August 2020.


At approximately 223 miles it is longer than the South Downs Way double but is only half the amount of climbing, so completing it in less than 24 hours seemed like a good challenge. Most of the routes in Hampshire would be known to us but the Wiltshire, Berkshire and Surrey sections would be new ground and navigation was expected to be significantly more of a challenge than the SDW.

Completing and enjoying rides of this distance in a day is all about getting your bike, nutrition and mental preparation sorted before you start. Looking back to our notes from SDWx2 gave us a good reminder of the nutrition required. The bikes were both S-Works Epics. Tyres were tried and tested favourites (without the word ‘race’ included in the name) Conti’s for me and Vittoria’s for Ed.

Mentally it was four 55 mile bike rides. Night, morning, afternoon, evening, with the reward of food at the end of each section. Just like the SDW the start is at the statue of King Alfred in Winchester but rather than heading east for the downs this time it was up the High Street past the socially distancing revellers being turfed out of the pubs.

It was a moonless night and very dark on the tree lined tracks. The first section to Salisbury is the most technical of the ride with some rutted tracks and very overgrown sections thick with brambles and nettles. Perhaps these will be cleared in the future but when we rode them some were almost impassable.

Picking out the central line between the off roaders deep ruts is often more luck than judgement and it gave Ed the opportunity for a slow speed sideways dismount into the long grass. No damaged done to man or machine!

After Broughton the KAW picks up the ridable section of the Clarendon Way for a few miles before dropping down to the River Bourne. The temperature dropped by the river so it was layers back on for the climb up to Stonehenge. Stonehenge was reached at 4 am but invisible in the darkness. After Stonehenge there is a fast 4 mile road section before heading out across Salisbury Plain. Now the tracks are much faster and wider.

Breakfast was at 5:40 with 55 miles done. On schedule despite the night riding and slow going in places. We stopped on the northern edge of the Plain but a cold wind prevented too much relaxing so once the muesli was gone (brick of porridge for Ed) we were on our way.

Section two, the morning ride, was all about the Ridgeway. This is my favourite part of the ride. After a short section of the Kennet and Avon Canal the Ridgeway is joined at Avebury. The track is in great condition and was bone dry for us. In wet conditions the chalk will be much less friendly. With a gentle south westerly providing assistance our average speed increased and the views towards Swindon (my home town) were a delight!

Wayland’s Smithy and Whitehorse Hill were soon reached. Familiar sites from my childhood. Unfortunately, you can’t see the famous white horse from the KAW so a detour is recommended if you haven’t seen it before. Dragon Hill provides a great vantage point if you don’t mind the additional climbing. (There is never any grass on the top of Dragon’s Hill because of all the Dragons blood, but I think that is King Arthur rather than Alfred!)

Beyond Whitehorse Hill the Ridgeway just keeps on giving as it heads due east. Watch out for a water point near some old barns after about 100 miles. Near a crossroads I think.

Lunch was taken after 110 miles at 11:00. An hour in the bag thanks to the Ridgeway. Cold pasta, crisps and pork pie. Proper food makes such a difference on these long rides. Section three, the afternoon ride, is a real shock to the system after the beauty of the Ridgeway. Hello Reading!

Hats off to the route planners here because crossing from north of the M4, River Thames and main London train line presents some navigational challenges. Passing to the east or west of the town offers few options so its straight through the middle for the KAW!

Every national cycling network route in the town is employed. The route even goes down the main pedestrianised shopping area past the front door of the cinema! After what felt like a gratuitous detour to show us a new and very empty estate of office buildings, thank you route 23, we were able to escape the concrete and tarmac. But only by about 5 metres as the route follows the side of the A33 dual carriage way for 2 miles. It’s a relief to return to the countryside although the next section is a mix of road and trail as we head south and cross beneath the M3.

It was getting hot by this point and a kind lady provided water bottle refills. Beware there are not the well-marked water stops that you find on the SDW. The next section was a surprise and a delight as we joined the tow path of the Basingstoke canal.

I had no idea that this was open to cyclists. My OS map doesn’t show any access rights but we encountered few problems as we followed the tow path. Watch out for the low bridges and other path users. It really is a lovely ride and so unexpected.

Some more clever route planning gets us through Farnham although our route included a section along Greensand Way that was most definitely closed to cyclists so I expect the final version will change this section. Tea was taken at 167miles overlooking Frensham Little Pond. A lovely spot for Marmite and cream cheese bagels and two slices of pizza.

The evening leg started at 17:05. 7 hours to get back to Winchester. The start of leg 4 is slow with lots of sand on the MOD land. Again this would be hard going in the wet.

The climb up to Hindhead is memorable. It gave us a few roadies to catch! However, our efforts required emergency refuelling from the BP garage at the top of the town. One swift bottle of Coca Cola later and we were turbo charged for the next 40 minutes as we headed south towards familiar territory.

We expected to see the SDW around every corner but this section down to Petersfield goes on longer than we expected. Note that my OS map shows we used a footpath going into Liss. I don’t remember this but again I expect this will be changed for the final KAW route. Finally, we arrived in Buriton and it was here that we made our worst navigational mistake of the day.

Amongst the confusion of paths and fallen trees we headed into the disused pit. Much sweating and bike carrying lead to some concentrated micro navigation and our escape on to the road leading to Queen Elizabeth Country Park. Home territory! We now expected the KAW to stick to the SDW but the KAW route plot we used took us down the easy valley road through QE. I expect the final version will stick to the actual SDW route.

The climb up Butser Hill was especially hard after 200 miles but no dabbing was required! Old Winchester, Exton and Beacon Hill passed in a gel fuelled blur. Lights on and final water stop at Lomer Farm. Holden Farm, over the A272, field of sheep (round the edge please) Keepers Cottage, Cheesefoot Head. All we had to do was roll down to Chilcomb.

Er no, the route planner clearly does not like the final section of the SDW (if only the footpath across the fields could be changed to a bridleway) so we had to carry straight on to the Twyford road and back in past the horse jumps, Hockley golf course and Plague Valley. This gave the KAW the chance to finish on one last cycling network along the Itchen Way and back to King Alfred himself for a 23:14 finish.


Only half the climbing of the SDWx2, so not as hard.
Interesting route, very well put together.
Congratulations and thanks to Cycling UK for devising this route.
Strava https://www.strava.com/activities/3783574349


For me these rides are long distance constant picnics. My advice is that you need to be grazing constantly after six hours and the large food stops provide a great mental and physical boost.

The Menu

Starbucks cold coffee in a can

Pork pie

Marmite and cream cheese bagels
Homemade pizza slices x2

On the go…
3 x Wiggle gels
2 x High 5 Aqua gels with caffeine
Kit Kat
Mars bar
Time Out
Another pork pie
2 x homemade flapjacks
2 x Kind protein bars
Clif Blocks
2 x Clif bars
Half pack wine gums
2 x bottles of Coke
Bag cashews
PH Hydration tabs plus PH capsules.

About The King Alfred’s Way

The King Alfred’s Way is due to be launched officially on 29th August 2020.

Here’s a run-down of what to expect:

  1. King Alfred’s Way is a 350km off-road adventure route around historic Wessex, the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Alfred the Great.
  2. The trail starts and ends in Winchester where Alfred is buried, and connects iconic monuments including Stonehenge, Avebury stone circle, Iron Age hill forts, Farnham Castle, and Winchester and Salisbury Cathedrals – visitors can immerse themselves in 10,000 years of history.
  3. The trail is perfect for gravel bikes and can be ridden over a few days as a bikepacking/touring trip. It makes an ideal short staycation to fit into the end of the summer.
  4. However, it doesn’t have to be ridden all in one go, as it is easily accessible by train for linear day rides (once public transport is encouraged again).
  5. The trail passes through or close to many villages and towns, so there is a wide variety of options for accommodation and refreshments.
  6. The route is designed to be suitable for people with a good level of fitness and experience of off-road riding (as you’ll know, there are some steep hills!), but doesn’t require technical mountain biking skills.


Club Bike Box Rental

VC Venta has purchased a hard bike box in Venta blue for Club member rental. It will be stored at Crispin Quail’s house (in Winchester) and will be available for rental to members for a small fee on an advance booking basis, with own collection and delivery. Booking requests should be made to crispinquail@hotmail.co.uk.

The BikeBox takes frames up to 65cm and both calliper and disc brake road bikes. L 116cm, H 96cm, W 36cm – See more details BikeBox Alan Premium Box.

Rules and processes around rental:

  1. Rental requests direct to crispinquail@hotmail.co.uk
  2. Rental for up to and including every 7 days £20 (so a 5 day rental is £20 and a 10 day rental is £40)
  3. Rental payment by bank transfer to VC Venta’s bank account 06174450 sort code 52-21-18
  4. Rental payment at time of booking. No payment, no collection
  5. Own collection and delivery from/to Crispin Quail’s house (Winchester address to be given at time of booking)
  6. Collection no earlier than 24 hours before rental and delivery back within 48 hours of end of rental, unless otherwise agreed
  7. Two rentals per year allowed per member, unless otherwise agreed
  8. Maximum rental per booking of 14 days unless otherwise agreed
  9. For members use only and not for friends or family of members
  10. Box to be returned clean. No stickers. Any damage to be reported and claimed on member’s holiday insurance
  11. The Club is not liable for any damage or loss suffered by the user of the box
  12. Cancellations before the rental start date, receive the following refunds
91 days or more 100% refund
31 to 90 days 50% refund
0 to 30 days 0% refund

Bookings are open for the remainder of 2020 and full year 2021.

Strava logo


July 2020 results and GC position

July’s punchy hill climbing segment through Wherwell village, brought out the competitive spirit amongst club members with a number of repeat-attempts to best each other’s times.

In the women’s competition Jools May took the full 15 points for first place with a quick time of 02:15. Joanne Clarke came a close second with a time of 02:18. Vanda Kyselicova took third position with a time of 03:16 to sweep up the 12 points on offer, as the third and final time posted this month in the women’s competition.

In the men’s competition, James Cocker triumphed with a blistering time of 01:43 on the last day of the month. Current GC leader Ben Gibbs came in a close second at 01:47 and Giles Corner rounded off the top three with a time of 01:49. Seven of the top 10 men’s times came in under the 2-minute mark, demonstrating the ferocity of the competition this year between those who are vying for a position at the head of the GC leader board.

In the Women’s GC competition, Jools May moves up onto 60 points, solidifying her second place and moving nearer to Izzy Wild, who despite not positing a time this month remains in the lead on 102 points.

In the men’s GC Ben Gibbs remains ahead of the pack, now on 104 points, however James Cocker is still in contention, just 12 points behind on 92 points. Christopher Purver has solidified his third-place position on 63 points, however Jim Cascerini, who leads the rest of the chasing pack remains able to catch Jim, if he can sufficiently outscore Christopher over the course of the remaining three months of this year’s competition.

The mid-table battle for 5th to 8th places is incredibly tight, with Martin Evans currently ahead by the smallest of margins. These riders are the group that may prove to provide the closest rivalry over the remaining segments of 2020’s competition.

Please remember to register with the updated VCV segment of the month challenge ‘Strava’ club, via this link if you want to participate and have your time counted:


The segment for August is a challenging TT style 4-mile run from Axford towards Herriard.

Take a look at the Strava link: https://www.strava.com/segments/24951452

Results for July 2020 Segment


Position Name Time Points
1 James Cocker 01:43 15
2 Ben Gibbs 01:47 12
3 Giles Corner 01:49 10
4 James Locke 01:52 8
5 Philip Hurst Jr. 01:54 6
6 Christopher Purver 01:56 5
7 Jim Cascerini 01:59 4
8 Martins Evans 02:07 3
9 Daniel Mahony 02:19 2
10 Philip Allen 02:22 1


Position Name Time Points
1 Jools May 02:15 15
2 Joanne Clarke 02:18 12
3 Vanda Kyselicova 03:16 10

2020 GC Ranking


Position Name Points
1 Ben Gibbs 104
2 James Cocker 92
3 Christopher Purver 66
4 Jim Cascarini 42
5 Martin Evans 33
6 James Locke 32
7 Daniel Mahony 31
8 Philip Hurst Jr 27
9 Pawel Niewiadomy 16
10 Ryan Seed 15
11 Andy Watkins 13
12 Dave Morris 12
13 TV 12
14 Giles Corner 10
15 Chris Hughes 9
16 Philip Allen 9
17 Richard Smith 5
18 Jack Broadfoot 4
19 Raf Izak 4
20 Adrian Bazxer 3


Position Name Points
1 Izzy Wild 102
2 Jools May 60
3 Nici Ferguson 44
4 Vanda Kyselicova 26
5 Joanne Clarke 24


August 2020 Strava Segment

As August arrives and the lockdown rules relating to cycle events are eased slightly, we can celebrate the return of the VCV TT competition. To appropriately mark this positive change, this month’s SoTM challenge is a 4 mile gradually rising gradient segment that will test your aero skills and pacing ability.

You begin at the village of Axford, riding Eastbound along Berrydown lane from the junction with the B3046. The first 2.5 miles consist of an uneventful yet potentially leg sapping average 2% gradient of gentle turns. You will need to hold your concentration and pace your power carefully, also holding the most aero position you can manage to optimise your speed whilst the road remains relatively flat.

As you pass the junction with Red Lane on your right, the road curves to the left and the gradient begins to rise a little as you ride into the more wooded area of the segment.

Riding through Beech Wood the road curves to the right and then you approach the hamlet of Bagmore. Two closely placed ramps in gradient mark the beginning of Bagmore lane as you pass the few houses of the hamlet at the 3.5 mile mark.

The last half mile flatters to deceive with a gentle false-flat that allows you to build up some further speed before a final ramp that leads into the final run-in to the finish line, that is sited a safe distance back from the junction with the A339.

The current KoM of 9:38 is held by a professional athlete (Maximillian Steadman) so it will take a big effort to overhaul his average speed of 26.1mph. The current QoM is an equally challenging 11:03 that will also require a special effort to best.

As per the rules of the competition, TT bikes are permitted for this segment. Please remember to stick to the current rules around social distancing and responsible riding.

The link to the segment is here: https://www.strava.com/segments/24951452