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Any Enthusiasts here ever ridden with Tour Grade Rider ?

JimmyKJimmyK Posts: 712
edited November 2009 in Training, fitness and health
I mean a regular joe schmo like me who enjoys cycling to keep fit, have any regular cycling dudes here ever ridden in the company of a Tour Grade rider(s) ? Was the difference not as marked as you may have believed, or was there not a cats butt in hell chance that you could have stayed anywhere near them at all ?

Im referring to that skinny drink of water that looks like he weighs about 9 stone in weight of course.

Jimmy

Posts

  • ColinJColinJ Posts: 2,218
    We had some ex pros ride on our training camps on the Costa Blanca a few years back.

    I rode 'with' Robert Millar, but only while the faster group were warming up with us early on. He was riding everywhere in the big ring and it all looked so effortless. That was probably 5 years after he retired.

    Similarly, I rode 'with' Marcel Wüst, about 4 years after he was forced to retire following a serious facial injury (he was blinded in one eye). He also made everything look effortless and could drop any of us at any time if he'd wanted to. Someone actually asked him how close to Pro fitness he was then, He replied that he was only at about 40% of the fitness that he used to have. He couldn't race any more because his peripheral vision was no longer good enough. If he got back into serious training at his age without racing, he reckoned that he could get back to perhaps 60% of his former level. Seeing how fit 40% of pro level was made quite an impression!
  • EdwinEdwin Posts: 785
    Roger Hammond turned up to our local road race league this year (although I'm not sure he's ridden the tour?). I was on the rivet and he went straight past us making it look easy. He also did the Birmingham CC crits in May. I was in the 3rd cat race, but he won the elite/1st cat, and lapped the field despite everyone else apparently averaging 29mph.
    So I would say yes, there is a big difference.
  • chrisw12chrisw12 Posts: 1,246
    I got lapped by Julian Winn, Geraint Thomas and I think there was someone else able to stay with them. This was before Geraint was going to be the next big thing.

    To be fair I'd only done a handful of road races and had just started in the sport, I reckon I'd have them now :lol: :shock:
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,496
    Every time I see a "tour grade rider" it's only for a second or two and from their rear.
    It is also very hard to identify them simply by the shape of their fast disappearing backsides. It's hard to commit a butt to memory.
  • inseineinseine Posts: 5,772
    I don't know about 'ridden with' but I've raced with Malcolm Elliott, Adrian Timmis and Dave Rayner on occassion. Didn't see too much of them in the races :roll: I did a cross race with Roger Hammond which was probably more impressive especially on a horrible decent he effortlessly rode down while I kinda slithered down (not on the bike!).
  • oldwelshmanoldwelshman Posts: 4,733
    Yes, rode in pinarello fondo and Rumsas was there and he won it twice.
    Last year rode it and Candy Pinarello were there, Elliot, Williams, Downing, Indirain, some Liquigas riders.
    Managed to stay with them all for the first 15 miles on the flat where we averaged about 32mph!! beofre a crash in front of me took out my rear qr as I bunny hopped over them.
    I am sure I could have kept up on the hills had I not stopped to fix qr :D Not really :D
    I waited over a minute for the next group to come alon as it was a few miles to the first climb.
    Indurain finished abut 8 minutes in front of me and we are the same age, but he is a bit bigger than me as he has put a little weight on :D
    Younger days rode a stage race with elite riders, but not continental riders, but it was hard enough!!
    Also mistakingly got caught up in the last stage of the milk race in between Elliot and Czech rider going over Caerphilly mountain just before finish and ended up on HTV Wales news :D I looked impressive as I had only just left the house where they had ridden 95 hard miles :lol:
  • andy162andy162 Posts: 656
    Sean Kelly. Granted not in peak form anymore but it was the way he handled the bike that impressed me. In a group, riding in 2's at about 25ish...pressing on a bit. It's drizzling then the heavens really open. Kelly sits up in the group whips out a waterproof jacket, unfolds it & sticks it on in about 10 seconds. All done without moving an inch off his line.
  • Depends which Tour you mean :wink:

    Super Sid Barras joins us for rides sometimes (same team) and needless to say I wish I was going as well as him now, never mind what he must have been like in his younger days :shock:
    "A cyclist has nothing to lose but his chain"

    PTP Runner Up 2015
  • inseineinseine Posts: 5,772
    I saw how well Sid Barras was going last Christmas and he's still pretty good! I have some insight into his form in his hayday becuase we had a series of handicap races every summer in the 80's and he along with Keith Lambert and other local fast boys rode most of them. They were obviously taking it easy but just the size of there legs was enough to scare you. I got a right boll***ing from Keith once for attacking on a dangerous decent. Youth eh?
  • SplottboySplottboy Posts: 4,208
    I won a Giant comp to ride with Team HR.Columbia, but it didn't come off. But, we had 4 days at the Tour last year, and they hired Balloon Tyre bikes for 20 of us across Paris.

    Was amazing, as we were given a guided Paris tour and free lunch as well.
    Guide was a Texan, who told us Napoleon was a "French dude..."

    Got a team signed shirt, 2 full sets of kit and Andy Schleck/Robbie Mc Kewan signed too.

    Have ridden with Team GB Roadies,Track, XC and DH riders tho. Good experience.
  • mrushtonmrushton Posts: 5,182
    I've been on rides with eg Warrick Spence who used to work at Cyclefit and Dan Duguid who rides for Sigma. They are just at a higher level but they have worked at their chosen sport. On a trip to Majorca last Jan.I rode up the san Salvador climb and got passed by 2 of the Columbia team, one of them being Kim Kirchen. They went past and I tied to hold their wheel but they just kept a steady pace set by their SRM and soon outdistanced me without any effort. It's probably no different to being ok at eg football and then walking out at Chelsea/Arsenal etc and wondering why you can't get the ball
    M.Rushton
  • inseine wrote:
    They were obviously taking it easy but just the size of there legs was enough to scare you.

    Sids legs are huge like! Was pretty much the first thing I noticed.
    "A cyclist has nothing to lose but his chain"

    PTP Runner Up 2015
  • BhimaBhima Posts: 2,145
    Was out with a track sprinter recently.

    On the hills, there was not much in it, but they murdered me on the flats. Really really murdered me. :shock:

    It was fun. :lol:
  • hazychrishazychris Posts: 202
    I got lucky and was one of the folks who won a ride with Garmin Slipstream the day before the start of the Tour of Britain. They weren't allowed to "show off" as they were just loosening up for the next day but two things really stood out:
    1) at a rate I could only just hold, alongside Trent Lowe, his heart rate was below 100 and he was chattering away as if he were sitting in an armchair
    2) it's scary how good their bike handling skills and confidence next to "unprofessionals" is - they really were comfortable riding shoulder to shoulder, and I was petrified that I'd write off a TdF finisher with an ill-timed wobble... as it was, I probably saved his bacon at a roundabout, as he's not too used to roads that aren't closed, but that's another story!

    It made my day to beat Trent up a hill (he's a climber and I'm most definitely not!) as he had his orders not to break sweat - his comment "hey, you climb ok for a fat pom" :twisted: We then worked out that I was 45kg heavier than him he chuckled and then asked (in a very nice way) how many orifices I was breathing through....
  • andy162 wrote:
    Sean Kelly. Granted not in peak form anymore but it was the way he handled the bike that impressed me. In a group, riding in 2's at about 25ish...pressing on a bit. It's drizzling then the heavens really open. Kelly sits up in the group whips out a waterproof jacket, unfolds it & sticks it on in about 10 seconds. All done without moving an inch off his line.

    SK had up to this year come to our area for a weekend in November where he leads 2 60 ml spins. I rode my 1st one 3 years ago. We were rolling along in a big group of 70 riders at a about 19mph when I saw SK move to the inside and stand up. Suddenly the group moved to the middle of the road :lol: It was Windy. Now thats a skill which would help on a Sportive when you going for Gold.
    Go neiri on bothar leat.
  • markos1963markos1963 Posts: 3,724
    Emma Pooley came out on a club run with us a few weeks ago and it was a bit of an eye opener. On the run back the pace went up as usual but due to the presence of the said racer it was a lot higher than normal(not Emma pushing it though) until we were bowling along at an average 26mph! The big difference, I was puffing like a train and Miss Pooley was as cool as a cucumber! Great fun and a great learning experience.
  • AggieboyAggieboy Posts: 4,014
    For those of you who have never seen this, it's a great read. 8)

    http://www.addiscombe.org/members/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=4604&start=0&st=0&sk=t&sd=a&hilit
    "There's a shortage of perfect breasts in this world, t'would be a pity to damage yours."
  • chriskemptonchriskempton Posts: 1,245
    Roger Hammond at junior level - well, he was a junior, I was a senior. Nonetheless, he kicked my ar*e.

    Chris Boardman at Hemel Hempstead crit. He kicked my ar*e.

    The Raleigh Banana squad in about 1987. They all kicked my ar*e.

    Rode on Sean Kelly's wheel for a bit at Kellogg's Tour Of Britain finale, Westminster. He would have kicked my ar*e, but he was just warming down after the finish.
  • LangerDanLangerDan Posts: 6,132
    Sean Kelly, Eddy Merckx, Laurent Fignon, Bernard Hinault, Roger De Vlaeminck, Claude Criquielion, Stephen Roche, Martin Earley, Acacio Da Silva and Paul Kimmage - and that was in just one afternoon (Kellys retirement "race" in 1994 - the safest race I've ever been in - the bunch was so large (>1200) there wasn't any room to fall)

    Haven't ridder with any of the current crop of pros, though I do occasionally ride with some current internationals - even they are scarily fit.

    Heard a story about Kelly riding a charity event in South Africa, not long after he retired. A rider I know was powering up a long climb, well pleased with his fitness, when he heard those dulcet Waterford tones "Commin' threw" as Kelly rode past him pushing, not one, but two female riders up the hill.
    'This week I 'ave been mostly been climbing like Basso - Shirley Basso.'
  • John C.John C. Posts: 2,113
    I'll let you know in a fortnight, I should be cycling with these guys http://www.colombachemoclassic.org.uk/entrants.php
    some of the names might be familiar. I expect to be in the same vacinity as they are for all of 10 seconds.One thig I did notice was that we are riding the caurse the easy way round ie. down Park Rash
    http://www.ripon-loiterers.org.uk/

    Fail to prepare, prepare to fail
    Hills are just a matter of pace
  • I've ridden with ex-pro and coach Dave Lloyd on several occasions during the last 3-4 years at his camps in Spain (www.traininspain.net) and he is still in amazing shape. He turned 60 this year and won his age category at La Marmotte in a record time. Up and coming 20 year olds still have a problem keeping up with him on the hills.

    I've also done some riding with Alexander Kolobnev on his "easy days" during the off season - absolutely amazing how strong he is and a really decent guy too.
  • About 4 years ago a few of us went to Majorca for a weeks winter training. At the time I was a decent 2nd cat and the guys I was with were recreational riders, anyhoo, in the distance we saw a T-Mobile car with a rider turning onto our road so I set off in pursuit.

    10 minutes of hammering it at 22-25mph later, I finally hauled my way up to Jan Ullrich's wheel absolutely cooked. He was spinning a 39x14 and not even breaking sweat for 20mph. This was winter Jan too.

    I beat Jan Janssen on the Marmotte too, but he was about 60 at the time.
    "In many ways, my story was that of a raging, Christ-like figure who hauled himself off the cross, looked up at the Romans with blood in his eyes and said 'My turn, sock cookers'"

    @gietvangent
  • ProssPross Posts: 25,424
    Stephen Roche was guest speaker at our club dinner in about 97 and went out on a club run with us. Even with his excess baggage after being retired for a few years he managed to make it hard going on the hills.

    Julian Winn started in the same club as me (and I think is a member again now) before moving on to bigger and better things including riding the Giro and Olympics so rode with him for a good few years - his first ever road race win was in my first ever race I think!

    Not quite ridden with but a speeding bullet went past me once when I was out who turned out to be Magnus Backstedt. I didn't bother chasing him down :wink:

    I also "raced" against Boardman in the 25m TT in the IoM cycling week by which I mean we rode over the same course on the same day, there were a few riders separating us on the result sheet :lol:
  • JimmyKJimmyK Posts: 712
    I beat Jan Janssen on the Marmotte too, but he was about 60 at the time.


    un-intentionally one of the funniest one liners ive read here at radar.

    Jimmy
  • JimmyK wrote:
    I beat Jan Janssen on the Marmotte too, but he was about 60 at the time.


    un-intentionally one of the funniest one liners ive read here at radar.

    Jimmy

    How so?

    I'm not delusional enough to think I have a tenth of the class of Janssen in his pomp. I just thought in the spirit of the thread it was an amusing anecdote.
    "In many ways, my story was that of a raging, Christ-like figure who hauled himself off the cross, looked up at the Romans with blood in his eyes and said 'My turn, sock cookers'"

    @gietvangent
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