09 Mar 2017

Palmer Park


In the early twentieth century the racing men of the day rode fixed wheel bikes on the road and quite often with no brakes! When I joined my first club – the Middlesex Road Club in 1948 everyone rode on fixed wheel bikes with brakes and it wasn’t until 1953 that a few of us “experimented” with gears, but we were not convinced until several years later that that was the way to go. I know several of you have been down to Palmer Park track for some of the road bike training sessions, but have you ever considered having a go at track racing?

Reading Track League runs a series of meetings throughout the summer and these are quite competitive with the riders split into different leagues according to ability. However, you can’t just turn up and ride unless you are a “known” track rider, so to encourage more riders to try track racing, on Thursday nights from March to September a series of six week accreditation courses are run to equip novice track riders to compete in the league. There are a few track bikes that can be hired if you don’t have a fixed wheel bike and the cost is £5 a session. The sessions themselves at the moment cost £5.70 a time.

Track racing can be highly recommended to improve your speed and bike handling skills, and you will find the structured quality training sessions can be quite exhausting ( no pain no gain !). So why not give it a go? The first course is unfortunately full already but the next one should start on 4th May. If you’re seriously interested then contact me at r.poole@btinternet.com and indicate if you need to hire a bike.

DICK POOLE, Track Secretary and President


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