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  • 18/01/2020 17:34 | Anonymous member

    6 hardy riders turned up at Marden in frosty conditions - Del, Paul G, Ralph, Glenn, Ciaran and myself - and we were due to meet Steve and Rick en route to our planned stop in Otford. 

    A brief chat about watching out for black ice and taking it easy in the conditions followed before we set off. Unfortunately we only made it just past Hadlow before a section of said black ice took out 4 of us on Hamptons Road! 

    Luckily there was no serious damage to either bikes or riders, but we took the wise decision to turn around and have breakfast at the Weathered and Worn in Hadlow, before gingerley heading back to Marden.

    Looking at Strava later in the day showed that we weren't the only ones to have hit the deck!

    26 miles covered at 16.5 average and just 450ft of elevation.


  • 12/01/2020 12:56 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    VELO FORTE – 2020 GROUP RIDE STATISTICS 4/1/20 – 11/1/20

    Number of Group Rides

    Average Riders/Ride

    Total miles

    Average Miles/Ride

    Total Ascent

    Average Ascent/Ride

    Average Speed/Ride









  • 12/01/2020 12:32 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Eight in the group this week for my lead out to the Minstrel Cafe at Edenbridge.

    It was great to see Phill Crane back out with us again after a self imposed absence due to him not finding riding in the damper, darker, colder conditions of the latter months not particularly to his liking. Unfortunately his lay off had taken its toll on his fitness and he peeled off after ten miles or so at Hadlow when he realised he was not going to be able to sustain our pace with any degree of comfort. Hope to see you back and fit soon Phill.

    It's a nice trip out to Edenbridge. Good, flowing B roads without the severe muck and debris of the back roads, and not too much climbing. 

    No dramas, - save for a puncture to my front tyre which irritatingly only made itself known as we exited the cafe stop.

    All in all a good ride with the group staying together, save for the last mile or so, and maintaining a reasonably healthy pace throughout.

    8 riders, 60miles, 2077ft of climbing, 16.2mph average.

  • 04/01/2020 18:55 | Anonymous member

    I knew that I should not have eaten the whole packet of mince pies that Aunt Doris brought with her when she came to tea on Boxing day!

    The dreadfully dismal days of devouring cataclysmic calorific Christmas canapes took their toll as four unfit cyclists were ‘led’ by a very unfit leader from Marden on the route to Lenham via Chart Hill. 

    We made very slow progress on the route out, gasping for air as we made our choppy way through Leeds and Kingswood at a rate of only 13.9 miles per hour.

    We arrived at the café looking like we had just cycled up Everest, and all took the wise decision to steer clear of any junk food, which would have added to our woes. We had a puncture and that was repaired at the café stop. 


    The route back was relatively flat going to Egerton and Pluckley. Despite our distinct lack of pace and elegance, our speed increased heading back to Marden, so we achieved an overall average for the ride of 14.7 mph. The tortoise-like leader managed to sustain a puncture on the way back but persevered with it for a while on a soft tyre. We all stopped whilst it was repaired but the ‘leader’ ended way behind the rest of the group, having absorbed all his energy fighting the soft tyre and the burden of the mince pies. Legend has it, he crawled the last mile.

    Hopefully the group will manage to shake off the over-indulging of the Christmas period and return fitter next week, especially the leader!

    5 Riders. 47miles. 1847ft of climbing. 14.7mph average speed.

  • 08/09/2019 17:15 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    VELO FORTE – 2019 GROUP RIDE STATISTICS 5/1/19 – 5/10/19

    Number of Group Rides

    Average Riders/Ride

    Total miles

    Average Miles/Ride

    Total Ascent

    Average Ascent/Ride

    Average Speed/Ride










  • 07/09/2019 16:50 | Anonymous member

    Glenn & I were joined by Paul Brown & Dave King who opted to join Velo Forte this week as the rest of the Amici group were doing a Steel Baroudeur ride.

    We had a relatively undulating route up into the Downs, but also enjoyed some nice descents including the Knatts Valley & down into South Darenth.

    Nells Café was pretty busy, but the quick service means tables are released regularly so we were soon able to find a seat.

    Distance - 52 miles. Elevation - 3100ft. Av speed - 15.4mph

  • 31/08/2019 15:30 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    I had endeavoured to lead this ride some weeks ago but got as far as Hadlow when my rear tyre literally blew up!  So, I was keen to give it another go! 

    A lovely sunny day welcomed our departure from the car park at the back of the King & Queen pub in East Malling.  We were five riders and were very fortunate to have been joined by 'Hong Kong Fooey', possibly looking a little older and maybe a little less trim these days!

    The cafe stop was at the Pond Cafe in Otford.  As usual, the service was excellent.  

    Total elevation 831 m - Overall distance 81 kms - Average speed 26.9 km/hr

    No punctures!

  • 20/07/2019 15:00 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Saturday 20 July 2019

    The predicted storm arrived 12 hours earlier so by the time all the fair weather cyclists had decided the weather still wasn't fair enough, the remaining three of us set out from Marden Sports Club in light rain.  

    Running a stolen route from Big Chris, the ride out to Silcocks Farm Cafe was pleasant and uneventful, and upon arrival we were greeted by the biggest fish finger sandwich in the world!

    The return ride was excellent until after Liverton Hill where Big Chris's route seriously let us down, killing our average by turning into gravel and pot holes with additional hazards created by the previous night's storm.  

    Overall, an excellent day on an excellent route - now the section after Liverton has been tweaked!

    • Distance: 91.5 kms
    • Average: 25.9 kms/hr
    • Punctures: 1

    Glenn Roberts

  • 19/07/2019 21:08 | Anonymous member

    4 of us gathered at the Marden Sports club, marking a little territory in one of the car park spaces.

    Then, amidst a sizeable gathering of other riders, off we set - destination Whitstable.

    Passing through Staplehurst we shared some road with Amici who were off to Seasalter, although our routes differed soon after.

    We were then "treated" to a spattering of gravel sections that was a wee bit sketchy but thankfully we all got through unscathed.

    One of the significant climbs of the day took us up towards Charing before dropping down towards Faversham. Ah, Faversham! As we passed through traffic was already building due to other road closures which featured more significantly on the return leg.

    The flats from Faversham to Whitstable saw the pace pick up a little leading us to the Umbrella Cafe. Coffee, cold drinks and good food later off we set to venture home.

    Faversham this time was truly suffering with traffic and so we weaved our way through the jams before spending what seemed to be a long, deceptively gentle but drawn out climb back up towards Lenham.

    Once over the M20, the taps were gradually opened and we all picked up the pace as the Sports Club beckoned.

    A great steady ride was finished off with a welcome drink and wind-down at the Sports Club.

    4 riders

    0 punctures

    65 miles

    16.0mph average

  • 07/07/2019 17:29 | Anonymous member

    There were just Chris, Glenn & myself riding from Velo Forte this week, so we decided to join the Inters + ride down to Lympne.

    In hot & humid conditions it was a steady pace down to the Marsh, with riders maybe conscious of Lympne Hill, the only climb of the day, which came just before the Café stop. A short break at the Lympne Castle Bistro followed before the pace rapidly increased for the flat ride back to Marden.

    At the end of the ride we were able to enjoy a drink & to socialise with some of the other groups in our new ‘Home’ at the Marden Hockey Club.

    A great ride, fast pace & a good alternative group for when Velo Forte are short on numbers.

    63 miles, 1700ft of elevation & average speed of 18.1mph.


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