Spring Cycle 2010 In Pictures

More than a few occasional cyclists will be nursing saddle sores and stiff legs after completing yesterday’s Spring Cycle. Judging by the digits on the issued rider numbers well over 10,000 people (on everything from top end racers and blinged out fixies to recumbents and rusty old supermarket bikes) took part, riding either the 50km route from North Sydney, or the 35km Cooks River route, finishing at Sydney Olympic Park.

Getting up stupidly early, we saw the competitive early starters zooming along as we headed in the opposite direction to get to the start. Trains groaned with the unusual number of bikes on the early morning service, leading to an end-of-escalator pile up as we were all disgorged at North Sydney. Departing in the ‘family and recreation’ group proved more perilous than the name suggests: having a lot of unpractised riders and swerving kids in one place is a recipe for disaster, and unsurprisingly we witnessed a large-ish pile up as one fall led to others, and a few people by the side of the route recovering after a tumble. Nevertheless, the event went well and everyone enjoyed the rare opportunity to ride across the ‘other’ side of the Harbour Bridge, and my favourite moment, going across the Glebe Island Bridge.

As the day wore on and the heat intensified, the rest stops were more and more crowded with exhausted bodies, and the sense of relief was palpable when Stadium Australia (or whatever it’s called now) hove into view. Unfortunately for those with tiring legs, there was at least another 10kms of looping around Olympic Park before the finish line. Thanks to Bicycle NSW, and all the volunteers for making the event such a great day! And congrats to all the youngsters who slogged through the route to finish and embarrass plenty of the adults!

If you’re considering doing it next year, here are some tips:
• Sunglasses and sunscreen. Do NOT forget them like I did…
• If you want to go fast, get in the early start group rather than mowing down kids later in the day.
• Take care on the ride – it’s not a peloton of trained professionals, and you never know when the person in front will slow suddenly or a kid will swerve in front from nowhere.
• Be courteous getting too and from the event – Sydney’s trains and ferries aren’t used to carrying that many bikes at once.
• Don’t stop when you get off an escalator!

Have you got any tips (or gripes) when riding in big events like this?

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