A quick thirty- mile Good Friday blast with Mr Burls to Frinton On Sea was the ideal opportunity to play with his geared Russian Ti ballistic missile I had been quite shamelessly lusting after. Justin had dusted off his equally fetching Campag equipped steel speed wagon built for his own pleasure some seven years previously. Interestingly, like all good mistresses she'd been hiding beneath the bed!
The road surfaces surrounding Tendering are really hard going-rather like churning through treacle and in keeping with our previous outing; the first fifteen miles were spent riding into a relentless headwind. Needless to say, despite the humid, yet slightly overcast conditions the seaside town was heaving as we snaked through lines of stationary traffic.
With it comes the lack of driver courtesy, either swinging across our path sans indicating, or simply passing close enough to caress my intestines!
The High St (characterised that afternoon by harassed families and boom boys) saw us call in at a bike shop to perform a bike swap. Whisper it but I felt more comfortable aboard his personal mount- something in keeping with a shorter stem, marginally more upright positioning and narrower saddle but more of this another time
The return leg of our journey was far more forgiving and conversation alternated between bespoke bikes and buying derv cars- my Ka has a good couple of year’s life yet but given my mileage, I think it will be a mid-sized derv Estate next time. Further roadside temptation came in the form of an old BSA motorcycle-asking price£600 but we managed to curb such urges and continue a cadence of around 85-probably higher on Justin's part. I'd blame Mila's delicious bowl of Russian chocolates, only a lack of oomph must never be attributed to kind and hospitable hosts!
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)