One of the inspirations for starting Road Rags was seeing the opportunity to provide better clothing for female cyclists. How did we do this? Read on to...Read More
A truly great weekend was had by all at Eroica Britannia 2017. A new venue gave much more space for the numerous stages, exhibitions, stall holders, bike jumble, eateries, bars and funfair. There was something for everyone and great weather for all!
Road Rags were happily positioned in the middle of it all. A great spot to meet old friends and make plenty new! We had a busy Friday and Saturday, a restful Sunday morning whilst the riders were out on their chosen routes and then another busy session into the evening close on Sunday before a gentle beer in the shade to talk over the weekend.
The entertainment on the big stage varied throughout each day with school choirs, brass bands, bit of Northern Soul, Norman Jay MBE holding court on Friday night and ABC got everyone dancing on Saturday. If that wasn't enough a top unexpected nugget for us was the cycling themed 'sing-a-long' in The Britannia Arms Tavern after ABC. The tent was packed with a bouncing crowd giving it their tuneful all!!
Roaming entertainers were a continual delight. The Hendrick's Gin Bar was a personal favourite with their Perilous Laboratory. Though we missed the Friday night ride out to The Royal Oak Pub though heard later it was great fun and an eventful return for a few! One for next year...
Hot it most certainly was and Buxton provided free natural mineral water to anyone who asked throughout the entire weekend @naturallypumpedup We made many a trip during the belting heat and cannot thank them enough for their generosity. They were right next to some of the big brands. Maserati who organised a Q&A with David Millar and Ned Boulting had some of their four wheeled machines of beauty on show. Nearby Pinarello and Bianchi were showing some of the best Italian two wheeled offerings money can buy.
Saturday in The Parade Ring there was some serious and less serious judging. The bike categories came with serious scrutiny from Luciano Berruti and the team. He was also out judging the two competitions that Road Rags sponsored 'Best Dressed Festival Gal' and 'Best Dressed Festival Guy' ably assisted by Patrick Grant. There were plenty more shows to see, Best Cake, Best Dressed Dog and Best Brew to name a few. Dissappointed to see that the two gents that turned out in full female finery under the banner'Two Old Scrubbers' didn't make the final of the Gal competition but they raised plenty of cash for charity and truly entertained the crowds on their circuits of the parade ground. Great work for a great cause! We were happy to award our Clerkenwell and Shoreditch super fine merino tops to our lady and our gent winners on the Sunday after the finals were held on the main stage.
Speaking of Sunday. After too many White Russians at Jimmy's Iced Coffee stand on Saturday night when we joined the #TheRideClub accordingly, we had the main event. Riders were heading out from 6.00a.m. for the 100 miler. 4500 riders in total, all on pre-1987 bikes, adorned in style, with 25, 55 and 100 miles to choose from. The Derbyshire countryside was glorious and all routes provided challenges with great traditional feed stops along the way. It gave us a chance to have a better look around the show and visit our friends at Best of Britannia BOB who have us as one of their Top Picks among the collection of Made in Britain goods. The vintage jumble had me parting with a few British pounds as I sourced parts for the next vintage rebuild.
It wasn't long before riders started to return. Chris Boardman was the first over the line according to the tannoy. The commentator entertained throughout the afternoon as he 'encouraged' everyone over the line. Must have been great for those who came in under the red, white and blue bunting as a Battle of Britain, RAF Hurricane swooped over and around us with a pre-planned display. Brass bands playing on the main stage. The heat was punishing for those on the road that day and 'Chapeau' to you all!
A great event has just got better and we enjoyed every minute. The camera was clicking throughout so there are some photos attached of riders and rejoicers. Hope you find one of yourselves or a pal! See you all next year!
@eroicabritannia @hendricksgin @maseratigb @bianchiofficial @pinarello_com
THE ENTERTAINMENT NEVER STOPPED!
Road Rags have been involved with Ride of the Lions since its inception. Their motto, 'The spirit of rugby on a bike', is a neat description.
They have raised a great deal of money for 'Walking with the Wounded' and covered some miles in the process. John O'Groats to Lands End was the starter three years ago and this year the even greater task of Big Ben to Gibraltar gets under way on May 21st. Named 'The Clock to the Rock' riders from as far away as New Zealand are coming to ride with past British Lions through England, France and Spain.
Two of our team have been helping in the planning and organisation and are now well into training for the event. The weather has been pretty poor these last few months but a Smithfield and soft shell jacket has seen us through most of our training with an added base layer for those really cold days earlier in the year.
The outlook seems fine and dry for the week ahead so I will be slipping my Hoxton over my baselayer and heading into the hills. The days in the Pyrenees will call for a lot of climbing so best get ssome miles in those legs.
We will keep you posted on our travels and share photos of our experiences on the way....