Velo Club Norwich
PUBLISHED: 16:01 09 August 2012 | UPDATED: 21:43 20 February 2013
Meet the members of Velo Club Norwich
On your bike!
Norfolk is perfect cycling country and the members of Velo Club Norwich make the most of it with races, time trials, social rides, specialist sessions and more.
Speeding through the countryside, enjoying fresh air, sunshine, healthy exercise and the company of like-minded friends the joys of cycling are reeling in more people than ever before.
More than 150 enthusiastic cyclists are members of Velo Club Norwich.
They ride against the clock, race and enjoy club rides, long distance rides and charity rides. Most are keen road cyclists but others ride off-road or tackle long-distance tours.
There are regular training rides and competition teams but the biggest weekly event is a Sunday club run, of around 50 miles from the city centre, with several sociable groups setting off at different paces to suit a good range of riders and all with time to stop for tea and cakes mid-way!
Velo Club was originally formed in 1976 as a cycle racing team. Its black and red colours are still common at the front of many races across East Anglia, and Olympic silver medallist and World Champion Emma Pooley rode with the club.
But the club also welcomes keen leisure riders, and members range in age from teenagers to cyclists in their 60s.
One of the current Velo Club teenagers is National Track Squad member Victoria Williamson.
Velo Club Norwich chairman, Steve Swift says cycling has become increasingly popular in recent years, and Norfolk is one of the best places in the country for cyclists.
"I think its because other people havent discovered Norfolk yet! The roads are quiet, and there are a lot of them, because its a rural area.
"I can go out and, if I choose to, I can go an hour-and-a-half without seeing traffic apart from crossing main roads. And there are lots of lovely villages to find. Theres nowhere else like Norfolk. Everyone thinks Norfolk is flat, but its not. If you go up to the north Norfolk coast there are plenty of hills to test your legs!"
Steve says the popular Sunday club rides cant use the tiniest roads, but members do choose quiet, scenic routes.
"And its a very sociable thing," adds Steve. "We dont go so fast that we cant have a chat too."
Lycra is not compulsory, although Steve admits most cyclists ride in their distinctive Velo Club kit.
Events through the year include regular training rides at average speeds ranging from around 16mph to 20mph or more.
Velo Club members also take part in the two-day Tour of Norfolk, time trials, road races and a wide range of summer evening rides.
Steve, a chartered engineer by day, comments: "Its always nicer riding in company than riding on your own, and you can learn from other people and share your experience."
For more information visit www.vcnorwich.co.uk