As a special treat for ride TEN we decided to take the group across town to a secret location, one of the many private / public spaces now blighting London. Once there the aim being to capture as many good shots of people doing rad tricks as possible. To make this possible we enlisted the help of super nice guy and rad rider Alessandro and his fantastic camera. By the time the evening was through we hoped to hand out our three special spoke cards pictured below.
Arriving a little late at 7:30, Cycle PS was already busy with people waiting for the off. While Jan and James put bar tape on a new set of bars James had recently bought I attempted to mount our latest accessory a GOPRO to my bike. Fitted, watered and having said hello to a few new faces it was time to set off.
Leaving Cycle PS and heading down Kimpton Rd we turned right, this time heading away from our usual Burgess Park route towards Southampton Way. Once on there we turned left onto Commercial Way taking a sharp right before the bridge to bring us down onto a favourite car free pathway, Surrey Canal Path. Shooting down there with rock 'n' roll tunes blasting we soon arrived at Glengall Rd where we regrouped before continuing on to the next part of our route which involved quiet back streets running from Old Kent Rd to Rolls Rd and all the way down Mandella Way where we carefully negotiated an underpass to take us across Old Kent Rd again.
All accounted for and ready for the next section we crossed to Great Dover St turning right at Black Horse Ct to join Tabart St which took us all the way up past The Royal Oak to the Church named after Saint George The Martyr. Regrouping again we headed up Borough High St turning left onto Union St and then up Southwark Bridge Rd which Harvey, Alessandro, Jan and me smashed, each urging the other on.
Safely across the bridge we regrouped again at the start of Queen St ready to engage the tiny back streets of the city. First we cut left up Great St Thomas Apostle, then Garlick Hill and up Bow Lane to turn left into Bow Churchyard where we circled a few times before exiting through a tunnel which took us out and across Bread St, through One New Change and across Cheapside to arrive on the brilliantly names Gutter Lane.
At the end of Gutter lane we turned left and then right down Noble St where we stopped due to a puncture. With all hands on deck and tools out we had the puncture fixed swiftly allowing us to carry on towards our secret end point.
From Noble St we shot up and around The Museum of London turning left down Long Lane and into Smithfield market where Jan, one of our fastest riders popped a huge skid around the corner into Grand Avenue. Emerging onto Cowcross and down along Turnmill St we were quickly homing in on our destination.
From Tunrmill St we joined Farringdon Lane and then Ray St, taking a sharp right up Crawford Passage to join Coldbath Square. Regrouping we crossed Roseberry Avenue to head down Mount Pleasant then up Phoenix Place which quickly brought us to Ampton St then Sidmouth St and right down to towards Kings Cross on Argyle St.
Crossing Euston St we hammered up Pancras Rd left down Midland Rd and right to cross Brill Pl, Phoenix Rd to join Eversholt St. This took us up to Lidlington Pl to then join Hampstead Rd which we left to dive behind The Bartlett School of Architecture before rejoining and heading up Robert St and then Stanhope St where we stopped to regroup and plan.
Our secret destination being a private / public space we knew it wouldn't be long before we were moved on, so we needed to act fast and capture as many pictures in the space as possible before our time was up. With this in mind and with a light rain falling I made it clear how slippery the surfaces would be and sent in Alessandro our photographer with James to back him up.
Show time, with Jan following close behind me we headed in, first through the tunnel and out around the complex before heading back down and through the tunnel. Straight away Jan went down, misjudging quite how slippery the surfaces would be. Undeterred we took in a few laps of the area finishing with a last run through the tunnel before security descended asking us to vacate the area.
Pumped, a little tired and the big destination revealed, a few of the group decided to leave and head home, whilst the rest of us decided to take the ride back across the river to graffiti tunnel where we could conduct our skid and track stand contest and hand out spoke cards to our lucky winners. Traversing between Euston and Waterloo I rode largely with Harvey and Alex where the two of them broke out some mad whip skids, ducking and diving through the traffic as the rain continued to come down. Check out the video coming soon...
Arriving at the tunnel we set up the Minirig sound-system and began our "Skid Skills" comp. This was tightly contested with Harvey finally pulling a massive skid right up to the gated entrance to the tunnel. Next up was "Track Skills" our track standing competition which was another close call with Jan landing the win.
Competitions done and drinks flowing we concluded the night with a quick round of smack the can, took some photos of the bikes, and played with a banana before a whole cacophony of motorcyclists descended on the tunnel.
Spoke card prizes went to, Harvey - Skid Skills, Jan - Track Skills and Alessandro - Rad Skills.
Big thanks to Jan, Alessandro, James, Vroni and Jewksy for the photos and videos.