Ticket to Ryde

11th May 2008

An early start for our ticket to Ryde run was not going to be a problem, the sky was blue and the sun was doing its job of making it feel like a mid summers day, for the second official C&F run of the year. It is quite unbelievable that the first run was cancelled due to snow and only four week later we were bathed in glorious sunshine which ensured a good turn out of 48 bikes and riders for the run.

Isle of Wight

The safety brief and welcome to our new riders was given and we were off on the first stage of our ride to Portsmouth using as little of the A3 as possible. The initial plod out to Tolworth and down to Leatherhead was to be expected however once we were clear of the urban areas things started to look better.

A smooth ride to Beare Green and then on to some of the finest biking roads in the South, which run out through Ockley and on to the much favoured A272. The sun was now fully up and the temperature was starting to rise and warm up the tarmac, what more could you ask for than having the joy of riding the A272 form Billingshurst to Rogate.

Turning off at Rogate was a challenge and noted within the safety briefing, the task was to take a blind left hand turn on a left hand sweeping bend behind the church which was always going to be a problem even with the infamous Mr Andrew Papas marking the junction for all he is worth, we still had a number of riders overshoot it and have to turn around.

Up on to the South Downs via Uppark Manor and down through some very smooth and winding roads towards Emsworth where we took our first comfort brake and refuelling opportunity after an excellent 89 mile ride.

This was the point where the 12 riders who were not continuing on to the Island departed leaving 36 bikes to head off through Portsmouth to the Wightlink ferry for our short hop and well earned cup of tea whilst travelling across to Fishbourne on the Isle of Wight.

All riders were ready for the next stage to Newport and then out of the town on to the twisty and undulating road across the central part of the island to Chale on the South coast. The coast road on the south side of the island follows the hills and contours of the land through the towns of Ventnor and Shanklin ending up at our destination of Ryde.

Being such a wonderful day the entire population of the island decided to park along the sea front therefore a hastily arranged parking and termination point for the ride had to be arranged which appeared to work well.

Thanks go to Les Channing and the Richard ‘Capt’n’ Beake for last man duties and to Andy for roving marshal on the day where we rode a total of 135 miles in hot dry and sunny conditions to our destination where all riders seemed to be content. As they say on a well known TV programme “It doesn’t get better than this”.

David O’Flaherty (aka DOF) - C&F Road Captain