Almost the end of January!!!!

Well a wheely good evening to you all and would you believe here we are almost at the end of January, crazy how time flies. This 2020 year is shaping up to be a great year on the cycling front with some great trips, sportives and events lined up. Some booked and some to be booked very soon the plan is they will encompass Belgium, Pyrenees, Mallorca, Yorkshire, South Downs Way, Epic charity ride across Europe and many more.

The first one coming up is a new venture for me in that I am doing my first gravel ride sportive. In my last post I mentioned about the trip down to the New Forest well in 5 weeks time I am taking part in a dedicated 80km gravel sportive. It should be great fun and there are a few of us from the club doing this. What I looking forward to the most is doing this on mass with many other similar riders. To be out on the trails and bridleways with other gravel heads will be great fun and socially great. I am still trying to decide on a tyre choice for this but the Gravel King 37 will I think be the one I use.

Above I have mentioned my charity ride well I will be launching this very soon, just trying to finalise the route. What I can say is it will be about 1500 km’s in distance over about 7 days all ridden solo unsupported. I am going to be raising money for a local charity and the trip will be taking place at the end of May during half term week. As said this will all be revealed very soon.

Until then happy riding and stay safe out on the bikes everyone.

Gravel Riding….

A wheely good day and a Happy New Year to you all. 2020 has started with a bang and already some great riding been done in the world of Paul Ashman Cycling. As the title says gravel biking and bike packing is firmly on the agenda for this year in one guise or another.

Last week myself and Matt went down for a day in the New Forest exploring the gravel trails this part of the country has to offer and wow it really is spectacular. Parking up in Brockenhurst we used a route someone else had planned from the UK gravel bike club and with this loaded onto the Garmin off we set. What became evident from the the word go is the miles upon miles of hard packed rolling gravel trails in the New Forest. Sweeping through the trees we saw many types of wildlife and some of the most stunning views and scenery. With a lunch stop at a cracking cafe called the Potting Shed in Hyde we headed back south through the forest. This was by far the highlight of the day as the afternoon gave us sweeping downhills and a tailwind that made for some fast flowing riding. I would recommend this area to anyone to go try out and have an adventure on the bikes as it will not be the last time I go down there riding. Here are a few photos of the day and if anyone would like to see the route or require more info please contact me.

This brings me onto bikepacking. More on this in a later post but to say i have recently got the full complement of Rapha bike packing bags and I am super happy with them on the bike giving me that set up for long distance endurance type rides and events. The idea of packing up the bike and setting off where the bike takes you is exciting and gives a great feeling of the unknown adventure ahead. As said future posts will delve into this world a lot more.

For now stay safe and happy riding. Laters!!!

Review of the year……2019

Well here we are approaching the last 24 hours of this year and a wheely good evening to you all. The last few months have been extremely busy and I apologise for the lack of blog and website updates. I intend to rectify this in the new year and will aim to post out a weekly update blog.

This last year has seen a wealth of cycling activities happen and I am going to list some of the highlights. Many of you will know of these and if i do miss something out no offence meant at all. So here we go with (in no particular order) my 2019 highlights:

  • The Paris Roubaix challenge with Tom. A gruelling sportive taking in all the 29 cobbled sectors of the famous race.  It was brutal but equally one of the most fun events I have taken part in with that famous velodrome finish
  • Going to watch many pro races including Tour of Britain, Tour of Yorkshire, Paris Roubaix, Tour of Flanders, Omloop and Kuurne Brussels Kuurne to name a few
  • LEJOG with kim, Andy and Jason. 1500 km’s over ten days raising much money for charity. This is one of those bucket list tick offs that had to be done and was a fabulous experience out riding the length of the UK
  • My epic solo ride from Newcastle to Swindon non stop 482 km’s in just shy of 24 hours. A mental ride with some mega highs and some dark lows but a great challenge netherless
  • Supporting my good friend Matt on his completion of Everesting challenge in the Summer. No mean feat and chapeau to that man
  • The growth of the business and seeing many more children riding is a huge buzz and something myself and the team strive to increase weekly

Finally I have to mention the crash and this was a low point for sure. 5 weeks off the bikes nursing broken ribs, fractured  wrist and a haemetoma. The only plus was getting to see some of the tour on TV while off recovering.

So onto 2020 and there is plenty lined up including a watch this space another huge solo challenge. All it leaves me to say is a very Happy New Year, thanks for all support in 2019 and as they say see you on the otherside.

LATERS!!!!!!! Paul

LEJOG Days 7 to 10 and it’s completed!!!

Well a wheely good morning to you all from a van trundling back home from John O Groats. In about 14/15 hours we will be back in Swindon having completed our epic journey and what a trip it has been.

The last 4 days saw us take on the majority of Scotland and the beautiful scenery it has to offer. The road from Gretna up to Lockerbie was arrow straight and gave us a chance to hone our TT skills. Then Day 9 was a fabulous trip along the canal path from Fort William to Fort Augustus where we joined the minor road over our toughest climb of the trip. Average of 10% for over 5 km’s that was just brutal.

Finally we got to Day 10 and that first morning when we left Lands End seemed a lifetime away. The last day was heavy rain and winds for most of the day and posed a challenge in its own right but gradually that finish line was in sight and the realisation kicked in.

We had completed the 1435 km’s from one end of the UK to the other in 10 days and had a scream all the way. It was a lifelong experience and in turn raised lots of money for two great charities. Thank you for all the support.

We kindly ask that if you are able to pledge, please choose one of the charities below that you wish to support or split it evenly between the two charities in the links below. One is the Swindon Downs group which is very close to me and my sister and the other The British Heart Foundation. Thank you so much all of you. X

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/paul-ashman2

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/paul-ashman3

LEJOG Days 5&6

Well a wheely good evening to you from Scotland, yes that’s right Scotland! The last two days have been spectacular with some stunning scenery, fast paced sections and a couple of tasty inclines. Yesterday we took in some of the cities of the North West on route to Kendal with the last 20km meandering through the lanes of the Lake District. Today we left to be greeted by the climb over Shap Fell which in itself isn’t too hard and the weather was stunning all day. The descent down the otherside was a corker touching 75kmh at times and then onto lunch stop in Carlisle. After this it was on into Scotland stopping for pics in Gretna Green and Lockerbie to pay out respects before reaching Moffat. Another great day and only four to go until we reach John O’Groats. Thank you so much for all the support and messages and donations.

We kindly ask that if you are able to pledge, please choose one of the charities below that you wish to support or split it evenly between the two charities in the links below. One is the Swindon Downs group which is very close to me and my sister and the other The British Heart Foundation. Thank you so much all of you. X

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/paul-ashman2

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/paul-ashman

LEJOG days 3 and 4

So wheely good evening from Runcorn and a double blog for you all, sorry they’re short but by the time we finish and shower, eat and prep bikes it’s sleep time. Yesterday was a great trip up from Weston with a flat first section and then via a diversion great lunch stop in Tintern. Onwards up through the Wye valley we got to Hereford for about 5:30. All in all a good day and we felt strong. The steak and.coder went down well.

Today was day 4 and a case of shut up legs all day. We a heavy legs but we’re in good fettle for he day ahead. Today’s route was an Ardennes classic type lumpy stretch that got us into Runcorn at about 5:30pm. So far nearly 600km covered and John O Groats awaits. All the support means so much to us all. So roll on tomorrow for the trip up to Kendal in the Lake District.

We kindly ask that if you are able to pledge, please choose one of the charities below that you wish to support or split it evenly between the two charities in the links below. One is the Swindon Downs group which is very close to me and my sister and the other The British Heart Foundation. Thank you so much all of you. X