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the trials of time

December 12th, 2009

In other words, what on earth happens to our brains? what hit me last night that, although I can remember the exact times I did in my first 3 time trials, I cannot for the life of me remember what bike I was riding when I rode them, nor can I remember the bike I had when I was taking a break from touring (rock’n'roll) and working as a bike mechanic at Day’s Cycles (Winchmore Hill, North London) in 1990 and 1991. I really enjoyed that time, learned so much, fed the cycling hunger. But when there was a chance to go on tour with The Pixies…well, you tell me what you’d do…

I recall that my first ‘proper’ bike was a Christmas present from mum and dad when I was 11. I’d only just learned to ride the year before (inspired by the previously mentioned godfather, Fred Goatcher). It was a white 21″ Sun, heavier than you could imagine, and I went everywhere on it. The next bike I remember after that was a real favorite – a lilac 23″ Pearson, 531. The color was great and i often could be seen adding orange Benotto (plastic) bar tape to it. But there were other bikes before that – what the hell were they???

Ah yes. My first ever time trial, a local 10 on a course near Hampton Court, yielded the highly (choose your adjective) time of 37:41. Raced in a t-shirt and trainers. I think I was 12. I know I was hooked. Next was a 33:02, then a 31:13. I’d end up taking almost 10 minutes off that time over the years.

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