Group Cycles

Below you'll find reports and updates from the various organised group cycles that take place weekly.  Thanks to all group leaders and other contributors for your ongoing input and commitment.

Follow the links below to older group cycle reports...

 Group A    Group B    Group C    Group D

Great Weather & Great Leaders Contribute to Great Club Spins

posted 7 Aug 2018, 14:29 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 7 Aug 2018, 14:31 ]

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun. 5th August 2018)   
The Wednesday evening spins have been a great success so far this summer with the lovely warm weather adding a continental feel to this mid-week session. On occasion it was too warm to complete the spin without an extra “hydration” stop which brought a great social aspect to the ride and resulted in many new members getting to know the more established crew. These spins will continue for as long as daylight hours permit safe cycling so keep an eye on notes and emails for notification of changes in the coming weeks.

The Sunday morning spins continue to be very well attended as always and as with the midweek sessions, the great weather has made them so much more enjoyable. Last weekend the route took the majority of riders westwards to Athlone via Ballymore and home via Moate, Kilbeggan and Tyrellspass. 

Thanks to all group leaders who are doing an excellent job marshalling the troops all summer. Best wishes to David Lally who was unlucky recently and came out the wrong end of a bad fall so hopefully it won’t be too long before he is back on his bike.

The SatThe Saturday Morning crew enjoying a coffee break in Kinnegad last weekendThe Saturday Morning crew enjoying a coffee break in Kinnegad last weekend

Sunday and Wednesday Spins

posted 10 Jul 2018, 01:35 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 10 Jul 2018, 01:35 ]

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun 8th July 2018)   
The weekly spins continue to be blessed with this amazing weather which is just perfect for cycling. Who needs Mallorca?!

Among the many groups to take to the roads on Sunday were two A groups, one led led by Mark Monaghan. It was a really good spin  on a lovely route incorporating Horseleap, Moate, Clara Tullamore and home via Daingean, Croghan Hill and Tyrrellspass. 

Group Leaders have asked that members turn up on time for these spins with Sunday’s departure time scheduled for 9am and Wednesday’s for 6.30pm. Please continue to assist Group Leaders on the road and obey all requests regarding routes, riding positions and “coffee-stop” locations. Most of all, enjoy the sunshine while it lasts and get plenty of miles in.

A Group Coffee Stop in Tullamore on Sunday's Spin
A Group Coffee Stop in Tullamore on Sunday's Spin.

A Club For All Ages

posted 25 Jun 2018, 08:01 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 28 Jun 2018, 04:22 ]

"By Shay O'Toole - Sun. 24th June 2018)   
Over the last few years the weekly notes section has reported on a variety of activities and events promoted by Lakeside Wheelers. Examples of this include racing, leisure cycling, mountain biking, cyclocross, youths, juniors and the Sprocket Rocket initiative which was a very popular beginners programme organised by club members for several years.

Whilst all of these are vital aspects of the club and are a significant part of what makes Lakeside Wheelers one of the best cycling clubs in Ireland, there is another very unique side to the club. This involves about 15 members who meet at least three times a week for what is mostly a very leisurely cycle.
What makes this group of very experienced cyclists unique is the fact that they are all either retired or semi-retired and range in age from mid 60’s to early 80’s, yes, you read it correctly, early 80’s!!! However, do not underestimate these guys who would probably put most of the younger Wheelers to shame when it comes to kilometres cycled annually.

Last weekend the PRO joined this select group of riders for the Sunday spin, a chat and of course, the obligatory coffee stop. So, on a beautiful sunny morning the lads gathered with all of the other Wheelers and departed the clubhouse for their normal 80km spin. Within the club these lads are affectionately known as the “older guys” or in some cases the “Jimmy” group which is a reference to the man who is synonymous with the annual Mallorca trip which will be discussed later.  However, the lads in question have their own pet name and refer to themselves as the “Mobile Men’s Shed”.

Thankfully Lakeside Wheelers is not ageist and this is reflected in the fact that this very senior cohort of members are often the first to respond when the club calls out for volunteers for any of the events which it organises. This was the case only last week when the lads turned out in force to help marshal the National Criterium race staged in Mullingar town centre and their assistance is always much appreciated by the event organisers.

Now, back to the Mallorca connection! About 15 years ago one of the pivotal members of the group, Jimmy Marshall, organised a trip to Porto Pollenca in the northern part of this cycling paradise and to this day he has returned each year with a group for a week’s cycling in May. Not only do the lads return to Mallorca, but they return to the same hotel and bike rental shop where they started off all those years ago. As a result of this connection many other members of Lakeside Wheelers have benefited from reduced rates in both of these places thanks to the network established by the original “Jimmy” group.

John and Ollie enjoying a relaxed coffee stop in Santa Margalida, Mallorca recently.
John and Ollie enjoying a relaxed coffee stop in Santa Margalida, Mallorca recently.

However, not all of their cycling is in the Med as this energetic gang can be found attending many of the sportives around Ireland during the summer. They are due to head south in the coming weeks to participate in the 180km Ring of Kerry cycle for which they will be more than ready. This is due to their regular weekly spins up and down the Old Rail Trail and along the roads of Westmeath no matter what the weather conditions. Last Sunday’s spin took the group to Tullamore via Tyrellspass and Rahugh then back home via Kilbeggan, Rahinmore and Dalystown. It was an extremely enjoyable cycle at a pace that was in no way slow as they kept a very respectable average speed of 24KpH. Thanks to you all for the company and here’s wishing the Mullingar Mobile Men’s Shed many more years of safe and happy cycling.

PS: It was fantastic to see every one of the lads kitted out in their Lakeside Wheelers club gear on the day as it looks great in a group and is also very visible for motorists to see them on the road. 

Well done to you all.

Liam Kenny, Frank Darcy, Ollie Gallagher, Mick Donoghue, Jimmy Marshall, John Culligan, Joe Brady and Sean Magee. The Lakeside Wheelers Seniors group.
Liam Kenny, Frank Darcy, Ollie Gallagher, Mick Donoghue, Jimmy Marshall, John Culligan, Joe Brady and Sean Magee. The Lakeside Wheelers Seniors group.

Group A - Sunday Spin

posted 25 Jun 2018, 07:42 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 25 Jun 2018, 07:54 ]

(By Mark Monaghan - Sun. 24th June 2018)   
Arriving at Lakeside Wheelers HQ last Sunday morning the members were greeted with glorious sunshine and a large contingent of eager cyclists. 

With the predetermined route set out the day, it wasn't long before everyone quickly got into their groups and hit the roads to work on the tan lines!

With the sun and little or no wind for company, the large groups quickly made headway to Collinstown, Castlepollard, Coole and on to Edgeworthstown for a hard earned coffee. From there the road home took the more scenic route via Carrickboy, Ballymahon and Skeagh Hill. Another 100km in the legs with a great group of Wheelers.

Group A Sunday Spin 24th June 2018

One of the many groups of Wheelers taking a break from their efforts on Sunday.
One of the many groups of Wheelers taking a break from their efforts on Sunday.

Tough 100k Spin for Sunday Groups

posted 12 Jun 2018, 14:48 by Kevin Monaghan

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun. 10th June 2018)   
It was a case of riding roads less travelled last Sunday as most groups headed towards North Longford and Cavan for a hilly spin. From the clubhouse the groups cycled to Multy, Coole, Abbeylara, Mount Nugent, Oldcastle, Collinstown and home via Crookedwood. 

This proved to be a tough 100km spin but with some new roads and hills it was a very enjoyable day in the saddle. Thanks to all group leaders for marshalling the spin and well done to all who took part.

You can follow the route taken by the groups HERE .

A group of Wheelers rest after climbing Lough Crew last Sunday.

Group Cycles & Sportive Update

posted 4 Jun 2018, 10:15 by Kevin Monaghan   [ updated 4 Jun 2018, 13:47 ]

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun. 3rd June 2018)   
The good weather of late has guaranteed big crowds for all of the club spins. Last Sunday morning was a perfect example with four separate groups departing the clubhouse at 9am. The main route of the day was Killucan, Ballivor, Summerhill, Enfield and then straight home along the N4. While mostly flat in nature this route resulted in high speeds and everyone enjoyed the day out.  Check their World Bike Day cycle here .

The Wednesday evening 6.30pm spin continues to be very successful. This is a mixed ability spin as most lads and lassies will have raced at the weekend or at the MiL so, the midweek ride is a little more leisurely. If you have not yet tried it, this is a great way to get more mileage in and improve fitness levels for sportives or racing.  

Lakeside Wheelers members have been very active on the Sportive scene in recent weeks. A large group travelled to the Tour of Connemara where they enjoyed a good spin, lovely scenery and fabulous weather. Further south there was also another group on the Ring of Beara cycle which, on a good day must be one of the most scenic cycles in the country.

Tour of the Lakes
Members are reminded that our own Tour of the Lakes sportive will be held on Sunday June 17th so keep this date free.

Carmel Lally, and friend after the Tour of Connemara.
Carmel Lally, and friend after the Tour of Connemara.

Sun Makes a Welcome Return for Weekend Spins

posted 30 Apr 2018, 07:28 by Kevin Monaghan

With the sun making a rare appearance last Sunday a large number of members turned up for the weekly spin. The route for the day had a “lumpy” start via Crookedwood and Collinstown before the riders got some relief through Delvin, Athboy and Trim and then returned home via Ballivor and Killucan. As usual all members are reminded to wear club kit on the Sunday spins where possible.  

The Wednesday evening spins are now in full flow with good numbers turning up each week. These midweek cycles are an excellent way to improve both your endurance and fitness as they are an invaluable top up to the Sunday cycle. Routes are varied and duration is usually two to three hours. The midweek cycle is not leader led but there is always someone on hand to choose a route and lead the way so if you have not yet joined the summer spins now is your chance. 

Some Lakeside Wheelers members enjoying the April sunshine last weekend.
Some Lakeside Wheelers members enjoying the April sunshine last weekend.

Mother's Day Sunday Spin

posted 11 Mar 2018, 14:14 by Kevin Monaghan

With Sunday being Mother’s Day, the route which was put out in advance on Garmin was very adventurous as most lads were under pressure to be home to “cook” the dinner for the all important ladies of the day. 

The plan was to head north for the hills around Oldcastle and Lough Crew which is a rolling road from start to finish. There was a good turnout on what was a slightly foggy/damp morning but all groups were happy to head in the same direction.

Taking the main road to Crookedwood and then veering off at Gartlandstown the legs were tested from the off and as the riders continued on to Oldcastle via Collinstown, Ankerland, Dromone and Lough Crew there was no let up. The approach to the climb of Lough Crew was very delicate as most lads (and lassies) were unsure of how their winter training was going to hold up. With everybody over the top of this short but steep ascent it was full speed ahead to the coffee stop in the village. 

The road home was no less painful with the wind doing a U-Turn and giving up no assistance. After a couple of stops for puncture repairs the group eventually got going in a steady pace which kept everybody honest until the double “kicker” at Crookedwood. From here to base it was every man for himself and all arrived back in time to get home for “the Dinner”.

A group of happy Wheelers atop Lough Crew last Sunday.
A group of happy Wheelers atop Lough Crew last Sunday.

Weekend Spins Go Ahead Despite Low Temperatures

posted 26 Feb 2018, 14:28 by Kevin Monaghan

(By Shay O'Toole - Sun 25th February 2018)   
Despite the extremely cold conditions last Sunday was a beautiful sunny morning and perfect for a good long spin. The big crowd gathered at the clubhouse at 9am clearly showed the Wheelers are “mad for road” this year and determined to not let the weather interfere with the cycling.

The A-Group headed for Edenderry via Tyrrellspass, Croughn Hill and Daingean. Fitness levels are decent enough for this time of year and this was evident by the lively pace set during the first half of the spin. Arriving at Edenderry everybody was ready for a hot coffee and a snack but with the ever-present chill it wasn’t long before the group was back on the road. 

A slight change to the itinerary saw the riders lengthen the spin by diverting to Enfield where it was hoped the easterly wind would blow us home. Unfortunately the puncture fairy struck a couple of times which led to a somewhat disjointed group but nevertheless all riders had a good 110kms in the legs on arrival back to base which is good going for February.

Beginners Group Completes its Six Week Programme

posted 26 Feb 2018, 14:05 by Kevin Monaghan

(By Bob O'Ceallaigh - Sat. 24th February 2017)   
Saturday 24th February was the last day of the six-week Lakeside Wheelers Beginners Induction Course. The beginners were accompanied by a number of D-Group cyclists returning from a winter of hibernation. Their return may have been somewhat premature given that Saturday, albeit sunny, was absolutely freezing! Anyway, the group of beginners who by now are starting to look like cyclists and the D Group returnees cycled out to Castletown Geoghegan Station on the Old Rail Trail and then on to Castletown Geoghegan village. This point was reached faster than in previous weeks as the progress of the beginners was very apparent. A very enjoyable spin was had by all as long as one ignored the cold pains in one’s fingers, thumbs and toes.

A very welcome coffee-stop with scones, brown bread and even sausages was had in Tyrrellspass Castle before the group turned for home. On arriving back to Mullingar the beginners had travelled 42km, an excellent achievement considering their first spin only six weeks previously had amounted to a mere 16km.
This progress in speed and distance has been accompanied by a considerable amount of learning in key areas of road safety and cycling etiquette; e.g. group cycling, road hazards, signalling, bike maintenance, clothing, safety equipment and fitness.

From now on this new group will be greeted warmly by the D-Group on the weekly spin which leaves the clubhouse at the old Army Barracks at 9.00am every Saturday morning. The Saturday morning group generally cycles about 55/65 km at this time of the year and will divide into two sub-groups to bring on the strength, endurance and speed of the beginners over the coming months. All things going well, by summertime the new beginners should be well able to contribute on the weekly spins and even attempt some sportives around the country.

A review of the Beginners Induction Programme will also shortly take place to consider how it can be improved and meet the needs of the beginner cyclist. Following that, Lakeside Wheelers members will once again volunteer their services to roll out another Beginner’s Induction Programme later in the year.  
Special thanks to all the beginners for the enthusiasm, good will and willingness to learn. Hopefully we will see you all out and about regularly from now on.

 Thanks also to Tom Carolan, Steve Franzoni, Gerry Wallace, Paul Daly, Janice O’Brien and Roibeard O Ceallaigh whose efforts helped make this Induction Programme a huge success and to the D-Group members who cycled with the beginners and provided great encouragement and advice over the last six weeks. More importantly, they showed how cycling can be a fun way of getting fit and meeting new friends.

Relaxing during the coffee stop on Saturday's Begeiiner's Group Spin
Relaxing in the Castle during the coffee stop on Saturday's Begeiiner's Group Spin

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