We offer a good number of organised rides of varying distances, difficulty and average speeds. We are a racing club, which means that we strive to improve our speed and endurance and, if you want, to compete in Time Trials and races. Each rider has different ambitions and we have a ride to cater for most, whether this is to lose weight or to complete ever-longer sportives. See the regular rides we offer listed below.
Will you be left behind? No – all rides stop at suitable points to let slower riders catch up unless it is agreed that the faster riders can go on.
For riders new to the club, we strongly recommend coming to the Saturday morning ‘Bacon Butty Run’, starting at Di Paulos cafe in Bexhill at 09:30 (for a coffee and a chat). This is the slowest and flattest ride we have – a great chance to meet other riders with different fitness levels and find out more about us.
Saturday 09:30 for 10:00 – Bacon Butty Run – the ‘BBR’ – all year around
Starting at Di Paulos cafe in Bexhill, on the corner opposite the De La Warr Pavilion. The ride is for all abilities, over 20 to 30 miles at an average speed 15mph (more or less, depending on the group). We usually stop for a ‘bacon butty’, cake or whatever at another cafe before returning home, such as Chilley Farm on the Langney Marshes.
Chris Parker sometimes organises a ‘BBR lite’ ride alongside the BBR. This has a slower pace and shorter route but will rendezvous with the regular BBR at the cafe. This is the best ride for total beginners.
Saturday 07:25 – ‘Pre-BBR’ – all year around
Starting from the De La Warr Pavilion and heading via Normans Bay level crossing (at 07:45) to Beachy Head, returning to Di Paulos cafe for 09:30. For intermediate to fast riders – 30 miles at an average speed of 18mph or more.
Sunday Harrow rides – times vary, but usually 08:00 start
These are club rides start every Sunday at Harrow pub on the ridge. Time varies depending on the time of year and the length of the route. These are normally organised by Jon Vidler (JV) or Patrick Piper. The club ride is significantly hillier, harder and longer than the BBR ride and riders are expected to have sufficient speed and stamina to keep up. JV/Patrick email details to riders on the email list. These rides are not suitable for beginners; the speed is around 18mph with a moderate to extreme amount of hill climbing!
Saturday or Sunday Improvers’ Rides – times vary
Steve Curtis organises one of these a month and they usually take place on a Sunday. These are similar in pace to the BBR rides but are easier than the Sunday Harrow Club Rides.
These rides are suitable for any riders who can manage a BBR. Riders will not be left behind if riders are dropped on hills – there will be regrouping at the top. Riders are notified of the ride details by email.
Tuesday 18:30 – ‘Tuesday Twenty ride’ – April to September
This is a 20-mile ride that runs from third Tuesday in April until the last Tuesday in September and is organised by Steve Curtis. It is a friendly ride for riders of different abilities from Hastings to Winchelsea, Udimore, Broad Oak, Sedlescombe and the Hastings Ridge. It is the same route every week (except in peak summer when it might be extended with a loop around the Broad Oak TT circuit).
The ride is cancelled if the weather is poor; confirmation is sent to the club via email. It’s a moderately hard ride with some good climbs and an average speed of 16mph, but you can ride at your pace as there are four regrouping points that everyone is expected to adhere to. The aim is fitness and conditioning (the reason so many of us ride).
Time Trials – varied times on Wednesday evenings – May to August
These run from the first Wednesday of May until the last Wednesday of August. The location and meeting times vary according to a timetable that Chris Parker sends out before the start of the season. The pace is tough – you ride as fast and hard as you can over the set distance. You should finish feeling completely knackered. It’s fun, truly!
Wednesday Wheelers – May to end August
For riders not going on the club TTs, there are the Wednesday Wheelers rides. These run from the first Wednesday of May until last Wednesday of August. Details of the rides are sent to members by email every week. The route varies but is normally around 30 miles at quite a hard pace, 17 to 19 mph. Sometimes, the route will finish at the location of that evening’s TT so that riders can enjoy some liquid refreshment together.
Wednesday 18:50 for 19:00 – Hastings Hills Run – September to April
For riders not going on the Chain Gang, there is a hilly 12-mile ride in Hastings aimed at improving hill climbing ability. The ride is done on lit roads rather than on the unlit roads of the Chain Gang, but lights are still needed. Details of the ride are circulated by email to members and the ride starts from Hastings Pier.
Wednesday 19:15 – Chain Gang – September to April
A night-time training ride for experienced riders only, flat but fast at between 18 to 30mph, that runs from the start of September until the end April. Riders of the chain-gang must be members of HSLCC or affiliated clubs (e.g. Eastbourne Rovers). Prospective new members are only allowed to ride the chain-gang once they have done a few other rides with the club and become known to established riders. In order to ensure the safety of all riders on the chain-gang, you must adhere to the club safety rules. For more details on chain gang safety please contact Chris Parker (the club’s General Secretary). The weather can be awful but that’s all part of the charm.
Friday 18:30 – Friday Night Road Ride – all year around
A 20-mile ride starting from outside the Fairlight Lodge Hotel on the Battery Hill/Fairlight Road. The start time is agreed each week by those wishing to do the ride and it runs all year.
Off-Road Group MTB rides – late May to September
Some riders do some off-road mountain bike riding on the South Downs, Bedgbury or Bewl water most weekends during the summer months. Riders can ask Steve Curtis to be added to the separate MTB emailing list. All members of this list can email others on the list and arrange meetups. Most of the club members are too sensible to ride off-road, but each to their own.
Big Tyre rides – October to April
Occasional rides on Sustrans routes to avoid traffic using mountain, gravel or cyclocross bikes, ridden at BBR pace and organised by Steve Curtis.
- Reliability trials (ideal for all levels of ability as riders go at own pace but you do need a Garmin to follow the route)
- Audax rides (ideal for all levels as riders go at their own pace but you do need a Garmin to follow the route)
- Open time trials (ideal for all levels of ability as riders go at own pace)
- London to Hastings ride- We do this ride several times a year, the super-fit ones will ride up while the rest of the riders take a train to the start.
- Brighton or Tunbridge Wells (Velo House) pre-BBR special
- Occasional social rides
- Rides abroad e.g Menorca, France, Belgium, Majorca, Gran Canaria etc.