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Weekend Round Up 9th 10th & 16th 17th

The weekend of 9th 10th was reliant on Tuff training sessions with little race action, so this Round Up contains all the news from the past two weekends.

It was pleasing to receive a report from Captain Verity Lacey about a Time Trial she attended. Over the years many Tuffs have participated in such events but attendance has been few and far between in recent years, so Verity’s article is a great way to focus attention again on Time Trials.

So what are Time Trials?. Riders cycle solo, starting at (usually) 1 minute intervals which ensures cyclists are pedalling against themselves, not other riders. The distances covered are usually across 10, 25, 50 and 100 miles. As Tuff Fitty are affiliated to Cycle Time Trials, members can take part in ‘Open Events’. Helmets are mandatory but so are front and rear lights, and participants tops must have their shoulders covered – ie no vest tops. Cycle Time Trials website is here – which has an event section, but feel able to ask any questions. Verity takes up the story:-

“Thought I’d do a little write up on the Worthing Excelsior TT I did today:

“I decided to bite the bullet and enter a TT race. Worthing Excelsior were hosting an event starting in Washington so I decided this was a good one for my debut”.

“The route was supposed to be the GS/982 Ashurst 16.3 but due to some temporary traffic lights being erected along the Partridge Green road, the route was quickly changed so the event could go ahead”.

“We were now riding from the Washington roundabout along to Bramber, onto the cloverleaf roundabout by Shoreham and back again”.

“Fortunately the rain that was due had pushed back and the wind was looking nice a light; perfect conditions”.

“Start time was 8:01 with a minute between each rider, I was second up with 7 riders in total and I was the only female in the line up of some pretty strong men!”

“All in all the ride went pretty well and although I was the slowest on the day I was pretty pleased with my time of 46:50 for the 16.4 miles”.

Worthing Excelsior organise other time trials here. And from April Brighton Excelsior stage Tuesday evening trials. Be great to see some Tuffs on the start line!

“Must be time to get a TT bike, N+1 right!!”

Held along the Clarence Esplanade in Southsea the St Patrick’s Day Duathlon gave competitors the chance to compete over Sprint, Standard, or Long Course Duathlon. Thanks to Mark Walford for reporting in who raced Standard distance:-

“Another eventful race for me. After doing a big bike training block, I wanted to see how I could ride in a competitive field. Early starts are just part of the norm for triathletes but long story short it took me 30 mins to pay for parking which meant I was in a big rush going into transition. So much so, I was setting up as the race brief started. I got myself sorted and shoes on and made my way over with about a minute to go. No warm up and hope I set everything up”.

“The weather was wet, windy and cold. Without a warm up and knowing I had two 5km runs either side of a 20km bike, I decided to take it easy. That was the plan until the hooter sounded and I just ran. After 5km I was 4th ticking along nicely, happy with the first part of my race. A good t1 and I was on the bike settling into the TT bars. A TT bike is a winter purchase, but I only rode it once prior to this race so was nervous/excited to see how I went. First corner and I put my brakes on to realise that only one brake was working, the front brake, I hadn’t reclipped in. Rooky error. Lucky not many technical bits, but head down and ride fast, 2 went by me but I stayed with them until a car held me up. I pretty much rode the whole 20km by myself dodging traffic, both bike and car, but feeling happy in the TT position”.

Into t2, I was just behind a group of 4, trying to be quick, I sat on the muddy floor to put my shoes on only to stand up and realise I had a big cheeky muddy bum or it may look like I had an ‘accident’. But a quick t2 had me in sight of the group of 4, 2 were just quicker and slowly pulling away. After 1 km I ran past one of the other competitors and because I was worried about my muddy bum, I asked him “does my bum look OK?” only to realise what an odd thing it was to ask, for him to reply very perplexed by saying “yeah”. Then I tried to explain the mud situation wasn’t an accident and the more I said, the worse the hole I had dug for myself became! So I just ran off feeling embarrassed.

Somewhere to sit sir?

Steady run to the end finishing in 5th. I was very happy with my race, but embarrassed about my errors. Good season opener on the bike and proof winter bike training worked.

Sheila (left) & Kate

The organiser for the Balcombe Bill Run summed up conditions as “truly awful” with lashings of rain and mud. However if you are a Tuff with a positive mindset then a much more enjoyable view of events can be taken. Sheila Bailey & Kate Evans took part in the value for money 7.1km – just £17 as Sheila takes up the story:-

“lots of SPLISH SPLASHING! And at least one Bull! “

“This is my second and Kate’s third time taking part in the Balcombe Bull Run. It is an event put on by the Balcombe Primary School to raise funds for both the school and St. Catherine’s Hospice”. 

“It is 7.1km that takes you across fields, along farm paths, up several hills and down several muddy areas. We thought last year’s event was muddy, how wrong were we! Due to the amount of recent rain this year it was similar to a typical weekend at Glastonbury but without the music or beer! “

“It is a really relaxed event, for example the race director gave the briefing to be careful, mind the bull in the field and to try not to fall over, and then said go, and off we all went. The fastest finisher did it in an amazing 35mins (something for the speedier Tuffs to aim for). Meanwhile, the rest of us were having such a good laugh, jumping in mud and puddles. Even without so much rain it is a really lovely event, well organised, with lovely marshals and you get a mini cow bell at the end”. 

“Be aware it is a parent that organises the event so sometimes the timings get a little messed up but it really doesn’t matter as you are purely doing it for fun”. 

“The school PTA and the children put on a cake and coffee stand and a BBQ for sausage and bacon baps which is just what you need after running through mud for a while”. 

We will definitely be back next year 🙂 

The Moyleman is an off road marathon in the hills around Lewes and was fully sold out before the end of 2023. This year for the first time competitors had to reach half way round the marathon course withiin 3 hours to prevent being withdrawn. The finish is back in Lewes at Harvey’s brewery for a free beer,pint glass and pizza. As you will see from the above photo, conditions were poor but this didn’t put off our hardened marathon runner – Jay McCardle. Jay did state it was a complete mudfest

It was March last year that a Tuff Tenpin Bowling evening was organised and Mike Barrett and Iris Bennett felt there should be a rematch. Mike formed Tuffs into four teams who were pleased to learn we had been allocated the VIP area. A fun evening ensued, particularly as the cost included a drink! Some participants came with a reputation for being pretty handy with a bowling ball, and with three of last year’s winning team present, once again the banter and outright hilarity at some of bowling ensued. This all combined to ensure it would be another successful evening.

Of course Tuffs are a competitive bunch and sneaky peeks at the opposing teams scoreboards were regularly viewed and after the first game was completed, the highest team score comprised; Colin and Sue Simpson, Barry Davids and Clive Harvey – pictured on the front of the album below. The other teams then increased the number of strikes and spares, but in booth three, the quartet of Colin, Sue, Baz & Clive kept their cool racking up another impressive score to complete another win, ending as outright champions. They were the only team scoring more than 1,000 points across both games.

However it was the banter and great humour that underlined the evening as another great evening of Tuffness. Thanks for organising Mike and Iris. (Click on the photo below for the antics album)


Goodwood Motor Circuit hold regular Sunday Cycles on the circuit for a tenner – a great opportunity to ride around smooth tarmac without needing to be on constant lookout for potholes. Last months scheduled ride scuppered the decision of many but this month; despite early morning rain, there was a strong Tuff list of riders. Some chose to drive over and pound out the distance on the circuit whilst others also threw in the commute there. The aggregate of the miles across everyone was very impressive. The above photo only shows part of the group with others present making double figures. Fancy cycling around the 2.5 mile circuit, then the next cycle day is Sunday 19th May, although unfortunately that co-incides with Arundel Triathlon – photo album of some of the Tuff riders below:-


Worthing parkrun saw Steve Fryer as first Tuff home as he crossed 19th in 20:37. After two consecutive half marathon weekends Dave March was also going well finishing in 21:25. Edward Lay notched up his 160th parkrun; 131 of these at Worthing. Steve Feest was also present ad 40 seconds later Paul Howie crossed the finish line. Next up was Phil Turner on pacing duties this week. Completing the Tuff seven was Les Pearce notching up his 34th volunteer credit.

Littlehampton parkrun was the chosen venue for several to run along part of the Frosty run course. Steve Bridgeman was followed home 11 seconds later by James Hodge. 26 seconds later Alistair Evans crossed the finish by the coastguard tower, only 5 seconds outside his PB. Chris Evans completed the Tuff quartet.

Bognor Regis parkrun saw Hotham Park had dried out sufficiently to stage a run; Clive Harvey was present for that.

Maidenhead parkrun had lots of cake to celebrate their 400th run and in amongst the 500 finishers was Trevor Harvey

Up in Crawley Tilgate parkrun was the choice of Colin & Sue Simpson. Despite having visited 78 different parkrun locations, Colin’s tally rose to 79 as they both ran this venue for the first time. Colin completed his 256th run and Sue completed her 218th

Well done to all fifteen

Worthing parkrun saw Edward Lay take the honour of being first Tuff back across the finish. Steve Feest was our next runner home, Tucked in behind was Paul Howie both of whom cut over 1 minute of each of their times from last week. Nina Tully has run the Worthing course 30 times so to get another PB – which makes it three PB’s in a row is very impressive – congratulations. Next Phil Turner was back on pacing duties, then it was great to see James Brock return to parkrun after his recent illness. Sue Pinky was delighted to achieve her best time for a couple of years and then Elaine Rousseau ran into Beach House Park to finish. Whilst still unable to run, kudos to Les Pearce who was once again on the volunteer crew to make 9 Tuffs on the Prom.

Littlehampton parkrun saw Steve Bridgeman in action. Alistair Evans was our next runner. Colin and Sue Simpson, fresh from both being in the winning bowling team the previous night were next across the line. Chris Evans was our fifth runner back to the Coastguard tower.

Bognor parkrun saw just one Tuff running – Clive Harvey This brought the total number of Tuffs this Saturday to fifteen.