The Weld Flyer – A short account

Bottles and Chains isn’t dead. It has been quiet, yes.. …but dead? No. In fact, it’s been bubbling away steadily underground like some larva filled subterranean ¬†grotto. We’ve been baking up ideas. The first to rise? ‘The Weld Flyer’.

‘The Weld Flyer’ is something Dave Killick (Killer) and I have been dreaming up over the last few years. We envisioned a mid winter gravel event traversing the Southern Forests that would challenge even the toughest riders. What we delivered was exactly that. 85km of unsealed roads with 1800m of climbing that had to be traversed within a 6hr time limit. A tough ask made tougher with snow laying on the highest parts of the course.

Over 40 riders registered for the event, most presented on cyclocross bikes with a sprinkling of mountain bikes and one slim tyre road bike. Most of the field managed to finish within the allotted timeframe, Emma Flukes being the fastest with a time of 4:45hrs. Our boy Tim Stredwick was DFL, finishing outside the timeframe but completing the ride in 6:41hrs. A solid effort from all considering the cold conditions on course.

The second check point is worth noting. Being a Bottles and Chains event we wanted to make the check point memorable.. …so we added a wood fired OzPig stove, couches, banged out punk music on an old set of speakers, cooked hot sausages and presented an esky full of ciders at the top of the final hill. Riders seemed to like this action as all but three stopped for a snag and a cider!

Anyway, there’s a few short words about this years event. We’ll be back again next year with version II of ‘The Weld Flyer’. Keep your eyes to our Facebook page for details. Thanks to event sponsors, Willie Smiths, Huon Bikes, Judbury Community Hall, to our partners Audax Tasmania, and much love for all the Bottles and Chains family who helped make the day memorable.

Author: Ben

Bicycle Hobo

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