Meet Barry. He’s a Bike SA regular, volunteers and rides a hell of a lot. He has some advice about riding our popular Grand Slam Challenge Series.
Q: So Barry, you’re a regular at Bike SA’s Grand Slams. How many you have you ridden?
Awww…. I don’t really know. I’ve been doing them for probably the last eight years or more. Some years I’ve managed to complete them all. So I’ve probably done say about 35 or more.
Q: What bicycle do you ride?
I ride an Avanti Corsa, a composite frame, part aluminium, part carbon. I’ve upgraded some bits and bobs.
Q: What do you like so much about the Grand Slam rides?
One of the great things is that they start and finish in the same location. You can either do the full loop or just do the one loop. Where you start is where you finish, which is great. Most other rides you don’t get that.
Q: What’s the vibe?
It’s really friendly, I talk to people. And there’s a great camaraderie, especially when there’s a tea-stop and lunch, and if you run into trouble there’s crew to help out.
Q: Any advice for new people.
Ride at your own pace. Once you start riding at other people’s pace, that’s when you run into strife. Be aware of other riders around you as well – so just be aware of all your surroundings etc. I think most people who take part are regular riders so you’ll get a lot of encouragement from people on the day if you’re just starting out.
Q: The Grand Slam rides start with smaller distances before getting longer and longer. What’s it’s like cracking the 200km?
It’s hard. We start at 6:30 in the morning and we’re still going at 3 in the afternoon, so it takes about 10 hours and I’m going about 20 km/h. I’m by no means the first one to finish but by no means the last one. I normally never go out and ride 200kms, but it’s amazing what you can achieve when you put your mind to it.
Q: How old are you again Barry?
I’m 71. But I’m definitely not the oldest one out there. But there’s also some younger riders too.
Q: Barry you legend.
I’d like to think so.
Bike SA’s 2017 Grand Slam Challenge Series kick off on Sunday 19th February with ride started at $35 per person. For more information go to www.bikesa.asn.au/grandslam