Fields of Gold

A pootle around some country lanes to loosen up Ryan’s legs for the following day, Saturday night’s ride was by no means a training ride. It was more of a bike ride I guess. The kind you went on as kids and just generally fooling around.


After picking up some ASSOS shorts from Alf Jones Cycles to demo, it was good to be able to ride in a jersey and not a jacket. Granted arms and knee warms were also worn, but it was fairly mild for an evening of cycling. It’s the first time I’ve tried ASSOS shorts, and our 18 mile loop was by no means a ‘hardcore’ test, but I was impressed. On the majority of cycling shorts and leggings I’ve used previously there’s been a seam down the outside of the leg, which I find can restrict me during each pedal stroke. The material can’t stretch very well. With the ASSOS shorts the seam goes almost around the legs, so where I’ve been restricted before, I wasn’t. It was a much more comfortable ride.


Once I’d figured out a good position for my knee warmers, I didn’t need to worry about my shorts rising up. 


With them being bib shorts, I didn’t have to worry about my jersey rising up and getting a cold back. Since using my Mavic bib longs, I’ve got rather use to this feature when out on my bike!


Ryan got on with his shorts too:

“On putting on the shorts I noticed that the cut was slightly different from anything I’ve worn before (and I’ve worn a lot of cycling shorts) The front of shorts is a little lower than normal and the bibs attach at a wider point. This felt a little odd at first, but once I got on the bike it all made sense. The lower front means that once you’re bent over in a riding position nothing digs in and the wider bibs sit nicely on the side of your waist rather than straight up your chest like normal. The rest of the short was faultless; the shorts were well fitted, but not too tight and gave a nice compression feel. The minimalistic leg grippers were spot on and there was no worry of the shorts riding up. And saving the best until last, the chamois (pad) is incredible! Like nothing else I’ve ever ridden in. It sits nicely in the shorts and hugs the body really well (in fact there is areas of the chamois that are left unstitched to the shorts to allow it to fit the contours of your body better) Comfy but not bulky, ASSOS have found the perfect happy medium. Even without using chamois cream (which I usually wouldn’t ride without) the shorts felt mega comfy and are just asking for you to do more miles!” – Ryan




The rest of the ride consisted of rapeseed fields, trying not to swallow flies and trying to out sprint each other. I lost count of how many times I had to stop after getting a fly in my eyes! 


I’m feeling a bit lost after my Triathlon since I don’t really have anything to train for. Yet, quiet rides on Saturday evenings when most are on the sofa are fun and relaxed to do. 

​Free next weekend?

Fancy trying out some ASSOS kit or fancy road bikes?
Why not come down to Alf Jones Cycles and join in the fun on their demo weekend!

What A Cyclist Does In London

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When I initially think of London, cycling doesn’t tend to be the first thing that comes to mind. More sky high buildings and jam packed roads. Businessmen in suits getting frustrated with the copious amounts of tourists. The distinct lack of mountains making trails hard to come by. As well as it’s jam packed roads, London doesn’t exactly scream ‘cycling city’.

But if you look a little deeper, the cycling scene in London is stronger than ever. Chain-gangs circling the many parks. Bike shops hidden away in amongst the hustle and bustle of the capital of Great Britain.

So what’s spouted from this great cycling scene?

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First off is the cycling store that is Rapha. Started in 2004, Rapha has become one of the most well-known brands in London as well as being known worldwide. Previously the kit sponsor for Team Sky, Rapha portrays quality in the products they sell. In amongst the shops of Brewer Street, the half bike/half coffee shop is any roadie’s dream and a must if visiting London.

With kit varying from socks to full Lycra sets, as well as being full of cycling memorabilia, Rapha is a definite past-time for any roadie visiting the big city.

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More new to the scene is the London shop for Swiss cycling brand, ASSOS. Walking into the white-washed wall shop you’re surrounded by cycling kits for every climate. From cold winter months to sweltering Alpine summer rides, there’s kit for just about any conditions.

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With the welcoming guys behind the counter, who are rather knowledgeable about the local cycling scene, ASSOS go above and beyond to find you the right kit. A static bike in the back, you can actually see what the kits you’re considering fits like in the riding position before you buy it. We all know comfort in paramount on those long rides…

Walking around a bike shop it is common to find a women’s specific section, but rather than splitting the sport into what is already segregated enough, ASSOS split their shop into collections. A pink cover on the coat hanger representing the women’s kit.

And before you think ‘well women’s kit shouldn’t be represented by the colour pink’, the padding on all of their kit is pink. I often found myself picking up men’s kit before noticing the pink sleeves on some of the coat hangers!

Pink is just ASSOS’s colour. And I’m a fan of it too.

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Last on the list (well this list) is the more MTB focussed shop; Soho Bikes London. Being involved in mountain biking before trying road, Soho Bikes has been on my radar for a while. Popular shows on YouTube and also having a coffee shop like Rapha, walking around it shows Soho is more about the mountain biker or commuter.

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Filled with mountain bike memorabilia from the likes of Steve Peat,  Soho is not your ordinary bike shop. Walking in you’ll find their coffee shop, from which you’ll be led deeper into the shop past Soho merchandise and bikes from the likes of Santa Cruz, Trek and Orange.

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Despite the differences in the objectives of each, it was clear the one common feature was coffee. Any cyclist, whether road or MTB, will always appreciate a good quality coffee.