Ulster By Velo?

Having an Ulster Week in Leicester inspired me to write about a trip to Ulster

We left Birstall about 2.30 p.m. on Friday with weather slightly damp. We headed for the M1. Fast motoring got us to Scotch Corner by 5 p.m.

"Good time." I said to Allan Jarman

"Stop saying that." he replied.

Anyway, half way across Bowes Moor my throttle cable broke.

"Told you so." said Allan

Everything went OK until Carlisle when a 7 mile traffic jam greeted us. After about 1½ miles I hit a car coming out of a side turning. One look from Allan shut me up and I didn't mention what good time we were making again. We arrived at the ferry port about 11 p.m. and went directly to my grandmother's house for a good night's sleep and food!

The next morning we were up by 6 a.m. After breakfast we went down to the ferry, which was about a mile away, and arrived with a half hour to spare.

On arriving in Ireland we had a 30 mile ride to Dunrod. We only took one bike across because it was cheaper. We arrived at Dunrod just after the first race had started and we both enjoyed a good day's racing but unfortunately we had to leave two thirds of the way through the last race.

About 18 miles from Larne and the ferry I put the brakes on to slow down because of rain and the rear brake anchor bolts ripped out and we fell off. Unfortunately for Allan I landed on him but we were both all right and set about repairing the back end of the bile. The brake shoes and chain guard were disposed of and a big hammer straightened the bent swinging arm, throwing the rear end together. We set off for Larne with 15 minutes in which to do 18 miles. Luckily the ferry was about 15 minutes late so we arrived at my grandmother's ready for another night's sleep and both dreading the next day for we had to ride home.

All went well on the way home apart from a primary chain going slack on Allan's Velo and two mudguard stays breaking.

We stopped at Gretna Green for a coffee and a look round and then set off again arriving at Leicester at 7 p.m., shattered, £6 of my hard earned money gone but nevertheless glad I went.

Mick Ayriss