La Musette #4



The best rides are the ones where you bite off much more than you can chew, and live through it.” – Doug Bradburyk 

Yep. We’re late. We missed March.

It’s the get busy time of year are we see Palace approaching way too fast for our training to catch up. The clocks have gone forward, the chill is thawing and rides after work in the lanecan just about be completed without lights.

In this edition we give a quick update on the clubs racing scene and a few tid bits here and there. As always, contact James Stannard or Ben Knapp if you have any feedback or want to include something in the future.


Chaingangs are back now that the clocks have gone forward with the switch from winter to summer routes just around the corner. You can read more about these on the club website here.

Additionally there are women’s chaingangs at Regents Park during the week and follow @Paragonette or see the forum for more on these.

The Chaingangs are a fairly regular topic of conversation with many competing aims from differing riders that turn up, some for a steady ride, some to smash each other until the strongest survive. The key to getting what you want out of it is either to speak up or listen, there will usually be a fast group, a not so fast group and a “no drop” group so make sure you get in the right one and listen to the more experienced riders during the ride.

For racers who know the route like the back of the hand be clear if you are riding a smashfest with no regrouping.

There is a lot of information and guidance on the club website at the link above.

Above all be safe, be responsible and be respectful, see the below links for great advice in group riding and chaingangs.



It feels like the season is in full swing already as the winter series have given way to spring warm up races and the first events of SERRL, Surrey League, ERRL and the National Events all being run and won.

One of the biggest issues this year will be getting entry into races with spots disappearing within hours of events opening up on RiderHQ and on British Cycling. With the growth in popularity of the sport it is difficult to see this changing. We have doubled our racing membership in the past two years and will likely see big pressure on our entry into local races.

Unbelievably we saw the first 4 weeks of Crystal Palace sell out in 48 hours a whole 7 weeks before week 1. We’ll be revising this for the rest of the season but weeks 5 and 6 will go live on RiderHQ on the Tuesday 2 weeks before the race date after 930pm and no refunds will be given. Additionally there will be a limit of 35 pre-entries for 3/4s, 30 for E/1/2 and 25 for the Women’s E/1/2/3/4 guaranteeing an amount for first come first EOL on the night of the race.

In addition to Palace Hillingdon will also run on Tuesdays, Velopark will run 4ths only, 1/2/3 and Women 2/3/4 on Wednesday nights and Hoghill and Cyclopark will run Thursdays. That’s a pretty packed calendar of weeknight racing.

Targeting races and getting our ducks in a row is a big priority for 2015 and there is much more to come on this. For now here’s a link to upcoming events in the South East and Eastern Regions.


With so many racers active for Dulwich Paragon it’s almost impossible to keep up with all the notable performances.

One that sticks out firmly from the first few months of 2015 is the big Win by Rhys Keepence in the first road race of the SERRL Summer Series at Tenterden. A real win of Panache forever documented in history by one of the best celebrations we’ve ever seen as pictured below.

The club currently sits 3rd in the South East Regional Rankings on 108 with 10 point scorers. Unfortunately events at Hillingdon (Central), Hoghill (Eastern) and Velopark (Eastern) do not count for points in the South Eatern Region as we picked up quite a few points during the various Winter Series races.

For further results here’s a link to recent results in the South East. 


James Stannard rode his first Wally Gimber this year and we thought it would be good to get a few words on how he found it:

Was it fast or was it fast?
It was my fourth road race and easily the longest after they extended it to 160km for National A so it wasn’t just the pace it was the distance. I didn’t really know what to expect in terms of speed but I had a pretty good idea after we’d done 45km in the first hour! Chatting to Ben and Rhys in the bunch I think there was a mutual hope that the pace would relent! (it did, a bit). On a side note Patrick Hawkins and the Dulwich organisers and volunteers put on a hell of a show and it really hammered home what a brilliant club we’re part of.

What was the biggest difference riding in your First National A versus what you were used to last year in the SERRL and Surrey League Races?
Seeing team cars pull up with 6 bikes on top! Haha. The guy who won rode the Vuelta last year (I wish my mum knew what the Vuelta was). I think a big difference compared with SERRL etc. was looking down at my Garmin at 75km and thinking ‘bloody hell, we’re not even half way yet’ that extra 50km really changes the way you think about a race. Just seeing the strength of some of the pros was brilliant and humbling!

What are your goals for 2015?
Win a race. Help get some more wins/top 10s for team mates in SERRL and Surrey League.

Here’s a great video put together by the club’s James Corlett on the Wally Gimber Team:



As we get into racing from May most will replace 2 of the targeted turbo sessions with race days but it is still important to slot in 1 or 2 targeted sessions to maintain that power (FTP) you’ve built up over the first 3 months of the year. With that being said see if you can slot in the suggested sessions around your particular week and race days. As always there is a lot of differing advice but if you’re racing for the first time this year you could do worse than follow this suggestion.

Day 1: Rest
Day 2: 6 x 5mins (Z5) with 3 mins at Z2 between
Day 3: 30 mins Rollers in Z2 or Cafe RIde easy
Day 4: 2x20mins SST with 10 mins at Z2 between or 1x40mins SST
Day 5: Race – Crit/Road Race
Day 6: Z2 Club Ride with limited efforts (2-2.5 hours)
Day 7: Tempo Group Ride (3 hours)

Continue off the bike with core strength with 1 or 2 20 minute sessions slotted in during the week (Plank, sit-ups, push-ups, leg lifts etc.) – and stretch daily!

Talk training plans to anyone and they will have differing idea, what is proven though is that work at SST is critical to increasing FTP.

British Cycling has some useful calculators for Training Zones on their website.

If you are considering a coach talk to a few of the other racers, between us we’ve used several and can recommend a few.



Some club members unfairly earn reputations and labels, others spend years and spill sweat and blood, break bones and teeth to develop theirs. Michael Williams has done it the hard way. In honour of his glorious past moments* we announce the Michael Williams Fund which will see a 50% reduction in cost of replacement Club Kit following a crash within a recognised racing or competitive event for members representing Dulwich Paragon as their 1st Claim Club.

*Michael has had more than his fair share of bad luck in crashing through no fault of his own, with the exception of the last corner at Palace, don’t be fearful of riding next to him!

The Details:

  • A qualifying competitive event will include any recognised BC Race (i.e. Palace/SERRL), Organised League (i.e. LVRC/London Cyclocross/Track League) or Time Trial Series/Event (i.e. Harry Must Club 10, 25m TT, Endurance TTs)
  • Sportivs and Grand Fondos (i.e. Ride London), Multi-Day Sportivs (i.e. Giro of Sardinia/Haute Route) and Training (Camps, Accreditation, Familiarisation Sessions, Chain Gangs) are not included
  • All requests for this fund are authorised at the discretion of the Club Kit Secretary
  • Each member may make one claim for this fund in any one calendar year
  • The club reserves the right to withdraw the fund at any time without notice

Should you need to utilise the fund please email