32 degrees, blue skies, the undulations of the Ridgeway and 22 eager cyclists. That was the scene that greeted us at the Harrow Pub in East Ilsley. Founders, investors tech professional gathered, some regulars and some new friends.
For the past four months we have enjoyed bringing the tech community together from Oxford and beyond for monthly networking rides and some mid-week exercise. This year the peloton was larger than ever.
Our ride leader, Will Axtell, a partner at Penningtons in Oxford had mapped out a cracking course with quiet open roads and a warning that there would be a few undulations! It tested us all but we all arrived together back at the pub for some well earned fayre.
This was the Champs-Elysees étape. The blue ribbon event. And the long downhill stretch provided the perfect conditions for an all out sprint for the most eager riders. Some fine performances! And the happy endorphines were flowing in all of us.
With the last ride of the season, there were prizes and kudos including recognition for those that have supported the Tour de Tech since 2017. Thank you all for making it what it is.
We will be back soon for some winter gatherings, not necessarily on the bike and already look forward to the 2024 season. So keep fit and keep turning the wheels of tech!
Just to the East of Oxford lie the Chiltern Hills and on the way is the wonderful gastro pub of The Mole Inn. We gathered in large numbers (20 riders) to burn off some excess summer holiday calories as we took to the undulating and quiet roads around the Thames Valley and Chiltern foothills. 35km of fun later we were back to tuck into some hearty food and drink and let the conversations flow.
The Tour de Tech 2022 got off to a cracking start. Straight into the Mountain Stage of the tour, we set off from The Talkhouse in Stanton St John under a Mediterranean sun and blue sky. Perfect conditions! Twelve riders formed a solid peloton and the chat flowed freely. Several new riders and some old friends joined made up the group. For some, riding in a larger group was a new experience, but they quickly learned.
After a warm up on the country lanes, we faced the mighty Brill Hill, taking it at our own pace. We caught our breath and the views at the Windmill at the top of Brill - always a rewarding place to stop! Then back to the pub for some great food from the new owners. Some of us even had pudding!!
See you at the next ride!
The days of cycling alone or with one other person are now over and we can't wait to the Tour de Tech peloton back on the road.
New dates will be announced soon for the May to September cycling season. The format will remain the same - great people, classic pubs, iconic cycling routes. We'll announce the dates and locations soon!
We miss you! The lockdown has put plans for the Tour de Tech on hold so far this year, but with the government encouraging us all to get on our bikes, we hope that you have been leading the way and inspiring others to take to the quiet roads and enjoy some fresh air. Like the Tour de France and the Giro, we are hoping for some late season fun. Especially if the pubs open!
• Distance: 40.1km
• Time: 1hr 45m
• Elevation: 435m
• Calories burned: 920
• Average speed: 22.8KM/h
A motley crew of 13 riders gathered at the Duke of Marlborough near Blenheim Palace for the final “regular” ride of the season. This route was one for the "Chipping Norton set" as we whizzed through Dean the home of David Cameron and glided past the glamorous Soho Farmhouse, where David Beckham has a new home. There were a few punchy climbs as we tracked the edge of the Cotswolds and skimmed through delightful and quintessentially English villages. This was home turf for quite a few of the riders including Rob McCrigor who used his canny local knowledge to take a more abbreviated route on occasion! Our speeding peloton rushed to beat the maturing sun as summer slipped to autumn and the evening gloom started to descend. A steep climb out of Wootton and then we were back into the welcoming arms of the Duke of Marlborough where the chat continued about tech, business and new opportunities after the long summer break. Another successful outing for Tour de Tech!
With the Tour De France over for another year, the Tour De Tech rolled on and the riders were suitably ‘G’d up for another evening of cycling and networking.
14 riders joined the stage starting at the Seven Stars in Marsh Baldon, with a mixture of regular Tour De Tech attendees and some joining for the first time.
The peleton, after a nice flat roll out through Toot Baldon took on the Col de Garsington avoiding the sink hole but not the gradients of over 7%.
The borrowers in the economy will be pleased that this percentage far exceeded the rate set today by the Monetary Policy Committee although at 0.75% this represents the highest Base Rate for nearly a decade.
The route then looped through Cuddesdon, Little Milton and Chalgrove before returning through Stadhampton and back to the pub for suitable refreshments, minus the Morris Dancers this year!
There was the usual balance of relaxed riding and Strava injected segment pace and a few riders even decided to do a few extra KM’s, taking advantage of the continuation of hot dry weather !
Two more 2018 TdT legs to go so keep your bike well oiled and sign up for the remaining events.
Chapeau to all those who attended.
Allez Tour de Tech !
Director, Corporate & Commercial Banking NatWest