Posted in: Paddy Doran
By Paddy Doran
Nov 28, 2011 - 10:16:00 AM

It's this time of the year again, cyclists building on their winter training for the coming racing season. We have pulled up an appropriate article by Paddy Doran which we first ran over six years ago.


He or she usually begins to make an appearance about this time following their long break since their last race, which was on the second week of March a full eight months ago. Their enthusiasm is unlimited, next year is going to be their year!

You usually meet them just as you are recovering from the rigors of last season and are looking forward to some easy spins to get your condition back into good shape.

They have probably been training since August or September when you were just finishing up your last events so they are absolutely flying.

Their bike is usually a giveaway. Its top of the range, stripped for racing with light wheels - tyres the full works in fact no hack bike is good enough for the winter racer.


Every time they go to the front they accelerate and accelerate and accelerate as you either let them away up the road or are dragged along with lungs burning, heart rates through the ceiling, covered in sweat (even though its freezing temperatures) and cursing to yourself with whatever little breath that you have left.

Every rise in the road the demon winter racer is gone! Away up the road like a Tour De France climbing specialist as you struggle to maintain the speed. Looking back at the group scattered all over the road with a smile on their face. At this stage they really are beginning to believe that next year really will be their year, which encourages them to ride even harder.

The size of the group that they train with usually peaks on the first day of training and declines steadily over the next weeks as the more vulnerable and naive riders in the group try to match them and gradually sell their bikes - take up snooker - or ballroom dancing from the effects of struggling home on their own on 39 x 25 after blowing up and getting dropped from the group.

This pattern will continue through January and maybe even as far as February when The Demon Winter Racers season usually ends for the 20th successive year, just as other riders are getting really fit. Or they might even get as far as the second or third race in March before their season definitely finishes. And this is where the Demon Winter Racer really excels. There is a thousand different reasons / excuses for finishing their season just then.. work - girlfriend -sick dog - budgie dead - joining a monastery - don't like the colour of the bike etc etc etc.

However next year is going to be the real year for them and they swear that they will get back training early for next season.