Not In The Peloton Awards 2018

2018 has been a bit weird for the world. We're not gonna' bore you with the list but we've bombarded with depressing news each week whether it'd be Brexit, Trump, the 'war' on plastic or just everyday problems of society. Which is why it's probably more important than ever that we all have a diversion away from the daily depressions the news love to share. For us, having access to a bike is our getaway, not from the wife, please don't twist our words here! But just refreshing our mindset, thinking of nothing else apart from you and the bike, if you're reading this and you don't have that release, go get yourself those 2 wheels and a frame for 2019 and never look back. In the meantime, let us take you through our highlights of 2018, we did a bit of everything and we've added not just another bike to the notinthepeloton bandwagon...!

Ride of the Year:

And the nominations are:

-Tour of the Mendips Stage 1

-Tour of the Mendips Stage 2

-The One v4.0

-Richmond Park Hot Lap

-Little Lumpy 2018

Surrey hasn't had much of a look in this year. In all honesty, we feel we need a break from the area, we haven't even climbed an ascent of Leith this year we don't think?!! We will return but as you will find out from the other categories we had our eye on more 'flat' based challenges at the latter end of the year. First 6 months though and it was mostly riding up something. Liam, Chris and Sam took us on a tour of the Mendips, a quaint little area South of Bristol. Stage 1 was a mucky misty ride through the hills, there was still snow lining the way from the cold snap from February. Cheddar Gorge, what can we say? Was like a scene from GoT, a very unique climb with a stunning backdrop. We climbed it again on Stage 2 and luckily the Sun came out to play and shone the climb in all it's glory. The Mendips was definitely a highlight of the year. We also carried on our series of The One and now into it's 4th version, we decided to take it on the road to the Chilterns. 13 hills were the challenge and 2 strong groups set off to take on some very punchy ascents. We even had a prize for Rider of the Day courtesy of Lexham Insurance but we think everyone showed a great commitment to the ride and was one of our favourite social rides we've taken part in a long time. Chris, Sam and myself stumbled upon a very rare time where Richmond Park was closed to traffic thanks to an event earlier in the day, only right then to put in a hot lap. With their encouragement, we felt we put in a decent effort to smash our PB by a considerable margin. Last nomination was one of our favourite sportives we've ever participated in, but it wasn't just the route or the amazing food stops or the weather, our little band of brothers that took on this beast of a ride were a pleasure to ride with which made the event just that extra special.

And the winner do you choose this?! We think Mendips Stage 2 just shades it. Climbing Cheddar Gorge in the glorious sunshine with your mates in tow or most of the time in front, it definitely left a memory. I think the pictures speak for themselves...

Event of the Year:

And the nominations are:

-Little Lumpy 2018


-4th Cat Hillingdon

It wasn't the year for a lot of many sportives/events. Our circumstances have changed slightly (you'll find out in a bit!) so our priorities have changed too. But we did manage to ride in a very homely sportive full of cakes and hills! Little Lumpy took in a lot of Hampshire's hills and what goes up, must come down. 80 miles in, we hit the wall and it was a slog up the last couple of climbs but what a great day. Revolve24 was basically Red Bull Timelaps on a race track...with your own pit garage! Thanks to Jam Cycling and Dirty Wknd, myself, Liam, Chris and Fraser put in a good shift to come 3rd overall. Now, we know it wasn't really an event but we took part in our first Cat' 4 race at Hillingdon. It was an insight to the grassroots of the cycling ladder where many pro's begun their careers. We came somewhere at the back of the pack and even lead for a lap but it was really interesting to see the variety of riders who plod along to take part in just under an hour of racing and on that day, in the freezing cold!

And the winner is...another category which was difficult to decide but I think for the cakes and company alone, Little Lumpy gets our nod. Put it on your to do list for 2019 and make sure you give the epic a go, not just because it's harder and there's more climbing, but you get to visit more cake stops!!!

Purchase of the Year:

And the nominations are:

-Planet X EC130

-Wahoo Elemnt Bolt

-Fizik R5B Road Shoes

It was the year we joined the n+1 crew and after much shopping around, comparing specs' we settled on the EC130 from Planet X. After much hassle actually taking delivery of the bike, it finally arrived and has been our 'Porsche' for the weekends. It's much more agressive than our trusty old Tarmac and did it self justice at Revolve24 and in our 4th Cat' race. It does need pampering though, the simplicity of the Sora groupset on the Tarmac can not be appreciated enough so it's been a learning curve mechanically too. Out with the old with our bike computer too as our Garmin Edge died (well the usb port has rusted and the cost of repair was expensive) so we swapped sides and became a Wahooligan. Now there are things I do miss about the Edge, touch screen was handy but I've gotten use to the simplicity and efficiency of the Bolt. Our other nomination was our Fiziks, we already own a pair of RB5 but the actual boot is coming away from the cleat itself and these are gorgeous shoes, we went black to match the EC130.

And the winner's got to be the bike hasn't it?!

Climb of the Year:

And the nominations are:

-Cheddar Gorge, Mendips

-Buster Hill, Hampshire

-Druids, Brands Hatch

Cheddar Gorge is just a stunning climb, the cliff faces opening up as you pedal through the town which resembles something you find at the seaside. We didn't get the pleasure of descending it but it was definitely a climb worthy another visit in the future. Buster Hill we encountered on Little Lumpy and you could say it was the Queen climb of the day, tough little cookie with a stinging end, you were treated to some cracking views of the rolling fields once you conquered it. Now Druids wasn't exactly a hill in comparison to the other 2 nominees but once you've tackled it lap after lap after lap, you begin to despise it! The track itself at Brands Hatch was undulating at times and the constant climbs of Druids helped everyone's elevation gain this year! Your reward after each ascent was a fast left hander downhill, bit freaky at night but great fun!

And the winner is...go cut the cheese because it's Cheddar all day long!

Review of the Year:

And the nominations are:

-NUT-R Action Mount

-Osprey Radial

-Kymira PRO2

A core part of our website is our reviews. We like to share our opinions on products and items that could make your world of cycling a whole lot more enjoyable and helpful. Our top selection this year has featured a GoPro mount from NUT-R which attaches to your QR offering some very cool footage. The Osprey Radial ripped up the rule book form commuting bags over, do you know that it can stand all by itself?! Fancy! Our final nominee comes from the apparel world and even though we wasn't 100% sold on it's thermal regulation technology, Kymira's 'Blockbuster' (look it up!) inspired design and race fit made sure our first race as a Cat' 4 was as comfortable as it could of been.

And the winner is...Osprey in our eyes are at the top of their game when it comes to commuting/hiking bags. There are things that we would add on such as another bottle holder on the side but you really are covered in every little area, well worth the investment.

Team Mate of the Year:

And the nominations are:

-Sarah Whitehead

-Liam Reilly

-Chris Detsicas

-Fraser Duff

-Sam Hodges

-Nick Boyle

Where do we start?! Sarah won our rider of the day at The One v4.0 voted by the other riders, think that says it all. Liam, Chris and Fraser was our team mates at Revolve24 and were very inspiring, their level of performance was unreal, not ashamed to say I was the weakest link but their company for the weekend was second to none, a great team to ride with. Sam has been our 'coach' leading up to our Cat' 4 race, giving us little tips as to where to be in the bunch, what to look out for, we did practice some lead outs at Hillingdon but he's on a different planet when it vomes to sprinting! Nick gets a yearly nomination and this year is as much deserved as the others, even though we only saw him twice this year, his commitment and friendliness makes it always a pleasure to ride with, I owe you a ride in Essex mate, gotta' show me those hills!

And the winner is...scrap the sole winner, let's give it to all of them, they all made our time on the bike a pleasure and shows how nice cyclists can be...just don't ask about Liam's road rage!

Special Recognition:

I think this has to go to Mrs Notinthepeloton. Not only does she put up with us leaving her for a good few hours at a time (she secretly enjoys this time as she can catch up on all her reality shows which we detest!), not only did she buy us a turbo trainer so we can train indoors and join the many on Zwift, she is also carrying lil' notinthepeloton which should be with us at the end of February. So thank you love, you've allowed us to carry on our hobby without any complaining, we hope our new addition gets the cycling bug too! (cue the soppy music!).

Blooper of the Year:

So we come to the novelty section of the night and the nominations are:

-3 punctures in 1 morning resulting in a 3 mile walk into work

-Crashing into a schoolkid on his bike

-Sam questioning why you need spare tyre levers then snapping his!

-Not realising that the temperature regulator thingy goes somewhere intrusive in Jake's FTP testing!

We've all had bad luck with punctures but one morning took the right biscuit. Flat on the Tarmac as I rolled out the door so I changed to the Planet X to get me to work. 2 punctures later on that thing and we didn't want to risk our last tube so we walked the remaining 3 miles to work. Couldn't find the fault in the tyre so risked the last tube on the way home, literally 20m out of work and puncture no.4! So the call of shame to Mrs Notinthepeloton had to be made...We had a couple of tumbles this year, our main one was with a schoolkid on his bike on a shared bike. It was one of those cases when you both move to avoid each other but you end up going the same way. Still nursing a smashed finger but he had a great story to tell everyone at school that day! Another nominee was Sam questioning why you would need spare tyre levers on a ride...few moments later he snapped his only one! Then numnutts here thought he'd do a nice thing and drop some spares off to him in the week only to find out he had plenty at home! Finally and we thought Sam was kidding when he told us that to get a decent reading of your body's core temperature for Jake Neale's FTP testing, the probe had to be stuck up your bum! Jake clarified this on our first test and let's just say, it took some time getting used to!

And the winner is...the punctures really annoyed us, luckily we had our trainers on so we power walked it to work. We did try to run but that wasn't happening!

And that concludes our NITP Awards 2019. Next year will be a year of adaptation, with the little one on the way, the bikecations and any events will definitely have to be run by Mrs NITP as the lil' one will obviously take priority. But we will be on Zwift (probably a lot!) and we will still be growing the movement of notinthepeloton. We wish you a great end to the year and do share your 2019 challenges, we will try not to get too jealous!

“It is the unknown around the corner that turns my wheels”.