In which a jinx is finally broken

Our previous ride on the Carrum Bike Trail had not been without their share of mishaps. With a growing littany of punctures, crashes, lost helmets, broken derailleurs, loose cranks (and ambulance evacuations), this trail had developed a fierce reputation for destroying bikes and riders.

It was therefore with some trepidation that we decided to give it another go on Sunday 2nd February (the night after the Awards evening). At 2 pm four riders (Dennis, Ross, Duncan and Bob) assembled at the Mulgrave Reserve. Duncan and Ross had proudly mounted some of their winnings from the previous evening on their bikes and were obviously keen to show them off to admiring fellow riders.

We set off through the Field of Broken Glass and were soon rounding Derailleur Bend and heading off in search of Mal. After we managed to survive the first 10 minutes without incident, our combined confidence started to rise. A couple of km further on Mal joined the peloton and we ramped up the speed and set a course for the beach.

Midway between Mulgrave and Dandenong an over confident young rider (probably only about 40 or so) passed us on the trail. This obviously did not go down very well with Mal and Bob who soon set off in pursuit and pregressively reigned him back in again. It is about time that other riders realised the folly of trying to pass members of the Warby Riders.

By the time we reached Dandenong the entire peloton had passed the unknown would-be “sprint king” and left him languishing in our wake. This was going to fun.

The long straight ride down to the beach was accomplished at good speed, although we did nearly lose a couple of riders down the numerous wide cracks that were prevalent along the path. It was a great afternoon for cycling and we pulled into the Patterson Lakes Shopping Centre in high spirits and ready for a sugar and caffeine hit.

After an enjoyable afternoon tea, with the usual share of jokes and stupidity, the time came for us to remount and head back to Mulgrave.

On the way back we stopped for a short while to watch some of the action of the boat races we had heard on the way down. It did not seem all that exciting to us, but then again we were all elite cyclists who knew that any sportsman that does not wear lycra can’t be worth watching.

After a few minutes of peering through the cyclone wire (yes I did say “peering”) we decided that there was more excitement to be found on the trail. So off we went again, this time practising our skills in riding in a tight peloton.

We made good speed back to Dandenong and before we knew it we were back at the Stud Rd Recreation Centre where we could hear some sort of races being held at the rear. Closer inspection revealed that we had stumbled upon the Formula 2cc Grand Prix.

There was a group of enthusiasts engaged in a series of model car races. We soon learned that these little cars travel up to 85 kph (almost as fast as Bob rides along the Warburton Trail).

We were also informed that for as little as $850 or so we could also enjoy the fun of crashing a model car into a barrier at high speed. I could have replied that we can fall off our bikes any time we like for no cost at all.

After a few more minutes we again mounted up for the final stretch. In spite of the jinx we managed to all arrive back at the cars without so much as a single puncture or torn tendon. Who said this trail was jinxed ??? Obviously not any more!!!!

STOP PRESS —- I just heard that Brian Coulter (one time Warby Rider) had been riding this trail a few days after our ride when he had a nasty incident with a cleat that would not let go. He managed to hit the ground with enough force to disclocate his knee, spent the evening in hospital and was operated on this morning. Makes you wonder doesn’t it ???