Monday, June 09, 2014

24hr Team

So, we have 4 men entered in the 24hr - that's a team and a spare!

A team is of interest because we have a Team Record for the 24hr, set in 1954. I'm not entirely sure that the club has had a team entered in a 24hr between then and now, but I thought I'd look up the team record and see what it is...

So, the record itself is 1225.043 miles held by George Crouch, Ray Drewett and Len Steel.

I went looking to see if I could figure out the individual mileages that made up that total and found this:

The Milestone - October 1954

Sat June 27 and Sun June 28
For the first time in the history of the club we had a team in a 24hr event, namely the Catford. And what is more, they all finished. To these three heroes I say well done, you all rode darned well. We who watched, and tried to help as much as possible, will always remember the courage of Len Steel, who after half an hour spent flat on his back on the pavement in Guildford at 238 miles got up and rode on. And the dogged determination of Ray Drewett, who suffered some very unpleasant patches but kept on and finished, to make up our team. It is easy to be wise after the event, but George Crouch didn't surprise many people with his superb effort, his was the ride of a man to whom distance means nothing, he will get there alright ask Pete Tester.

Without his front tyre trouble Geo would have done round about 420 instead of his 413. Len's mileage was 404 and Ray's 408. By the short distance of 13 miles we missed the Team award.
On the same day our tandem specialists were battling against the redoubtable Higginsons in the Archer Tandem 50. The terrible pair were just a bit too good for R and F and won in 1-46-40. Ron and Frank not far behind, in fact second with 1-47-24. Geo P and Tony B backed up well to win first team with their 1-54-47.

Now, at this point I am not sure whether that information is encouraging or discouraging for our intrepid four this year. In theory that is 206.5 for the 12, 5:48:40 for the 100 or 1:27:10 for the 25 or 34:52 for each 10 miles. 400 miles is 200, 6hr, 1:30:00 and 36:00 respectively. If the faster of the 3 does more, then the others can theoretically do slightly less than Ray and Len did all those years ago. However, looking at the result of the previous 24hr in our district the 400 mark is quite a challenge. 60 years ago when the record was set, the riders did many more miles than we typically do today.
The club solo record is 430.293 set by Ossie Clare in 1959.

Maybe 60 years on we will see the Team Record broken. Either way, to you all (and Ann) Good Luck - Ann has done this before and knows what to expect, the rest of you hang in there and aim to finish, everything else is gravy and you will look back with pride on a finish, and frustration on an NF.
But think of these men in whose footsteps you follow:

 Len Steel 404m

 Ray Drewett 408 miles (can't find a racing pick of him, sadly)

George Crouch 413 miles


  1. Dear Lisa, thank you for this it is good and inspirational! As for me it is as you know my first 24hr, My family and most of my mates think I am mad & indeed I am! It was Pete who gave me the name of MHM (mad hatter Morley). With Simon T in good form and Paul D having plenty of miles in their belt it is as I see it up to Simon W to make sure he breaks the 400 mile barrier. As for me 400 miles is out of the question but I will do my best to exceed 350mls. On the other hand I expect that Ann with her total dedication will beat me and I guess she hopes to beat 320mls. We will see on the day (24hr). Best of luck to all!

  2. Thanks for putting that together Lisa...good stuff!