Here are a couple of events into which I am more than happy to funnel a little oxygen of publicity. The first is the Anjou Velo Vintage taking place in the Loire Valley town of Saumur in June. Way back in the summer of 1993 I spent about five months living and working at the camp-site on the Ile d’Offard, an island in the middle of the Loire river that sits opposite the town of Saumur. If you are a fan of sparkling wine, fortress castles, beautiful rolling countryside, troglodyte caves, the Calvary and, err… tanks (there is a museum dedicated to them), then Saumur is the place for you. What I didn’t know about Saumur however is that it is the host to an annual vintage cycling event. It is now in its third year and at the recent London Bike Show I chatted to one of the guys responsible for organising the ride. I even got a free poster out of him (which is now proudly hanging in my flat). You need an old bike to actually participate in the cycling part of the festivities but even with no bike it seems that there will be plenty taking place in and around Saumur itself on the weekend of the 22nd & 23rd June to keep you busy. Alas that weekend is the one before I set off on my epic ride across the continent (again) so I will be resting up here in the UK but if you happen to find yourself anywhere near the Loire Valley in later June, it may be worth the detour. Full details on the website.
The second event is a little nearer home, just down the M3 in the New Forest to be precise. Kate Reynolds on Twitter pointed it out to me; she is organising it with her husband & it’s called the Early Riser Festival. The website describes it as follows: “From cyclosportives and Mountain Bike competitions to pedal-powered cinemas and music, there really is something for everyone at The Early Riser. There are loads on offer for children too, including Bikeability courses and Mountain Bike trails, plus a children’s tent with music, arts and entertainment.” A family festival of cycling & music. Alas I will not be able to attend myself as it takes place on the weekend of the 3rd & 4th August (by which time I should be somewhere in southern France), but it does sound like fun. I’ve never heard of anyone doing something that combines music & cycling in the form of a festival before and you never know, one day it might have the kudos of having been at Woodstock. You heard it here first folks… Have fun if you go along!