Caffeine Culture. Sydney, Randwick Botany Cycling Club
Randwick Botany Cycling Club (RBCC) rides are open everyone. This particular map is from their Tuesday loop around the picturesque beaches of the Southside (of the Harbour Bridge) and be downloaded to your Garmin by clicking on the map (below)*. The profile may not seem like there’s much elevation gained but this is a challenging ride and the gradient can get steep on a few of these climbs, up to over 10% and range from 500m to a little over 1,000m in length.
The ride commences from Centennial Park and travels east to Bronte before zig-zagging along the coast, taking in Tamarama, Bondi, Watsons Bay, Rose Bay and Double Bay with a few nasty hills near the end. Once at the top, it’s a short ride to The Grind café on Oxford Street where the service is always pleasant and their “porridge topped with strawberries and honey is delicious” (Alex).
The club has set rides each day of the week barring Monday when a sleep-in is usually deserved. Wednesday is a longer, slower ride, taking in the well-ridden tarmac of La Perouse and the Botany container terminals and is the only ride of the week that doesn’t feature designated sprints. Thursday’s ride is similar again, but at a higher pace and with a few additional hills and sprints thrown in for good measure. Friday is the traditional coffee ride to wrap up the working week, culminating at The Grind for a brew. A popular spot for many clubs and bunches on this side of the bridge. While Saturday’s ride is a little less formal, there’s generally a bunch heading north towards Akuna Bay and West Head, but with racing on Saturday afternoon at Heffron Park the attendance isn’t so consistent.
The biggest ride of the weekly calendar is on a Sunday, when in summer months up to 60 riders will head to Waterfall. It’s also a very structured ride, with rolling turns all the way down to Waterfall at a fast but manageable pace. The run back gets much more competitive, especially the ‘mad mile’ on the way back into Sutherland. Much like Coluzzi, the pace will normally sit at over 50km/h on the run back to Sutherland with the lead bunch usually hitting over 70km/h in the final sprint. It’s not for the faint-hearted. There’s a short descent and a pair of railway tracks approximately 500m before the sprint line. Make sure you roll off the front and out of the way of the bunch if you do not wish to get involved.
Departs from: Tuesday – Friday – Randwick Gate, Centennial Park, 6:00am.
Saturday – 6:30am (NB – this ride meets at Bike Bug bicycle store, North Sydney, NOT Centennial Park).
Sunday – Randwick Gate, Centennial Park, 6:30am and 7:00am (easier ride departs at 7:00am).
Additional rides: Tuesday and Thursday, 3:00pm. Bunch training at Centennial Park.
Average speed: 25-30km/h (depending on the day and route).
Difficulty: Various – generally moderate, with a genuinely tough ride on Thursday
Notes: Randwick Botany are happy to accommodate new riders within all of their bunches, but a Tuesday or Wednesday ride is the ideal introduction to the bunch. If you plan on riding with them regularly, it would be appreciated if you join the club too.
*A username and password is required for those wanting to transfer the course information to their Garmin head unit.
Please contact the club for more information. http://www.randwickbotanycc.com