On Sunday 1st September, thirteen members of the club joined around 150 riders in the inaugural edition of ‘The 5 Valleys Gran Fondo’. The event was organised by Prostate Cancer Wales to raise funds for lifesaving equipment that at present is not available in the principality. Glorious weather greeted participants at the start in Margam Park where the riders were set off in groups at 3 minute intervals. While not a race, the presence of riders from four other local clubs ensured that there was plenty of friendly banter and no small amount of competition.
The route wound its way to Pencoed and on to the first climb of the day at Smilog Woods, where club president, Gerald Clements and committee man Gwyn Humphries were on hand to ensure that nobody took the easy option. From there it was over to Blackmill via Gilfach and up the Ogmore Valley to The Bwlch. Acme riders received additional support at the top of this climb from Roger, Margaret , Carl and Sharon who handed out food from a ‘goody bag’ provided by Chris Thomas that could have fed an army.
The route split here with the shorter version heading into the Afan Valley and back to Margam while riders doing the longer route descended into the Rhondda then over the Rhigos to Glynneath. It continued to Neath then over the Cimla climb to Pontrhydyfen before an undulating final stretch back to Margam. All members completed the 75 mile event in times under five hours with Paul, Phil, Anthony and Ethan achieving the quickest times.
Everyone who took part can donate their sponsor money online at www.justgiving.com/fivevalleys. You do not have to return your sponsor forms.
(The only Acme rider not shown in the group photo is Chris Clements)
All our members wish to send their best wishes for the future to Ian and Katie Humphries who leave, tomorrow 25th September for their new home in Devon. Ian, we have all enjoyed your company and who knows, some of us may turn up on your doorstep one day and accompany you on one of your marathon hilly rides !