Pioneer Run


7708 Anthony Pownall sits back as he makes the coffee break on a 1900 De Dion Bouton tricycle. The bike has just been restored from a very bad state and most of the worn or missing parts had to be made from scratch

It also provides welcome relief for rider and/or machine with refreshment and general facilities.

For a few brief hours on the Sunday morning, the school car park became a busy workshop and service station. It was an opportunity for support crews to catch up with their charges, to re-fuel, perhaps a bit of fine-tuning, maybe some running repairs, although some were ambitious in what constituted this last category.

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Many riders deliberately missed the stop. Inevitably, this year's warm weather brought out the traffic, adding plenty of unwelcome hazards to the Epsom-Brighton journey. By late morning, Handcross village became badly congested. For others, it was on the pragmatic basis that: 'If the bike's going – why stop?'

Inevitably, for a few, Handcross marked the end of the road, throwing in the metaphorical towel. Bike preparation is one thing, but there's always an element of luck in arriving on Brighton's Madeira Drive.

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