If you like cycling, but you’re worried about cycling on busy roads, that have potholes every few metres, then I recommend the cycle training night at Castle Combe. It is held every Tuesday on the car racing circuit, (minus the cars), from mid-April through to September, from 5.30pm until dusk. The cost is only £3 for grown ups, and £1 per child.
It is brilliant because people at all levels of cycling ability are welcome and catered for via a system on the track where elite riders take the inside lane, moderately fast riders in the centre, and slower people ride at the edge. The 1.8 mile track is lovely and smooth, obviously flat and wide, and very safe. There are clear entry and exit lanes. There are children as young as six and people on mountain bikes, along with experienced road riders. I went with my husband and two boys and had a really worthwhile and enjoyable ride, where we were all able to put in bursts of speed, or float along by the edge, or attack the wind (it is quite exposed up there) to our hearts’ content.
As cycling on roads can be a hairy experience, then the relative peace up at the Castle Combe track is a welcome feeling. Almost the only sounds are the whirling, whooshing winds that come from behind and build up to a crescendo as the elite riders come belting through in a two line formation: a joy to behold.
Castle Combe race circuit is reached in 40 minutes from Bristol City centre, and if you’re close to M32 or M4 then it will be quicker. An hour or two of safe cycling, with a chance to pile on some speed at your leisure, is a pleasant way to pass an evening and improve your fitness too.
Further details can be found here. Note that riders under 14 must be accompanied by a responsible adult.