THE New Year brings with it a new cycling season, new goals, and new good intentions and on Saturday, even some weak winter sunshine.

It also saw the welcome return of Fullarton Wheelers club members Steven Donaldson and Gordon Stead, fresh from their holiday homes in sunnier climbs.

No fewer than 24 members arrived in Kilwinning for the regular run to Largs. The Fullarton Saturday run is faster than the Sunday Club Run, and the pace of the faster riders did eventually take its toll.

The big group soon split into several smaller groups on-route to the ever-welcoming Bagel Basket café.

As it was the New Year some riders opted for coffee minus the cake. The return journey saw the full group staying together most of the way back to Kilwinning, with a few spirited individuals stretching their legs in the last few miles. Distance covered was approximately 35 miles at a speedy 18mph average.

The consensus among the 12 riders who met at Irvine Cross for the weekly run on Sunday was that the temperature was minus eight degrees. Experienced roadman George Gass could not feel his hand or feet and was wanting a cuddle.

On the plus side, the club were joined by a prospective new member who has an extremely impressive racing record. And in another first, she was accompanied

by her husband riding an electric bike. Due to the icy conditions and perishing cold a shortened club run was decided upon. This involved a circular tour of Irvine, Drybridge, Dundonald, Symington, near (but not quite into) Tarbolton, then onwards to Galston. On the A76 heading back to Kilmarnock, with the electric bike still in tow, our new elite cycling companion related some tales of her cycling past. Not because she was pushing the stories but because everyone was interested to hear about it. Sprockets Cycles hovered into view and it was in for coffee, food and heat. Distance covered was 30 to 40 miles for most and a reasonable 15.5mph average, and there was just one puncture.

Fullarton Wheelers managed to squeeze in a quick winter league event before Christmas. The course covered five miles and the description of it seemed worryingly vague.

Nevertheless, it was another busy night expertly organised by Jim Seenan and Stephen Cassidy. Congratulations go to John Todd, outright winner of Winter League Event Five.

Also congratulations ao Natalie Hunter, winner of the women’s competition. Fraser Bell won the handicap competition, and Sean Barron holds the top spot in the ‘power to weight’ competition. New Year diets will perhaps see this position challenged.

Finally the Irvine club are proud to present the FWCC Ice Breaker 2-up time trial.

This is a team event in which two riders work together to achieve the fastest time over a 10-mile course.

They invite club riders to start their year in style, and in horrendous weather conditions.

It is one of the Club’s most popular events and details can be found on their Facebook page.