Meet MDCC's Chairman - Andrew Payne


Andrew is one of the clubs longest serving active members, and has been part of the Sunday morning fast group longer than anyone else. Often referred to as the metronome, due to his smooth riding style, you will regularly see him at the head of the group nearly always in cut offs or shorts, no matter what the temperature. Read on to find out more about Andrew:


Q. When did you start and what made you start cycling?

A. As I believe is quite common, I used to ride everywhere while at school.  Around 17 or 18 once I learned to drive riding basically stopped.  Between then and early 2005, I kept my bike and would have gone out once or twice a year for a short ride while doing some errands.  Maximum ride length would have been 8-10miles.  In 2004 I was looking to lose weight and get a little fitter. So an elliptical cross trainer was purchased for myself and Sharon (wife) to use. After about 9 months this became knackered, so I purchased a bike and got Sharon another elliptical trainer.  My idea at the time was to go out for about 1hr at the weekends and possible 45mins in the evenings during the lighter summer months.   After 2-3 weeks I got bored and looking at joining a club.


Q. Why did you join MDCC?

A. I joined the club around May 2005 see above.  I also considered Thames Velo, but it appeared they were heavily into road racing which I didn’t fancy as it didn’t look safe. Their Sunday morning rides didn’t start till about 10am and finished around 3pm after a mid-point coffee stop.  This appeared to tie up most of the day which Sharon may not have been overly pleased about.  Maidenhead & District rides started at 8.30 and appeared to focus on timetrials which I felt were a safer option.  After a short call with Tony Deadman I turned up to one of the Thursday evening 10tt on the Drift Road during May.


Q. You are very good at TT's and compete regularly. Why are they so appealing to you?

A. Thanks for the term ‘very good at TT’s’, but that’s not quite what I would call my performance.  In the club I have become one of the better TT’er but riders like Peter Loveridge and Jon Elliott are both much better than me.  Their initial appeal was they are safer than road racing and once you get into it they are highly competitive against riders of a similar ability, despite being nowhere near the overall winner.


Q. What sort of riding do you enjoy most now?

A. I like all the riding I do, if I don’t enjoy it I wouldn’t do it.  This includes all the commuting / bike related training in school and with Lorry drivers, the longer distance guiding riding I do, hard core training when time allows and I’m not knackered, taking part in TT’s and club rides.  If I had to choose it would be the guided riding and TT’s.


Q. Is cycling the only sport you do?

A. Time is the biggest limiting factor so no.  I do occasionally have a game of squash with my grown up children.


Q. You ride most days due to your job. How do you combine this with specific TT training?

A.  Difficult.  Since I’ve given up my IT sales role (5 years ago) and becoming a full time professional cyclist, the time trialling performance has gone downhill.  I’m now on the bike every weekday (plus weekends), commute between 20-60 miles a day.  After many discussions I believe the problem limiting the performance isn’t so much the cycling, but being on my feet all the time at work.  My legs normally feel too tired to put in race efforts or hard interval periods.  Age is also against me and I’ve found recovery takes longer than it used to. When working in IT I still did a lot of commuting which included structured or unstructured interval sessions, short easy recovery rides racing and group rides, but the working day was mainly static and seated.


 Q. So roughly how many miles do you do a year?

A. Last year 11,495 miles but about 3 years ago just over 14,000


Q. Other than cycling what other hobbies do you have? 

A. Usual house and garden maintenance.  I would like to race my radio controlled cars again.  This can also be very time consuming.  I’ve still got all my equipment which is over 16 years old and just about works.  During February I did turn up at a local evening club to race, but they wouldn’t let me take part as the equipment didn’t meet current specifications.


Q. What is your most memorable ride?

A. Doing a 25tt in 56.24 on the Bentley A31 H25/8 on a very hot Saturday afternoon in 2017.


Q. Does anyone else in the family cycle?

A. All my family ride. Sharon is a fair weather social rider.  Her view is that if going uphill means you can’t continue to talk to your friends you should either get off and push or go another route.


Q. If you could have any bike what would it be and why?

A. Not sure.  In my mind choosing a bike is a bit hit and miss.  Most bikes get very good reviews, but they all tend to ride differently.  I’m currently happy with my Cervelo P5 TT bike and my custom made Cyfac, so have no plans in the foreseeable future to buy a new bike.  At some point in the future I do expect I will buy an electric assisted bike, but I expect that to be at least 7 years away.


Q. How are you managing with the current situation?

A. Frustrated due to restrictions, but as the family are all well, I would say ok.  My elderly parents are finding it much harder. They are both well and just about mobile.  The highlight of their day used to be a trip to a coffee shop to get out of the flat.  This is being missed and is going to cause other ongoing problems.

Work dried in schools as soon as they shut and the work with lorry drivers shortly after.  I’m well on top of gardening and the bikes are staying cleaner (helped by the dry weather).  I’m out on the bike most days, but have mixed views on going for long rides.  Shopping is my biggest concern. Most people are clearly trying to keep distances from others, but a small number don’t appear to have got the message.