Author Archives: hscladmin

Stroud Green: post-lockdown champions!


Stroud Green continued their winning form last Friday at Downhills Park to take the post-lockdown race series by a comfortable margin.

Stroud Green’s dominance was tested by a resurgent Risley team — the only other school to take part in each of the three rounds.

They were joined by the current title holders North Harringay, making a welcome return to the League.

Risley took control of the boys 24” and 26” categories, winning all but two races after one of their riders was relegated for repeated and deliberate swerving into another.

The girls races were fairly well split between Stroud Green and North Harringay, with three wins each and, for the most part, sharing second places.

The balance shifted back to Stroud Green during the mixed finals, with the school winning three out of the five races.

But it was Risley’s new-found strength and confidence that marked the day. Tired of trailing behind Stroud Green, they came determined to win the round — and they would have, too, if not for their rider’s relegation. Five wins and seven 2nd places: their best result of the series.

Consistency, though, is everything, and no team was able to mount a serious challenge to Stroud Green’s command in the standings.

See the full results and points-per-school.

Round 4 standings
League standings after Round 4

Thank you to all the schools, volunteers and parents for their support and enthusiasm as we sought to get our League back on track after so many months. And for your patience on race day as we fumbled with our face masks, sanitised bikes and did what we could to make race days as safe as possible without killing too much of the fun.

We look forward to returning with our normal calendar of monthly races in the new school year, with a full complement of schools.

Find out more about the Haringey Schools Cycling League. If you’d like your school to take part, see How to Join.

MTB racing in Finsbury Park

round 3 collage_70

After a gap of three years, the League returned to MTB racing in Finsbury Park for the penultimate round in the post-lockdown mini-series.

With just two schools taking part, riders were able to compete in multiple races, boosting their teams’ standings with the extra points on offer.

Normally held in autumn or early spring, the track was a lot drier than in previous years. Despite the lack of mud, it was still a technical course which needed skill and confidence to handle at speed — and stamina for the uphill return straight.

The day saw expert bike handling by some riders who negotiated the twists and sharp turns with apparent ease. And there were the usual close finishes that make the races such fun to spectate.

The lack of riders on the day meant that some races were mixed categories, and the boys and girls races were combined in the three finals. It was great to see the girls giving the boys a run for their money, taking top spots in both the A and B finals.

Stroud Green maintained a comfortable lead over Risley (who were down two riders), winning most of the races (save the Boys 26”, which Risley dominated) and the team relay. Risley ended the day with 179 points, with Stroud Green on 265.

See the full results and points-per-school.

Round 3 Standings
League standings after Round 3

But the fights to cross the line first are only part of the story. 

In the day’s racing, we saw riders crash dramatically — and get back on and finish the race. There were riders who chased hard from the back, just so they could move up one place. And riders for whom just getting round the course was an achievement in itself.

So, while everyone races to win, what defines their win will not be the same for all.

The league’s final event this term will be on 9th July at Downhills Park.

Find out more about the Haringey Schools Cycling League. If you’d like your school to take part, see How to Join.

How fast is your school?

opensprints race

We think all primary school children should have the opportunity to experience the sheer fun of racing on bikes. To help new schools give it a try, we can now bring cycle racing directly to your school — indoors!

Using our brand new Frog track bikes mounted on Kreitler Goldsprints rollers, and hooked up to OpenSprints electronics, we can run roller racing sessions in your school’s gym or hall.

roller setup

Roller racing is an easy way for schools to introduce bike racing to children — even those who aren’t too confident on two wheels. Four riders at a time pedal as fast as they can on our static bikes, while their progress round a virtual course is projected on the wall in front of them. It’s fun, fast and noisy! And because the races are quick, there’s usually time for several classes to have a go.

rollers 1

So, just how fast is your school?

We’ve been running a mini roller-racing series in the latter days of lockdown with some of our regular schools — and getting some impressive times over 500m races (that’s two laps of the Olympic Velodrome).

We’re especially keen to hear from Haringey primary schools that haven’t taken part in the cycling league before. So here’s the challenge: can you beat our schools’ top times?

opensprints winner

Find out more about the Haringey Schools Cycling League. If you’d like your school to take part, see How to Join.

And we’re back…! School racing returns to Haringey’s parks

round2 v31_75

Last Friday, the Haringey Schools Cycling League held its first outdoor race event since the easing of the pandemic lockdown.

Belmont Junior, Risley and Stroud Green primaries raced on a cyclo-cross course at Belmont Recreation Ground, as a part of a mini post-lockdown series.

And it was close: Belmont and Stroud Green were evenly matched, with either one taking first or second spots in most of the afternoon’s races. Risley, who fielded the smallest team, dominated in the Boys 26″ B-Final. In the end, Belmont edged in front of Stroud Green by just one point. See the full scores and points-per-school.

Mini-series standings so far

The day also marked the first event since the League became an independent, British Cycling-affiliated club.

The league has also been running a series of indoor roller racing days at primary schools in Haringey. If you’d like us to come to your school, please contact us for details.

The league’s next event will be an MTB race on 25 June at Finsbury Park.

Find out more about the Haringey Schools Cycling League. If you’d like your school to take part, see How to Join.

Come to our AGM on 17th March

The Haringey Schools Cycling League’s first AGM on Tuesday 17th March 2020, 6pm-8pm (at the Turkish Cypriot Community Association, 628 – 630 Green Lanes, N8 OSD)

This is an exciting time for the League, as we move away from our host school and set up as an independent club, affiliated to British Cycling.

We’ll be doing what we’ve always done: bringing the fun of cycle racing to primary school children in Haringey.

We’re still only reaching a small number of Haringey schools, though, and we want to change that!

Please come to our AGM, get involved and help us do it.

Thank you.

League Finale at Downhills


After the disappointment of having Round 6 rained off last month, the sun finally shone on the League for the last event of the season.

Five schools competed in Downhills Park on a fast course that suited the sprinters — but only if they had the skills to tackle the tight, technical turns effectively.

And there was a lot to race for. North Harringay needed to hang on to their place at the top of the standings. Chestnuts — who’d been having their best ever season — were threatening to push South Harringay out of their way and fight NHP for the top spot.

Some races were settled by the first turn, if riders could get a good start and put distance between themselves and the pack before the riders bunched up at the bend.

Others were fights all the way to the line, with the last tight, narrow turn bringing riders almost to a stop before powering down the the final straight.

All the schools showed impressive bike skills at being able to handle the course with such confidence. There were inevitable crashes, but these became further examples of the riders’ determination and resilience.

North Harringay just managed to scrape ahead of Chestnuts to take the most points of the day, and claim the League title for the fifth time. Winning five of the days’ 16 races, Chestnuts came second on the day, finishing just behind South Harringay to take third place in the title race.

Completing their first season with the League, St Mary’s notched up an impressive three wins, including the Boys 26″ A-final. Risley and SHP both had A-final winners in the 24″ categories.

Full race results and points

The event brought to a close one of the most successful seasons since the beginning of the League in 2012. Three new schools have taken part, with the total number of children racing at our events across the year topping 340. Nearly half of these children were racing for the first time.

Events for the 2019-20 season will be added to the calendar once the new school year starts in September.

Find out more about the Haringey Schools Cycling League. If you’d like your school to take part, see How to Join.

Chestnuts fly on home turf


Edging ahead: Chestnuts and North Harringay battle it out in the Girls 24″

Chestnuts Primary were on a mission to win as Round 5 of the League took to the school’s home park last week.

Racing against five other schools, they dominated the day, taking the most wins overall, and continued their hold over the Girls 24” category.

North Harringay were snapping at their heals — winning five races in the Boys and Girls 26” — but had to settle for second place in points for the day.

Stroud Green won three of the days’ races, taking first place in both the Boys’ 24” A-Final and 26” B-Final. South Harringay, St. Aidan’s and St. Mary’s notched up two wins each.

Round 5 saw the most races ever held in a single League event — 20 races in just 2 hours. Thanks to the riders, school staff and volunteers for their help and cooperation in making this possible.

Race results and points

South Harringay currently have a slender lead in the standings1, just ahead of North Harringay. The League competition will be decided on the schools’ best 5 out of 6 scores.

1To make it fairer to schools unable to attend all events, the roller racing scores have been weighted to give each school double points.

Round 6 will be held on 7th June in Bruce Castle Park.

Find out more about the Haringey Schools Cycling League. If you’d like your school to take part, see How to Join.

Herne Hill Velodrome


Riders from Coleridge, North Haringey, Stroud Green and Risley took part in the League’s annual trip to the Herne Hill Velodrome for a day’s coaching and racing on track bikes.

The first half of the session was getting children accustomed to riding track bikes — which have no freewheel or brakes, and require riders to use toe straps on the pedals.

The riders rode progressively higher lines around the banked track and, as their confidence grew, practised speed control, pacing and overtaking.

The day finished with a pursuit race between the four schools, won by Stroud Green. Risley came second, with Coleridge and North Harringay drawing for third place.

Round 5 of the League is on 10th May at Chestnuts Park.

Find out more about the Haringey Schools Cycling League. If you’d like your school to take part, see How to Join.

Cyclo-cross at Ducketts


Round 4 of the League saw six schools return to cyclo-cross racing on a twisty, technical course at a blustery Ducketts Common still recovering from the effects of Storm Gareth two days before.

This was just the second time that schools had raced on grass since the season opener in November. With North Harringay knocked off the top of the standings during the previous round, and Risley and South Harringay set to push them into third place, there was a lot to race for.

Chestnuts dominated the Girls 24, winning both heats and taking first and second places in the A final.

In the Boys 24, South Harringay took the first heat and the A final. Risley won the B final and the first heat of the Boys 26.

Stroud Green had a good day, winning the B finals in both the Girls 24 and 26 races. And St Mary’s — racing for the first time on grass — won the second heat in the Boys 24 and came second in the Boys 26 B final.

North Harringay saw a return to form, confidently winning all but one race in the Girls 26 and the A final in the Boys 26. They finished the day with a 16-point lead in the standings.

The next round will be on 10th May at Chestnuts Park.

Race results and points

Find out more about the Haringey Schools Cycling League. If you’d like your school to take part, see How to Join.

South Harringay race to the top

Reigning champions North Harringay were pushed into second place in the League competition by South Harringay at this year’s roller racing event.

In what is to become a regular winter fixture, 82 riders from eight schools (including newcomers St Mary’s and Our Lady of Muswell Hill) raced each other on fixed wheeled track bikes mounted on roller racing stations, while a computer projector displayed their progress over 500 meters.

The day’s top time was notched up by Risley, recording a very fast 34.06 seconds in the Year 6 Boys race.

Next up was South Harringay, achieving almost the same time in Year 5 Boys (34.62 seconds).

Stroud Green achieved the third best time, an impressive 37.06 seconds in Year 4 Girls.

But it was South Harringay who came top of the points leader board for the day, with 63 points. Stroud Green were second with 53 points, and Risley third with 50 points.

Surprise of the day was seeing North Harringay come joint 6th with just 33 points, and South Harringay knock them into second place in the overall standings.

The next round will be on 15th March at Ducketts Common.

Race results and points

Find out more about the Haringey Schools Cycling League. If you’d like your school to take part, see How to Join.