Dear Land Lubbers

A great day was had by the majority, following the Smuggler route over the moor and along the coast.  The feedback given told us it was a well-received day.

We at BikeShed are hugely grateful for the mega signup, just short of 700 riders in total, not bad for a 80/90% chance of precipitation on the day! The sunshine did come out to send you off with a smile and see you home, so hopefully you’ll remember it fondly enough to sign up for June 3rd, 2018. Speaking of next year, it is our 5th anniversary of the event, so something extra special is being conjured up… Can’t say more or you’d have to walk the plank! 

Photo’s have already popped up all over the shop – there’s an album of badly taken snaps from around Ride HQ on our Facebook page! Also, Sportive Photo were the pro-photographers hiding in the bushes, their photos are available at www.sportivephoto.com

I must mention the folks who give so generously to make the event what it is, so please extend your thanks should you come across the following, and better still support them where possible.

  • Simon and ‘Country Life Brewery’ who donated the beer you enjoyed.
  • Steve and Kate with ‘Rustic Table’, what great food from their “field kitchen”! A great deal……….although I didn’t tell them at the time!!
  • Julia and William from Claremont Marquees, who allow us a very generous rate and are so obliging with their time.
  • Dave at ‘Crankhouse Coffee’ provider of super smooth coffee at the BikeShed Café and Strava prize provider.
  • Railway Cafe at Bideford for the coffees.
  • Mick at Exmoor Forest Inn at Simonsbath, great hospitality and coffee pit stop.
  • Phil Parkes at Lee Abbey who was chopping the grass and clearing the site for us at 7am on the morning.
  • Porlock toll road estates.
  • Petroc College for the leg saving massages.
  • North Devon Council/Barnstaple town management for helping with the ‘tick boxes’.
  • MediBike guys and Ricky Hill for attempting to keep us all safe.
  • Sainsbury’s & Tesco for the discount in helping to fill our feed stations.
  • And of course, the real smugglers/marshals from ‘Taw Velo CC’ and ‘The Hell Cats Mudwrestlers’ fully decked out to cheer you on, adding such atmosphere when you least expected it.

Oops nearly forgot……to my brilliant team of guys and girls at BikeShed/Café/Bike-It who got up before first light to check the parrots were all on their perches ready for ‘anchors aweigh’, and my family who manned Lee Bay. (Special thanks to Keith who took on the role of Cap’n from Marcus)


We’re having a bit of trouble associating the winning Strava times with riders – aliases are doing us no favours! If you think you’re up there on the leaderboard, please email us with a link to your ride. We’ll dish out the prizes once we’re confident in the winners!

Please email the times or segment link through the website. The segments are ‘Beara Hill Short’ & ‘Porlock Toll Road’.

The male & female winners will receive a £30 voucher for The Bike Shed. 2nd and 3rd will be the lucky recipients of some smooth Crankhouse Coffee. All rides must be submitted to the Bike Shed via the event website by WED 21ST JUNE. http://www.thesmugglersportive.co.uk/contact-us/

Finally, thanks to Sarah at Force Cancer Charity for helping us connect to a great charity and giving reason for raising money that benefits so many. What better excuse to go ride a bike. Hope to see you next year if not before.


P.S. I can already feel the bounce of the plank……apologies to those that I should have given a mention!