IT’S been around seven months since lockdown changed how sports clubs operate, and Chard Wheelers have had to adapt to ever-changing rules and regulations.

On the local cycling scene it’s been a tough time for clubs, with many events cancelled and cycling in large groups stopped.

In the last few months, however, changes to sport have allowed the club to at least resume small group riding.

This has proved invaluable to clubmates who haven’t seen each other since March, and has been a chance to catch up, proving that group sport does as much for the spirit as it does for the body.

Club secretary Mark Hughes said: “These are hard times for Chard Wheelers and they are the same for football, rugby and all other sports who now find themselves without the support of income from events, games and such.

“But what coronavirus has shown us is that sport must go on, we can still ride our bikes, kick footballs and keep healthy, and I think that counts for a lot.”

Time trials, short circuit races and hillclimb events have been allowed to take place, as riders set off one at a time or in small groups.

At the hallowed Yeovil TT, long-time club stalwarts Dean Ward and Steve Noyce among others have posted fast times this year; Ward has kept up his record of racing or time trialling every year since 1999.

Hillclimb riders Rex Facey, Mike and Sharon Egan, Ollie Pennington and Daniel Eastment travelled to Cockercombe for the Somerset RC event, with all riders performing superbly.

It’s also worth noting that the club’s own hill climb up Yarcombe is due to take place this Sunday (October 18).

All are welcome, so bring your bike to Yarcombe Village Hall at 9am to register and race - you might surprise yourself!

For information on joining 1st Chard Wheelers, you can visit the club website here.