How the Ribble Endurance SLe helped keep one 69-year-old’s passion for cycling alive.

“If I couldn’t cycle anymore I might as well lie down and die. It’s hugely important to me, it’s freedom.”

Frank Browne said riding the Ribble Endurance SLe has enabled him to continue riding with his club which has meant the world to him.

“This bike means I still get to ride with my friends”

says 69-year-old who rode a staggering 10,000km last year.
Frank can keep up with fellow club riders now

Frank Browne, of Dungarvan, Ireland, took up cycling in his fifties and says it’s ‘never too late’ to get back into the sport he loved as a child.

He said: “I cycled as a kid as most people do but as I got older, life happens and I stopped. But when I was around 54 I decided I needed to change my life for health reasons.”

“I stopped smoking and wanted to get fitter. So I got back on the bike. I remember vividly the first ride I ever did – it was literally for 20 minutes around my town. When I got off the bike my legs felt like they were going to give way under me. I was so unfit I don’t think my body knew what was going on. It makes me smile thinking back at that now. But I stuck at it. I started just riding on my own, and then eventually joined a club. We have been riding together for around ten or fifteen years and get on so well, and we know each other inside and out. We understand each other. They are the people I see most, other than my family.”

But as Frank got older he struggled to keep up on the group rides.

The grandfather-of-three said: “As I’ve got older I found it harder to keep up on some of the club rides on the hills. The group are great and they always waited for me but I just didn’t want to have to hold everyone up. 

“Last year one of the group, Emma, told me about e-bikes. But I thought they wouldn’t be for me as they are just so heavy and wouldn’t want to have to push them along if the battery runs out. But Emma found Ribble e-bikes and was excited to give this one a try as it was so light in comparison.”

The Ribble Endurance SLe with Shimano 105 weighs 13kg – and is part of the lightest range of electric pedal-assisted bikes in the world.

Frank added: “I am delighted with the bike. It has allowed me to stay riding with the people I have ridden with for years so nothing can ever really explain what that means to me. It has allowed me to keep my social life. 

“Since getting the e-bike I now look forward to the hills for a breather.”

Frank is also able to lead rides on his new bike.

He added: “It’s great that at this stage in my life I can lead rides and ride with the younger and fitter riders.”

The battery life of the Ribble Endurance SLe can depend on a number of factors including the weight of the rider, route profile and also temperature.

But Frank has ridden more than 200km and still had power to spare.

He said: “One of my initial concerns of electric bikes is the battery life. But I did 207km and there was still battery life at the end of the ride which I was really impressed with.”

Ribble Endurance SL e

“Don’t get me wrong, I still have to put the effort into riding the bike and there are times where I think ‘why don’t I just play golf instead?’. But cycling is my life and I would be lost without it.”

“Cycling for me is something to live for, it’s what I look forward to.”

“If I couldn’t cycle anymore I might as well lay down and die. It’s hugely important to me. It’s freedom. Being able to get out and see the landscape and appreciate out countryside. There are beautiful roads to cycle on in Ireland. I will be aiming to ride just as much if not more kilometres this year so excited to get out on the road.”

We headed out for a ride and catch up with Frank – watch the full video here

Want to know more about our electric bikes? We look into whether they could be right for you – view blog

Ever wanted to pack your bike up and head off for an adventure? Ryan and Ben did exactly that as they headed from Nepal to India for an adventure of a lifetime – view blog

  1. Great stuff. do around 10k a year too but at 73 i still dont feel the need for and ebike . MY R872 is just fine

  2. At 81 I still ride my club runs on my normal road bike. Obviously in the future, God willing, I will have to go electric.

  3. At 75 I no longer do group rides, but quite happily do 70 odd miles once a month, and about 3 30 to 50 mile rides a week otherwise. I only average about 11.5 to 12.5mph, so I guess an e bike could be a good idea. Can’t afford one at the moment though.

  4. I have a Ribble e-bike, I am 80 and bought the Ebike in July and transformed my cycling, I got to stage in my life when we’re a problem, not any more, still have to pedal but it helps and 50 is not a problem .

    Harry Clements

  5. I’m 73, and convinced. Frank’s account could be me, for exactly the same reasons. I could change groups to a slightly slower one, but I really enjoy the company of the crew I ride with, despite being the oldest by a decade.
    Saving up, and persuading ‘her in doors’ !,

  6. I am 70 years young and took up cycling 6yrs.ago and having a struggle to keep up on club runs in the Glens of Antrim so in June 2020 I ordered a Ribble Endurance SLe and it arrived in August and I have not looked back it is just great the hills are not a problem any more and I am up with the group

  7. Ive been cycling 30 years. Had Peugeots, Treks, giants, nukeproofs, etc etc(best was a rose carbon pro, beautiful… still got it.. 12 years later… its immaculate )… had my ribble endurance sle a year… only worked for maybe 60% of that… been broke since 3rd December and still waiting to get it back (now 3rd Jan). I’m not that old but to put it bluntly, have knackered knees. If I want to keep cycling I need an ebike or I’ll have both knees done in plastic.. simple as that. I bought a ribble because its British (i know the gubbins isnt) and to support our economy especially with EU etc. 3600 quid and another set of wheels as I like to have spares, not bad just going into lockdown! Just feel really let down by them so far. 4th time its broke since March 2020 and communication getting worse. Really dont trust the bike now. Failed on me 20miles from home… already done 20 and with the bike being heavy when not powered and there being drag from the rear wheel (there is… it’s like the brakes are always on when you stop peddling)… it was hard work… knees on ice and strapped up… deep heat and ibuprofen for 2 days. Cant afford to keep doing that! Seriously need to get these things right when you spend that much money with a company… oh and never once said sorry for the poor product. Hey ho. It was ribble or the bianchi aria (should have gone for the bianchi but its slighlty heavier) Got a Cairn coming soon… communication been brilliant. Hopefully put this poor Ribble saga behind me and be able to actually enjoy cycling again. Sorry guys… but you have really let me down… oh and fix my bike and return it… oh and actually read your emails and speak to me… been a month now. Cheers!

  8. Hi Stuart,
    Thanks for getting in touch and I’m sorry if you have not received the service that you deserve as a valued customer. I have passed your details onto the customer service team so that they can investigate the matter further and let you the status of the return.
    Best Regards
    Team Ribble

  9. I am 62 and bought a Ribble ALe which arrived January 2021. Have to say the pre sales team are brilliant. The video call to the showroom is first class and gives you a virtual tour of the bike you want from great experts. Due to COVID the bike took about 4 months to arrive due to parts shortages. Now I have the bike I do around 60-70 miles a week solo riding in the New Forest. I have had issues with the mud guards coming loose and brakes making horrendous noises. After sales support is very poor. Left messages and spoke to the team who said they would investigate and get back to me but more times than not they don’t. It is a good bike but like Stuart said earlier Ribble’s after sales needs great improvement to match their pre-sales team! Was very saddened to read Stuart’s experience.

  10. Hi Howard,
    Thanks for getting in touch and I’m incredibly sorry if the aftercare service that you received was not up to the standard that we expect every customer to receive. Obviously, we take any such feedback seriously, which is why I have forwarded your message to the Customer Service Management team. I expect you will be hearing from them shortly.
    Best Regards
    [email protected]

  11. We travelled the 60 odd miles to the Ribble store with the intention of buying 2 e road bikes,were fitted by a very efficient young man ,went to pay & order (over 9k) of bikes only to be told they refused cash,which is unbelievable as it is legal tender in the UK. For many reasons we support the right to pay in cash as we support the Which campaign,this protects the elderly,partially sighted etc the list is endless we refuse to use cards because the banks make enough money without giving them an extra 2% on every transaction.
    You are letting the country down & losing business as a result.

  12. Hi Des,
    Unfortunately, our showrooms are not set up to handle cash payments and we can only accept payments via PayPal, Cyclescheme, Finance or Credit Card. We are sorry if this caused you any inconvenience.
    Best Regards
    Team Ribble

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