Owing to the fact that these rides are becoming increasingly popular and attendance is increasing each week, particularly with new riders it has become necessary to implement a few ride ‘rules’ and guidelines for all riders taking part.
Personal and Machine Safety (Mandatory)
1) ALL riders will wear a helmet which is properly fastened
2) ALL riders will wear appropriate clothing for road cycling
3) During April and October lights (front and rear) will be required as they will be needed towards the end of the ride.
4) Your bike must be in a fully roadworthy condition particularly brakes, tyres and steering.
5) Ensure that you have sufficient items with YOU to repair a puncture or replace a tube. Do not rely on somebody else having these items for you.
It is important for participating riders to understand that these rides are not a ‘chaingang’ high intensity training ride. They are a group training rides intended to be ridden at a steady pace achievable by all those in each group. There are ‘chaingangs’ run by local clubs on other nights if this is what you require.
There will be at least two groups for each ride which will generally be regarded as a ‘Fast’ group and a ‘Slow’ group. The fast group will usually average 20 to 22 mph for the 30 mile ride and the slower group will average 16 to 18 mph for the same, or slightly shorter route. Group size will be limited to 10 riders for safety reasons. If there are more than 10 riders for either group then a third group will be run. It will be up to individual riders to decide which group they ride with but if you are in any doubts about you ability then choose the slower option.
Generally the group will ride in two lines but this will obviously need to be single file where road type or traffic conditions dictate.
Riders will be expected to take their turn at the front of the group and whilst there to maintain a STEADY pace in order that the remainder of the group can remain in close contact. In other words do not continually accelerate/decelerate as this can lead to accidents from sudden movements or braking etc.
Call out ALL hazards such as holes, gravel, approaching vehicles, parked vehicles and LISTEN for others calling out hazards that you may not be aware of yourself.
When moving through after taking your turn on the front, move through and to the left without accelerating excessively and allow TWO new riders behind to take their turn at the front. If you are tired then just do a short turn! We may on occasions practice ‘through and off’ technique but this will be indicated during the ride.
On any ride there will be the occasional hazardous junction. Please do not take unnecessary risks and put yourself or others in danger. If the group splits, be prepared to wait and regroup after the next junction.
If you are aware of a rider who is being dropped ensure that those at the front of the group are told to ease off in order that he/she can re-join the group. If you are that rider then please shout (if you can!) so that others are aware you are struggling. It will happen to everybody at some time! Remember this is NOT a ‘last man standing’ chaingang ride!
Whilst you might think that some/all of the above is harsh or unnecessary it is done to ensure that the rides are both safe and enjoyable. In time the average speeds may increase as riders become not only fitter, but more skilled at group riding. There will be riders in every group who are very experienced and those who may be very fit and strong but are very inexperienced. If you are the latter then please watch and listen to the experienced ones and you will become a good rider.
If you are seen to be riding inappropriately during a ride then you will be spoken to on the ride and may be asked to leave.
Many thanks for your co-operation and have many miles of safe riding.