General Cycling Discussion - organized rides...what do I need to know?
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07-09-02, 09:43 PM
Well, it's official. I signed up for my first 50 mile organized ride on July 28. Also, I plan to do an organized 25 miler on Sunday. Will register for that one when I get there.
What do I need to know about riding with such groups? I have no idea how many riders will be involved. How do I handle slower riders (of the 5-10 mph variety)? Do I call out, "Passing on your left," and pass as if I was riding on a path? Anything else you can tell a beginner (such as myself) about these kinds of rides? :)
It should go ok... I just don't want to do anything stupid or offensive. :rolleyes:
My first organized ride will be in Sept. It'll either be 55 miles or 75 miles. So let's hear it from the more experienced riders.
07-10-02, 07:09 AM
a lot of organized rides stagger the starts, for the distance of the rides. (good/ fast riders doing 100 mi start before 75..50...then the family doing the 10 mile loop through town) others have a mass start. Be careful at the start until everyone spreads out. You should ride at your own pace, slower than some faster than others. Sometimes I say "passing" Depends on the situation. If 2 people are taking up the entire lane, I'll say it, but if someone is ridding along the white line I may not. Hydrate days before and eat on the ride. A power bar mid way through will really help.
07-10-02, 08:20 AM
If you are riding in a pack, or at least among other cyclists, communicate with them. Most people appreciate hearing a polite "on your left" when being passed. (I know I do). Many will reply "thank you." "Stopping," "Slowing," "Right turn." and "Left turn" are also helpful phrases.
If you need to stop in the middle of the ride, get your bike and yourself completely off the road.
Are you planning to ride alone? Chances are good that you will find someone who rides your pace to pass the time with...if you want.
Wear sunscreen. Drink plenty of water. Don't whine. Stretch. Don't spend too long at the rest stops--you'll get stiff.
Carry the things you might need: a raincoat (if the weather is threatening), a tube, a pump, a tool or two that you know how to use. A power bar. Share these things with others who might need them.
Make sure your bike is in good operating condition before the ride. The SAG truck is for emergencies, not routine maintenance.
And most important of all: have fun! :D It is great to spend a day riding with other people who share our passon for cycling.
07-10-02, 08:56 AM
great advice regularguy...also do not forget patch kit.
07-10-02, 10:15 AM
Watch out for people who havent asked for or heeded all the above advice. Some events have many experienced riders who maintain good group discipline, but others are mostly newbies who behave like a herd of cats.
People may stop without warning or just fall off their bike in front of you, so keep a safe distance from the rider in front, and dont get trapped on the sides, those are your escape routes.
One thing that wasn't mentioned: Make sure you get a map of the route. We don't want you to get lost. :D
Generally the roads will have colored arrows (red, yellow, white, etc.) painted on the side of the road indicating a turn or continue through an intersection.
If there are different distance options (15, 25, 35, 50, etc.) the arrows may be different colors for the different options. This information should be shown on the map.
If there are different distance options, be aware that you may come to an intersection with more than one color arrow. Follow the color for the distance option you are riding.
Good luck with the ride. :thumbup:
07-12-02, 04:01 PM
Thanks for the input, everyone. It's good to have an idea of what to expect. Tonight and tomorrow I'll be riding a bit more to 'prepare'. Tonight's ride will likely be short, but tomorrow should be a good one. Must remember to get a good night's sleep, too. That's been a toughie lately...
Thanks again! Sunday's ride will be fun.
Have fun riding on Sunday. 25 miles should be easy. It will be a real short ride, and before you know it, you'll say "that was it??? oh man, I want to ride more".
I think I'll do a 50 my first time (in Sept.), but I'm afraid I won't make it. The longest rides I do are about 20 - 25 miles. After those rides, I feel tired already. So I think it'll be a challenge to go for 50 when 25 is your norm.
HAVE FUN! :beer:
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