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Old 01-23-10, 11:07 PM   #1
IronMac
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Poor Group Ride - Drop Them?

Hi all,

Last night I was out with a group of riders and while they were enthusiastic, fast riders they were doing incredibly dangerous things on the road. Now, this is not a racing group or anything like that, just a group of like-minded riders who decided to get together for a night ride.

Some of the stuff they were doing included:

- blowing past red lights
- almost no hand signaling
- no looking over shoulders before changing lanes
- crossing intersections while in the wrong position of the lane so that they cycle across the lane to get to the outside where they belong
- leaders who zoom off without the rest of the group
- passing indiscriminately
- sidling (past me) into the blind spots of trucks and buses while at reds
- weaving side to side in the lane

Now, I don't normally ride with groups so I have very limited experience with riding with anyone else (my normal bicycling partner would have freaked but she's a racer) so maybe this is typical of all group rides? All I kept thinking was that this group was asking for an accident soon because car traffic here in Singapore is pretty fast and heavy.

So, should I just not ride with these people and just do it myself? Am I being too critical? I love night riding and there is safety in numbers, one of the good things about this group is that they have a lot of lights on but nothing will save you if you're in a blind spot somewhere.
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Old 01-23-10, 11:27 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by IronMac View Post
Hi all,

Last night I was out with a group of riders and while they were enthusiastic, fast riders they were doing incredibly dangerous things on the road. Now, this is not a racing group or anything like that, just a group of like-minded riders who decided to get together for a night ride.

Some of the stuff they were doing included:

- blowing past red lights
- almost no hand signaling
- no looking over shoulders before changing lanes
- crossing intersections while in the wrong position of the lane so that they cycle across the lane to get to the outside where they belong
- leaders who zoom off without the rest of the group
- passing indiscriminately
- sidling (past me) into the blind spots of trucks and buses while at reds
- weaving side to side in the lane

Now, I don't normally ride with groups so I have very limited experience with riding with anyone else (my normal bicycling partner would have freaked but she's a racer) so maybe this is typical of all group rides? All I kept thinking was that this group was asking for an accident soon because car traffic here in Singapore is pretty fast and heavy.

So, should I just not ride with these people and just do it myself? Am I being too critical? I love night riding and there is safety in numbers, one of the good things about this group is that they have a lot of lights on but nothing will save you if you're in a blind spot somewhere.
This is par for the course for group rides in L.A. Just play it by ear. Remember you're always riding your own bike, and nobody else can make YOU do something stupid. If the risk is too great, don't go, if you can manage to be reasonably safe yourself, despite what others do, then go along.
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Old 01-23-10, 11:50 PM   #3
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Eh eff that. Cycling is dangerous enough without riding with ******bags that just increase the divide between motorists and cyclists with their dangerous, illegal, and stupid shenanigans.
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Old 01-24-10, 12:27 AM   #4
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Hi all,

Last night I was out with a group of riders and while they were enthusiastic, fast riders they were doing incredibly dangerous things on the road. Now, this is not a racing group or anything like that, just a group of like-minded riders who decided to get together for a night ride.

Some of the stuff they were doing included:

- blowing past red lights
- almost no hand signaling
- no looking over shoulders before changing lanes
- crossing intersections while in the wrong position of the lane so that they cycle across the lane to get to the outside where they belong
- leaders who zoom off without the rest of the group
- passing indiscriminately
- sidling (past me) into the blind spots of trucks and buses while at reds
- weaving side to side in the lane

Now, I don't normally ride with groups so I have very limited experience with riding with anyone else (my normal bicycling partner would have freaked but she's a racer) so maybe this is typical of all group rides? All I kept thinking was that this group was asking for an accident soon because car traffic here in Singapore is pretty fast and heavy.

So, should I just not ride with these people and just do it myself? Am I being too critical? I love night riding and there is safety in numbers, one of the good things about this group is that they have a lot of lights on but nothing will save you if you're in a blind spot somewhere.
What is the group ride leader’s response? Sometimes some of those actions happen in one of our group rides but the offending rider is most often teased unmercifully at the very next opportunity, peer pressure. If it continues the group leader is often asked to address the problem before the next ride. Or is this not an organized group?
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Old 01-24-10, 12:35 AM   #5
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They're squirrels; any experienced rider would stay as far away from them as possible. You're better off finding another group or riding alone.
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Old 01-24-10, 12:39 AM   #6
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I'd ditch the group. While riding with a group, my opinion is that you depend on others to make safe calls and decisions. One dipstick move and you could be the one to get hurt! I'd make the right call before taking the risk of finding out that I made the wrong decision.
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Old 01-24-10, 12:39 AM   #7
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What Louis said absolutely +1
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Old 01-24-10, 07:48 AM   #8
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August 9 I was riding with my 9 year old grandson. One minute everything was going fine like I didn't have a care in the world. The next I was picking myself up off of the Katy trail with two broken elbows. I needed a home healthcare worker for 2 weeks, I was out of work for 9 weeks and it's looking like the left one is never going to heal back to where it was. We weren't doing anything crazy, that's just how fast things can happen.

I give crazy bike riders a wide berth.
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Old 01-24-10, 09:04 AM   #9
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you were riding in Singapore?

what the heck. how does the rest of the riding generally go in Singapore? If that's bicyclist expected behavior, there you go. i doubt singaporean drivers are terribly in tune with bicyclists hand signals, etc. i suspect it is much more 'claim your own' riding style there.
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Old 01-24-10, 09:37 AM   #10
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August 9 I was riding with my 9 year old grandson. One minute everything was going fine like I didn't have a care in the world. The next I was picking myself up off of the Katy trail with two broken elbows. I needed a home healthcare worker for 2 weeks, I was out of work for 9 weeks and it's looking like the left one is never going to heal back to where it was. We weren't doing anything crazy, that's just how fast things can happen.

I give crazy bike riders a wide berth.
Yikes! What happened, Retro Grouch?
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Old 01-24-10, 10:40 AM   #11
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If you get together for a coffee after the ride, talk about riding etiquette. If things dont get better in future rides, leave them.
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Old 01-24-10, 12:39 PM   #12
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Now, I don't normally ride with groups so I have very limited experience with riding with anyone else (my normal bicycling partner would have freaked but she's a racer) so maybe this is typical of all group rides?
From your description, it would seem that the people in the group where not that skilled. The groups I ride in don't act the way you are describing.

Note that things that good groups do might not make much sense to someone with limited experience. But the group you are describing appears to not be good.
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Old 01-24-10, 02:34 PM   #13
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OP, you are under no obligation to ride with the group. If you don't like it or are uncomfortable with it for whaver reason, just tell them you you are going to do your own thing and either ride away, turn, or drop off the back. The one thing I would advise against is not telling anyone and just trying to ride off the front. Nobody will understand what you are trying to do, and just think you are a d!ck for pushing the pace.
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Old 01-24-10, 03:26 PM   #14
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OP, you are under no obligation to ride with the group. If you don't like it or are uncomfortable with it for whaver reason, just tell them you you are going to do your own thing and either ride away, turn, or drop off the back. The one thing I would advise against is not telling anyone and just trying to ride off the front. Nobody will understand what you are trying to do, and just think you are a d!ck for pushing the pace.
I'm with UMD. I've had several group rides where people were doing exactly the same actions the OP mentioned. I don't care to be associated with people riding like that. So I drop back, tell the clean up guy that I'm leaving the ride and go my separate way. I've done this too many times and finally decided not to do group rides anymore. I don't even care for organized rides anymore due to the amount of inexperience on them.
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Old 01-24-10, 03:38 PM   #15
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UMD's got the right idea. That's your safety they're screwing with. Warn the group once that if they don't clean it up, you'll bow out. Then if the shenanigans continue, do it.
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Old 01-24-10, 03:48 PM   #16
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LOL! Ok, I posted my issues with the ride on the forum run by Diginexx of Singapore at http://stridasingapore.com/forum/ (I'm going to be a d**k about this) and found that they've banned me.

Frankly, good riddance to them because, yeah, it's my safety that's paramount.
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Old 01-24-10, 04:55 PM   #17
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I love night riding and there is safety in numbers, one of the good things about this group is that they have a lot of lights on but nothing will save you if you're in a blind spot somewhere.
There is not safety in numbers when the numbers are acting in an unsafe way.
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Old 01-24-10, 06:12 PM   #18
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LOL! Ok, I posted my issues with the ride on the forum run by Diginexx of Singapore at http://stridasingapore.com/forum/ (I'm going to be a d**k about this) and found that they've banned me.

Frankly, good riddance to them because, yeah, it's my safety that's paramount.
Wow, that site is a good example of trying to give everyone their own niche to the point of breaking all the groups down to one person. There must be a hundred forums there. Many forums with no activity for a year or more. Sorry, couldn't find the one you were referring to.
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Old 01-24-10, 06:30 PM   #19
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Machka, I was hoping that with all of those lights that drivers would notice us and give us a wider berth but the roads are pretty narrow here. I saw a Dinotte 400 rear light in action and I may just get one to add to my collection. Mmm....

BP: here is the link to the ride a couple of nights ago - http://stridasingapore.com/forum/ind...cseen#msg10735

I knew that the shop owners (who run the site) were touchy people but banning someone for raising safety concerns especially when they have a thread in that sub-forum that says "Safety Come First!"?

Frankly, I had expected a bit of a better response from them especially seeing as how they're a Bike Friday dealer and I now own a custom NWT. Maybe they're jealous that I left all of them walking while I rode up Mt. Faber. hehehe
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Old 01-24-10, 06:43 PM   #20
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They're squirrels; any experienced rider would stay as far away from them as possible. You're better off finding another group or riding alone.
+1 I'm with Louis. A night ride is dangerous enough without taking unnecessary risks and from the sounds of it the group you were riding with left their sense of safety in pockets of their day jersey. I'd either ride by myself or with a like minded ride buddy.
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Old 01-24-10, 06:50 PM   #21
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Ok, thanks to everyone for your input. Both it and their reaction to my concerns shows that it would be better for me to ride by myself. Cheers!
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Old 01-26-10, 07:23 AM   #22
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This is par for the course for group rides in L.A. Just play it by ear. Remember you're always riding your own bike, and nobody else can make YOU do something stupid. If the risk is too great, don't go, if you can manage to be reasonably safe yourself, despite what others do, then go along.
Pretty much standard around here, too. I'm a geezer, around long enough to see cycling expand and contract a few times (up and down in the early '70s, up when Lemond was hot, down again, then up when Lance came along). Every new wave brings a bunch of a-holes who don't know or don't want to follow the rules. Fine with me if they endanger themselves, but they piss off drivers by the thousands and make things hard for all of us. I enjoy riding by myself anyway--I ride with a few friends, but rarely with a random group of testosterone junkies.
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