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It’s your turn to pull….

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It’s your turn to pull….

Old 04-28-22, 09:25 PM
  #1  
A350driver
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It’s your turn to pull….

What’s the standard club ride pull? I’m talking about a bunch of middle aged people, mostly male, going 20-22mph for 40-50 miles.

I only ask because I was raised to believe we share the load, pull hard for 2-3 minutes then get off the front and take a break at the back.. When going faster in a bigger group, 1 minute pulls. Slower in a small group, 5 minutes or maybe 6-7.

Lately there’s been some a couple guys in my group (of 10-15) who pull for 10-15 minutes before they move off! WTF? I don’t know if they think they’re trying to help (it’s not help!) or if they just like to set the pace, or enjoy the view, but I get really board sitting behind someone for 10+ minutes as second wheel.

And then what?

Am I supposed to pull for 10 minutes too?

So what is the common etiquette for time at the front in a club ride (not a race) ? 3 minutes? 5 minutes?

Unless you’re the lead dog the view never changes, I get it, but let’s all get a view from the front more often! If it were up to me there’d be a 3 minute time limit.

Oh, and how do I tactfully say, “Hey dude, get off!”

Last edited by A350driver; 04-28-22 at 09:32 PM.
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Old 04-28-22, 09:31 PM
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I solo ride 99% of the time, great view, lots of pulling.

This is not helpful regarding your question but neither are random etiquette anecdotes from people that are not riding with the exact group you are with.

Why not talk about it with your club people to take out the element of WTF you are experiencing?
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Old 04-28-22, 09:51 PM
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Originally Posted by yaw View Post
I solo ride 99% of the time, great view, lots of pulling.

This is not helpful regarding your question but neither are random etiquette anecdotes from people that are not riding with the exact group you are with.

Why not talk about it with your club people to take out the element of WTF you are experiencing?

I plan on doing that but I want to hear what the “normal pull” is before I go off on some of them. That was my question. You as a mostly solo only rider have zero input here.

Thanks for your help…..
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Old 04-28-22, 10:44 PM
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There's no real "normal" pull length (as far as I've found with varying groups) but 10 minutes is deffo too long in a fast bunch! Mostly it's kept to a 1-2 minutes, but can be far less or literally a few seconds if we're rolling turns.

It will also vary with each rider in the bunch, how your bunch rotates, and how strong everyone is feeling. No need for you to pull as long as the guy in front did, you pull to maintain pace. When I'm fatigued my turns on the front are shorter. If the bunch is strong and I'm not feeling it, my turn may be 10 seconds. When I'm feeling strong (or stronger than the others) my time on the front is far longer. A 10-minute pull on the front would only occur for me on a social ride where I'm sheltering some not-so-strong riders.

Let us know how you get on when you discuss with your particular group. Worth doing for sure. 🙂
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Old 04-29-22, 01:13 AM
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I don’t really do the organized paceline thing, but to me this is entirely dependent on the fitness of the riders. If you’re bored sitting on a wheel it’s not disruptive to go up to the front and pull for a while. Frankly it’s a problem on the rides I’m on where people won’t take the initiative to get on the front and pull, especially if we need to bring back a breakaway.
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Old 04-29-22, 04:10 AM
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If they're holding pace, what's the problem? If they're slowing down, then yeah, they need to pull off and take a break.

I tend to take longer pulls, just depends on how I'm feeling. I usually get thanked for a good pull, never heard anyone complain. There are also guys that do short pulls, nothing wrong with that either, just do what you're feeling.
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Old 04-29-22, 05:04 AM
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In the local club there are 2 styles of rides that the organized rides fall under. Every listed ride has a leader (or 2).

One style of ride is indeed then led by that leader (if there are 2 of them, then the other acts as sweep). Periodically, the leader will let others take the lead for a period of time if they want to allow. These kinds of rides will then experience the longer pull leads you might be witnessing.

The other style ride is typically advertised, or due to its listed level (eg. A and/or B) as being a rotating paceline ride. Typically about a minute, sometimes adjusting longer if there's a hazardous/narrow patch of road that's not favorable for 2-abreast space.

Either way, ideally whoever is the registered "leader" of the ride, should be setting the 'rules' and communicating them to the group before the start.
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Old 04-29-22, 05:55 AM
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You want to "go off" on riders because they pull too much?

Please send me the details on your group ride. I will gladly take your place.
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Old 04-29-22, 06:09 AM
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Depends on the personality of the group, too many variables. If there is an understanding that you will all take short pulls, what you describe is not cool. If it's not explicitly (or implicitly) stated, it's really up to the rider. Stronger riders may want to take longer pulls. Weaker riders may want to sit in and take very short pulls. Best advice is be flexible, but if it's a "problem" you may want to have a pre-ride chitchat with the gang and/or ride leader (if there is one) asking to share the work evenly.
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Old 04-29-22, 06:44 AM
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Cafe' roll or workout roll? It matters. The cafe' roll nobody on that ride should care either way as you're there to chat, have snacks and coffee, and enjoy the day. Not hammer or get in some XX min of zone X training into the ride. It annoys me to no end on the weekend fun roll the teammate who shows up to show off saying "oh, I'm going to go off front for a couple intervals then let you catch me". Then why did you come at all if we won't see you for 1/3 of the ride?

Workout roll? There will usually be a rotation protocol if the group is worth riding with for the workout. "We're going to do three 20min sets where we average 25mph and you pull off every 30 seconds".

A lot of disorganized workout rides go down the toilet hole of randomly trying to stay together but also hammering different segments along the way. These rides can be loathsome as folks "think" they accomplish something on the flats or downhills by sitting on the front for 5min at a time going slow as balls. When in reality, you need to let a group rotate constantly up front to keep the speed up. I stopped doing those kind of rides as they are disorganized and pointless.

I can average the same speed alone the in-town workout ride like that does alone, not because of any strength, but because they don't freaking rotate enough to keep the speed up.

So my workouts are alone. Then if I want spicy I do the racing simulation hammer ride.
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Old 04-29-22, 06:53 AM
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Originally Posted by datlas View Post
Depends on the personality of the group,
Originally Posted by A350driver View Post
I plan on doing that but I want to hear what the “normal pull” is before I go off on some of them. That was my question. You as a mostly solo only rider have zero input here.
Well, datlas, there's your answer.
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Old 04-29-22, 06:59 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
I don’t really do the organized paceline thing, but to me this is entirely dependent on the fitness of the riders. If you’re bored sitting on a wheel it’s not disruptive to go up to the front and pull for a while. Frankly it’s a problem on the rides I’m on where people won’t take the initiative to get on the front and pull, especially if we need to bring back a breakaway.
"I don't do or have experience with the thing. But I'll tell people what to do anyway."
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Old 04-29-22, 07:11 AM
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Originally Posted by A350driver View Post
I plan on doing that but I want to hear what the “normal pull” is before I go off on some of them. That was my question. You as a mostly solo only rider have zero input here.

Thanks for your help…..
Sounds as if you are joining an established group that is recreational in nature, rather than focused on training. IME, a rotating paceline with one or two minute pulls is not the norm for that sort of ride. You may need to find a different group.
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Old 04-29-22, 07:13 AM
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Originally Posted by A350driver View Post
Lately there’s been some a couple guys in my group (of 10-15) who pull for 10-15 minutes before they move off! WTF? I don’t know if they think they’re trying to help (it’s not help!) or if they just like to set the pace, or enjoy the view, but I get really board sitting behind someone for 10+ minutes as second wheel.

And then what?

Am I supposed to pull for 10 minutes too?.
If it's only "a couple of guys" doing these long pulls, then you can do what the others do (pull for less). So, no, you aren't "supposed to" pull for as long.
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Old 04-29-22, 07:17 AM
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Do people not talk? Like just say, "let's do 2 mile pulls"? When I lead a group ride, the first thing I say is that people need to communicate with each other. If people don't, it puts everyone in danger.

And I have to ask, you get board riding your bike when you are behind someone? Do you ever ride alone?

Also, and this will come off as *****y, but your post does not make you sound like someone I would want to do a group ride with. Just saying.
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Old 04-29-22, 07:18 AM
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Back in the day, group rides had a boss who would keep things going correctly and not be shy about it. The group rides in my area are a cluster chuck.

A weekend endurance ride to the cafe and back should not have showoffs jamming every hill ruining the training effect for everyone and then slinking back sucking wheels to ambush on the next hill or worse, some undefined Strava segment lurking up the road. Who really cares if someone sits a little long on the front on a long endurance ride? OTOH, a fast training ride should have more defined pace and pulls. When I was on a team, our training pace was fairly set but what varied is length of pulls. Schmucks like me might just pull thru and be there for 20 seconds whereas the very strong captain could take 2-3 minutes up there (single paceline) and the other riders 40-60 seconds.
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Old 04-29-22, 07:20 AM
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A standard club ride of middle-aged guys averaging 20-22mph and individuals pulling for 3-4 miles stretches? Okay.
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Old 04-29-22, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
A standard club ride of middle-aged guys averaging 20-22mph and individuals pulling for 3-4 miles stretches? Okay.
OP is from Sebring.

How about a senior citizen pulling at 23 mph for 102 miles? It happens all the time down there.

Just because you can't do it, doesn't mean many middle aged riders cannot pull at 20-22 mph on flat terrain.
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Old 04-29-22, 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
OP is from Sebring.

How about a senior citizen pulling at 23 mph for 102 miles? It happens all the time down there.

Just because you can't do it, doesn't mean many middle aged riders cannot pull at 20-22 mph on flat terrain.
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Old 04-29-22, 08:34 AM
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My group rides typically see most riders doing pulls for anywhere from 1-5 minutes, then moving off. There are always a few stronger riders who will do longer pulls. I'm fine with it.

The length of pulls is usually longer when our group is bigger. With smaller groups with similar level riders, we can be more organized and sometimes will rotate faster to get an echelon going, where riders are only doing 5-10 second pulls and there's more of a constant rotation. With bigger groups there seems to be less organization which results in stronger riders staying on the front to push the pace, and weaker riders sitting on in the back and not pulling through.

We also sometimes ride 2-wide for longer stretches without rotating. In these situations, the two front riders will almost always do longer pulls, then come off together and drop back. I think there's a bit of peer pressure in this situation for the two riders to "stick it out" on the front longer and not be the first one to suggest dropping back, and also the pace is usually more relaxed/casual when we're riding 2-wide, so there's more socializing and less concern about pace and sharing the load.

Either way, I'm never going to complain if someone wants to take an extra long pull, as long as they're holding the pace. I'm also unlikely to ever pull a group ride for more than a few minutes, regardless of how long others are pulling.
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Old 04-29-22, 08:42 AM
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This is really a question you should ask the people that run your club.

It depends on the goals and how committed to one purpose every member of the ride has. As well as whether the ride is intended to be more for everyone's own enjoyment in their own feeling of what that enjoyment is.

You might have bigger expectations of what the ride is for than others.
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Old 04-29-22, 09:56 AM
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Originally Posted by A350driver View Post
I plan on doing that but I want to hear what the “normal pull” is before I go off on some of them. That was my question. You as a mostly solo only rider have zero input here.

Thanks for your help…..
There is no "normal" pull. It depends on who you are with and the type of ride you've all agreed to.
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Old 04-29-22, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
"I don't do or have experience with the thing. But I'll tell people what to do anyway."
I do the paceline thing, and frankly OP doesn’t sound like he does the “organized” paceline thing either because people are taking 15 minute pulls
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Old 04-29-22, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
I do the paceline thing, and frankly OP doesn’t sound like he does the “organized” paceline thing either because people are taking 15 minute pulls
(I'm not going to go find the fairly-recent post where you confused pacelining with riding in a disorganized group.)

Yes, the OP isn't likely taking about an "organized" paceline. His complaint is odd anyway: he said that "a couple" of people are pulling too long and the others in the 15 person-group (presumably) aren't and thinks he's "supposed to" pull as long.

Of course, other people in his group might be fine with the others taking long pulls (but their opinion doesn't matter, I guess).

Last edited by njkayaker; 04-29-22 at 01:03 PM.
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Old 04-29-22, 10:21 AM
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Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
I don’t really do the organized paceline thing ...
9 hours later ...

Originally Posted by LarrySellerz View Post
I do the paceline thing ...
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