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Need Tucson "Fred" Group Ride recommendations, please

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Need Tucson "Fred" Group Ride recommendations, please

Old 07-25-21, 11:48 AM
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stealthfixr
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Need Tucson "Fred" Group Ride recommendations, please

I am relatively new to Tucson, having moved here just before the pandemic, and this is definitely a strong rider area. During the pandemic, I connected with a local bike shop group ride that transitioned to Zwift once a week. While I finished the ride with them a couple times, I really struggled to hold their pace, it wasn't no drop, it was a bummer to be 'rubber banded' back constantly and it ended up being not too fun. Anyway, I stopped attending. Now that the same bike shop is having in person group rides, I am very hesitant to attend with likely the same result, but in person. I am trying to be faster, but I am not there yet.

Please help me find a group ride like this: when I lived briefly in Honolulu HI, I joined the HI Bicycling League and joined a Saturday AM group ride from a local park. The ride was 30 or 50 miles long, no drop, and half social in purpose. With quite a bit of climbing involved, the rides were 15-16mph average; sometimes 20+ on the flat, often at 18-ish. While sometimes that group ride would make a line of riders setting a heavy pace, they were also very no-drop and often happy to loaf at a slow pace and enjoy the scenery. If someone got a flat, most everyone stopped to help. At the end of the ride, they would often have a little picnic and enjoy each others company a little longer. Call it the Biking Enthusiast Fred group ride.

Is there a group ride for Fred's in Tucson?? Not neo-pros, not 'The Shootout' group. A normal people, no-drop group ride for road cycling enthusiasts? Thank you in advance for your suggestions!
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Old 07-25-21, 10:54 PM
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Check out the Greater Arizona Biking Association. They are Tucson based and are regularly putting on group rides at various levels (the rides are posted on Meetup).
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Old 07-27-21, 02:03 PM
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I don't see any GABA rides on the weekends (yet). Any other choices that would match on the weekend?
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Old 07-29-21, 11:26 AM
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Tim Carolan, a bike fitter in Tucson, leads a "shop ride" out of Cyclefit Solutions every week, I haven't gone on it yet but my friend who has insists it is very chill...definitely the antithesis of the Shootout! I think you can find more info here: https://www.facebook.com/timcarolan [edit: disregard, see my post #7, below]

Speaking of which, Sabino Cycles leads a weekly early ride from the shopping center on the north-west corner of Catalina Hwy & Tanque Verde Rd up Mt Lemmon just to the Molino Canyon Vista & back. 20 miles round trip, "conversational pace" (whatever that means when you're climbing a 6% grade for 5 miles). Can't remember if that's on Fridays or Saturdays.

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Old 02-22-22, 04:29 PM
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~6 months later I can offer a tiny bit more insight:

Originally Posted by tom306 View Post
Check out the Greater Arizona Biking Association. They are Tucson based and are regularly putting on group rides at various levels (the rides are posted on Meetup).
^^^This would definitely be my first choice for a "Fred" ride. I recently joined GABA, and from all the ride listings I've received -- and the one ride I actually went on -- I suspect the majority of the rides GABA categorizes as a "C" classification would perfectly fit in with OP's wishes. And they definitely do offer weekend rides...although I completely understand OP's comment about it seeming to be mostly mid-week rides. Doesn't anybody in Tucson work for a living?!?!

Originally Posted by Bob Ross View Post
Tim Carolan, a bike fitter in Tucson, leads a "shop ride" out of Cyclefit Solutions every week, I haven't gone on it yet but my friend who has insists it is very chill...definitely the antithesis of the Shootout!
I also joined CycleFit, but I've only gone on one of their rides so far. If that ride was any indication, and/or if what I hear from other CycleFit members is true, it might be a bit more hardcore than what OP was looking for. The inside scoop is that Tim is very good at controlling the pace of rides, but if Tim's not there the other members can often gravitate towards a hammerfest. The ride I went on was definitely not a hammerfest...but it was a climbfest, with over 1,700' elevation in the first 15 miles. Consider yourself forewarned.

If you ever get a weekday off (or want to take a sick day) you should try the Friday "Stretchy Ride" sponsored by The Homestretch Foundation. It often attracts pros and ex-pros, but it is explicitly listed as a chill, social, recovery ride, with an entirely flat route and a max cruising pace of 15mph. Meets up Fridays 9:00AM ...or wait, maybe it's 10:00AM? at LeBuzz on the corner of Tanque Verde and Catalina Highway.
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Old 04-29-22, 06:35 PM
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Cyclefit is certainly not a "Fred" ride group, and to "join" you're required to buy an expensive "club" kit, of questionable design taste. LOL Lot's of super nice and great riders participate in Cyclefit rides though.

I'm the President of Vistoso Cyclists, a large semi-private members only club based in Oro Valley. We have a short waiting list and over 150 rides scheduled yearly, but also don't schedule on the weekend days. All of our regular rides start in Oro Valley. We do have a stronger group that does off the schedule Sunday rides, but unless you live in Sun City, membership might take a while. We are limited to having only 20% of our total membership open to non-Sun City residents.

GABA sounds like the best fit, and they do in fact have weekend rides, as seen here in their schedule on MeetUp: https://www.meetup.com/bikegaba/events/

Miles, smiles & tailwinds!
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Old 05-06-22, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Miles2go View Post
Cyclefit is certainly not a "Fred" ride group
Yeah, since I wrote that I've gone on probably half a dozen CycleFit rides, and there's nothing even remotely Fred-like about them. I should probably edit my previous posts!

GABA is an interesting crew: They have a lot of rides that definitely qualify as "Fred-like" ...but then there are also some insanely strong riders (with, if I may be so bold, absolutely no clue how to control the pace of a group or how to ride in such a way that a group can even stay together) who love a hammerfest but list rides with descriptions that are virtually identical to all the Fred rides! It's a real crap shoot.
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