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First ever group ride

2 watchers
Jun 2016
4:41pm, 3 Jun 2016
30791 posts
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Nellers
I've signed up to go out on a group ride tomorrow morning with the local informal cycling Facebook group. I've never done a group ride before. What do I need to know/do to survive it? I'm told the planned average speed is about 16mph and I know I can do that so it's not a fitness thing.

The obvious bits seem to me to be:
1) Don't swerve about or accelerate/brake suddenly
2) Take a couple of spare tubes and a pump so I don't sponge off anyone else's resources
3) Take reasonable turns on the front

Other than that what can you experts tell me that will help?
Jun 2016
4:55pm, 3 Jun 2016
4944 posts
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Battlecat
Don't overlap the wheel in front

If you see a hazard in front like a pothole point at it so the rider behind knows its there or if there's something you need to move out for (eg parked car) point away from it behind your back

If you know a car has come up behind you shout 'car back' so the rest of the group know it's there and may try to pass
Jun 2016
7:37pm, 3 Jun 2016
30794 posts
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Nellers
Thanks Catters.
Jun 2016
8:45pm, 3 Jun 2016
4495 posts
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Dai Bank
Don,t hit the front on the way out. Be careful 16mph average is fast, all cyclists lie about their fitness and the amount of riding they have done to get to their present level of fitness viz, I had a late night last night so I,ll be taking it steady, as they go to the front and wind it up. This will allow you to judge the pace setting.
Don,t look at the wheel you are following look at the riders back, adjust your speed by very small increments of pedalling, freewheeling or lifting your body into the wind and by just covering the brakes.

Have fun.
Jun 2016
9:04pm, 3 Jun 2016
30795 posts
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Nellers
This might tun out to be a redundant question but the group reckon on doing 35-40 miles. I'm getting ready for a 75 mile ride and I had planned on doing at least 50 tomorrow on my own. If they haven't blown my legs off would it be considered poor form to slip away on the way back at some point to add in an extra loop to get over the 50? Or should I wait until we get back and the group splits and then go and do some extra afterwards?
Jun 2016
9:29pm, 3 Jun 2016
19192 posts
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Red Squirrel
As long as you let the group know beforehand what you'll be doing, I would imagine that'll be fine. Otherwise they'll think they've dropped you and may sent people to look for you.
Jun 2016
9:50pm, 3 Jun 2016
30796 posts
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Nellers
👍🏻
Jun 2016
9:56pm, 3 Jun 2016
20151 posts
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eL Bee!
If the group works reasonably well and can ride with good formation and quite 'tight', 16mph is not that fast on a flattish route.
If it spends more time re-forming than being formed, then 16mph can be quite hard work!

Being smooth and predictable and communicating with those around you are the main things - everything else has already been said
Jun 2016
2:41pm, 4 Jun 2016
30797 posts
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Nellers
Not quite the experience I was expecting this morning. Although I've never done a group ride before I was one of the fitter riders there. It wasn't a particularly tight group in terms of being able to hold wheels and formations so it was just a relaxed chatty ride regrouping after most of the hills. I had no trouble sticking with the pace. In fact I was giving some of the slower riders a wheel to tow them back up to the group at times when things split. I finished up tacking on an extra 20-odd miles and getting it up to 55 miles total for me. The group did 35.

Enjoyed it but I think I'll try out the bigger boys group next time.
Jun 2016
8:01am, 10 Jun 2016
30822 posts
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Nellers
I've been persuaded. 4 or 5 local riders are planning a 70 mile loop on Sunday and they've convinced me to join them. Longest ride so far is 55. I'm a little nervous but they've told me I'll be ok.

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Maintained by Nellers
I've signed up to go out on a group ride tomorrow morning with the local informal cycling Facebook ...
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