Friday, August 21, 2009
Biking speed when in a group
As y'all know I run the Biker Chicks bike rides, right now in the West Chester Cycling Club, I am the only ride leader offering anything to folks other than very fast pace line biking.
For August 22, there are 7 rides listed not counting the Chicks. All are at 14-17 mph or higher and all will run a pace line. SO the only alternative to pace line riding right now are the Chicks. I post the speed at 11-13 and I do try very hard to stay in that range. But stuff happens.
It could be blazing hot and then I can barely bike and might manage a slower speed. It could be a cool day and I can go faster, if it is a flat ride, such as the Schuylkill River trail, that speed could be as high as 14 or so. Again all of this depending on weather, wind etc.
Sometimes I show up for a ride and I am the slowest in the group so I have to hustle to try and keep up. On the Covered Bridge Ride we headed out with 9 folks and I came in last of this group even though I was giving it my all. Lucky another chick stayed with me or I would have come in alone on this ride.
It happens, it is what it is. I do ask all to bring the cue, bring medical ID and cell phone, put my phone number in your cell. Bring snacks, high calorie, and bike tubes and inflation. Never leave home without having at least looked at the cue. Have some kind of back up plan. Many on the rides often volunteer their friends or husbands as a back up for you if no one is home. But you give it some thought when you take off to bike ride.
Talked to one WCCC member who refuses to carry a cell phone and she ran into trouble and thumbed home. Not sure I would recommend this. I am a stickler on safety. If you are not, do not expect me to take care of you if and when you run into trouble.
But come prepared for EVERY ride with cue and some idea of where you are biking. As ride leader now for over 3 years, it is a huge responsibility on my part to constantly be monitoring all the cyclists in the group. It helps if you are somewhat prepared, ride safely and do what i say if i see you doing something I determine to be unsafe.
I do the best I can, remember, this is a VOLUNTEER job and if I was not currently offering C rides, the WCCC would just be a club of pace line riders. I am trying hard to change this but I need you folks to show up for rides and actually DO THEM.