Group 1 | Over 17mph | Over 50-70 miles
Group 2 | 15-16 mph | 40-60 miles
Seniors | No rush, out for the enjoyment
Introduction rides | Monthly (read below for details)
We aim to hold an introduction ride on the first Sunday of each month. Distances are between 30-40 miles, at an average of 14 mph. Please arrive around 10 minutes before the start time to introduce yourself to the ride leader.
These rides are a good introduction to riding in a group and perfect if you are interested in joining the club but don't feel confident joining one of the regular groups. The introduction rides are shorter and steadier than the regular groups and you don't need to be a member to come along.
You will need a road bike and ideally use clip-in pedals or toe-clips. As a rough guide, if you can ride alone for 30 miles at around 12-13mph then the pace should be OK for you (you can use free apps such as Strava or Ride With GPS to check this).
BSCC Club Run Etiquette
The following guidelines explain the conduct expected on BSCC club rides and ensure that a good experience is had by all. All riders remain personally responsible for abiding by the rules of the road and for their own safety.
- The Sunday club run is a social ride. It is not a race or interval training session.
- If you have a GPS enabled device, download the route.
- Know who the ride leader is, follow their instructions, and relay those instructions up and down the group.
- Be aware that the club runs tend to be shorter and slower in the winter.
- If the group size exceeds 12, we will try to split into two groups.
- Let other riders know if you are leaving the club run or if you need to stop or you are struggling to hold the pace.
- On steep or long hills, the group will naturally spread out. All riders will re-group at the top of the hill, out the way of traffic, waiting for everyone to come back together before setting off again.
- Returning into Bristol from the open roads will require a re-adjustment to traffic, junctions and lights. Re-adjust your mindset and riding behaviour accordingly ‐ ride slower, safely and be prepared to stop.
- Club members are encouraged to wear BSCC kit.
First time riders
- If you have not been on a club run before, then it is suggested that you start with one of the monthly introduction rides. It is always better to underestimate your abilities than overestimate them.
- Review the route to make sure that you will be comfortable with the distance, elevation and pace.
- Introduce yourself to someone in club kit and find out who the ride leader is.
- New riders are encouraged to try out the club, but you will be expected to join after 3-4 rides.
- All riders are advised to wear a helmet.
- Mudguards are useful in the winter to prevent spraying the following rider. If it is wet and you do not have mudguards, you may be invited to ride at the back of the group.
- A basic repair kit to be carried on every ride should contain 2 inner tubes (or one tube and a patch kit), tyre levers, pump/CO2 and a multitool.
- Check the weather forecast and dress appropriately.
- Keep your bike in good condition and well maintained.
- You will find it useful to carry drinks, food and/or money for the café stop.
- For the safety of all riders, tri-bars are not permitted.
- Flashing lights are not permitted on club group rides as they inhibit the vision of other riders.
How to ride in a group
- Stay as close to the rider in front as you are comfortable. The closer you are, the more energy you will save.
- Do not overlap wheels with the rider in front. This is the biggest cause of crashes in group rides.
- Ride steadily and predictably at a smooth pace without surges or sudden braking. This will help keep the group together and avoid tiring the riders at the back.
- Ride two abreast in pairs. When singling out (on narrow or very busy roads) the rider on the outside will ease off and slot in behind the rider on the inside. The two lines should have no more than a handlebar width between them; they should not occupy the whole lane.
- Hold your line (ie follow the wheel in front) without swerving across the road. This is particularly pertinent through bends.
- Do not half-wheel (ie ride half a wheel ahead of the rider alongside you to encourage them to go faster). This is often an unconscious action; gently remind others not to do it and make sure you dont do it yourself.
- Be aware when getting out of the saddle on a hill to avoid slowing sharply or throwing your bike back into the rider behind; make a conscious effort to push hard on the initial pedal stroke before you stand to avoid it.
- Give other riders extra space on a hill in case they are not experienced with the point above.
Hazards/potholes should be pointed out for following riders and all communications should be passed up and down the line. You are likely to hear/see the following calls:
Communication should be relayed both up and down the group. Shouting should be kept to a minimum ‐ noise is no substitute for good observation and clear signals.
- "Clear" ‐ The junction ahead is clear to ride across without stopping.
- "Car up" ‐ Used on narrow roads when a car is approaching from behind.
- "Car down" ‐ Used on narrow roads when a car is approaching from the front.
- "Hole" / Pointing at the road surface ‐ indicates a hole or other hazard that needs to be avoided.
- "Easy"/ Patting up and down ‐ The group is slowing down (for a junction, horse etc).
- "Out round / Keep in" / Hand pointing or wafting behind the back indicating the direction ‐ The group should move out/in as indicated to avoid an obstacle or other road users.
- "Mechanical" / Hand up in the air ‐ The rider needs to stop (eg. to repair a puncture) and so the rest of the group should wait at a safe location.
- "Single out" ‐ When singling out the rider on the outside will ease off and slot in behind the rider on the inside.
- "X off the back" ‐ X number of riders have been dropped, and the group should drop the pace a notch to allow them back on.
- "All up" ‐ All riders are back in the main group.
For further details please see Michael Miskelly (Club