Club Ride Etiquette
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  1. #1
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    Club Ride Etiquette

    I'm out on easy solo ride this morning and as I start chuffing up this winding hill, a club ride goes whizzing by kicking up gravel and dust. The leader (who, incredibly, belongs to my own club) is way out in front of the poor slobs struggling to hold his wheel, or at least watch where he's heading off to. They knock me off my line on the shoulder, and not one of them bothers to warn me that they're coming up from behind, or say hello as they blow by.

    So, I turn on the gass as they grind up the hill passing one by one saying to each that I was impressed with their turn of spead and asking for their autographs as I'm sure they must be pros training for the next race. I keep up this wise-assing as I pass the ape-like ride leader who is obviously intent on showing his little group just how hard he can hammer.

    About an hour later, I pass the ride leader, alone, having dropped his entire group along the way, on the side of the rode staring at a flat. I notice that he doesn't have tool kit, spare, or pump (can't get weighed down with that crap). I drop a glueless patch and disposable CO2 inflator in front of him and as I pass by remind him that next time, it might be wise to be a bit more polite to the solos he rides past.

    Sorry for the rant, but I needed to vent. Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming...

  2. #2

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    You forgot to mention

    that you were riding a mountain bike, in your baggy shorts, sweatshirt, sneakers, visor on your helmet, Poland water bottles instead of regular bottles, etc. It would have been a
    nice touch to skid to a stop in front of the leader and spray gravel in his face before you dropped off the patch.

  3. #3
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    also don't forget the playboy bunnies waiting for him at home to give him a bath. Anxiously awaiting the opportunity to making sure his third thumb is clean.

  4. #4
    NeoRetroGrouch
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    You have a problem...

    All they did was pass you. For that you have to berate each of them, belittle the leader and rant on a public forum? "Kicking up gravel and dust"? Sounds like they are spinning their wheels. How could they knock you off your line? Did they bump into you? If it was a training ride, it was the job of the "ape-like ride leader" to make the others work hard. And if the others were working hard, I know from experience that breath is not wasted by saying hello at this point. You, and those who have responded, need to get a handle on YOUR ego and learn to accept being passed.

    TF
    "Don't those guys know they're old?!!"
    Me, off the back, at my first 50+ road race.

  5. #5
    hi, I'm Larry
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    Good way to win friends!

    I am proud of you. You were able to berate each and every one of them, just because they were pedaling up a hill so hard that they were having a hard time breathing. Heaven forbid not saying hello to your highness between gulps of air. They deserved your wrath!

    At your next club ride I am certain you will be the center of attention and that everyone will want to be your friend. Way to go!

  6. #6
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    Were you two on that ride?

    Quote Originally Posted by bimini
    I am proud of you. You were able to berate each and every one of them, just because they were pedaling up a hill so hard that they were having a hard time breathing. Heaven forbid not saying hello to your highness between gulps of air. They deserved your wrath!

    At your next club ride I am certain you will be the center of attention and that everyone will want to be your friend. Way to go!
    I don't have a problem getting passed. In fact, as I get older and fatter, it happens pretty frequently. As for training rides, I do recognize them and stay out of their way to do my own thing. Usually, a shout is all it takes for me to give way on the narrow, heavily trafficked roads we share.

    When I'm on a club ride, I do my bit on the front, and then hang with the others without much fuss. I seem to get along fine with my club, but I guess you guys have the psychoanalysis of my own group rides all figured out, huh?

    The comment about these guys being too out of breath is just too much. None of the six or so guys on this ride were too out of breath to grumble on the way up the hill about the leader disappearing on them. They just couldn't waste enough energy to be courteous and avoid sending me to the kerb.

    I guess giving up a patch and inflator to the leader with his flat was just an ego stroke. How silly am I? It was all about me being passed.

    First, I got diss'd on the road and then I get slammed on this board. It's enough to send me over to the MTB crowd. They don't seem to be too out of breath from training rides to waste energy being polite to fellow riders.

    Now we can get back to the good stuff...like debating whether or not to grease carbon seatposts.

  7. #7

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    You ride solo? Big shocker there.

    Quote Originally Posted by MerckxMad
    I don't have a problem getting passed. In fact, as I get older and fatter, it happens pretty frequently. As for training rides, I do recognize them and stay out of their way to do my own thing. Usually, a shout is all it takes for me to give way on the narrow, heavily trafficked roads we share.

    When I'm on a club ride, I do my bit on the front, and then hang with the others without much fuss. I seem to get along fine with my club, but I guess you guys have the psychoanalysis of my own group rides all figured out, huh?

    The comment about these guys being too out of breath is just too much. None of the six or so guys on this ride were too out of breath to grumble on the way up the hill about the leader disappearing on them. They just couldn't waste enough energy to be courteous and avoid sending me to the kerb.

    I guess giving up a patch and inflator to the leader with his flat was just an ego stroke. How silly am I? It was all about me being passed.

    First, I got diss'd on the road and then I get slammed on this board. It's enough to send me over to the MTB crowd. They don't seem to be too out of breath from training rides to waste energy being polite to fellow riders.

    Now we can get back to the good stuff...like debating whether or not to grease carbon seatposts.
    You ride fast enough to pass an entire group, while speaking, and you're still getting fatter? Hell, you can stay on the couch and do that. First you claim to have no problems riding with a club of your own, next thing you say, you're ready to give up the roadie scene and join the boys next door. Says a lot about your club.
    As you ride more, you'll learn how to hold a line and stay on the road when being passed by a group instead of freaking out. You might even lose the "Don't nobody diss me!" attitude. This skill will go a long way towards healing your bruised ego.

  8. #8
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    Wink You also forgot to mention

    That they were 90 miles into a 120 mile training day.
    If this would have happened in the "real world", two or three of them would have knocked you on your ass, for the smart-ass comments.

    You also forgot to tell us that the group were all 60 year old grandmothers.
    If your opinion differs from mine, ..........Too bad.
    .
    How would you like it if Hitler killed you
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    If you feel wimpy and weak, get out and train more, ya wee lassie!

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  9. #9
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    No grease on carbon seat posts. Ever. It reacts with the carbon compound and can cause failure. Oh, you need to lighten up a bit. So some guys hammered past you while you were spinning. Get over it :O)

  10. #10

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    This is for real.

    This is not just an issue of the poster's ego. It is one of real danger. He said that he was knocked off his line onto the shoulder. The rider who did it is as bad as the cars that buzz too close. I've had similar experiences with faster riders who seem to want to show contempt for their slower fellow cyclists by passing as if they weren't there. I ride with a small slow group which is routinely passed by a large fast group which starts at the same time a couple of miles behind. They usually pass us after about 15 miles. As they go by, the father back their riders are in their group the closer they come to us. I have been brushed and bumped hard. Recently I held my arm out to try to warn them or fend them off. One of them grabbed my arm and gave it a yank, laughing as he almost pulled me off my bike. With cyclists like these who needs cars on the road.

  11. #11

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    Next time stick your elbow out. See if they like bumping into that at 25mph...

  12. #12
    NeoRetroGrouch
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    I would not stick my elbow out...

    Quote Originally Posted by Sweathog
    This is not just an issue of the poster's ego. It is one of real danger. He said that he was knocked off his line onto the shoulder. The rider who did it is as bad as the cars that buzz too close. I've had similar experiences with faster riders who seem to want to show contempt for their slower fellow cyclists by passing as if they weren't there. I ride with a small slow group which is routinely passed by a large fast group which starts at the same time a couple of miles behind. They usually pass us after about 15 miles. As they go by, the father back their riders are in their group the closer they come to us. I have been brushed and bumped hard. Recently I held my arm out to try to warn them or fend them off. One of them grabbed my arm and gave it a yank, laughing as he almost pulled me off my bike. With cyclists like these who needs cars on the road.
    No offense, but I would bet the faster riders are a lot more used to contact than you are. I know from experience that trying to protect my space with an elbow against a much better rider results in disaster.

    There is no defense for someone grabbing your arm, but I don't get the feeling that original poster experienced anything nearly so dramatic. Remember, for these riders, being close, and even touching, is the norm. They tend to forget that not all are use to being that close. If it's intentional, then is inexcusable.

    TF
    "Don't those guys know they're old?!!"
    Me, off the back, at my first 50+ road race.

  13. #13

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    Used to contact

    I'm plenty used to contact from racing track in my youth. I threw an elbow to the guy who bumped me hard. I was right on the white line and the road shoulder was ground down about four inches - for construction of a bike lane! - and I had absolutely nowhere to go. Before my move with holding the arm out my habit was to stick my elbow out, as we did in track racing whenever it seemed ike something might be about to happen. The elbow just isn't enough to fend these cowboys off. To me this is another situation that shows that cyclist can be their own worst enemies. We shouldn't have to defend from each other. These same guys take over the whole lane even where there's a bike lane and even when going slow - you know, riding no hands, putting their arms around each other's shoulders and joking in the best Mario Cippolini style. Blow through lights, etc. etc. Very cool, especially when done in Euro team kit on a megabucks bike. Ride on.

  14. #14
    NeoRetroGrouch
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    I agree mostly...

    I ride everything from "8 miles and a restaraunt" to the weekend warrior animal pack (only B group though) and many types in between. I can, and will, defend things that one group thinks another is doing wrong. For that particular style of riding, it makes sense. But being an inconsiderate a$$hole is just that and there is no defense.

    Sorry about assuming where you were coming from on the contact comment.

    TF
    "Don't those guys know they're old?!!"
    Me, off the back, at my first 50+ road race.

  15. #15
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    60 y/o grandmothers --
    Best race comment (I didn't hear it myself, although I have confirmation that it was uttered by a guy in my club.
    From the rear of the pack, "Hey, pedal up there! My dead grandmother can pull faster than this!"
    From the front, "Well, dig her up and get her out here, because we haven't seen your a** at the front!"

  16. #16
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    Then there's the famous "Lets chase those guys down". Spoken by a guy 12 places back, who hasn't been at the front all day.
    If your opinion differs from mine, ..........Too bad.
    .
    How would you like it if Hitler killed you
    Dogbert.

    I>U

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    If you feel wimpy and weak, get out and train more, ya wee lassie!

    If Jesus had a gun, he'd be alive today!

  17. #17
    Old, slow, and fat.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MerckxMad
    Sorry for the rant, but I needed to vent. Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming...
    I can see a few things that are "wrong" with this situation. Remember, two wrongs don't make a right. The OP's reaction to the situation is understandable. The rest of y'all are making assumptions and aren't offering constructive criticism.

    What could be done?
    1, if you know a pack is fixin to pass you, make sure you have some "wiggle room."
    2. don't move even if you get bumped.
    3. keep the high moral ground and don't stoop to their level.
    4. stop and calmly explain to that @#$#@ that just passed you trying to kill the pack that the actions of the pack and he weren't right, and could you please watch the ^%& out next time?

    I was going to add #5: beat the snot out of the leader dude, but that really wouldn't accomplish anything...

    HTH,

    M
    I've moved back to NoVA. PLEASE change the weather!

  18. #18
    53T
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    I'm not buying it.

    Gravel and dust? Is that an exageration, or a just made up? BTW, where did you get a disposable CO2 inflator? I could use something like that.

    Ape like ride leader? I've seen some ape-type riders, but they were sprinters, like me. Never saw an ape-climber.

  19. #19
    hi, I'm Larry
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    Thumbs up I appologize!

    I was a sarcastic smart @ss as a kid and sometimes I forget I'm an old fart that should know better.

    It's just sometimes when I see something that strikes me as so outlandish, silly and delightfully twisted as the orignal post I can't contain myself.

    It's kind of like when you are playing the front line in volleyball and you see that ball just hovering in mid air over the net screaming hit me. You just got to smack it down as hard as you can and forget that there is a real human being on the other side of the net.

    Please forgive this sarcastic smart @ss old fart.

  20. #20
    NeoRetroGrouch
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    Not in my book...

    Quote Originally Posted by MShaw
    I can see a few things that are "wrong" with this situation. Remember, two wrongs don't make a right. The OP's reaction to the situation is understandable. The rest of y'all are making assumptions and aren't offering constructive criticism.

    What could be done?
    1, if you know a pack is fixin to pass you, make sure you have some "wiggle room."
    2. don't move even if you get bumped.
    3. keep the high moral ground and don't stoop to their level.
    4. stop and calmly explain to that @#$#@ that just passed you trying to kill the pack that the actions of the pack and he weren't right, and could you please watch the ^%& out next time?

    I was going to add #5: beat the snot out of the leader dude, but that really wouldn't accomplish anything...

    HTH,

    M

    1. ALWAYS leave yourself the wiggle room that you need unless you are intentionally taking the chance for some reason.
    2. Nobody got bumped. I asked.
    3. There was no high ground to be had.
    4. He did catch and berate the "ape". And, if the pack did not want to stay with the rider off the front, they didn't have to.
    5. So he's not a particularly nice guy. Evidently, neither are you.

    You are reacting to nothing but prejudice against "club riders".

    TF
    "Don't those guys know they're old?!!"
    Me, off the back, at my first 50+ road race.

  21. #21
    Old, slow, and fat.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TurboTurtle
    1. ALWAYS leave yourself the wiggle room that you need unless you are intentionally taking the chance for some reason.
    2. Nobody got bumped. I asked.
    3. There was no high ground to be had.
    4. He did catch and berate the "ape". And, if the pack did not want to stay with the rider off the front, they didn't have to.
    5. So he's not a particularly nice guy. Evidently, neither are you.

    You are reacting to nothing but prejudice against "club riders".

    TF
    Most of my friends are club riders. Some are actually good riders with no desire to race. I can respect that. I don't understand it, but I respect it.

    Its the arseholes that think their excrement don't stink that bother me.

    M
    I've moved back to NoVA. PLEASE change the weather!

  22. #22
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    Sheesh!

    I thought that I would just vent a bit about some discourteous riders that I encountered this weekend, and maybe start a bit of a discussion about how we might treat each other on the road. I didn't expect a vitriolic attack from people who do not know me.

    Anyway, it's not a big deal. Really.

    However, for the record:

    1. I've been riding for more than 20 years.
    2. I've been a member of my local club for the past 10.
    3. My fellow club members make fun of my growing gut, but generally accept me as valued member (and because I supply post-ride beer).
    4. I used to race, but find that the other old farts are now much faster than me and I no longer like riding around in circles in surburban office parks.
    5. I can ride hard uphill and speak at the same time. (Sometimes I can even chew gum and walk). I know how to ride a line. I also know how to bump someone off theirs without locking bars.
    6. I do not chase down club rides for the purpose of making them wave nicely to me or otherwise pay homage to my extensive palmares.
    7. I don't really care who passes me on the road, as long as they do it safely.
    8. I don't kick dogs, unless their mine.
    9. I don't say a ride leader is ape-like unless he has more body hair than a primate and stradles his bike like King Kong atop the Empire State Building.
    10. I gave the large, hairy, impolite (but not ape-like) leader an old plastic Innovations chuck and cartridge.

    By the way, for those of you who offered thoughts on similar experiences, thanks for reading.

  23. #23

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    Are you guys riding in freaking Thunderdome or something? I'm in Austin and have been passed by tons of groups, racers, grandmas, etc. and have never had any sort of altercation with anyone. I've definitely encountered the arrogant guys in their full Fassa Bartolo kit who could give a **** that you pulled up next to them at a light. Are you guys up in the north east or something?

  24. #24

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    Thunderdome

    You put your finger on it - I'm in South Florida, where road rage is normal and expected. Why shouldn't cyclists be the same way? We even have fist fights between retirees in ticket lines at the discount movies - I kid you not, a 70-something was recently killed this way. Welcome to paradise. Thunderdome it is, or better yet Mad Max and The Road Warrior.

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