PACC is developing a calendar of Club Rides for members and prospective members. Upcoming rides are be listed on the Events Calendar. For latest updates, you can also check out the PACC Club Rides Facebook page here. (You will need to be approved to join the group).
Club Ride Expectations
- You will be at the meeting point on time. When we set a time, you get 5 minutes grace and then the bunch is gone. No exceptions. Theoretically leave home early enough to puncture and still make it on time.
- You will be able to ride in a double pace-line bunch. If you can't, please let us know and we'll buddy you up with an experienced rider to sit at the back of the bunch to look at how it is done, then you can have a go. Note, Cyclo-Cross rides often use roads to join up trails.
- You will respect road rules and other road users.
- You will actually try to act as part of bunch. Disruptive or dangerous riders will not be welcome. Doing your interval training is for before or after, not for this bunch ride, unless otherwise specified.
- Spares will not be provided. Thus BYO tubes (2 spares is a good start), tyre levers and pump; and please make sure you actually know how to use them. If you don't know how to use them, be prepared to learn! For cyclo-cross or MTB rides off road - ride tubeless!
- The pace of the ride will be indicated by the Ride Leader at the ride briefing, and all effort will be made by riders to maintain this within a small margin – not withstanding cyclonic headwinds or driving rain/sleet.
- The objective of the ride is to always have someone else to ride with. For some people the ride will be their 'recovery pace'. For some it might be challenging. The main aim of the ride is to provide an opportunity for everyone to meet other club members. There may be sections where you can go at your own pace, then stop and re-group.
Road Bunch Guidelines (think of them more as rules)
LOOKING PACC PRO - We will mostly ride in double pace-line, 2 riders abreast and however many stacked long. Sloppy bunch formation is deserving of ridicule. Wearing club kit makes you extra pro. Wheel sitting - You will be expected to be able to do this. Your front wheel should be 30-40cm behind, and no more than 10cm laterally of the wheel in front and your handlebars level with the person next to you. On particularly bicycle un-friendly roads we will go single file, as called by the ride leader.
STAY TOGETHER - When riding, stay in bunch form at all times. The bunch should stay in formation and behave as one large PREDICTABLE slow road user. Specifically don't carve the bunch up to go around cars at traffic lights. If the bunch breaks formation we expect that riders will be smart about how and when they do this keeping respect for other road users.
SPEED DATE - 5 minute turns on the front. The pace-line will act like a “speed-date” – front left partner will slow slightly while front right partner will roll to the left in front of them. The rider previously behind the front right partner will now become the front right partner. Repeat.
ROLL OVER - When it’s time to roll over, this needs to be communicated between the front pair so that it is smooth and does not cause any unnecessary braking or overlapping of wheels.
NO HALF-WHEEL HARRYS - Halfwheeling (ie. riding slightly ahead or behind your partner) - just don't do it. It’s rude to the rider next to you, and disruptive to the bunch as this will cause riders behind you to do the same thing to their partner.
HAND SIGNALS - Hand signals - point out road hazards and call them by voice if necessary. Don't point out or call things that don't need it. Potholes, glass, 3cm+ rocks, sunken man hole covers are things to point out – eg anything you wouldn’t ride over no-hands. Ride around the obstacles rather than over the top and then point it out. Point out stuff either side of you – don’t point out stuff on the other side of your partner, that is confusing to everybody. Give plenty of notice, and everyone in the bunch signal hazards as they approach. Failing to make or pass signals is not cool or pro, and will signal to others in the bunch you are unreliable and not a good wheel to follow.
OVER - Changing lanes/Turning right. The rear right partner will shoulder check that there are no approaching cars and then clearly yell “Over”, which will be communicated forward.
TRAFFIC LIGHTS - The front pair need to make an accurate and quick judgement whether to stop or to roll through if the lights change, based on distance and speed of the bunch that the WHOLE bunch can stop in time and safely. Yell “Rolling” or “Stopping” nice and loud, and together. Both hands on your brakes is better than indicating.
PREDICTABLE - Be predictable. Keep an eye on the person in front and an eye on the person in front of them. Stay aware and keep your mind on the job in hand. Don't swerve all over the road and avoid making sudden movements unless there's no other choice. Voice calls are very useful for alerting the riders behind you.
SILKY SMOOTH - Be smooth. Learn how to sit pace nice and smoothly, instead of slinky-ing back and forth. Learn that brakes have a whole spectrum of use, and not just OMGLOCKUP! Learn how to negotiate corners towing a bunch who are almost blind to it. Conversely, learn to trust that the rider in front is taking the right line through a corner.
NEW RIDERS - There really is only one way to learn how to ride in a bunch – by doing it and consistently practising. Plus if you don't know something, the quickest way to find out is to ask! The bunch riding calls and behaviours may start out being a bit foreign, but with everyone in the bunch doing it, they will just become second nature.