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 Post subject: Choosing A Cycling Club
PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2006 15:31 
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Joined: Fri Apr 02, 2004 23:42
Posts: 3820
Choosing a Cycling Club

OK – so you’ve all read me notes on here. :lol: 8-)

Inspired – all our petrolheads have rushed out to buy a bike like johnshers’s or a top of the range Giant or a macho testosterone charged Stinky 8-) :lol: :D :)

So you want to meet other cycling nuts :wink: – so you look for a club where you can prove you can ride 50 miles, take on the Tourmalet, Hardknott …..Snowdon… the Ormes… whatever … :D :) :P

Quick surf on the CTC site, CW site will give a list of regular runs and the local bike shop can point you to local runs – such as the one being run by self and my colleagues … :wink:

Simple enough? :shock: :?

Hah! :shock: :? :shock:

CW reports the sad truth of dwindling club memberships – and the remaining ones being specialist for testosterone fuelled racing clubs or boring old farts who say

time warped old cove wrote:
“Eeee ‘ecky thump – 1950 – them were t ’days! What do you need al them gears for – lad? Eeee—carbon frame … what the ‘eck – now wrong wi’ a proper bike made o steel tha knows”

:hissyfit: :roll:

Eagerness turns to puzzlement as you get a sharp sermon on the topic and how you’ll never make a cyclist with all them gears – “fixed wheels maketh a man - boy” :roll:


OK so after this - you decide to try again next Sunday and are told that racing today … degenerated into poncy aerodynamic "nonciness" :? :shock: "whereby riders are not tough enough to handle sleeping rough under a hedge whilst on a cycling holiday in Durham…" :shock: :?

Hmm – as Francine (*who also got the “you’re just a woman” jibe” :roll: :wink: writes

Francine Hardcastle in CW wrote:
“Hardly desirable for a sport eager to recruit enthusiasts and get the buzz”

– Francine Hardcastle’ s piece examined “sampling “ and concluded that meeting successive groups of total strangers each ripe with the promise of a slow roasting by an unsympathetic changing can intimidate the less gung-ho amongst us. :shock:

And Oh – I love this bit 8-) 8-) 8-) :twisted: :lol: :D


“There is also the serious danger that a change of club will only deliver up a different form of nutcase – whether devoted to cycling or stamp collecting since all clubs seem to be magnets for the full range of mild personality disorders”

:twisted: :twisted: :lol: :lol: :shock:

Wow – :shock: :? she got away with this in a Cycling mag!

:bow: :bow: :bow: :clap: :clap: :clap:

So – she wonders whether not to bother and avoid these clubs at all costs :? - and this is itself means forgoing all the benefits which clubs provide :? :? :roll:

. Namely – you cannot race unless you belong to one – and even if you could do so – the lack of the experience and training, which these clubs help, you with place you at a disadvantage. There is, after, all the need to be coached and developed as in any other sport. :wink:

Also as she rightly points out in her piece :yesyes: :yesyes: for a new cyclist – riding in a group is a good way to build the essential road skills, steady cadence and route planning – as well as the best place for cake and tea. Also – good way to make some pals and cycling buddies.

But as she concludes – clubs are a vital part of the UK cycling scene – and all cycling clubs need to get a grip and encourage riders of all abilities to excel in whatever type of riding we wish to pursue – whether a Sunday ride or a serious training blast :twisted: :twisted: :D

And rightly concludes that friendly accessible clubs – with a healthy take on life attract more members that the ones to which the nutcases flock. :wink: :)

So...something to learn and think about and perhaps we need to work on providing some facility for those who just want to ride for pleasure and leisure learn essential skills together - after all this may be the very thing to get more bums in saddles and a far better road user relationship than appears to be the case at present.

Perhaps A and B Cyclists can give some leads as to encouraging riding and promoting a more accessible club membership aimed at improving skills and catering for the full range of stamina and stamina building.

Have they perhaps got such a club in their area? How do we change the fuddy duddys per Francine's experience in CW?

Take with a chuckle or a grain of salt
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Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon - but driving with a smile and a COAST calm mind.

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2006 17:54 
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 00:04
Posts: 2311
I can vouch for Addiscombe CC. They have club rides aimed at all levels. 40 mile ride at your choice of 13/15/17/19 and 21mph average. The 13 and 15 groups are very beginner friendly - nobody is going to leave you if you struggle up a hill. They also have a mountain bike group for the nutters. :wink:

Other clubs in this area seem to be more race-oriented - ie all rides are as fast as possible.

I think the CTC do leisurely rides or at least could put you in touch with groups that do.

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2006 14:49 

Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2005 10:15
Posts: 318
Location: Co Durham
I believe Addiscombe CC is an unusual beast in that it caters for in-betweeners like me.

I feel that CTC groups prefer to ride in a slow and leisurely way, at least they do whenever I see them in the countryside - too slow for me although I am a CTC member but not a member of a DA (District Association).

On the other hand having heard from friends about the chain gangs of clubs like Ferryhill Wheelers, I don't fancy thrashing around the countryside getting left behind - I don't average a high enough speed on my own.

The only time I have had a pleasant ride with cyclists at my own pace has been on rides like the "Hell of the North" in September, when there are a lot of riders with widely differing abilities but who can handle a hilly 100 mile run.

So until I get a better offer I will continue to plan rides on my own.

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