Useful Tips

Just a bit more information to make your cycle rides more enjoyable. WWCC is not a club with endless rules and regulations, but there are some things that need to be considered to make everyone's cycling a good experience.

Essentials

1.     Follow the Highway Code at all times - it applies to ALL road-users.

2.     It is a Group Rule that well-fitted cycling helmets must be worn on Group rides and headphones are not permitted.

3.     Ensure your bike is road-worthy, the brakes are fully operational and that your tyres are pumped up to an appropriate pressure for the road conditions and weather.

4.     For winter riding, fit mudguards with a mudflap to protect yourself and the person behind you from water and mud spray, which can be a hazard

5.     Carry puncture kit, tyre levers, inner tubes, pump, multi-tool, waterproof jacket, food, water/energy drink, money, mobile, contact details in emergency.

6.     Dress in appropriate clothing for the weather.

7.     When cycling in dull and/or foggy conditions, at dusk or at night, wear appropriate reflective bright clothing and ensure you have working lights.

8.     Carry at all times ICE (In Case of Emergency) details and ideally hold their own insurance from for example, CTC or British Cycling.

Group Riding

9.     When conditions permit, cycle a maximum of two abreast in close parallel lines, focus on keeping it neat and tidy

10.     Ride directly behind the rider in front of you.

11.  Lead cyclists to navigate and point out hazards in the road by either shouting or using hand signals, preferably both. Listen to them and act on the calls, and most importantly, repeat them for the cyclist behind you.

12.  Be prepared on small or busy roads to ride in single file; the inside rider at front to speed up to create space for outside riders to pull into the iside.

13.  Riders at the back of the pack to shout "Car back, single file" if there are vehicles behind. Listen and act on their call.

14.  Calls "Car BACK" thereʼs a car approaching from the back of the group ride "Car FRONT": thereʼs a car approaching from the front of the group ride.

15.  Cover your brakes when appropriate but always when in close formation.

16.  Brake as gently and smoothly as you safely can when riding in a pack, calling out “Slowing” or  “Stopping" or "Easy".

17.  When on the front keep pedalling, this is particularly important going downhill. If you freewheel everyone behind may have to brake.

18.  Point out with hand signals and shouts, all potholes, manhole covers and other dangers in the road that could cause a puncture or an accident.

19.  If you are at the back of the group and you, or someone else is being dropped, it is your responsibility to call to the cyclists in front that the pace is too high. The pack must communicate this up to the front. The lead cyclists will not be aware if you start to drop off. Ask them to slow down; it is your ride too. 

20.  When asked to “ease up’ or “slow a little” do not brake suddenly. Gently ease your pace by pedalling less hard or freewheeling for a moment. Look at your speedo if someone is being dropped you probably only need to reduce your speed by one mile an hour to allow them to stay on.

21.  Keep the pace smooth and constant, keeping the pack as a compact unit.

22.  Slow right down when passing horses, and pass them as wide as it is safe to do so. Always call to the horse riders well ahead of catching them - a cheery “Good morning” or “Hello”. Keep calling until the riders indicate they know you are there. They may want to turn the horse so it can see you.

23.  If you are on the front, remember that people are following your calls. Stop at T junctions and only pull out when it is safe for the whole group to make the move. If you decide to pull out on a roundabout or junction, you need to call "Clear", - or "Wait" - to warn the pack of hazards. 

.... and a summary for efficient riding:

These notes above are abridged, with permission, from Shipston Cycling's website


ADDITIONAL NOTES

 

Riding two abreast

Why do we do it?

1.       It is legal and is covered under rule 66 of the Highway Code.

2.       To ride in an optimal, economical fashion.

3.       To achieve a consistent pace.

4.       Help deliver our ethos of not leaving riders behind.

5.       Social reasons – you can talk to the rider next to you (if you want to!)

6.       Provide motorists with a shorter “train” to overtake. Riding in this fashion minimises the distance involved and is therefore safer for everybody.

When should we do it - what type of roads?

1.       Small, single carriageway roads or larger country lanes.

2.       Riding two abreast on these types of roads makes motorists take a definite overtaking decision.

When shouldn’t we do it?

1.       On narrow lanes or busy, larger roads where riders could potentially still get squeezed for room.

2.       Downhill or uphill riding – both are, by definition, less controlled.

What are the risks?

1.       Half wheeling – two wheels touch and both riders can go down.

2.       Wet weather. In dry weather the distance between riders should be around 1 metre, but you should double this to 2 metres or more in wet or treacherous weather.

3.       Sudden braking – where possible, inform the rider behind you of your intention.

 

The notes on this page are for guidance only and are published on the basis of riders making their own decisions on the road.