Here’s a few basics on the way clubs ride on the road, most decent cycling clubs follow this code of conduct as it helps keep everyone safe on social rides.
1. Keep together.
2. Front riders are the eyes of the group.
3. Front riders should warn of:-
Hazards ahead Change of speed Change of direction Potholes Manhole covers, etc Parked vehicles Approaching vehicles
Warnings should be both verbal and by pointing and given in plenty of time.
4. Any warnings or directions given by the lead riders should be repeated by the following riders and passed down the group from pair to pair.
5. After any interruption in the ride, e.g. road junctions, roundabouts, stopping for any reason, after a climb or descent, the lead riders should make sure that all riders are back in the group before moving off at normal pace. It is OK to keep moving, and is preferable to keep moving, but slowly until everyone is back together. But don’t make dropped riders have a long chase to get back on, it just makes them even more tired.
When riders are a long way down, then stopping is an option to consider.
Optionally and only upon mutal agreement of the riders the group may be split mid ride to accommodate different abilities. A suitably experienced leader must be present in both groups in order to safely complete the ride.
When the route involves negotiating roundabouts, road junctions, etc, then waiting at a corner, etc, may be necessary to ensure dropped riders follow the correct route.
6. If novice or unfit riders are present, avoid letting them ride for long periods by themselves on hard sections of the route, i.e. long hills or climbs.
7. Ride in line with the rider in front of you; do not overlap wheels (halfwheel)
8. If gaps appear in the group, warn the riders in front and request them to ease down. Avoid letting large gaps open.
9. Try to ride as a close knit group, including most climbs.
10. When climbing in a group and you cannot hold the wheel in front, do not let a gap open up in front of you – let the rest of the group behind you move forward to keep the group together.
11. Communicate with other riders. If you notice gaps occurring because the pace at the front is too high, ask the riders at the front to ease off. Keep the group together.
12. Change riders at the front frequently, stronger riders doing longer turns, weaker riders shorter.
13. Rear riders should warn of any overtaking vehicles, or instruct the group to form single file to help following traffic when necessary.
14. Rear riders should warn the group if any riders are dropped.