Our club runs give riders of differing abilities the chance to enjoy cycling in a group. The group ride gives riders the chance to improve in different ways by learning from other riders and maintaining a decent pace over a reasonable distance without getting lost. A group ride is social and is generally safer than riding solo. These guidelines aim to keep it that way. It goes without saying that we respect all other road users and the rules of the road.
Who Can Ride?
Club Runs are open to guest riders. Riders are expected to join Brighton Excelsior CC [BECC] after 3 rides. New riders under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult.
The ride leader will turn riders away if he or she feels that their age, fitness or lack of appropriate equipment poses too much risk to a safe, successful ride.
Ride leaders are experienced but are not necessarily coaches or committee members. BECC Club Runs are not insured and riders take part at their own risk but guided group rides are generally safer than solo rides.
How is the Ride Run?
Speed is determined by the ride leader based on the ability of the group. Red and Blue Club Runs are not training rides, those wanting to train should join a Black Run or organise their own training.
A Club Run is not about scoring Strava PRs, it is a group ride. However, there have always been certain sections where attacks are accepted on BECC club rides. These include obvious sections like Copsale and Coombes Lane as well as any significant climbs where people's speeds will tend to vary. Please always respect the lead rider’s instructions on the day and don't go sprinting off the front of the group.
The Club Run waits for everyone, with the exception of riders who disappear off the front.
Ride in 2 parallel lines. Never ride 3 abreast or on the wrong side of the road. When a car wants to pass, close in to the left or drop to single file as necessary.
Do not break the line. Overtake only on hills or sections nominated by the leader, do so in safe places where the road ahead is clear, do not cut in too close in front of a rider you have passed.
Stay close to the rider in front in order to save group energy.
Don’t overlap your wheel with that of the rider in front of you. This is a big cause of crashes in group rides.
Share the pace by doing your time on the front without trying to push the pace. Everyone should be able to keep up. Stronger riders should just spend more time on the front and only ride ahead on hills and nominated sections.
Don’t switch suddenly. Hold your line and keep a steady cadence.
Don’t stop suddenly without signalling.
Communicate clearly and tell someone if you have a problem. You won’t be abandoned.
Signal or shout from the front backwards for cars "Car", obstacles, pot-holes, gravel, slowing “Easy” or stopping “Stopping”. Shout “Clear” or “Wait” to indicate traffic at a junction. Always check the road for yourself after a “clear” call. Your safety is your own responsibility.
Shout from the back for cars “Car Back”, punctures, mechanicals and dropped riders.
At a shout of “Car” or “Car Back” you must take visible action unless already tight to the left.
Riders who cannot or will not comply with the rules and general etiquette will be asked to leave the ride.
A road bike is required. It is too difficult for non-elite athletes to keep up on hybrids or mountain bikes.
Ensure your bike is in full working order. The gears should change smoothly without the chain coming off, both front and rear brakes must work well, tyres should be in good order and inflated to the correct pressure. If your bike is clearly not in good order you may be asked not to ride.
Please wear a helmet and carry a rain jacket, a pump, essential tools and 2 spare inner tubes.
Please bring sufficient food for the ride and plenty to drink, typically 2 x 500ml bottles would be the minimum. Energy gels are also a good idea.
Mudguards are advised during wet weather as they help keep you and others from getting soaked and make the bike easier to clean.
It is also advised to have a rear light and a mobile phone plus cards or money.