Members earn points for every event (group ride, TT etc.) they attend. And bonus points are awarded for leading or organizing an event. These points will be used to buy goodies and services at an auction in the off season.
Points Earned for 2017
EMAIL / BULLETIN BOARD – Keeping Informed
The Owen Sound Cycling Club uses a variety of tools to communicate with members and for members to interact with each other.
If you are a new member, a returning member with a new email address or a guest, be sure to subscribe to our email list. This will ensure that you receive any important club announcements.
The Schedule link will take you to a calendar with a list of all upcoming group rides, time trials and social events. Because it is a Google calendar, you can click on the +Google link (bottom right) to add the OSCC calendar to your Google account. Once you’ve added the calendar, you can choose to be notified of new or changed events, etc.
Follow us on Twitter to receive notification of last minute cancellations and venue changes, etc.
We also have a Bulletin Board where you can chat with other members, buy and sell, coordinate car pooling and share technical tips. You must register on the BB before you can post. Registered members can also subscribe to topics: you will be alerted via email when there is an update. Even if you don’t register and post to the bulletin board, it’s a good idea to view it once in a while to see what’s happening.
- What kind of bikes do you ride?
That depends what type of riding you want to do. Most of us prefer to ride on the roads, so generally we have chosen to ride road bikes, but in effect, any roadworthy bike can be used to ride on the road. They are generally in good mechanical condition and often have mudguards fitted in the winter for road riding. Mountain bikes (also known as MTBs or ATBs) are the choice for people who want to ride off-road, and there are plenty of people in the club who do that too.
- Can I ride my mountain bike on the road?
Yes, no problem, though they are usually heavier than a road bike, so hence harder work uphill. You will find the ride improved by putting slick tyres on your mountain bike however. Another area that would benefit you is to buy some pedals that you clip in to. We can offer advice here if need be.
- My bike is only cheap.
More expensive bikes benefit from being lighter, which means they are easier to ride uphill, but ultimately it doesn’t matter how expensive a bike is, as long as it’s well maintained. A well maintained bike will run smoother, have fewer mechanical problems, and will be more fun to ride.
- You all look a bit professional dressed in the Lycra. I don’t want to wear Lycra.
Lycra can be a bit ‘revealing’, but we dress like that for reasons of comfort. The shorts have a synthetic chamois pad which helps keep your bum comfortable. The materials used in all the clothing tend to breathe well, reducing discomfort from sweating, and they don’t flap around in the wind. Basic rules for a beginner are ride in whatever you’re comfortable.
- I’m pretty interested, but want to get some advice on kit. Could you guys help?
Yes, simply ask. Most of us have experiences of various bikes and equipment and would be only too happy to advise you what to buy, and what to avoid. We’ve made the mistakes, no need for you to copy our errors!
- Do you shave your legs?
Some of us do, some of us don’t, no rules. Generally it’s people who race who shave their legs, and the main reasons are not for wind resistance. Shaven legs are easy to massage, and can look nice!
- I don’t like riding near cars or on busy roads.
Neither do we. Generally, all our rides are on quiet back roads, away from cars as much as possible. We get out to these roads as soon as we can. For some of the time trials the junctions are marshaled to increase visibility and driver awareness. Of course, we also have mountain bikers, and their rides are almost exclusively away from traffic.
- How fit do I need to be to be able to come riding with you?
You’ll need a reasonable level of fitness to be able to do a group ride By reasonable level of fitness, we’d suggest that you should be able to ride at
about 25 km h on the flat for a distance of about 40 km. If you wanted to ride a club time trial (an event where you ride a set distance against the clock), then you are testing yourself, so there is no minimum speed.
- Do I need to be in the club to come on a ride or do a time trial?
Any one participating in an Owen Sound Cycling Club ride (group ride, time trial, off-road ride) must be a member. The signed waiver must be on file and you might be asked to produce your membership card. The membership fee includes OCA insurance. If you already have OCA or UCI insurance, then you can join for a nominal $5.
- I see that you all seem to ride close together in a group. If I did that, I’d be afraid of knocking someone off.
Don’t be. At first it might seem very daunting, but if you’d never ridden in a group, we’d start by placing you at the back of the group where you’d not have to worry about people around you. From there we could teach you the basics and soon get you riding within the group as your confidence increased.
- But why ride so close together?
You’ll see! Riding ‘on someone’s wheel’ as it’s called gives you the benefit of slipstream. Riding close enough to the person in front of you can save you as much as 15-40% of your energy, depending on the speed and size of the group.
- Is everyone else fast? What if I can’t keep up?
Try riding as far as you can on a flat road at 25 km h. If you can ride about 50 km in two hours in varied terrain then you’re probably fit enough. That is about the speed of our group rides, and it is always easier when you are in a group. If you start to struggle, don’t worry, we’ve all been there, and someone will ride with you to ensure you are OK. We won’t leave you behind in the middle of nowhere. And, anyone in the club can lead a ride. The rides just have to be planned a week or so in advance so our insurer can be informed. So if you want to do a slower, recreational ride you can do so.
- Do I have to race?
Not at all. You do as much or as little as you like. You may find that racing is infectious, especially time trials which are done entirely at your own speed. In a time trial you are racing against your previous personal best times always trying to better them.
- You haven’t answered all my questions!
Contact one of the following…
Make sure your bike is in good working order before each ride. On each ride take at least: a puncture repair kit, pump, a spare tube, basic tools and a water bottle. A cell phone may be useful in case of a breakdown, an off day, or emergency.
- Wheel positioning.
Do not ride with your front wheel overlapping the rear of the person in front. If the person in-front makes a sudden move, your front wheel could be knocked from under you and you will be the one who crashes.
If you see a pot hole or debris (especially if you’re riding on the front of the group), alert others in the group (by shouting or pointing down), as the view for riders behind you can be restricted. The same principle can be used for other obstructions (i.e. parked cars, pedestrians, etc).
- The route.Don’t overtake (and in particular ride well ahead of) the leading rider in the group unless you are willing to take responsibility for your own navigation. The ride leader is not obliged to chase after people who miss a turning in this way.
The leader should start relatively slowly to enable the group to get organised behind him/her and allow any gaps to be closed up. This is particularly important when riding through the town where traffic lights may conspire to split the group.
- Split.If there are more than twelve people in a group, or there is an obvious disparity in abilities or fitness, we may consider splitting it into two or more groups.
The FAQ and Group Ride Tips courtesy of Welland Valley CC