Free and open to anyone with a MCA membership or Citizen/CCA/UCI licence. 6pm every Thursday & Friday from the shop (weather permitting). Distance is generally 50 – 80 km. We will keep the speed down to 25 kph until we get (15 km) out to Grande Pointe. At Grande Pointe it is a 9 km loop and we usually do 2 to 4 laps as individuals or groups depending on how you feel that Friday. If you feel strong, go strong, if you don’t, just ride slower. Then we regroup and head back keeping our speed down to 30kph to keep the group together.
The advantage of this ride is that it is for everyone; 15 km warm-up to Grande Pointe then you go your own speed (crazy or conversational) for the next 10 -30 km before we head back. Then 15 km cool down back to the shop. You control it. Right now the folks on the ride are getting between 50 km and 80 depending on lap speed and how long their commute is to and from the shop.
Woodcock Cycle Works Ride Club
Your first ride only requires a signed waiver, all subsequent rides require an MCA/UCI Membership/Licence.
For more benefits sign up for a Woodcock Cycle Club Membership in addition to the MCA membership.
More Club Benefits
- Road trips! Co-ordinated traveling and accommodations to races and spring/summer training camps.
- Support at MS bike tours, local events and races
- Invitation to the famous Club Windup. “The only thing we like more than riding our bikes is to eat good food”.
- Shop Discount at Woodcock Cycle Works
- Team or Club Kit discount for volunteer efforts at our organized races
Club Discount on your Retul Bike Fitting
- We are one of the few certified Retul Digital Bike Fit centre between Toronto & Calgary
- 3D Motion Fitting system used by the Pros
- Muve bike fits available
- All fittings use your power data to ensure the most efficient fit
How to sign up
To join a group ride you must
The first time you join us you do not need a membership, we will have you sign a waiver and then we are good to go. If you like the ride and want to join us again you will need a membership or racing licence.
You'll also need to...
- Be wearing a helmet
- Hold a valid MCA General Membership ($50), or Citizen/UCI/CCA licence. These are only available online at www.mbcycling.ca. These conditions allow the bike Clubs and its Members to be covered by Insurance should (heaven forbid) anything go awry.
- Be prepared to show your card (once received) or until you receive your card you can show receipt of payment for the license and/or License# at the beginning of each ride. The first time you join us you will need to sign a waiver, this protects the validity of our insurance through the Manitoba Cycling Association (MCA). The second and subsequent times you join us you will need a MCA General Membership, this membership is $50 and covers you and Woodcock Cycle Works with insurance for the duration of the season.
- Oh, and please sign in for each ride at the front counter.
Things to check before a ride
- Air pressure in your tires. Tires naturally lose air every day, it is not unusual for me to go from 100 psi to 90 psi in my rear tire a day after a 85 km ride.
- Brakes, spin your wheels to insure there is no brake rubbing. Brakes get bumped, wheels go out of true from road bumps.
- You don't need to lube your drive train every day but if your chain is black and grungy then you left it way too long. Spray it with a degreaser, wipe it good, lube it well.
- Drop test, lift your bike up a few inches and let it drop down on the tires, if anything rattles then tighten it up.
Things to bring on a ride
- Fluids. You always need fluids. There are lots of fine details you can research on the topic of Cycling Nutrition/Hydration but to keep it simple: Pre hydrate by drinking 500ml one hour prior to a ride. Bring at least 1 bottle of fluids for every hour that you intend on being out. Water is not the best hydrator for sport, you need sodium (Gatoraid, Poweraid, Aceleraid). This way you will be more efficient with the fluids you carry.
- Snack. It is always good to bring along a snack. For myself who has a 25% body fat, I find keeping my heart rate around 135 bpm that my body has time to convert all the energy I need for a 80 km ride. However if I am going harder and I am up near 150, 160, 170 bpm for any extended period during the ride I will need to have a snack every 30 min or so and a gel for the sugar (energy). My body cannot convert fat to energy that fast. Also, do not eat a big snack within 3 hours of starting big ride, it sits heavy and mucks with your blood sugar.
- Inner tube or patch kit
- Pump or CO2 cartridges
- Spare tire or a boot, A boot is a small piece thicker rubber, duct tape etc. that you put on the inside of your tire to keep the tube from bulging out in the event of a cut or gash in your tire. It will get you home.
- Tire levers to help you fix your flat.
- Lights, white for the front, red for the rear. The Manitoba Highway Traffic act tells us we must have them on 1 hour prior to sunset. Reality says it is still bright 30 min after sunset is it is a clear blue sky, but why risk it.
- the right clothing for the weather now and the weather later. It is not uncommon for even Birds Hill Park to have different weather than Winnipeg.
Be On Time
Many riders have busy schedules and want to get as much riding in as they can. Each group ride typically starts within minutes of its posted start time. If you’re late, you’ll miss the ride. No one wants to make a poor first impression by being the one who holds up the start of a ride. It is a good idea to arrive at least ten to fifteen minutes before the start of the ride.
Communication is key to safe group rides. Roads are full of traffic, loose gravel, signs, pot holes, parked cars, animals, pedestrians, etc. and visibility is limited for cyclists riding in a pack. It is important to communicate to the other riders in the group by calling out and pointing out hazards with simple hand gestures. Signal all turns to the group and to motorists. Hold up your hand high in the air if you have a problem like a flat, so riders behind know to be careful. Be attentive to the ride leader when he/she is describing the route and possible hazards. Even if you are an experienced rider, there may be important announcements about route changes or new hazards such as road construction. Make an effort to make new riders feel welcome. The two most obvious things that can make a new rider feel unwelcome are, being ignored and being dropped. Experienced club members should talk to new riders and, if necessary, assist the ride leader in keeping track of new-comers and making sure they get back if they have trouble keeping up.
Know who is behind you
Each rider is responsible for making sure that the rider behind them doesn’t get lost or dropped. They do this by waiting for the next rider each time there is a turn, traffic light or any type of road condition that could cause a rider to get dropped. Additionally, it is especially important when riding in town that the group does not proceed through stop signs until it is safe for the all riders in the group to do so.
Ride Smart & Be Safe
Follow the Rules of the Road as defined in the Highway Traffic Act—a bike is a vehicle. We ride 1 metre out from the road edge (paved shoulder is not legally part of the road, we may or may not chose to ride on it). We take command of the entire lane when safety requires it such as through construction areas, narrow lanes, yields and roundabouts etc. and we release control of the lane once we are completely clear of the hazard/chokepoint.
Group ride dynamics are interesting and ever changing. You have to be alert at all times. To be safe it is important to ride smoothly by not over reacting and by avoiding hard braking. Be alert as to what is going on up the road in the front of the pack, and anticipate what traffic will do. Inexperienced riders that panic and touch a wheel may crash or cause a crash. You can avoid problems by practicing these simple rules:
- Make sure your bike is in good working order. We can help with this – a spring tune-up is a great idea.
- Be relaxed.
- Be predictable in all your actions. Move around slowly, flowing like water.
- Stay alert at all times.
- Communicate hazards by calling and pointing them out.
- Hold your line. Especially in corners.
- Do not pass in corners.
- Don’t overlap wheels. A slight direction change or gust of wind could easily cause you to touch wheels and fall.
- Leave enough space between yourself and the rider in front of you to suit your abilities (generally a metre or so for a beginner).
- When preparing to stand up on the pedals, get out of the saddle slowly over two pedal strokes to avoid shooting your rear wheel into the rider behind you.
- Be aware of the rider(s) around you.
- Don’t brake hard unless absolutely necessary.
- Pass and change lanes slowly and carefully, like you would in your car.
- Remove aero-bars for all group rides.