Which ride?

Rides

  • The Sunday Rides depart from Kings Square, USUALLY at 09:00 – but please check the Events Calendar, News and/or Facebook because some longer rides start earlier, and sometimes weather or roadworks force a late change.
  • On all rides participants are expected to be self sufficient so bring a water bottle and a basic tool kit such as a multi tool, a spare tube (or two), tyre levers, and a pump. A waterproof cape and an energy gel are worth considering, depending on the weather forecast and ride distance.
  • Newcomers and Juniors should introduce themselves to the Ride Leader, Club Captain, or Vice Captain who will suggest which group is suitable. Newcomers can attend three GCCC organised rides (including chain gangs) as a non member. For rides after this they will be required to join. Membership forms will be available at these events and can be found on line here.
  • There may be over forty riders in Kings Square, going in perhaps several groups ranging from very easy (AA) to very quick (Training). The Ride(s) in the Calendar will take place, and depending on numbers and preferences there may be extra Rides. The aims are to give everyone the Ride they want and to keep each group to a reasonable size.
  • Club Rides aim to be at the coffee stop between 11:00 and 11:30. Usually some riders will choose to go back to Gloucester from coffee, while the Club Ride itself will stay out for a further ride to a pub for lunch before heading home.
  • The Club Ride will keep together, making sure to regroup at junctions and hilltops. Special care will be taken of young riders (see our Young Riders Policy, included on the Membership Application), weaker riders, or newcomers.
  • There are some simple conventions for bunch riding (see, for example, here) which new riders will soon pick up.
  • If you decide to leave the Club ride, please tell the Ride Leader you are leaving the ride or everyone will be waiting while he/she looks for you. Choose riding companions of similar ability or make sure you are happy to return on your own.
  • Note that if there is a Training Ride it will NOT follow Club Ride practice; towards the end of the ride they do not regroup and they do not usually stop for coffee. Participants need to be capable of 20+ mph bunch riding for at least 3 hours. Check out a video of the Tuesday night Chain Gang
  • There are a few season long competitions associated with the Club rides, which can be viewed here.

Club Ride Classifications

Press the buttons for examples of typical routes and profiles. Note profiles are stretched to fit the space; mouseover to see the real incline.

 

AA

Flat, easy pace, open invitation ride typically 18 to 25 miles to coffee, 35 to 40 miles round trip. Average riding speed 10 to 12mph, depending on attendees.

A

Easy(ish) possibly a few gentle climbs; some experience necessary, typically 20 to 28 miles to coffee; 50 to 60 miles round trip. Average riding speed 12 to 15mph.

B

Hills, experience and stamina necessary; typically 28 to 32 miles to coffee; 60 to 70 miles round trip. Average riding speed 14 to 17mph.

C

Long ride requiring very good stamina and food supplies. Check with Captain for details. 80+ miles round trip. Average riding speed 14 to 17mph.

MTB

The emphasis is on cross country rather than downhill riding, using bridleways, RUPPs, and BOATs where possible. Rides will typically be at the red or blue standard of the MTB trail grading system.

Sport Rides

Sport rides are generally category B as above, the route often being longer/hillier. Destination may differ from Club Ride if numbers dictate. Average speed 17-19mph.

Training Rides

Training Rides are around three hours with a coffee stop at the end in or around Gloucester. Average Speed of about 19-21 mph.

Training Rides DO NOT follow Club Ride rules, in that although they always regroup after a climb, participants must be prepared to be dropped on the run in back to Gloucester over the last 5-10 miles, if it speeds up at the end of the ride. They do not usually stop for coffee until the end of the ride. Participants need to be capable of 20+ mph bunch riding for at least 3 hours. For an impression of the riding style check out a video of the Tuesday night Chain Gang

Midweek Social Rides

  • The Midweek Rides depart from Kings Square at 7 pm, but please check the Events Calendar, News and/or Facebook because weather or roadworks sometimes force a late change.
  • The difficulty level can vary considerably, even though the ride always goes at a moderate pace for typically about 1.5 hours to one of a selection of the best pubs within a 15 – 20 radius of Gloucester.
  • Anywhere in the Cotswolds will involve some climbing, whereas North or South in the Severn Valley can be much easier – so pick your destination!
  • Occasionally an MTB option is available too.
  • Full lighting must be fitted, even in Summer. You will probably be coming home in the dark on quiet country lanes.
  • Occasionally there is an off-bike event instead, such as a quiz.