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etiquette ?, randomly joining group ride(23 posts)

etiquette ?, randomly joining group rideibmkidiii
Sep 3, 2003 7:19 AM
What is the etiquette on that? I was passed yesterday by a group in a tight 2x5 formation, and I pullled in and drafted behind them for a bit, but felt guilty so I let the gap open a bit and they ended up dropping me. If I'm willing to push some wind, are most roadies cool with letting me join in their mini-peleton? Will I get yelled at if I just sit and draft off of them?(I assume so, or at least they won't be happy with me) Plus I couldn't figure out their rotation. It seemed like they were taking 5 min+ turns which seems a bit long to me.

Mtb'er cross training
It depends,TJeanloz
Sep 3, 2003 7:37 AM
I'd say it depends on how organized they look. If its a group of <15, all wearing the same clothing (i.e. on a "team" ride), I wouldn't just jump in without asking. If its a rag-tag group of >15, I would probably say something, but jump in.

Bottom line is that it's easy and always better to ask - the worst that can happen is they'll say no.
Here's another questionlotterypick
Sep 3, 2003 7:55 AM
If you're friends are in a small group ride (7-9) guys and they go every week, these guys are all solid ex-team type guys.

I've only been riding, since a 10 year break, since July.

On the big climb I got dropped and they waited for me at the bottom. I seemed to make it back fine, but maybe they are shutting it down for be nice (we did hit 35 on the straights on the way back, and I kept up).

Should I work on my own or stay and try to hang on, which I don't mind and I'm fine if they drop me (which I told them before the ride).
Here's another questionTJeanloz
Sep 3, 2003 8:04 AM
I would be o.k. with a "friend" sitting in (not pulling at all) if that's what it took for him to keep up. That's far preferable to dropping a "friend". You're on a group ride to ride in a group, not to drop everybody.
If you said they didn't have to wait...biknben
Sep 3, 2003 8:10 AM
Telling them they didn't have to wait for you was a nice gesture on your part. It looks like they returned the favor by slowing until you caught up. It sounds like you found a good group of people to ride with.

Groups often splinter on climbs. Those who are faster on the climb will coast or slow down afterwards to allow others to catch up.
I agree, it depends and its better to askFez
Sep 3, 2003 8:05 AM
I frequently ride alone and enjoy it.

One time I got yelled at by a group of 5 weekend warriors. They rode 3x2, so they pretty much took the whole lane of a closed road. I figured I couldn't pass them and sustain it, so I rode a few bike lengths behind.

One of them decided to yell at me and tell me how uncomfortable it was for his group to have a stranger draft unannounced. I suppose he meant his group was very skilled and someone like me could take them all down with my relative inexperience.

They all had flashy, bright painted bikes with aero bars, so I decided not to mess with them.

I passed them so they would be rid of me, but after a few miles I was approaching a one way crossing that everyone should slow down for and cross single file.

All of a sudden, right from behind one of the riders of that group tries to do a last second pass and nearly plowed/clipped into me from behind.

So the moral of the story is its best to ask if a group wants company. Even so, you should never assume that other riders are riding safe, even when they have a holier than thou attitude.
and never assume that those with aero bars are real roadies;) nmSpunout
Sep 3, 2003 8:17 AM
Chances are, if they've got aero bars, they're NOT roadies. nmMShaw
Sep 3, 2003 9:06 AM
I agree its better to askbimini
Sep 3, 2003 9:56 AM
I agree, ask if you can join. You may find out from how they answer if you want to associate with them.

I was on an organized multiday ride and joined a pace line. It was 2 rows and I joined behind the right row. A fellow in the left row started to try edging me out and then started yelling at me when I held my line and told me to get to the back. Fine, it was their party so I went to the back.

After riding the tail for about a mile and seeing how this "team" yelled and screamed at the other riders they passed or wanted to pass. I was embarassed to even be seen with or have people think I was even remotely associated with this "team".

I dropped off and found more plesant people to ride with and talk to.
I don't get it.NatC
Sep 3, 2003 12:21 PM
If you were a few bike lengths behind that group, then you weren't really interacting with that group, were you? What difference is it to them (aerodynamically speaking) if you were a few lengths behind or a few miles behind? Seems to me that they were a bit uptight yelling at you. How can having someone a few lengths behind affect you other than if you're a total ninny? How much road do they need for chrissakes?
Yeah, I agree. People get too uptight. It is no danger tobill
Sep 3, 2003 12:53 PM
anyone to ride behind someone. Even to draft closely. It's ALWAYS the guy behind that goes down -- the guy in front doesn't even know what happened most of the time. I suppose you could try to make a case that it's rude because it invades your personal space or something, which I can sort of see, but that's all in the eye of the beholder, too. Ever notice how you can cram into an elevator and be completely unfazed by your proximity to others, but if it's just a couple of people, the same space is very uncomfortable? I always found that interesting.
The threat is greater to the rider behind but...biknben
Sep 3, 2003 3:05 PM
There are still plenty of things that could happen to the guy in front. While the guy behind will go down the rider in front is still at risk. Ever have someone fall asleep in a paceline only to slam into the back of you when the light turns red?

Frankly, riding with someone you don't know can be awkward. If I'm at the front I take responsibility for those that are behind me. I don't feel like being responsible for some stranger that I just happened to pass on the road.

If you want to be friendly then pull up and chat. I f I get the warm-fuzzies, I'd be happy to pull you along. If you're the silent type, just looking to mooch and catch a draft, then go find someone else.
Yeah, I agree. People get too uptight. It is no danger todeHonc
Sep 3, 2003 3:47 PM
It can be a danger - you get a total novice who is enthusiastic and wants to join in - they sit right on your wheel and ride into you if for some reason you slow because they haven't learnt to watch the leading bike's BB. I like to trust the competancy of those I ride with at speed in a pace line. But on a casual ride I never mind strangers joining me.
The only time I ever have heard of a rider crawling up a guy'sbill
Sep 3, 2003 6:17 PM
rear wheel to the point where it was a hazard was a freak thing where a Cat 3 in my club hooked his front wheel into another guy in my club's rear derailer. It happened at a stoplight, not at speed. It still almost sent the guy over. Almost. They had ridden together like maybe only a hundred times. So, it can happen to anyone. And it rarely happens.
People are too uptight. Too sure of their own competence, too suspicious of others. Too uptight, period.
But Fez said he was "a few bike lengths behind"NatC
Sep 3, 2003 6:46 PM
not a few inches. If you can't handle another bike several feet behind, then either you suck or you're a ninny. Fez should've stayed a few bike lengths behind that group for the rest of the day until they started crying or had a conniption.
Try this reason.....PbOkole
Sep 4, 2003 6:02 AM
I'm out on a ride just kind of noodling along minding my own business and feeling the aloha. Unbeknownst to me, I have a person who I had just passed a minute ago grab onto my wheel. As I approach an intersection, I start to slow for the stop sign. My shadow was not paying attention and ran up the right side of my wheel. He went down but fortunately was not hurt as we were not going that fast. He continued on his way but I couldn't. His collision had totally bent the cage and scored the carbon face plate on a very nice Record 10 derailleur. Derailleur hanger was also bent and several spokes were nicked by the bent derailleur. The result was a walk home and a $300 bill to get the bike fixed. You had better announce yourself when you grab onto my wheel. I WILL say something if you don't.

Larry
But what would his saying something have changed? This is abill
Sep 4, 2003 7:07 AM
real question. Would you have said, no, you can't? Would you have said, okay, but don't run up my rear? I mean, what difference would it have made? Seriously.
The dumbsh*t who was not paying attention should have paid for the damage. But it could happen whether the wheel was invited or not. Sh*t happens.
205.174.22.23PbOkole
Sep 4, 2003 9:27 AM
But what would his saying something have changed? This is a
I don't know if there is a standard answerfiltersweep
Sep 3, 2003 7:53 AM
The way I see it, if a group is going substantially faster than you, why would you want to grab a wheel? You were on a solo ride at your own pace for a reason, and it only would take a few seconds for the group to pass. On the other hand, if they were a lumbering group going about the same speed as you, you are naturally going to be entangled in them for awhile. This would also make you a relatively strong rider compared to the group.

I'd guess most roadies are OK with a passenger hanging on for a bit as long as he or she does not interfere with what is going on.
re: etiquette ?, randomly joining group rideasgelle
Sep 3, 2003 7:58 AM
To echo TJeanloz, why is there a question. The decision rests with the group not with you. If you decide you want to join them, ask if it's O.K. The answer they give will be the only one worth anything. Some groups wil say yes, some no. No one on this board can tell you which it will be.
Just ask...biknben
Sep 3, 2003 8:03 AM
I would ask one the of the guys if they minded if you just hung on the back.

Every situation is different but the first step is to ask. Most riders will be friendly and not care at all. They will respect the fact that you asked and didn't just hang back there without saying anything. Hangin on the back without offering a hello or greeting would be rude in my book.

If you're not comfortable with their rotation just stay at the back. If someone motions you into the rotation, simply explain you want to watch to see how they are rotating and maybe you'll mix in later.

Personally, I wouldn't feel comfortable with a straggler that just mixed into the group. If I had a nice rotation going with friends, a straggler would really disrupt the rythym. I'd prefer that they just hung at the back.

The key is honest communication.
You can't always "just ask..."TSWG66
Sep 4, 2003 7:20 AM
What about the guy that edged me and my riding partner off the corner trying to pass going 100mph? He had headphones on and was obviously not concerned about his environement. Had I wanted to ask if he minded another, i couldn't have. Instead, I caught up to him and rode 2-3 lengths behind him and a few feet over for about 10miles. He kept looking back and wanting to be pissed but I wasn't drafting...just keeping up. I was thinking he would turn off the radio or something.. but nah...
This is such a weird debate. The guy you described -- whybill
Sep 4, 2003 7:34 AM
would you want to ride ANYWHERE near that guy? Most people get all righteous about wheelsucking, even when it's the sucker at risk more than the suckee by many times over, and here you are, and you know that the guy is a doofus, you know (or you should) that you're far more at risk than he is under the best of circumstances, even if he wasn't a doofus, and he's not communicating and obviously doesn't want you there, and you still insist on shadowing him? Why? This is just so bizarre.
I realize I'm becoming my own brand of self-righteous, but I'm beginning to wonder whether roadies have any social skills at all.