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Need help before I cause a crash or offend(9 posts)

Need help before I cause a crash or offendlotterypick
Oct 6, 2003 7:03 AM
Went on the group ride Saturday and the guys are all encouraging me to improve and get stronger for the past two months.

Things are going great but I've made two mistakes. One in etiqutte (sp? it's wrong) and the other tactical, but almost cause a crash for the group.

I need common words of advice from the peleton, funny ones are appreciated also.

On the ettiquette (wrong again?) one, I pull off to go home earlier than everyone else, as we near where I'm getting off. I come from third to sprint past everyone in the pace line in fun. I should have gone to the front and pulled to say thanks. I did pull on the ride, just not at the end.

This time. I'm pulling as we get near the end for me and then pull out to the left. Everyone passes me and we're still a little way from the place for me to leave and I'm still feeling good, sooooo.

I sprint to the front and tell my friend, who at the front, let me pull on your left.

Well he thinks everyone else is behind me to he goes right and almost crashes into the guy the was following him.

Long story short, I almost caused a crash of the whole group. It's clear I want to do well and do right, but I'm making little mistakes in ettiquette or tactics, please sound off what i should remember, do and don't do. Thanks.
ya know,...mohair_chair
Oct 6, 2003 7:11 AM
A paceline is supposed to be a machine. If you mess with the machine, you might break it. That's the simplest rule there is.

Why you are sprinting up the line is a mystery to me, but you wouldn't be riding with me if you did that more than once. Don't do it. If you are third in line when your offramp comes, before you get there, let the people behind know you are pulling out, then when the time comes, wave goodbye and pull out. Why do you have to put on a show?
Oct 6, 2003 7:18 AM
It was just for fun, but I knew it was a mistake when I did it and called the lead guy at his house to appologize.

THe second time, I was just trying to be helpful and pull all I could before I hit the pull out spot.

I'm not a bad guy, just don't know the rules.

I think I've got a better idea now, be second near when I pull out and pull like crazy or for a long time before I pull out and once you're out, don't pull again, jsut go home.

I'm just asking for other things to remember. Meaning, I'm looking for advice before I make the mistake, I think you can appreciate that.
why the guilt?mohair_chair
Oct 6, 2003 7:36 AM
I don't think you get it. You seem to have some kind of guilt thing going on that you need to deal with.

You have no obligation to pull extra hard or extra long because you are leaving early. You don't need to be "near second" to make that happen, and you shouldn't be scheming to get there.

The only obligations you have if you are in the middle of the line and you are pulling out (for whatever reason) are 1) make sure the rider behind you knows, so they don't think you are swerving to avoid an obstacle and so you don't slap them with a surprise gap in the line, and 2) pull out cleanly and safely.

Drop the guilt trip. If you were a pro riding in a breakaway and you had to pull out, you might do a hand sling as a nice gesture, but you are no pro, and you're not racing. This is a fun ride, right? Nobody is keeping score of how long or how much you are pulling.

If you get a reputation as a dangerous or crazy rider, you'll find yourself riding alone a lot. The most important rule in pacelines is: be predictable. No surprises.
Oct 6, 2003 7:48 AM
I'm feeling like an idiot because these guys are so nice and encouraging.

In reality they don't need to be nice and could certainly just expect me to get stronger and do it myself, but instead they are helping me, encouraging me and just being bro's.

They pull up next to me and give me advice. in fact they're advice last week was to not work so hard, since I'm not the strongest and set my goal on making the bottom of the steep section with the lead group.

I did and it worked and they were cheering me at that point.

I agree with the perdictable and not leaving a gap. I hate that myself.

I guess there is nothing more I could learn since they said I ride with good form and now just need to get stronger.

If I feel like an idiot for almost causing them to crash and wanting to ask you if there is anything else to avoid, then I'm guilty.

Thanks for the help. I'll be predictable, but I'm still going to pull sometimes, to get stronger and do some work, because I like hanging out with these guys.
There's no shame in being less strong than the other riders --bill
Oct 6, 2003 8:41 AM
in fact, just the opposite. When you do get to be as strong as they are, mark my words, they are going to miss the day that they could count on feeling stronger than you (that's a guy thing that defies all explanation). The only time that anyone will mind your not pulling is when you sprint past everyone or beat them up the hill or whatever. Then they'll think you're a wheelsuck. Before then, no one thinks you're a wheelsuck -- you're a newbie who's looking up to them. You serve an important role -- you're feeding their ego, dude!
Just don't try so hard. That gets people into trouble as soon as anything else. Be willing to learn, remain open to the experience, and go slow.
honestly, this is the wrong place to get that adviceThe Human G-Nome
Oct 6, 2003 7:29 AM
paceline rules are different everywhere you go. it's always safe just to do what everyone else is doing on your group and then you can't go wrong. as far as jumping from the line, in some pacelines that's not only ok, it's expected. if you race, jumping from a paceline and then being able to create and maintain a gap is something you have to practice before you'd ever be good at it during a race. as long as other riders know ahead of time that this is ok, then you can do it. otherwise, it's bad form. also, the worst rider in a paceline isn't the one who "jumps" because that looks obvious, rather, it's the rider who creeps away everytime he hits the front and adds 2 or 3 mph everytime he pulls. the trick is to maintain your speed, not to try to blow up the rest of your paceline.
You must be predictable. Anything unpredictable is dangerous.bill
Oct 6, 2003 7:33 AM
Which usually means, pulling off to go home means pulling off from the front in a normal rotation, then just leaving, which is fine, or getting on the rear and leaving. Don't turn off from the line, front or middle. If from the front, people will follow you. If from the middle, no one knows what to do. You either pull off and leave or get to the back and leave.
While I am sure that your apologies are, at some level, appreciated, common sense and a simple and immediate recognition of when you are in the way by getting out of the way probably would be more appreciated than the follow-up phone apology.
Pacelines are not hard, and there isn't an arcane system that makes them work. Predictability is the key, and moots the need for more than the most rudimentary communication (although you should tell everyone you're cutting off, so that no one thinks you went into a ditch).
teary-eyed good-bye...filtersweep
Oct 6, 2003 9:34 AM
I agree... and I don't see what the big deal is.

Skip the histrionics- let your buddy know ahead of time that you are cutting out early, then just leave. Period.