Club Rides and Ride Designations
The Lost River Cycling Club adheres to a no-drop philosophy for club road rides. This inclusive philosophy is an important part of who we are. Our club has a very diverse group of riders who have varying skill and fitness levels. Being a part of a group that makes the ride fun for each person is among the most important arts of being part of the club.
To be responsive to the variety of riders in the club, we have adopted a multiple-group philosophy for the basic weekly road rides. On all rides where there is interest in doing so, and after an initial warm-to get on less trafficked roads, the group can split into multiple groups of various paces. The length of the warm-up section will vary based on the gathering point and the destination.
The ride host is a volunteer club member. The ride host's job is to: 1. Make sure that all riders know the basic route- particularly the place where a ride will split into multiple groups, 2. Identify a person that day to be "sweep" (making sure that slower riders or those with mechanical difficulties do not ride alone), 3. Identify new people joining the ride and be sure they feel welcome, 4. Review basic rules of the road and ride etiquette. The ride host is not necessarily the sweep.
An essential part of the no-drop policy is the goal to have a rider play "sweep" and help any rider with a mechanical or fitness issue finish the ride. Sweeps are volunteer club members and its impossible to have as many rides as we do and be perfect with this. But the goal is to prevent a rider on a Club Pace designated rides from being left to ride alone.
All club members are encouraged to "pitch-in" a few times a year to serve as a ride host and/or a sweep and help us make this happen.
Club (or Recreational) Pace - This is the basic group ride speed based on our traditional Wednesday and Sunday rides. Club pace groups may break up at times, for example on hills, in crosswinds or after long sections at slightly higher speeds. The group will also stop to get back together at relatively frequent intervals if riders have gone off the back of the group. If riders have flats or other mechanicals the group will stop. LRC tries to have a designated ride leader and sweep at every Club Pace ride. The leader and the riders should work together to make sure that no one rides alone. As on all rides speeds can vary greatly based on conditions and terrain but it is reasonable to expect that these rides will average between 14-18 MPH over more than 20 miles.
Intensity (or Tempo) Pace -This is harder than Club Pace. Riders in these groups should be fit and experienced. These will average 3 or 4 miles an hour faster than Club Pace. The group will look out for one another and will reform at reasonable locations. There likely will not be a designated leader. Riders may get left behind particularly near the end of the ride or if a follow group is there for them to join. There will likely not be a sweep. The group may not stop for mechanicals or flats.
Race Pace -This refers to hard efforts for the fittest riders with appropriate bike skills. Riders are expected to be fully self-sufficient. If you flat, get dropped, or get lost then tough. This is the level of effort to expect if you join the race team members on a team ride.