I am pretty sure we all survived that one, although the 32 cyclists that started the cycle were well scattered by the end so it was hard to tell. Today was the day of the puncture and that led to a rather disjointed cycle in some of the groups. How we deal with a puncture needs a little bit of work; there is no need for everyone to pull in, especially if the person that punctured does not normally cycle in your group. Stick to your group and make a group decision as to what to do if one of ye gets a puncture or mechanical.
Before you start in Nenagh you should know the group you are going in. There were far too many people with no clue what group to go in. After 6 weeks of the N7 loop everyone should know where their abilities lie. Guideline – for the 1000th time – if you can’t roll through from start to finish (or at least 75% of the distance) in the group you are in then you don’t belong in that group. It is also important that the leaders of the group don’t slow down the bunch speed because someone is struggling that shouldn’t have been in the group in the first place. Each group goes at a certain speed and that doesn’t change.
Why are ye so cruel?! the reason we have this ‘no wait’ policy in place for people that are struggling in the wrong group is so as to protect the quality of the cycle. If we wait for everyone that makes bad decisions and the whole thing slows right down then the spin becomes useless for a lot of our racing cyclists. The reason we have 32 strong cyclists out training with the club is because it is a good quality session. If the quality drops the racing cyclists won’t turn up as they will just go do their own thing. We are trying to develop a racing team in Nenagh and need a minimum standard. As a team we want as many people as possible to train together. There are plenty of cyclists in the club that just do their own thing already. That is fine but as a general policy we want to see as many people out training with the club as possible. If nobody turns up to training then there is no club. To prevent this from happening we need to ensure our Saturday and Sunday spins are worth attending. Don’t take getting dropped personally.
Back to the cycle itself, G1 were first to turn right to Templemore. Unfortunately 3 cyclists were left in no mans land behind G1 and weren’t able to bridge across to the group. This made the cycle tougher for both groups on the road, as the bunch was smaller than it should have been. A little bit more awareness of what’s going on is probably needed from group 1. Don’t start your interval until everyone is ready to go.
Groups 2 and 3 were both dealing with punctures back the road so they were a little late getting started. Group 3 were next onto the Templemore road. They had 11 cyclists in the group and they pushed a nice pace to Templemore. They passed the group of 3 and could see the rest of group 1 up ahead but never caught them cos G3 had to turn off in Templemore towards Thurles. The last group to start was G2 but they didn’t have the Thurles detour to do so they had plenty of time to spare.
G3 worked nicely into the headwind on the way to Thurles and over to Borrisoleigh. By the time they reached the turn off to Templederry they were down to just 5 working in the group. Understandably, some were saving their energy for the last few energy sapping miles up to the top of the hill after Templederry. G3 were surprised to see G2 up the road as they didn’t expect to catch them. Both groups got to the end of the interval at the same time. There, we learned that G2 had been dealing with a few punctures on the road and this was the cause of the delay.
G1 were obviously working well together today as they weren’t seen for the rest of the day. The quality in this group is improving all the time, so fair play to everyone for sticking with it. G3 all finished together so that was ideal too. It is hard to judge how G2 went with the punctures, but sure you get days like that!
So, a few small things to take away from today’s cycle
- know your group before you start – the sessions run far more smoothly when people are realistic about their abilities and choose the correct group.
- don’t pull in for punctures if the person is not in your group. Even if the person is in your group, most of ye should continue cycling down the road anyway and turn back after a while.
- familiarise yourself with the route and the plan of action for that day’s cycle = read the website on a Friday evening – it will only take two mins.
95% of what is happening at the club spins is very positive. The standard is improving all the time. Everyone is getting on well in the bunch. There are a good mix of personalities e.g. nice guys like Matty and Will (give them some kudos on Strava), and b******s like Kenneth and John Gleeson. The technical ability in the group is also improving quickly. People are very keen to improve in general. Even when people choose the wrong group that is not a hugely bad thing – it is great to see that people want to push themselves to the next level. We fully encourage this but there is a time when you have to be honest with yourself and don’t bite of more than you can chew.
Up Next: Sunday Cycle – starts at 8:00 at Tescos. Two intervals plus a coffee stop. The weather should be ok for this. We have been averaging around 15 cyclists each week for this spin, it would be great if we could boost that to 20. See ye all tomorrow.
La Marmotte: keep mulling this over. So far we have 10 definites (that includes both nice guys and b******s mentioned earlier) and a good few maybes. We are targeting 15 for this trip. The registration day will be next week so work on increasing your brownie points with the other half this weekend. Get in touch with Kenneth or Shane if you are going. It promises to be a great trip. The enrty fee is all you need to pay now, the rest can be sorted at a much later date.