The whole point of the weekend is for you to
have FUN. You won't have that if you feel that you're
obliged to gallop along at a rate that you don't feel
comfortable with, neither will you if you feel that
you're dawdling along and have a need for speed...
Groups inevitably are made up of riders with varying
levels of competence and/or desire to ride quickly. We
can cater for all types of rider by applying the
"Drop-off system" This is not complicated but I've
managed to make it appear so in the following
explanation. Read it carefully as you'll be quizzed on
it once you eventually arrive here...
The system requires a leader (that's ME!), a
tail-ender, and the riders (you!).
The LEADER - is familiar with the route, and
hopefully follows it. I will carry a mobile in case of
problems on route..
The RIDERS - at any point the
route deviates from the strip of tarmac in front, the
first bike behind the leader will stop on the junction
in a prominent place to mark the way (he then becomes
the JUNCTION MARKER). He will stay there until the
tail-ender arrives. Meanwhile the group all move forward
one, so number three, becomes number two, behind the leader,
and so will mark the next junction.
The marker can
then work his way carefully back towards the front.
Overtaking is fine, but please be careful and courteous!
TAIL-ENDER - is ideally familiar with the route also,
but doesn’t have to be. They will stay at the back for
the entire ride and will be pointed out at the beginning
of the ride. They may wear a fluoro vest to make them
obvious, or have an effected walk, or talk with an
exaggerated lisp. The tail-ender is exactly that, so
they should move the junction marker on once they
arrive, this also ensures there is no confusion as to
who is the rear bike. If anyone drops out of the group
the tail-ender will stop with them and find out what is
going on. If there is a problem he will get in touch
with the leader, or if they are just stopping for a wizz will wait with them so the marker stays in place
at the next junction.
The result is that NOBODY has to worry about getting
lost. Even if you can see nobody ahead of you, you know
that they'll be waiting at the next junction. Everybody
rides at their own rate, nobody has to peddle harder
than they want to.
It works brilliantly and means
that a group with widely differing skills and experience
can travel well