Frequently Asked Questions
Why should I come on a club run?
It’s the best way to progress your cycling. You’ll learn how to ride safely and efficiently in a group and it’s far easier to head out for a training ride knowing you’ll be with a group of mates rather than on your own. TQCC offer potential members the opportunity to try out three “taster rides” before any commitment to join.
As with all cycling clubs, riders require third party insurance (this is included in Cycling Ireland membership). If you do not have a CI licence, don’t worry, you will be asked to fill out short form and you will be covered for insurance purposes by CI on that ride.
Do clubs offer different levels of rides?
Most clubs will have a number of groups heading out reflecting a range of abilities. TQCC typically have A, B1, B2 and C group rides available. Please see our ride classifications for further details.
Details of upcoming rides are posted on our Strava page where members “sign in” so that ride leaders have some idea of numbers beforehand and can plan appropriately (only club members have full access to the TQCC Strava page with discussions etc).
If you are thinking of coming along for a taster ride and have a Strava account, you are welcome to sign in to let us know you will be there, or drop us an email to [email protected] or Facebook message and someone will look out for you on the day.
How fit and fast do I need to be?
You’ll need a reasonable level of fitness but you definitely don’t need to be a super fit racer. If you can ride your bike for 20 miles, you’ll be able to ride 30 and join a club run. On our C rides the average speed is around 12-14mph, and on weekend rides there’s always a coffee stop on all club runs.
You can check out the other group ride speeds on Group Ride Classification link above. If you are a complete beginner or are dusting off that bike that’s been hanging in the corner of the garage for years, it would be advisable to go out for a few rides by yourself or with friends, perhaps down the towpath, Greenway or the Harbour Estate, to feel comfortable riding a bike again and to gauge your bike handling skills and fitness.
Will I be dropped if I’m too slow?
No. The group may split up on climbs as everyone has their own climbing rhythm and it is rare for the group to stay together, faster riders will wait and you’ll regroup at the top. On our B and C rides, we’ll give the slowest rider a chance to catch their breath at the top before heading off.
When you first head out with a club, ride with a group that you feel is within your capabilities or just below that. If you find it too easy, you can move up over the following weeks until you find your right level. It’s better to underestimate your ability than to really struggle and be put off.
When do TQCC go out on Club Rides and where do they start?
All club rides start at ‘The Green Deli’, Titanic Quarter. Riders should pick a group according to their experience and fitness.
Group rides posted on Strava will include details of average speed and distance. The aim is to ensure that you have an enjoyable (and sometimes challenging) experience.
The main ride days at present are as below;
Wednesday nights 6.30pm start
An opportunity for those new to cycling, wanting to build your fitness, or push yourself, to experience group riding at a level that suits you in a generally traffic free environment;
- Flat route with 2 x laps Airport Road/Queens Island (11 miles per lap);
- 4 x groups (numbers permitting) with an average speed of 14/15, 17, 19+ & 21+mph – pick a group that suits you
- In late spring/summer, there may be an opportunity to go on a hilly route over the Holywood, Castlereagh area.
Saturday morning 8.30/9am start (Check Strava)
Usually three routes to suit different levels
Sunday morning 9am and a 9.30am start
Usually two routes to suit different levels
Do I need to do anything special with my bike setup?
All our group rides are on open roads, and club members will use road bikes with drop handlebars. Upright city-style bikes or mountain bikes are generally less suitable for this type of club ride as it could be harder and less comfortable for you to keep up with the group.
The most important thing is that your bike is well maintained and roadworthy. We ask you to use mudguards for winter rides, as they make riding in a group on wet and muddy winter roads much more enjoyable, especially for the rider behind you!
What else should I bring?
We recommend that people bring a minimum of a spare inner tube, tyre levers, a pump and/or CO2 inflator, and a multi-tool. You’ll need water or an electrolyte/energy drink for hydration, some money for the coffee stop or if a stop isn’t planned, enough food and drink to fuel your ride. Make sure you have a fully charged mobile phone with an I.C.E number stored on it. Finally, dress appropriately for the weather and remember that over the course of a ride it may change.
It’s much better to have to remove a jacket or arm warmers and pack them away in your back pocket if you’re too warm than to be wet and cold if the wind picks up or it starts to rain.