All riders are encouraged to carry a good bike pump, and a couple of spare tubes, with some decent tyre levers, a drink, some food and some money. But more essential is some form of ID and emergency contact details, either an ID tag or your GDW membership card with your emergency contact details on the back. If you have the misfortune to come off or have a medical emergency this could be the most important information in your pocket. Carrying a mobile phone is also a good idea with your emergency contact name/number in the directory.
HOW TO RIDE IN A GROUP
Riding as part of a group is more sociable and can save you energy.
The performance advantage to riding in a group is that several people can share the responsibility of setting a manageable pace as well as sheltering their riding mates from the wind – a technique known as ‘drafting.’
The most efficient formation for a large group is to ride side-by-side in pairs, with riders gradually rotating and sharing their turn on the front. How long your turn is depends a lot on weather conditions and how strong you feel, but 5 minutes is a good starting point.
Riding in close proximity to other riders does carry hazards though, so be sure to give enough space to manoeuvre, don’t overlap the wheel in front and be sure to keep good communication with your riding companions.