Last year several of us started doing regular fast chain-gang rides on a Monday evening which became known as the “Monday Mash”. This year we will be making it an official club ride and opening it up to anyone interested. They will start as soon as we judge there to be enough daylight and clean enough roads to run them, so watch this space….
These are fast paced rides and you will be expected to maintain a solid level of effort and ride at speed in close proximity to other riders – working as a team. The main group will be aimed at relatively fit and confident riders who are perhaps looking to use it as training for racing, TTs, or just general fitness. If other riders wish to attend and organise their own group to ride at another pace this is welcomed.
Initially we will be aiming for approximately 20mph average speeds to get everyone used to the format, but as the weather improves and we shake off the winter legs this will increase. Last summer our rides were generally around 23-24mph average with 3-4 riders. If this sounds daunting remember that working as a team you can expect to ride a fair amount faster than you would manage on your own at the same effort – you don’t necessarily need to be able to manage these sort of speeds on your own to join in and you can always just try and hang on as long as you can. Length will generally be around 25-40 miles and take 1-2 hours, start point will vary depending on the route and location of those attending (they will not necessarily start in Gillingham).
Unlike the normal club rides these are not “no-drop” rides, however any dropping will be by consent – i.e. make it known to the group that you can’t carry on before you drop off so that they know not to wait for you. We are not racing or competing against each other and will not be deliberately trying to drop people as the idea is to work as a team and moderate the pace to keep everyone close together – but inevitably there are times when people need to pull off if they are starting to hold up the group.
Routes will favour fast flowing roads and avoid notable climbs (as much as our area allows). Rides will not necessarily be weekly and will only take place when the weather is suitable, and when we have enough riders who have committed to attend – minimum 3+ riders for the ride to happen. With this in mind we have a WhatsApp group for those interested in attending to discuss availability, if you wish to join it please comment on the Facebook post or contact Edd Hunt.