Group Riding: The Basics
Why It’s Important
Group riding takes practice. The future of Bike MS: City to Shore Ride is in YOUR hands! With 7,000 cyclists on the road during City to Shore weekend, all with a variety of skill levels, it’s important to know how to ride safely and courteously in a massive group. The dangerous actions of a few can jeopardize the future of this ride for all. Bike MS provides the necessary tools to educate all City to Shore cyclists on proper riding etiquette but it’s up to YOU to become a Responsible Cyclist.
Safety starts with you. A group mentality is not always safe.
Your responsibility in a pack includes:
- Stopping at all red lights and stop signs - it’s the law! Each cyclist is responsible for verifying that the intersection is clear.
- Following police direction and all traffic signals and signs.
- Being aware of others around you.
- Communicating well in advance. Use gestures in combination with verbal commands.
- Not using aerobars in a pack.
- Being respectful of other riders. Help others when needed
- Remembering pace lines can be dangerous. Never ride in a pace line with cyclists during Bike MS weekend. Do not ride more than two abreast.
Learn How: Group Riding Skills Courses
Bike MS has partnered with the League of American Bicyclists (LAB), a national organization dedicated to cycling, cycling advocacy and cycling education, to offer our cyclists free Group Riding Skills (GRS) Courses.
The GRS courses are designed for active participation. Courses include a classroom portion of approximately 60 minutes and an interactive cycling portion in the parking lot to practice group riding skills drills and techniques. The course DOES NOT include an actual ride. All courses are taught by League of American Bicyclists Certified Instructors (LCI).
Due to the number of cyclists starting at PATCO Woodcrest Station (75- & 100-mile start) Saturday morning, a staggered start has been instituted. Remember, you are starting with 7,000 other cyclists and it is important that all riders, veteran or novice, understand the courtesies involved with a ride the size of City to Shore.
Staggered Start Tips:
- Be aware and courteous of the Bike MS staff and volunteers directing cyclists in and around the start chute
- Only enter the start chute via the staging area (see map)
- Stay out of the start chute at all times! (unless it is your group's turn to be released) – remember, you may just be arriving to PATCO, but your fellow Bike MS cyclists may be getting on the road.
- Only cross the chute at designated areas (see map)
- Pay attention to when it is your group’s turn to start – arrive to PATCO early to make sure you can leave on time
- Listen for your group to be called over the loudspeaker
- Only enter the staging area when your group is called
- Be patient