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Chain Gang


When: Every Wednesday

Where: Hungry Horse - The Magic Roundabout, Charlton Road, Andover, Hampshire, SP10 3JJ

Time: 18:30

Please be at the meeting place for 18:25 ready to go, as the Chain Gang will start promptly at 18:30.

Cost: FREE

Apres Course: Weyhill Fair Public House


The Chain Gang will start at the slowest rider's pace and maintain it to keep the group as one.  If the numbers allow it and the group contains a mixed ability, then we can discuss splitting the group into two on the night. The ride is about 20 miles and is quite hilly so even the slower group can be tuff.  The chain Gang is an ideal oppertunity to get to know members both on and of the bike, as after the ride has finished a number of members go on to the Weyhill Fair public house for a drink or two.

Benefits


A Chaing Gang in involves riding in close  together with other riders, which has a number of benefits:
  • A more efficent method of riding
  • Ideal training for races
  • Builds confidence for riding in a group at speed
  • Builds trust amongst riders in the group
  • Improves bike-handling skills

Equipment


To participate in the Chain Gang, you will need the following:
  • Bike - make sure it is servicable
  • Working front and rear lights
  • Cycle Helmet (Although not compulsory)
  • Bike shoes
  • Spare inner-tube
  • Pump
  • Tool kit

Tips for Riding in the Chain Gang

  • Keep the pace constant. Allowing for variation is wind and gradient, try keep the pace constant. When you get to the front, don’t sprint off. That will break up the rhythm and is not the point of a chain-gang. Also avoid slowing down.
  • When you’ve finished your turn, it is important so slow down by 1mph. Otherwise the rider coming through has to lift the pace. And there is constant pressure to keep lifting the pace. But, the idea is to keep a constant pace and speed.
  • Don’t allow gaps to appear. Concentrate on keeping an eye on the wheel in front, don’t allow a large gap to develop because it can then be hard to meet the gap.
  • Don’t cut up riders. The tricky part is coming to the front. The rider on the outside will overtake the rider on the inside and as he does will move across to the inside. It is important to time this correctly, don’t move inside too soon as you will cause the previous rider to have to slow down. Don’t leave it too late as this will also create problems.
  • Make sure you are used to following a wheel at pace before joining.
  • If it is your first time you could stay at the back and observe how people make changes.
  • Once you get the hang it seems quite natural and creates a good feeling of teamwork. You can see the advantages of riding behind others.
  • Make sure your bike is well maintained. Don’t have lose or rattling bits, people will trust you less.
  • Be careful about braking, it creates a ripple effect which can be dangerous at high speed. Use your body to slow down (i.e. sit up to create more of a wind brake. Look ahead and if necessary reduce pedalling effort.
  • Know the circuit. Learn the local chaingang circuit and practise the descents so you can know potential dangers.
  • Remember it is not closed roads. It is difficult to find any circuit which is not populated with heavy traffic. You have to give way to traffic, just because you are in a chain gang doesn’t mean you can expect cars to wait for you.


magic Roundabout




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