Club championships are coming up on the 28th September at Preston Park. We hope that all riders will enter under their age category and have a chance to stand on the podium and win medals and trophies! As the racing is being run under British Cycling regulations, riders will need to use the British Cycling gear restrictions that apply to their age group.
The purpose of gear restrictions is two fold. Firstly it ensures a level playing field among all riders in a race by encouraging use of tactics rather than just seeing who can push the biggest gear to go fastest. But just as importantly, it ensures that young, developing riders are not pushing big gears, which risks damaging knees and growing muscles. It’s also very good practice to develop a supple, spinning pedalling style.
While some of our older riders have participated in racing events with gear restrictions this season, many more don’t yet have this experience. So at this weekends Inner Ring session we started getting riders familiar with the experience of having their gears measured before a race, and racing using the restricted gears for their age groups.
For some, this meant their highest gears may have been ‘locked out’, in which case they may have been pedalling faster and possibly not going quite as fast as they are used to. Rest assured that this is all part of the learning experience for the riders. Over the next few weeks we will continue getting riders prepared for the club championships with more gear restricted races and bunch racing practice. We’ve done a lot of group riding skills this season and it was great to see everyone riding safely in the bunch race this weekend with nearly 30 riders on the track!
If you’d like more information on how to setup gears for your age group please see the official British Cycling guidance, or ask any of our coaches over the next few weeks on Saturday mornings.