Forum home Road cycling forum Road beginners

A lesson...

nebznebz Posts: 6
edited December 2013 in Road beginners
I started riding in August of this year. It was a way to get out, keep fit with friends and something of a present to myself. I have now been cycling for a grand total of 17 weeks and despite some motorists best efforts I've loved it. The feeling of freedom, challenging yourself and just the feeling of being healthy again is fantastic.

I have only had issues with motorists but today i had an unfortunate 'lesson' from another cyclist, which for some reason i feel compelled to share. I must have passed him earlier in my ride because as I caught up with him again he swerved into the middle of the road and challenged me saying "why are you riding like a c**t?". Bearing in mind i always wave, tilt my head or shout hello to any passing cyclist i was a tad confused. It turns out that I'm not allowed to overtake anyone during winter training? He sped off and a couple of miles later he'd slowed down and waved me to his side. I explained that i was new to cycling and asked why i can't cycle to my pace - I admit i do push myself but coming from a national level in swimming it's how i've always trained. (I realise that most people are far quicker than me but i don't race having only taken up cycling 17 weeks ago and I'm on my bike to challenge myself and get fitter I'm not interested in anything else.) Again the answer was "no", apparently i have to abide by his/the rules and that winter training is all about base miles and i can't overtake... I was then told i was free wheeling him and off he sped...

It was a bizarre incident. I had wanted to join a club next year so that I could meet fellow riders and learn from them - i admit i know very little about the culture that surrounds cycling and that I do indeed need to learn more. However in a swimming pool i don't pull someone over when they overtake me and tell them I'm doing base training and then blast past them in a flurry of water. I've never ridden with someone who really knows what they're doing in a group situation so the free wheeling comment was completely lost on me. If this is how an experienced rider treats someone who's new to the sport (and he must be local to me too) I'm not too sure how welcoming a club would be. Maybe I should slow down but surely that's on my own terms? I guess all places have bad eggs but it certainly took the gloss off my otherwise enjoyable ride.

Apologies for the rant and for posting it in a forum as it's not a topic per se, more of a case of please be gentle to us new riders!
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  • deswellerdesweller Posts: 5,271
    That's plain weird. Not allowed to overtake? Never heard that one before.

    Ride how you like. As long as you're not actually running people off the road or sticking branches in their spokes I don't see how any other rider can assume some sort of authority over you.
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  • taff..taff.. Posts: 81
    I think you've just found that some people are censored 'oles
  • mrfpbmrfpb Posts: 4,478
    Not allowed to overtake and not allowed to ride behind him (presumably what he meant by a free wheel) so you can't win. The guy clearly has a "King of the Road" complex and you are not allowed to dent his ego. You will meet guys like this in clubs but they will be in the minority and generally will be pulled up for such behaviour. But bear in mind that clubs will run rides to a standard that you will need to conform to - so choose a group that has similar abilities and goals to you.
  • diamonddogdiamonddog Posts: 3,368
    Ignore the rodent.
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,028
    Stick a rissole on a bike and dress him in Lycra and he's probably still going to be a rissole. Don't let him spoil your day!
  • That guy's a D*#@!. He probably saw something that indicated you are new to riding. Ride at your own pace and don't worry about such. I started riding in May this year and I rode solo for 2 months before joining a Saturday morning ride group ride.
  • dabberdabber Posts: 1,621
    So let's get this right... you overtake (safely we presume) someone you don't know from Adam. He tells you you aren't allowed to overtake him? Is that right?

    If so I think I'd have invited him to a bit of sex and travel.
    “You may think that; I couldn’t possibly comment!”

    Wilier Cento Uno SR/Wilier Mortirolo/Specialized Roubaix Comp/Calibre Bossnut
  • dabber wrote:
    So let's get this right... you overtake (safely we presume) someone you don't know from Adam. He tells you you aren't allowed to overtake him? Is that right?

    If so I think I'd have invited him to a bit of sex and travel.

    That^ :D
  • Peddle Up!Peddle Up! Posts: 2,040
    I think he suggested the best response - "why are you (riding like) a c**t?".

    Drat - this forum could REALLY do with strikeout codes.
    Purveyor of "up" :)
  • If you are so desperate to overtake people that you waste yourself doing so before slowing to a crawl a hundred metres later, you'll annoy people (though even then, being abusive about it doesn't become acceptable). If you draft for miles without taking a turn, you'll annoy people.

    What you have experienced is just inferiority complex. This behaviour is not in any way a part of cycling etiquette. I recently pulled up behind a similar guy in a queue who immediately started ranting and raving about how many people have drafted him today. I overtook him, he overtook me again rashly, before I left him behind. More vitriol at every turn. He had an S-Works bike with flash wheels and fancy kit, too. As with all areas of life, some people can't take the fact that they aren't very talented or capable.
  • nebznebz Posts: 6
    Thanks for the feedback everyone. I thought it was just a random outburst from someone who didn't have any grounds to be upset but i thought i'd check to see if i'd somehow broken an unspoken rule of the road. I'll keep riding like i have, with a huge smile on my face, twinned with a pained expression when hitting a hill!
  • Make sure to overtake him next time you see him too.

    As a National Level swimmer you will no doubt be very physically fit, but as someone I think mentioned, perhaps there is some indication you are new to cycling. His machismo probably took a bit of a knock being overtaken by a newbie, and so he tried to reinforce his self assumed dominance by being a censored .

    Certainly dont think you did anything wrong.
  • What a muppet.

    Under the circumstances I would have overtaken him, slowed down, allowed him to pass and then overtaken him again.

    When he says he is doing base training tell him you are from Australia and this time of the year you do sprint sessions.

    As to why people get annoyed when you draft behind them, this has always puzzled me. Assuming you are not in the same decent or race then how on earth can they justify being annoyed. If someone wants to ride behind me and kid themselves how much excercise they are getting they are welcome. Of course it is a big weird to be that close to a stranger, but some cyclists have no sense of personal space. :mrgreen:

    Of course, being a beginner I do swerve occasionally and often need to test my brakes so perhaps I am not the best person to draft from. :twisted:
  • Can't understand some people! Where were you riding?
  • elderoneelderone Posts: 1,410
    Sounds a right censored , just ride and enjoy yourself and ignore the idiots.
    Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori
  • KajjalKajjal Posts: 3,404
    When I tell you not to over take me next time listen up ;)

    Seriously though while most on road bikes are cheerful enough you do meet some real miserable , nutters, often riding in groups. Just ignore them are carry on having a good ride :)
  • NapoleonDNapoleonD Posts: 18,632
    edited December 2013
    Road cycling is a pure cross section of society.

    I.e. There are some utter, utter c0cks.

    I'd've cinzano'd his sorry a55


    Edit: ^^^^^ Drunk post. Sorry. I'd've just told him to eff off.
    Twitter - @NapD
    Strava - Alex Taylor (sportstest.co.uk)
    ABCC Cycling Coach
  • mm1mm1 Posts: 1,101
    Could he have meant half-wheeling instead of free wheeling? If you're not used to riding in company, you won't know what this is; its when instead of riding side by side at a steady pace, someone has to keep half a wheel in front...with inevitable consequences. http://stevetilford.com/2013/08/05/half-wheeling/

    This person sounds like an ill mannered idiot.

    I would ask around about local clubs and find a friendly group to ride with, you will love it.
  • smidsysmidsy Posts: 5,273
    Let us be very clear, there may well be many rules (mostly unwritten) but there never has and never will be a rule that states you can not overtake "because it is winter".

    The bloke was obviously a right B311 END and required nothing more than your complete distain.

    If you happen across the same fool again just ride how you want. If that involves overtaking him so be it.

    Your response next time may well include reference to his need to ride quicker if he does not want to be overtaken.

    Happy cycling and ignore such fools.

    PS: The only possible objection to being overtake in bad weather may be down to getting sprayed with all kinds of censored due to the overtaker not having mudguards. This is still not a rule but it is annoying when it happens (but I suppose riding faster to avoid being overtaken applies). If you do overtake a slower ride in these circumstances it pays to choose your spot to minimise such effects.
    Yellow is the new Black.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    LOL - no overtaking in winter !! 30 years of cycling and I've never heard that one before.

    As everyone has said - ignore him - he's a raving loon. And will no doubt be on top of your 'must overtake' list in future.
  • He's just a censored who didn't like the idea of being overtaken, especially when he probably thought he was doing well ;)

    I was on my road bike on a tarmac cycle path yesterday and got overtaken by a mountain biker - did I freak out, no, but I did draft him the rest of the way ;)
  • Not having overtaken many cyclists in my short time in the saddle, i pray i one day meet a reptile like that on the road, there are toerags like that in all aspects of life and you just met the cycling version.

    Must admit i dont like ninja close pass type riders who say nowt but you done everything right by being polite and letting him/her know, i would have slowed down and passed him ten times until he cracked and then would have made him eat his own bike :)
  • I've had a similar occurrence recently. A (faster than me) rider came up behind quickly and drafted me all the way up a climb. We got to the summit and he immediately accelerated off and I thought that was the last I had seen of him.

    I carried on my way which takes me over a swing bridge which happened to be open allowing a canal barge to pass. The same cyclist was waiting there so I Drafted him for the next couple of miles. He was not impressed and told me to f-off. Not sure why he got so stressed!
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,028
    It does amuse me that most of us use cycling in order to de stress whereas some of us seem to go around in a state of almost permanent anger...
  • You should have kicked his front wheel away from him then beaten him to within an inch of his life. When he is lying bleeding in the ditch diall 999, tell the Cops where you are and tell them there is a man in lycra who is masterbating at passing children and punching himself in the face....


    He probably won't bother you again.
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,028
    But perhaps a slight overreaction?
  • I've had a similar occurrence recently. A (faster than me) rider came up behind quickly and drafted me all the way up a climb. We got to the summit and he immediately accelerated off and I thought that was the last I had seen of him.

    I carried on my way which takes me over a swing bridge which happened to be open allowing a canal barge to pass. The same cyclist was waiting there so I Drafted him for the next couple of miles. He was not impressed and told me to f-off. Not sure why he got so stressed!

    drafted up a climb?

    as for the op, i will be imposter or newtt'er in this thread and say; sounds odd, i suspect there was something you did that you didnt realise that was either dangerous or bad cycling or caused him to take some sort of averting action, as i don't believe, even amongst the many lone oddballs that are into cycling, one would kick off so much over simply being overtaken.
  • Where are all these mad people? Everyone's nice round here. Mostly my conversations are on hills and either I or the other guy is saying "it doesn't get any easier, does it?".

    I say everyone - except the cow in the car that pulled out in front of me on the mini roundabout the other day. First time for a long time it's happened - clearly my fault though since I had very unusually forgotten to switch on my front light.
    Is the gorilla tired yet?
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,028
    Cows are rubbish at driving cars... Hoofs keep slipping off the steering wheel
  • You should have kicked his front wheel away from him then beaten him to within an inch of his life. When he is lying bleeding in the ditch diall 999, tell the Cops where you are and tell them there is a man in lycra who is masterbating at passing children and punching himself in the face....


    He probably won't bother you again.

    Well that escalated quickly!
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