Learn to race, even if you’ll never race

The Northeast Bicycle Club (NEBC),  a developmental club with a variety of programs and events for riders of all ages and capabilities, is putting on their annual bike racing clinic.

It’s a great program that features two off-bike discussion sessions in March, and four on-bike clinics out at Fort Devens on Saturdays in April.

The “graduation” exercise is participation in an actual bike race, on a short and safe course in Newton, the Wells Ave racing series run by Boston Road Club.

Even if you’ll never race

Even if you have no intention of racing, this clinic is a fantastic way to learn to appreciate the sport of bike racing, and to seriously upgrade your skills for safe and fun riding in groups or with clubs.

Check out what is covered:

  • Bike handling: Cornering; pacelines & double pacelines; riding in close groups; incidental contact.
  • Racing skills: Sprinting; time trialing; climbing and descending; starting and finishing.
  • Tactics and strategies: Road racing as a team sport; applying team strategies and tactics in race situations; using the race course and your strengths to your advantage.
  • Training and equipment: Periodization and specificity; training effort zones; racing bicycles & equipment; maintaining and performance tuning your equipment; proper bike fit.

The instructors are great – patient, knowledgeable, and enthusiastic about the sport and educating riders. The price is cheap, too.

Find all the details on BikeReg here: http://www.bikereg.com/events/register.asp?eventid=12615

And hurry! Registration closes on March 18th, but this class tends to fill up quickly.

Photo credit: spunkinator

3 Reasons You Should Learn to Race Your Bike

Check it out – NEBC is continuing their fantastic program to get new racers up to speed in a safe and effective manner. I went through this program some years ago and it was really great.

To the newbie, bike racing can seem dangerous and trying it out can seem risky. Well, it is a bit dangerous and risky, I suppose, but that’s all the more reason you should learn from patient, experienced racers. It might be a lot less dangerous and risky if more people participated in clinics like this one. Even if you never intend to race, you should still take this clinic.

1. You will learn how to ride safely in groups – whether those groups are racing or not.

2. You will learn how to control your bike – a little knowledge and experience can help you avoid panic and disaster when you need to react quickly (again, whether or not this is in a race situation).

3. You will gain an even greater appreciation for the sport by learning and practicing the tactics and strategies used by racers.

You’ll also likely find that there are many other riders out there just like you who are enthusiastic about cycling and interested in racing or improving their skills, but need a little hands-on guidance to get to the next level.

Here’s the blurb from NEBC on the clinic:

As it has every Spring since 1993, the Northeast Bicycle Club is planning to offer its Introduction to Bicycle Racing program to the public during the month of April, 2010. This 4 week program will introduce you to the exciting world of bicycle road racing, and will prepare you to enter and be competitive in your first race. Among the things you will learn are:

Bike handling: Cornering; pacelines & double pacelines; riding in close groups; incidental contact.
Racing skills: Sprinting; time trialing; climbing and descending; starting and finishing.
Tactics and strategies: Road racing as a team sport; applying team strategies and tactics in race situations; using the race course and your strengths to your advantage.
Training and equipment: Periodization and specificity; training effort zones; racing bicycles & equipment; maintaining and performance tuning your equipment; proper bike fit.
At the conclusion of the program is a Graduation Exercise, in which we will bring you to an actual race to test out your new skills!

Find the full details on the program and how to register here.

Photo Credit: Eleaf