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Asking to join a ride in progress?

Old 08-14-19, 07:26 AM
  #26  
livedarklions
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Originally Posted by bakerjw View Post
Group rides are hit or miss.
Some don't mind people tagging along while others are of the "We'll yell at you" variety.
Some groups welcome other riders while some do their own things.
It never hurts to ask.

I avoid group rides though as there is too much drama.The only group rides I do is with my wife on our tandem.
As a long-distance lone wolf rider, my observation is that a lot of groups can be very fast for short bursts, but end up stopping so much to coordinate that I don't see how they build any endurance.
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Old 08-14-19, 07:59 AM
  #27  
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Heck, just turn around and follow them. See if you can close the gap. It seems to me that if you’re able to catch up to ask them if you can follow them, then you’ve already answered your question as to whether you can hang with their pace.
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Old 08-14-19, 08:10 AM
  #28  
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Just wondering if shouting "Mind if I follow at a distance?" would be against road etiquette I guess... Would you find that rude or strange?
Not rude, perhaps a bit strange, but if you are following at a distance that doesn't interfere with the group, and you aren't interacting with the group, it is probably unnecessary. It's a public roadway and I wouldn't consider trying to keep pace with a group of riders, while maintaining a reasonable distance, "joining a ride in progress". It's just sharing the road. Following a female or juvenile rider could, however, be considered creepy.
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Old 08-14-19, 08:16 AM
  #29  
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When I am on a solo ride I sometimes like to toy with other riders.

See, e,g,,:

https://www.bikeforums.net/general-c...ke-me-mup.html

True story.
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Old 08-14-19, 08:23 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Back in the late 80s a rag tag bunch of we locals rode behind 7-11, and later Coor's Lite, the day before the U.S. Pro Cycling Championship. What a thrill. We kept our mouths shut and kept at a safe enough distance. The teams were in a group and we were stretched out in a long line behind them desperately trying to keep up as they rode effortlessly while chatting.
That's nothing, Kevin Costner's brother beat those guys while wearing a cowboy hat!
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Old 08-14-19, 08:47 AM
  #31  
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If someone is fast enough to catch a group I wouldn't find it offensive to ask "may I sit in for a bit". Just be observant. If you see they're doing some kind of workout rotation, don't join and screw that up. If they're just cruising at tempo with some pretty long and easy pulls on the front, whatever, won't affect anything.

Not being mean about it, just pointing out a few obvious issues I could see coming up:

-The group has a turn in the route that doesn't match your route while you're NOT on the very back. Thus creating a problem. Or, if you choose to sit on the very back, you'll have to be a really good back door rider to let people in without being an annoyance.

-The group is doing some kind of special rotation you're not used to, but they are.

-You're on a flat bar bike and they're not and they take the t-junction intersection at full bore road bike speed and you can't maneuver as well.

Just things to consider. But again, no harm in asking.

I've also caught smaller groups OR larger B or A minus groups and had the issue of them sucking wheel until a hill. So, now I will sit back about 100 yards and wait for a hill and then surge past. I find it infinitely annoying when a 2-wide line takes up the entire lane and won't squeeze in for me to pass. Making me pretty much pass over the centerline. THAT is ******y. Hold the rotation for a second and tighten the F up.
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Old 08-14-19, 09:29 AM
  #32  
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I occasionally ride with strangers. Sometimes it's a verbal "hey do you mind if I hop on for a bit?" and sometimes it's just a non-verbal situation where I get swallowed up by (or catch up with) a larger group and just start riding with them. This is definitely a "read the room" situation, and I've never had people tell me that I couldn't ride with them, but also there are times when it's obvious to me that a group doesn't want random people hopping on. If you're not sure, ask.

I think the smaller the group, the more important a verbal conversation is. It definitely seems weird and a bit rude to just start riding right behind a solo or small group of riders without saying anything. If your intention is to just ride behind a group at a safe distance to see if you can hold their pace, there's really no need to ask. If you're closer than 2-3 bike lengths for more than a few minutes, it's probably time to either join the group, pass or drop back.

A question for the OP: It sounds like you're interested in finding a local group ride to join. I would expect any organized group of kitted roadies to be a bit suspicious of someone wearing street clothes/shoes and riding an old MTB randomly hopping into their ride mid-way, even if you ask and can hold the pace. You'd likely get a much better reception if you show up at the start.
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Old 08-14-19, 10:30 AM
  #33  
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Well, if anyone is curious -- They ended up uploading their ride on Strava as well. Was pretty obvious to figure out with the flyby feature.

"You have been weighed, you have been measured, and you have been found wanting" would probably have summed it up if I had attempted to hang with them.

I can handle that mileage, but not at that sustained speed. Definitely a goal now though...

My stats that day:


Versus one of theirs:
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Old 08-14-19, 10:48 AM
  #34  
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Where tf do you ride 40 miles and only get 26 feet of climbing?

And I say this as someone who lives in Kansas.
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Old 08-14-19, 10:50 AM
  #35  
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I think you can do it. 22 mph on flat ground in a group is like 16-18 mph solo
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Old 08-14-19, 10:53 AM
  #36  
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If it's an organized club ride, there is most likely a waiver that each rider has signed prior to the ride (either as part of the membership, or ad-hoc at the ride start). Which makes it hard to join in mid-ride. Anyone here lead club rides and what would/should you do as a ride leader?
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Old 08-14-19, 10:57 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by ksryder View Post
Where tf do you ride 40 miles and only get 26 feet of climbing?

And I say this as someone who lives in Kansas.
That'd be the metro Detroit area. The entire lower peninsula of Michigan is pretty flat -- Let's just say if I ever encountered real hills I'd be totally unprepared!
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Old 08-14-19, 11:08 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by ksryder View Post
Where tf do you ride 40 miles and only get 26 feet of climbing?

And I say this as someone who lives in Kansas.
Average speed of 21 mph, and max of almost 31. Might not be any elevation, but it sounds like a pretty good downhill somewhere.
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Old 08-14-19, 11:14 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by ksryder View Post
Where tf do you ride 40 miles and only get 26 feet of climbing?

And I say this as someone who lives in Kansas.
One could ride up and down the boardwalk in Wildwood, NJ, numerous times and end up with less climbing than that.
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Old 08-14-19, 11:31 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by ksryder View Post
Where tf do you ride 40 miles and only get 26 feet of climbing?

And I say this as someone who lives in Kansas.
I was thinking the same thing. Although I live in Tennessee where I can get 1,000 feet on an average commute.

ETA...

Our local road club holds a regular ride and I don't recall ever having filled out a waiver. They do a couple of things that I like.
It is no drop.
The first 15 miles is a controlled pace.
They ask for first time riders and encourage everyone to say hey and talk to them when they ride.
After the 15 mile mark, the route splits. Left is no drop. Right is no holds barred.

One evening on the no holds barred segment, a guy caught up to us and held on riding a mountain bike. He was thrilled and dropped back off after a few miles. He was actually spent.

Last edited by bakerjw; 08-14-19 at 11:35 AM.
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Old 08-14-19, 12:01 PM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by Synack42 View Post
Well, if anyone is curious -- They ended up uploading their ride on Strava as well. Was pretty obvious to figure out with the flyby feature.

"You have been weighed, you have been measured, and you have been found wanting" would probably have summed it up if I had attempted to hang with them.

I can handle that mileage, but not at that sustained speed. Definitely a goal now though...

My stats that day:


Versus one of theirs:
158bpm and nearly two hours on a group ride. Either someone was doing some hero pulling or was cutting their teeth to hang on to that ride. Especially considering they had 20 minutes of non moving time in there somewhere to catch their breath.
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Old 08-14-19, 12:23 PM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by burnthesheep View Post
158bpm and nearly two hours on a group ride. Either someone was doing some hero pulling or was cutting their teeth to hang on to that ride.
Or heart rate is highly individual dependent. With a threshold heart rate around 173, I can ride at 158 all day.
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Old 08-14-19, 12:30 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
Or heart rate is highly individual dependent. With a threshold heart rate around 173, I can ride at 158 all day.
This. Virtually every ride I do I have an average of 150-170 whether I hammer or spin. RHR is about 50 and max is 195. The older guys I sometimes ride with will have HR in the 130s on the same ride.
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Old 08-14-19, 12:30 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by Synack42 View Post

Versus one of theirs:
26 ft of elevation over 40.36 mi? How is that even possible?
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Old 08-14-19, 12:38 PM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by bruce19 View Post
26 ft of elevation over 40.36 mi? How is that even possible?
I can believe it. They were following the water for the most part and everything in between is nothing but farms. Really, this part of the state is ridiculously flat. (It's a very scenic area at least!)

...I also envy the apparent 20 minute bakery stop...

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Old 08-14-19, 12:58 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by bruce19 View Post
26 ft of elevation over 40.36 mi? How is that even possible?
Riding along a beach?
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Old 08-14-19, 01:03 PM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Average speed of 21 mph, and max of almost 31. Might not be any elevation, but it sounds like a pretty good downhill somewhere.
More like sprinting for the county line sign.
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Old 08-14-19, 01:05 PM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by ksryder View Post
Where tf do you ride 40 miles and only get 26 feet of climbing?

And I say this as someone who lives in Kansas.
Originally Posted by superdex View Post
If it's an organized club ride, there is most likely a waiver that each rider has signed prior to the ride (either as part of the membership, or ad-hoc at the ride start). Which makes it hard to join in mid-ride. Anyone here lead club rides and what would/should you do as a ride leader?
Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Average speed of 21 mph, and max of almost 31. Might not be any elevation, but it sounds like a pretty good downhill somewhere.
Originally Posted by burnthesheep View Post
158bpm and nearly two hours on a group ride. Either someone was doing some hero pulling or was cutting their teeth to hang on to that ride. Especially considering they had 20 minutes of non moving time in there somewhere to catch their breath.
Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
Or heart rate is highly individual dependent. With a threshold heart rate around 173, I can ride at 158 all day.
Our Sat. morning LBS ride (no waiver) is 40 miles with around 30' elevation ONLY BECAUSE we ride over some canal "humpback bridges." About 1 mile or maybe 2 miles at a controlled speed after leaving the bike shop and then there are a few riders who get antsy and let it rip. A good MPH Average would be 23mph to 24mph with the faster guys finishing a bit sooner.

Before my cancer slowed me down the best ride I was on we averaged 23.8mph for the 40 miles with the fast guys being no where in sight after 12 miles into the ride.

Last edited by OldTryGuy; 08-14-19 at 01:09 PM.
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Old 08-14-19, 01:27 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
Or heart rate is highly individual dependent. With a threshold heart rate around 173, I can ride at 158 all day.
This misses the point. In a group ride you should be going over and under the avg HR depending on how long and how often you pull. You can infer what I did because you know it's a group ride and you know you typically have time on front and time sitting in to average out.

I'm not arriving at the idea by thinking 158bpm is high. I'm arriving at that knowing it is an average of higher and lower numbers.

Even if they pulled half the entire ride, they'd have to be a good bit over 158 when pulling to bring the average up to 158 from the HR they were at sitting in.

Think about for a second if you assumed they only pulled for 1/4 of the ride how high their HR during a pull would have to be. Pretty darn high.

The only logical conclusion (to me) is either lots of pulling or having a hard go at it one way or another.
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Old 08-14-19, 01:32 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by burnthesheep View Post
This misses the point. In a group ride you should be going over and under the avg HR depending on how long and how often you pull. You can infer what I did because you know it's a group ride and you know you typically have time on front and time sitting in to average out.

I'm not arriving at the idea by thinking 158bpm is high. I'm arriving at that knowing it is an average of higher and lower numbers.

Even if they pulled half the entire ride, they'd have to be a good bit over 158 when pulling to bring the average up to 158 from the HR they were at sitting in.

Think about for a second if you assumed they only pulled for 1/4 of the ride how high their HR during a pull would have to be. Pretty darn high.

The only logical conclusion (to me) is either lots of pulling or having a hard go at it one way or another.
Nope. People are different:

Originally Posted by ksryder View Post
This. Virtually every ride I do I have an average of 150-170 whether I hammer or spin. RHR is about 50 and max is 195. The older guys I sometimes ride with will have HR in the 130s on the same ride.
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