Monthly Introductory Ride

Anyone wishing to join Dulwich Paragon Cycling Club must complete one of our monthly introductory rides on the first Saturday of each month.  At ALL OTHER TIMES the Saturday Club Ride is MEMBERS-ONLY.  Please note you cannot ride with the club, or apply for membership, until you have completed this ride and accepted certain conditions of membership.  

Date:  The first Saturday of the month at 09:00.
Meeting Point: Herne Hill Velodrome, Burbage Road, Dulwich. SE24 9HE map.
Length: 55km (approx.).
Groups (Avg. Moving Speed): Racers (28-30 kmph), Fast (26-27 kmph), Intermediate (22-25 kmph) and Steady (21kmph or under).
Sign-Up: Here.
Entries Close: 23:59 the Thursday before the ride.
The Route (may be subject to change):  Here.

The ride takes place ALL YEAR ROUND, regardless of weather conditions!  However extreme weather may mean a change to the route or curtailment of the ride. 

FOR RACERS – experienced or budding …

DPCC is keen to welcome riders who are interested in racing for the club.  Beginner, or established racer, male and female, you are welcome to join the Racers’ Introductory Ride Group. Led by least one senior racing member the speed will be 28-30kph over 50 kms (approx.). We aim to ride as a disciplined group, obeying all the rules of the road. It is not a test or a trial and definitely not a race. There will be a chance to ask questions about the pathway to becoming a fully fledged racing member of Dulwich Paragon.  Please scroll to the bottom of the sign-up form to supply us with details of any racing or club experience, BC number, etc…

FOR ALL OTHER RIDERS – of varied ability or experience…

We are also happy to welcome less experienced and non-racing cyclists to the club, although DPCC is essentially a sporting, competitive club. Depending on numbers there will be several Non-Members’ Introductory Groups riding at progressively steadier speeds.  These will take a different route to the Racers’ Group and be led by experienced Dulwich Paragon members who will ensure groups stay together; no-one will get dropped or lost!   If you’re feeling strong and confident, ride with one of the earlier groups.  If you’re a newer rider, or just getting back to fitness one of the later, slower groups will be best.

None of our rides are suitable for absolute beginners, and we reserve the right to turn away anyone whose riding does not meet these basic requirements – all participants should understand and use gears, brakes, cleated pedals, etc efficiently and be confident riding on the road and in traffic. You will be riding in a group and your ability on the bike will affect those around you. You have a responsibility not to endanger your fellow riders.

The Non-Members Intro Ride route is approximately 56 kms with around 620 metres of climbing (the Racers’ Group takes a different route).  All groups follow the same route, and stop regularly to regroup and take a breather.  If you’re struggling to keep up, use this opportunity to wait for one of the following, steadier groups – but please inform your Dulwich ride-leaders first!  We strongly advise anyone who is unsure of their ability to ride the route (see below) before signing-up. If you can manage it in around 2.5 hours you’ll be fine.  These rides are not a test of any kind; we have had participants in the past who struggled initially then went on to become strong and competitive riders through perseverance and training, so don’t despair if you find it hard at first!

 

ALL RIDERS MUST OBSERVE THE HIGHWAY CODE AT ALL TIMES 

This includes: obeying traffic lights and signs;  riding no more than two abreast and – when instructed by ride-leaders – riding in single file to allow traffic to pass on narrow roads;  not riding on the footway; not abusing other road users.   Anyone who breaches these rules WILL BE refused membership.  Please acknowledge any courtesy shown to you by other road users and stop at pedestrian crossings where necessary.  We also raise a hand to fellow cyclists.

Riders attend strictly at their own risk!  The club is affiliated to British Cycling and is covered for Public Liability Insurance and you are indemnified against risk whilst participating on an ‘invitation prior to membership’ basis.

ON THE DAY …

ALL RIDERS should arrive at the start in HERNE HILL VELODROME at 0845.  At around 0900 there will be a short briefing about the club, its aims and ethos, and the etiquette of group-riding.  The ride will then be split into the groups of around 10 /12 and will leave at about 5 minute intervals to avoid bunching.  You are welcome to do this ride once, after which you will be expected to apply for club membership if you want to ride with us again.

There are certain non-negotiable conditions set on membership, one of which is membership of British Cycling at Gold, Silver or Ride level (but NOT Bronze). You will be informed of other expectations conditional to being accepted at the pre-ride briefing.  Note: Please only add DPCC to your BC membership after the introductory ride and before applying for club membership.

Refreshments and toilet facilities available but NO parking for vehicles inside the stadium.

ALL GROUPS finish at Crystal Palace Parade, at some time around midday and 1pm.  There are several cafes – Cadence, Cafe Paradou, Cafe St Germain – all of which will welcome you with decent coffee, good cake and hot food.  There’s also a couple of pubs.  It’s a great opportunity to get to know your fellow riderd a little better and to ask the Dulwich riders any questions about the club and its activities.

OTHER INFORMATION … 

Bike:  We expect you to be riding a road-bike with drop handlebars.  Whatever machine you’re on please ensure: gears are shifting reliably; wheels are straight and true; brakes are effective and tyres in good condition and inflated properly.

Clothing: A cycle jersey or jacket with pockets (you need quick access to your food, we don’t stop for long) Padded shorts or tights. Possibly a rain jacket or warmer layer – this is a year-round ride remember and temperatures out in the countryside may be significantly LOWER! Padded mitts or long-finger gloves.  Try to avoid carrying backpacks, heavy locks etc. We strongly advise all riders to wear a suitably-sized and properly adjusted helmet.

Food & drink: At least one water bottle. Two if hot. Hydration is vital to how you feel at the end of this ride – keep drinking, small regular sips, even when the temperature is low.  When you can see your breath, that’s water leaving your body…

Other items: A bike multi-tool. Two spare inner tubes and tyre levers. Pump. Money for coffee/food at the end of the ride.

You: A desire to ride in a close group,  improve your riding skills and fitness, enjoy the companionship of other riders, participate fully in club life.  Capable of riding 55 kms / 30 miles with several steep hills and only brief stops.  Able to fix a puncture, make small mechanical adjustments en route

Safety: Carry emergency contact details, with details of any medical conditions/allergies etc.

FINALLY …

The club was founded in 1935 by a group of passionate and dedicated cyclists. Dulwich Paragon CC has grown since then and now has over 600 members BUT the passion remains as strong as ever, we love riding our bikes and we are very proud of the fact that DPCC is friendly, inclusive and welcoming to ALL regardless of gender, race, religion and sexual orientation.

Whichever ride you join we want you to relax and enjoy it.  And then become part of what we believe is the BEST BIKE CLUB IN BRITAIN!