I got an email from the guys over at Cyclefit this morning, sent to all Etapistes. Some tips on riding in bunches:
- In a fast moving dense bunch slower riders go down through the middle and faster riders go up the outside. That's just how it is.
- If there is a side-wind there could be an echelon effect - get in the shadow of the wind by overlapping your neighbour. Use your nose as a wind-vein. Never do more work into the wind than you have to.
- Always try co-operation before defection. Try and get your group working well together by initiating work yourself. But don't be a patsy - never be the only one working in a group. Know when to defect. Tic-tac-toe.
- Be brave - if you can't get a slow group to go fast then plan an escape. But try and take a couple of strong riders with you. Communicate, talk, motivate, plan, think all the time. Tic-tac-toe.
- Build alliances, command respect, inspire by example, succeed by intelligence. And stay away from erratic riders.