TT Review (Mick)
The Club TT’s have for the most part been well supported this year, with a turnout of 20+ riders most weeks, mostly being our own club members, or non-affiliated ‘guests’ riding ‘private’ trials.
The notable exceptions were the Wortham Ling events, which were poorly supported, with as many helpers as riders… (even after some riders intending to ride elsewhere found that event cancelled!)
I’ve decided that the effort of putting these on is not worthwhile, so have left them out of next years schedule. I have kept the Wingfield ‘Hilly’ in for next year, & also the ‘Wacky Races’, which seemed to get a bit of a renaissance this year. It’s not all about beating your best, there should be an element of fun too!
The issue of Marshalling will need some more thought, as we should not rely on just one person for the majority of events (Many Thanks, Bridget!!) I’ve put a Marshalling schedule in with the list for next years events, & would encourage members to put in for their ‘stint’ ASAP. I WILL cancel events next year if there is no one prepared to marshal on the evening.
It has also been good to see that there are several members now riding ‘Open’ events on a regular basis. Hopefully with a bit of coordination there can be some competitive club ‘teams’ in some local events.
Web Master Report (Neil)
During 2013/2014, we’ve improved how the club uses technology (and particularly the Web) in a number of ways:
- We’ve revamped the website to give it a neater look and to remove dated content.
- Visits to the site are up roughly double what we had last year.
- Google search resutls are good (with searches such as “Diss Cycling Club”, “Cycling in Diss” or “South Norfolk Cycle Club” having us at the top of the results)
- The TT and other results are now posted on the website in an easy to access way.
- We’ve added the ability to pay annual subs online via the BC site and that seems to have worked well.
- The Facebook group now has 146 members and has become an important part of the fabric of the club with a range of posts from ride reports, interesting snippets, events coming up, interesting discussions and plenty of fun.
- Except for a short break over the summer, Simon has continued to produce the excellent “Something for the Weekend” weekly emails for club members which are always popular and much appreciated.
- We ran an online club survey this year (results attached) which proved a useful way to gather opinions from members and gauge the general views on a number of topics.
- We are now using BC’s club management dashboard which isn’t brilliant but they’ve been kind enough to take up our suggestion of being able to produce ICE list for all club members which are now providing to ride leaders and event organisers.
As part of looking at the survey feedback, I did have a ponder on whether we should do more with the club’s website. To be honest, though, doing anything much more would be quite expensive (as we’d need to stop using the free WordPress site we use today) and probably wouldn’t gain us a lot more in terms of meeting the primary goal of the site which is to be the place people go to to find out about the club. Given that, we’re probably going to be doing “more of the same” in the year to come in terms of our use of technology but thoughts, comments and suggestions always welcome.
Club Run Report (Neil)
Club runs have been a bit up and down this year. On the upside, we’ve had increasing numbers and more rides with:
- The Thursday “Those That Can” ride going out almost every week. Many thanks to Stuart and Colin who have been the main stay of these rides.
- The Sunday club runs continuing to be a core activity for the club and attracting lots of riders each week to the extent we’ve often had to split into two groups either to be safe on the road or to allow the groups to run at different speeds.
We also published a ride leader protocol on the website and, after things got a bit disorganised in the middle of the year, we’ve pretty much got the ride leader rota sorted.
On the downside, it continues to be tricky to organise club runs which keep everyone happy and it’s a regular topic of debate and discontent amongst members. Some of the main issues are as follows:
- Roads. There is a significant number of people who don’t want to ride on rougher roads during the summer when they’ve got their decent bikes out. What we’ve tried to do to address this is plan routes on “decent” roads.
- One group or two? We tried to introduce two club runs during November at different paces. Some like this, some don’t.
On the whole, it feels like if we’ve got <20 riders out then most folks are happy to go out to the cafe at the pace of the slowest rider and then split on the way home if faster riders want to go ahead of the main group. If we’ve got more than 20 riders or folks who definitely want to go at different paces then we can split and meet at the cafe.