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“We are a selfish lot”

What a lovely ride we had on Sunday 13th October from Mangaweka back to Palmerston North. The weather, albeit a bid windy (very windy actually) was dry, there was a great turn out of people of varying strengths and all appearing to be enjoying the lovely countryside and company of others. It is a shame therefore that again I feel the need to write an article expressing my frustrations (I’m putting it mildly) about rider selfishness.

Shortly after leaving Cheltenham and as the wind continued to blow, there were a few people in our group (two groups having merged at this stage) who were struggling to keep up and as I tend to do, I moved up to the front to ask that the speed be cut back. To my annoyance, the group continued on at the same speed and I decided to drop back to ride with and support one of our colleagues. We rode the last 25 kilometres by ourselves, without any other cyclists in sight, they perhaps clearly more interested in coffee than helping a fellow cyclist. I certainly don’t mind doing this if there  is only 2-3 kilometres to go, but how could a group of experienced cyclists and yes, there were some very strong and experienced cyclists in this group, leave someone to struggle on their own, especially with so far to go. Out of a group of approximately 30 cyclists, I would have thought it quite appropriate that 3-4 riders drop back to help those that are struggling.

My main annoyance is this; why do a large majority of cyclists not behave in a courteous manner i.e. help a fellow rider in need? I will never leave a rider to struggle on their own, I couldn’t morally do this, especially as in this case, when the rider is of an older generation.

Cycling should be enjoyed by all and remember, we all get tired at some stage and need assistance. As for me, I will continue to do what I think is right and look after my fellow cyclists. I only hope that others will assist in this area as I feel my own performance suffers when I and only a few other cyclists are always left to help.

Your feedback as always, is welcomed.


Steve Loversuch