Make sure you are prepared and ready to go! With just under 3 weeks until the GCFOC challenge, here are some tips for you…

3 WEEKS TO GO – SAFETY
1. Bike Safety: Prepare your bike
Just as you have prepared your body for the event, so too should you ensure your bike is ready to go in top
working order, so it can perform as well as you and so you arrive safely to the finish!
The best thing to do is take your bike in to your local bike shop for a full service so that your pushie is
clean, the working parts are oiled, the bolts are tightened, wheels are trued, and it feels like a million
bucks! Some of the things to look at are:
a) Tyres: If you don’t do anything else, ensure you have a good pair of tyres on your bike so that you
eliminate likelihood of punctures, increase your safety down the descents and an easier ride up the
hills (if you get a good set of tyres they minimises the rolling resistance).
b) Drivetrain: Ask your bike shop to check your chain, cluster and chainrings and if they are worn, replace
them!
c) Pedals and cleats: Inspect your pedals and cleats and if they are worm, replace them now but
ensure you keep the same position!
d) Wheels: On the Gold Coast, the salt air can corrode the alloy parts of our bike, even if it has been
safely parked in the garage. You don’t want a broken spoke mid‐way through your ride so get your
wheels checked and have them trued for an easier ride!
e) Cables: Have your cables inspected and replaced if need be to ensure improved shifting and braking
performance of your bike.

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2. Road safety: Ready yourself
Safety on the road on a bike starts with you first! To ensure your safety and the safety of others, please
ensure you brush up on your bunch skills, bunch etiquette and general road safety so that you can have an
enjoyable, happy and safe ride! Below are some safety tips for cyclists from the Gold Coast City Council website:

* Always watch what other vehicles are doing and do not assume they have seen you. Make eye contact.
Do not ride with headphones as they distract your concentration & prevent you from hearing other vehicles & road users.
Learn to use your peripheral vision.

* Take control, be assertive of your rights as a cyclist and take the right of way unless the other vehicle does not appear to have seen you or there is risk of collision.

* Avoid situations you are not comfortable in by using quieter roads and pathways.

* Watch out for people in parked cars opening their car doors. Stay alert.

* Watch out for vehicles overtaking and then turning left in front of you, especially at roundabouts. Some motorists don’t realise how quickly cyclists can catch them when their vehicle slows to turn.

* Where it is too narrow for a vehicle to pass you safely, check for vehicles coming from behind, signal and take up the whole lane. When the situation is safe, move to the left again and allow the vehicle/s to
pass.

* Roundabouts are often safer if you take up a whole lane, thereby preventing vehicles from turning left in front of you or squeezing you into the kerb. In this situation, use your judgement and consider other road users.

* Be considerate of other road users and try not to hold up traffic unless necessary for your own safety. Cycling side by side up hills or in narrow passageways whilst holding up traffic does not help the image of cyclists. Where safe to do so, cycle in a single file and allow traffic to get past you. (Source: Gold Coast City Council 2010 Safety Tips for Cyclists, http://www.goldcoast.qld.gov.au/t_standard2.aspx?pid=67)

 
Gold Coast Festival of Cycling: www.gcfoc.com.au