First a quick introduction. For those of you who don't know me, I am Simon Oddy, Chair of the Sulis Scorpions. My door is always open if you have any questions, suggestions, or indeed would like to volunteer to assist with the running of the club. If you would like to get in touch, please drop me a line (email address below) or track me down at the circuit on a Saturday where I can be found coaching most weekends from 9 until 12. If you can't find me, one of the other coaches will be able to point you in my direction or indeed help.
I would like to bid a very warm welcome to our new members that have joined in the last few months. Jason is doing a fantastic job with the induction groups as I am sure you have noticed. Working with the new riders Jason provides them with the basics of group riding and base skills and then moves them into the most appropriate group for their abilities and strength. It's great to see the new riders demonstrate their skills and enthusiasm!
As we are now starting to leave summer behind, I'd like to take this opportunity to ask you to ensure that the riders are fully equipped for the weather, with long fingered gloves when it gets cold, and rain jackets when it rains. Unfortunately we don't have any clothing available at the circuit, so it's really important that the riders come fully equipped, and remember that the wind can whip across on top of the hill at Odd Down! If you'd like any advice on what to equip your rider with please ask any of the coaches.
I'd also like to bring you the news that we are in process of registering our race series with British Cycling, with one race day every month from January through to June. I'd like to thank Eugene for all his hard work in organising this series. We are always looking for helpers at these events, so please don't be shy in volunteering - it is great fun and you get a great view of the races (unless, like me, you are on sign in duties. Well, you can't have it all, can you :) ).
Eugene is also organising the club champs this year. It's likely to be a bit different to the usual, and may not be at Odd Down - watch this space!
At the Scorpions we are a dedicated bunch, working together to give our riders the best possible start to their cycling future, a gift that we hope they take with them wherever they go. For those that are a bit confused about the groups and their structure, we have 5 groups of varying abilities and also an endurance group. We ensure that the riders are in groups where they can ride together comfortably and take part in the activities safely and, most of all, have fun!
Whip and Sand, the 10am groups, are for the youngest and least experienced riders. These sessions are run mainly by Jason (when is not doing inductions), Alberto and Felix. Also at 10am is the Emperor group, led by David and Steve. This group is for those riders who can ride well in a group, and can also keep up with some of the stronger riders.
At 11am there are two further groups. The Striped group, run mainly by Matt and myself, concentrates a lot on group riding and starts to introduce more technical tactics to give the riders an advantage should they start to race. The Imperial group is for the strongest riders, and the focus is very much on tactics, riding in groups, and preparing for events. This group is led by Eugene, our head coach, and is supported by Steve, Richard and Luke.
I mentioned earlier that we also have an endurance group - this starts at 9am and is open to all those wishing to improve their endurance and speed skills. We also set a few challenges along the way. This group is for the slightly older riders who are thinking about doing long distances, sportives, or even longer races. This group is led by any of the coaches, with the mainstay being Richard, myself, Jason and David.
Finally, we are constantly discussing new ideas, organising new events, and looking for ways in which to make the sessions as informative and as much fun as we can. If you would like to know more, or get involved a bit more, please drop me a line or come and chat.
Chair. Sulis Scorpions Youth Cycling Alliance
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