Super Domestiques at the Ride Studio Cafe

June 15, 2010

in Rides

The Ride Studio Cafe runs weekly rides – 52 weeks a year.  In 2012 our Sunday ride ran 50 out of 52 weeks.  The two cancellations were due to icy road conditions.  Not bad considering our New England winters.

One of the reasons we have such dedicated groups of cyclists is because of the way the Studio manages the rides.  We have Super Domestiques.  We used to call these people, “Ride Leaders.”  We found that this title wasn’t really in the spirit of how we manage rides.  The person responsible for the success of the ride is not necessarily ‘leading’ the ride at the head of the pack.  This cyclist’s role is to ensure a safe, fun, ever improving experience for the cycling group.  Many times this person is actually the sweeper – at the opposite end of the pack from the leader.

So, we’ve officially changed the name “ride leader” to “Super Domestique.”

The Super Dom’s basic role is to ensure safety and fun; believe it or not, this includes the following:

  • Meetings and organization:
    • Super Doms generally about 30 minutes before the ride
    • They help organzie the rider meeting about 15 minutes before the ride
  • Ensure that all riders have signed the RSC ride waiver
  • Super Doms each wear an RSC sashimono jersey pocket card that signals responsibility for helping riders that are having trouble.
  • Super Doms ride at the prescribed pace; we generally have three or four ride speeds for any given organized ride.  This means that you have a cyclometer or a Garmin so that the actual speed is clear.
  • Super Doms really understand their roles for the ride.  This is not a race or a competition.  This is an experience – a great experience.
  • Super Doms help ensure that every rider gets a cue sheet with the RSC phone number on it.  If we don’t have cue sheets for the ride, we make sure the rider has an RSC business card.  We won’t let any rider get stranded.
  • On some rides we also have a “rolling mechanic.”  We can’t promise this for every ride but for longer routes at least one of the Super Doms will be a qualified mechanic. Or what the Studio calls the “roulant mechanique.”

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