Anyone who has ridden Steaming Nostril will tell you about the pain that awaits on the snowy, icy, wet and mud filled rail trail. The pain of doing it once isn’t good enough. After having clawed your way out of the rail trail, racing 60km of snow covered dirt and gravel roads, you’re forced to ride the trail one more time before crossing the finish line. The return trip is where most people are “broken”. Pictures often reveal pain filled and desperatefaces.
This year’s race lived up to its name with temperatures well below -10 on the start line. With a better understanding among all riders of the importance of getting onto the rail trail at the head of the bunch, the neutral start was not so neutral but I was able to get onto the trail with the lead group.
There were already some deep ruts in the snow covered trail - which was nerve-racking in this fast paced group. I did my best to stay attached to the back and prayed that Nathan Chown did not attack off the front – as there would be no way I could respond.
The lead group came out of the rail trail with roughly 20 riders which included Nathan Chown, Peter Disera, Mark Brusso, Tim Marshall and Peter Morse. And in what is certainly the Rule #5 award of the day, Gaelen Merritt broke away solo almost immediately after leaving the trail – and stayed away for the rest of the day. The group was never able to organize itself. From what I could see from my sheltered attempt to do as little work as possible, two riders from Morning Glory Cycling Club, Tom Nesbittand Kevin Higgins, did the majority of the pace setting.
With Gaelen becoming little more than a dot on the horizon, there were a number of attacks in the peleton. Nothing stuck until Tom Nesbitt made his second attempt to get across. As Tom started to disappear into the distance, I looked around the group seeing Chown sitting very comfortably and knew that if I didn’t come into the trail well ahead of these guys I was going to have no chance. So I jumped. I didn’t let myself look back until I had made up half the distance to Tom. When I did, the peleton was well off in the distance.
I’ve got to be honest, without Tom’s work, I would never have made it across to Gaelen. It was clear that Tom had given everything to get us to Gaelen. As he came through to take his pull and I immediately came around him and told him to take another one off but the effort to get across had cost him too much. Tom was off the back and it was just Gaelen and myself left.
Gaelen and I were able to build up a 2 minute lead on the peleton. As we prepared to re-enter the rail trail and make the short trip to the finish, we wished each other luck knowing that cooperation would no longer be of much benefit. I came into the rail trail first. There was no big attack. I just road as fast and as hard as I safely could. The trail was much smoother and faster than on the way out but I was too afraid to look back for fear of crashing. When I finally exited onto the road, I looked back and I was on my own. I crossed the line and won my first race of the year.
I want to thank my team Real Deal Racing and sponsors Gears,WASPcam, Feildgate Homes,Toronto Sport and Social Club,Morning Glory Cycling Club,Champion System, PowerBar,Balance Physiotherapy, RPM Total Fitness, Spin Kicks, Kenzington Burger Bar and Barnstormer Brewing for their help in getting me on the podium. I also want to thankCycle Waterloo for hosting Steaming Nostril and making this great race happen.
The OCA's Club President's Day.
by Sasha Golish
On Saturday February 8th the Ontario Cycling Association hosted its Annual Club President's Day. It is a day when all the cycling club presidents get together to discuss the emerging cycling issues, what is working in their clubs, and a time to learn from each other.
Sasha Gollish, MGCC Director of Advocacy, attended on behalf of the club and was also presenting to the other club presidents. Her presentation covered Cycling and the Law; the things that we cyclists need to be aware of on the road. Her presentation is attached and is a good reminder for everyone on what the rules of the road are. It will also be attached on the MGCC website here.
The keynote speech was delivered by Steve Varga of the Collingwood Cycling Club (CCC). Steve was discussing his new document, the CCC Ride Guidelines. CCC has a very organized ride structure that they follow every weekend. The goal for the CCC rides is ride quality and experience. Steve spoke to group interaction, organization and structure to reach a high level of ride quality and experience. Some of Steve's ride formations can be found in Sasha's presentation.
Other workshops included:
Michael Cranwell – Member of the Lapdogs Cycling Club specializing in growing and running a successful multiple discipline club
Greg Rawson – OCA Sport Coordinator specializing in event sanctioning
Paul Holman – Owner of Holman Insurance specializing in club and event coverage
Steve Indig – Specializing in Sport and Law
Overall the day was a success. The group learned a lot from each other. Overall the theme was that we couldn't wait to get out and ride on the road in the warm again!
MGCC is very excited to let you know about three opportunities to join your fellow members on a great cycling trip. We've got trips planned to:
FOUNTAIN HILLS, ARIZONA | February 22 to 27, 2014
This trip is in partnership with Real Deal Racing.
Cost: $599 for double occupancy, $899 for single occupancy
Read here for all the details!
BOONE, NORTH CAROLINA | April 30 to May 4, 2014
This trip is in partnership with High Country Endurance.
Cost: $1,480 (includes all costs, taxes and gratuity)
Read here for all the details!
LAKE PLACID, NEW YORK | LADIES ONLY | May 28 to June 1, 2014
This trip is in partnership with High Peaks Cyclery.
Read here for all the details!
**Please note that all costs do not include transportation to and from destination.
Long time MGCC rider/racer/coach/mentor etc. Rolston Miller really is all that. But don't take my word for it, have a look below at how all that looks in glorious slow motion while decked out head to toe in envy inducing Rapha wear. All this in support of our bike shop of choice and huge club supporter Gears
This is what an early morning ride should look like. Beautiful. Inspired. Dance.
Watch this short film directed by our incredibly talented friend, Shelley Lewis.
Viewer Discretion: This will motivate you to get on your bike and ride.
Writer Shelley Lewis
Director Shelley Lewis
Producer Kristina Anzlinger
DP Kris Belchevski
Camera operator Kris Belchevski
Assistant camera Mark Moher / Mike Pesut
Grip James Gordon
Picture editor Melanie Hide
Sound editor Stephanie Pigott at Pirate Radio
Actor Rolston Miller
AGM 2013 Recap
On Wednesday November 13th MGCC hosted its second Annual General Meeting at Gears Bike Shop (Leaside).
New MGCC Logo and Kit for 2014
The highlight of the night was the unveiling of the new MGCC logo and kit. A huge ‘thank you’ to Mike Zikovitz for his time and effort in creating this awesome new logo.
Below is a quick summary in the order of events from the meeting.
1. A General Update On the Club (Fraser Chapman)
MGCC has seen considerable growth since 2011, where we began with 220 members. In 2012 it grew to 374 members. 2013 saw 606 people register. As Fraser said “It is a volunteer based, not for profit community of exceptional people doing great things with their bikes.”
2. MGCC West (Dave McLaughlin)
The MGCC started the west chapter in 2012. This was the second year and still see major growth in the future. 2013 saw 40-45 riders out on a regular basis with lots of new people coming out helping to grow the west chapter.
2014 will see the addition of:
- Marshals for the rides
- The addition of weekend rides and more weekday rides, including a ladies only ride
- Building a structure based on what MGCC central is doing
- More ‘field trips’ where MGCC west comes to central and central goes out to MGCC west
- Building a board of directors for the West Chapter
3. MGCC Training & Coaching Committee – (Greg Connor, Rolston Miller (on behalf of Real Deal) and Charlie Breyer (Watts Up))
2013 was a very successful season and improvements made across the Club, including:
- Lots of success racing, both in numbers joining the race teams and in race results
- MGCC Strava domination(!)
This year, most of the credit goes to our Partners, RealDeal and WattsUp. Again both RealDeal and WattsUp have winter training programs available to our members. Check out their websites and join the club for some awesome training sessions.
From the club survey clearly it showed that coaching and training is important to our members. From the survey we asked the following questions and saw the following responses:
1) What Off-season programs would the Club like to see?
#1 response: 61% of members want to see more winter programs from WattsUp and Gears/RealDeal
2) What Improvements would you like to see made to the Club?
#2 response: 45% wanted to see more skills/clinics offered
#4 response: 43% wanted to see more local training camps
3) How would you like to see the Club’s Funds Spent?
#2 response: 45% want to see it used on Coaching Clinics
Thinking hard about the budget for your year, coaching is money well spent
4. MGCC Cycling Advocacy Committee (Sasha Gollish)
What did we do in 2013?
· Helped to repeal of the City of Toronto Single File Bylaw, which made it easier and safer to ride in Toronto and on our weekly rides.
· Helped with the City of Toronto Cycling Safety Website. We wrote up the relevant HTA laws to support the info graphic the city of Toronto created to show you when it is and is not ok to ride two-abreast. Here is an infographic
· Helping the Waterloo Cycling Club with their incident. Riders of the Waterloo Cycling Club were charged with careless driving while out on a group ride. These charges have since been dropped.
What's the Plan for 2014?
· Helping the CIty of Toronto with a Truck Side Guard Policy. It is important to help support this initiative at the city of Toronto, it will make riding out and back to Brimley and on the Bagel/Croissant/Eclair rides Safer
· Setting an Emergency Action Plan for each of our rides
· Continue to make recreational cycling safer not just for MGCC members but all cyclists in the Toronto area.
Most importantly a huge THANK YOU to Ian Henderson for his leadership over the last two years, he led the way in changing the single file law in Toronto.
5. MGCC Youth Program Committee (Dave McKay)
The Youth Committtee was quiet in 2013 but will be back in 2014, currently working on the framework for the future. Target group is kids between 6-14 to develop their riding skills and confidence in a safe environment. The plan is to start a ‘Grass Track’ Racing program in 2014 check out this video
6. MGCC Race Team Committee – update & 2014
The 2013 Highlights and Stats:
· 129 people registered for our race program email list
· MGCC riders competed in road racing, mountain biking, cyclo-cross, multisport locally, provincially, nationally and internationally
· MGCC riders were very well represented in OCA sanctioned O-Cup races this year, competing in junior, sport, sportif, and Masters 3, 2, and 1 events, including podiums at several O-Cup events, and had several podiums at Provincial ITT Champs. Our most notable team was the M1 team, who were a factor in every O-Cup.
· Superb representation at the grand fondos, especially Centurion Collingwood that saw many MGCC riders podium
What we said we would get better at last year:
1. Improved communication regarding race attendance: got better, thanks to the road captains who helped with race attendance issues
2. Improved logistical support at races: better, thanks to help from RDR, but this still needs improvement. I would like to see 2 summer interns hired for this job.
3. Better communication to the club as whole regarding MGCC racing results during the season: much improved, with 4 large communications going out. Continued help is needed with results –especially multisport—as they do not include club name, and getting those results compiled is time consuming
4. Continued integration of MGCC racers as mentors to MGCC club riders: share the knowledge: this is going the right direction, but I would like to see more “race specific” instruction going on. We have lots of fit people, but we can make better bike racers.
5. Continued empowerment of MGCC racers by training and working together. We can all make each other better: THIS HAPPENED!
Goal for 2014:
· More juniors and more elite riders riding in MGCC colours
· Consider how it is we support our racing members. On site logistics? Uniforms?
· Mid-winter “racing camp”? Boone is amazing, but can me a little late for the majority of the early Ontario season.
6. MGCC Social & Philanthropic Committee (Michelle Pearlman)
What MGCC did in 2013:
· The best attended social event was the one that profiled all charitable rides in Canada. We learned that already there are lots of members in our community that are actively involved. Two of the most notable were David Newall’s Pedaling for Parkinson’s and Don Behan’s Beaver Valley 180, in support of Special Olympics. In addition huge fundraising was done by some individual members; Fraser Chapman, Peter Cook and Sarah King alone raised well over $150K this year for Coast to Coast
· The club introduced the MGCC ‘s Annual Bursary. In 2013 MGCC received close to 40 applications, and awarded 8 grants of $500 and two of $1,250 to talented youth in our community
· We held our biennial Bike Rally, which was managed completely by Andrew MacEachern and Barry Gordon. In total there were 110 bicycles, bike helmets, and bike locks where provided to children in
· The MGCC Year End Party Raffle continues to support different initiatives. In 2011 Tracey Dort-Kyne, in 2012 Share the Road and this year the Ontario Cycling Advocacy Fund.
What we see for 2014:
· Re-launching the MGCC Bursary with new criteria. Criteria include that a rider must be Ontario Resident and U-23. MGCC will be announcing results to be announced in December.
· Form formal Philanthropy committee. Activities will include to support the biannual MGCC Bike Rally. And we may look to expand to annual by engaging a school
· Establish a more formal partnership with The TRAILBLAZERS Tandem Cycling Club, a registered charity, provides recreational cycling to people who have limited or no vision, the opportunity to cycle with sighted volunteers on our tandems (bicycles built for two)
· Explores additional organizations or causes for MGCC to support
· Continue to promotes various charitable cycling events in the community and profiles key activities by members
What we did in 2013:
· Monthly Pub Nights for Central, the West also introduced some social activities
· Club Time Trials – initiated and lead by Jeff Sykes
· Epic Year End Party
What we’re planning for 2014:
· Form formal Social committee that will explore options
· MGCC is 100% Volunteer driven, want to make sure we are recognition and acknowledging across various committees and activities. For instance we had the Croissant Tips of Weeks, managing the Marshall schedule, week day ride emails, website updates, etc.
7. MGCC Finance Committee – update & 2014 (Fraser Chapman)
Our fiscal year end is December 31st when the financial statements will be made available in the new year.
Here is how your $65 membership was spent this year:
$14 on water bottles
$10 on bike decals
$3 on a 2nd club tent
$9 on socials
$5 on extra club kit (tri kit included) – given away at the end of year party
$14 on general club admin: ie. club registration (CCN), directors and officers insurance, incorporation fees, Bagel Ride SAG, Cookie O Grams, Centurion/O-Cup expenses, TT Championships, Thank you gifts
In 2014 the membership fee will be $75 + Insurance: The 2014 membership will include MGCC Water Bottles, MG Jersey Bins (a safe and dry place to store your phone, credit card, etc), MG Bike Bells, MG bike decals
8. Training Camp (Fraser Chapman)
· BOONE, NC – Apr 30th to May 4th – all MGCC members (male and female) are invited to attend
· Women’s Only Camp Details coming soon
· Investigating the possibility to do a mid-winter cycling camp.
9. New Routes (Fraser Chapman and Tim Marshall)
In 2014 we are reversing the Bridle Path Loop for 2014. This is still a consideration and will be tested in the spring. We're doing this from a safety perspective.
New weekend bagel rides are also under consideration; these are much easier to redesign as it is a matter of changing the ‘box’. ‘Australian Pursuits’ are going to introduced the 1st Saturday of every month. In addition there may be ‘specialty’ bagels (longer rides).
If you have new routes in mind please send them to Tim, keeping in mind the importance of safety and all inclusivity.
10. MGCC 2013 Athlete Bursary 1.0 + 2.0 (Fraser Chapman)
In 2013, known as Bursary 1.0, MGCC had 40 applicants and distributed $6500.
In 2014, known as 2.0, we have 32 applicants and $8500 to be distributed.
11. Election of Board of Directors for 2014 (Fraser Chapman)
A huge thank you to Shannon Hunt, Patti Lawrence, and Dave Newall who have stepped down from the board.
We would like to welcome the new board members: Greg Connor, Peter Cook, Sasha Gollish, Dave McLouglin, and Scott Moore.
Honorable mention goes to Kerri Brass, who initiated our marshaling program 2 years ago and led the group through the 2013 season. Kerri will be stepping down and Ian Henderson will be taking over his role.
The Col Du Brimley was kinder as far as the weather was concerned for the 2nd BITT (Brimley Individual Time Trial) of 2013
Kudos to those that came out and congrats to all the members who participated, see the results below.......
We had a wet but excellent Time Trial today on the Col Du Brimley
Congrats to all the members who participated, see the results below
As a club we are asking for the support of our city councilors in making Toronto a safer place to ride bikes. As such we are asking our members to take the following actions: read the letter below, Copy it, add your personal info as well as your city Councillors info, print it off and mail it in as a personal letter to your city Councillor
We believe that taking these actions will help us make Toronto's roads safer for cycling.
Thank you in advance
MGCC Member Name
[Insert MGCC Rider City Concillor Name]
100 Queen Street West, Suite C [INSERT COUNCILLOR'S SUITE #] (note councillor suite @ can be found at http://app.toronto.ca/im/council/councillors.jsp)
Dear Councillor [INSERT COUNCILLOR'S NAME]: (Use this link to find your city councillor: http://app.toronto.ca/wards/jsp/wards.jsp)
I would appreciate if you would pass on my concerns regarding the City of Toronto (City) cycling bylaw outlined below to the Toronto Cycling Committee. I am an active recreational cyclist who participates in weekly Morning Glory Cycling Club rides.
You may not be aware that the City has a bylaw that requires all cyclists to ride single file, “No person shall operate a bicycle upon a roadway other than riding in single file except when over taking another vehicle.” The City by-law can be found here, http://www.toronto.ca/cycling/pdf/hta.pdf. This bylaw, 32-92-14(2), was written in 1992 at a time when recreational cycling may not have been as popular, but today recreational cycling is growing in popularity. The Globe and Mail reported this spring that recreational cycling is growing in the range of 10% per annum (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/more-sports/cycling-is-the-new-golf-the-rise-of-an-on-trend-activity/article4246149).
In June of this year the Ontario Coroner’s office released a report on cycling deaths. The theme of this report was public safety, ‘We encourage all Ontarians to take personal responsibility for their own safety and for the safety of all road users.’ As any cycling club will tell you riding single file increases (not decreases) the risk to cyclists. A group of cyclists needs more room on the road than an individual cyclist in order to avoid the usual road hazards as well as the cyclists in front or behind them. Riding single file tempts drivers to pass the cycling group without changing lanes, which poses a danger to a larger group of cyclists.
When a group of cyclists ‘claim’ the lane in which they are riding, by riding two to three abreast, it helps to increase safety by:
1) Sending a message to drivers that they must switch to an alternative lane to safely pass the group; and
2) By riding 2 or 3 abreast (well within the right-hand lane) the length of the group is shortened by 1/3 to 2/3, making it safer and quicker for motorists to pass the group.
Any experienced group cyclist will tell you riding in formation with 2 or more cyclists abreast is a standard safety procedure performed by any large group of cyclists. Cycling safety research also supports the ‘safety in numbers effect;’ increasing the density of cyclists improves their overall safety,
In 1996 the City also requested the Chief Coroner of Ontario to review cycling deaths in Toronto. This report, A Report on Cycling Fatalities in Toronto 1986-98: Recommendations for Reducing Cycling Injuries and Death, was released in 1998. Recommendation 12 suggested a review, and possible changes, to the municipal bylaws to be consistent with the provincial Highway Traffic Act (HTA). This also parallels with Recommendation 9 from the recent provincial Coroner’s report, superficially asking the City of Toronto to ensure consistency with their By-Laws and the HTA. The City bylaw is inconsistent with the HTA; the HTA does not have a law that requires cyclists to ride single file.
The City also has a number of programs and initiatives supporting cycling safety. The Toronto Bike Plan written in 2001 encourages safe cycling in Toronto. The vision, ‘to create a safe, comfortable and bicycle friendly environment in Toronto, which encourages people of all ages to use bicycles for everyday transportation and enjoyment,’ supports and encourages recreational cycling in Toronto. The Toronto Public Health Department released A Road to Health this April noting the need to improve walking and cycling within the City.
The province continues to encourage safe cycling, both for recreation and commuting. The Ministry of Transportation is poised to release its updated cycling policy before the end of 2012. The Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport promotes the adequate provision of and access to sport and recreation infrastructure at the community level. In 2011 the Ontario Medical Association published Enhancing Cycling Safety in Ontario, a document advocating for a healthier Ontario through increased recreational cycling.
As an avid cyclist I ask you and your team to consider repealing by-law 32-92-14(2), ‘Fail[ing] to ride in single file.’ This by-law poses a safety risk to myself and my fellow cyclists.
Thank you for your consideration in this matter.
[INSERT MGCC Member Name]
As October comes to a close, the leaves have turned, it’s dark well past the completion of the last Brimley hill repeat, and the winter cycling gear has been pulled out of storage to handle those crisp Autumn mornings on the bike. For many, the 2012 season is behind us and thoughts have turned towards 2013. Here are a few things to consider when starting the process of making 2013 your best season yet:
Brimley and the Bridle Path are both soaked with the sweat of success from this year’s MGCC rides. Take some time to celebrate your accomplishments from the current season – and what better way to start that celebration than by attending the MGCC’s End of Season party on November 8th? Come share your stories, celebrate your club mates’ successes and enjoy the camaraderie of a most excellent and accomplished team.
A long, hard season naturally creates fatigue on the body, both physical and mental. A full-stop break at the end of the season is very helpful in allowing the body to repair any of those little aches and pains that can develop over the course of the year. A break also helps clear any mental fatigue from a long season of early morning wake-ups. You want to continue to be motivated right through that long, dark winter – not fired up from the success of this year only to push straight through and be burnt out in mid-February. Consider taking a full week off at a minimum, or one week off for every 250 hours of training in the past year. Enjoy the extra minutes of sleep in the morning and fit in some non-cycling related activities with your support crew that got you through the season.
Feeling guilty about resting? Don’t! Carve out a piece of that rest time to reflect on the past year. Did you set goals at the start of the season? Did you achieve them? What are your limiters to becoming a better rider? A season debrief helps consolidate what we’ve learned from the current season and helps set the stage for the coming year.
After a well-deserved break, it’s time to get back at it. Where to begin? Consider writing down your goals for the 2013 season. Goals can be as big or small as you want to make them – this year our club had goals ranging from just wanting to be comfortable riding a bike outdoors all the way up to people wanting to win international races. Goals are great motivational tools, but the true value of goals comes from breaking down all the steps needed to achieve them, and taking stock of progress along the way. The off-season is a great time to assess where we started, what we’re hoping to accomplish on our cycling journeys, and where we currently stand.
Not sure what specific steps are needed for you to achieve your goals? We’re surrounded by a wealth of knowledge in this club – pick the brain of your more experienced club mates. Have you ever worked with a coach? Coaching professionals can help you identify your limiters, create a path towards success and are there to give you the nudge you need if you start to drift off your line. The off-season is a great time to set up a coaching relationship as you are able to craft a season plan together. If you’re thinking about working with a coach or want to learn more about what’s involved, have a chat with one of the club members who works with a coach, or sit down with Mike or Ed from Real Deal Performance to see what they can do for you.
Rested, recovered, and ready to rock with a plan for the coming year, hit that trainer hard!
Congratulations to everyone on a great season of riding! Looking forward to the 2013 MGCC already.
See you on the roads,
RANK TIME START #
1 0:03:34 1
2 0:03:45 19
3 0:03:47 12
4 0:03:50 17
5 0:04:02 14
6 0:04:03 2
7 0:04:12 9
8 0:04:19 20
9 0:04:21 8
10 0:04:28 27
11 0:04:32 4
12 0:04:40 18
13 0:04:41 13
14 0:04:42 5
15 0:04:51 6
16 0:04:52 24
17 0:04:56 10
18 0:05:09 15
19 0:05:13 26
20 0:05:15 16
21 0:05:57 11
22 0:06:00 3