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Overtaking/being overtaken by a fellow cyclist

  • 21-04-2022 11:36am
    Posts: 0

    Just wondering if there are any unwritten rules of overtaking or being overtaken by a fellow cyclist?

    The reason I ask is that I've had a few odd interactions with fellow cyclists in the last week and maybe I'm missing something as I usually cycle solo and often very early in the morning or late in the evening so don't meet too many out and about.

    This week, I passed a guy very early just outside a built up area. I was going about 5kph faster than him and I gave a greeting and a wave as I passed but got nothing back. After a while I noticed he was on my wheel and he stuck there for about five minutes without saying a word and not offering to take a turn. I found it very odd and after a while I just dropped him.

    Another evening, I had my new power meter out and was doing intervals on the road. Again, passed a guy who I was going much faster than but he took my wheel and after a minute took a turn so it looked like we were riding together. Session over but he was a sound guy and was happy to chat with him.

    This morning, I spotted a guy a good bit away who seemed to be looking long and hard at his rear cassette and was going very slowly suggesting he had a mechanical. I went to pull up alongside him to ask of he needed help but he put an arm out as if to suggest I needed to back off. I sat on his wheel and asked if he needed help and he said he was ok so I just went by as quick as I could as again it was a bit of a strange interaction.

    Is there any better way to get overtaken or overtake a fellow cyclist on the road?



  • Posts: 2,799 ✭✭✭ [Deleted User]

    Do you tuck in behind a pedestrian, or allow one to tuck behind you? Why do cyclists think they are a brethren?

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Because motorists enter a blind rage when they see us two-abreast and start foaming at the mouth. I'm surprised they can even type on facebook sometimes, they're so apoplectic behind the wheel.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,557 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    becauses there's shag all aero advantage to tucking in behind someone when out walking.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,557 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    anyway, there are just some odd people out there from time to time. i see nothing wrong with what you did. just overtake and say hello as you do so (and make it sound as casual as possible, even if you're absolutely belting it out at 100% effort)

  • Registered Users Posts: 418 ✭✭GandhiwasfromBallyfermot

    The first and third guys just seem to be rude. For the second guy if you're going to sit on the wheel of someone who's overtaken you its usually polite to say something or ask them first. If I do it I'll normally catch up to them and just say "Hey do you mind if I sit on for a little bit and we can do up and overs if you want?" If they're doing intervals or say no then no biggie, I'll back off.

    I don't think you did anything wrong when overtaking as long as you're not blasting past people and give them space. Some people are just grumpy or rude.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 5,367 ✭✭✭JimmyVik

    Theres none for a non professional cyclist either so dont be kidding yourself :)

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 24,898 Mod ✭✭✭✭CramCycle

    I know a good few people on my commute, sometimes we chat, sometimes we drag each other along and other times we say hello as we blast by. People I do t know I'll say hello to or ask if they need help if it looks like something is wrong but unless they offer me to sit on(a guy on an ebike around shankill regularly offers his wheel) I don't, if they sit on mine I either let them or work to drop them, if I'm not comfortable, I'll let them know.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,557 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    well, it was just a throwaway comment, but the science seems clear that there is a benefit, though obviously variable based on speed and rider position.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,437 ✭✭✭NSAman

    Obviously you haven’t walked behind Ivy O’Connor on a windy day!

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,116 ✭✭✭bazermc

    Plus you’re likely to get a box in the chops from them

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  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 24,097 Mod ✭✭✭✭robinph

    Actually yes I do, or at least follow behind on the same side of the footpath or trail so as to leave more space for cyclist, runners, or faster walkers to get by without needing to weave around.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,321 ✭✭✭secman

    Always say hello when passing, usually wouldn't take a wheel , maybe ride along side and play it as it goes, staying abreast or sharing. Did meet an A1 rider on N81 a few years back maybe 2017..he was heading to Wicklow Gap to watch Ras I think. I asked him if it was okay to try and stick on his wheel , I was planning on turning at poulaphuca, was going to a wedding later that day. He said no problem, just about managed to stick on, i was in reality, probably working harder than he was, even though i was drafting......poulaphuca couldn't come quick enough...a fair few pbs that day 😁

  • Registered Users Posts: 594 ✭✭✭ARX

    Speak for yourself. I'm all about the marginal gainz.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Sounds like I just got unlucky. I'm always caught for time - either rushing to get back to family or before it gets dark - so I'd nearly always prefer to do my own thing. If a guy wants to grab my wheel, no hassle but I'd expect he'd return my greeting and maybe ask at the least. In my head all of the above interactions were going to be me overtaking with a 'Hi, lovely evening for it' and that's it.

  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 20,416 Mod ✭✭✭✭Weepsie

    Don't we all go really fast, go as close as we can and make vroom noises?

  • Registered Users Posts: 533 ✭✭✭Mr. Cats

    Normally if I see a rider ahead, I’ll put all my effort into catching and passing them. Typically I don’t say hello or anything as I’m too in the zone and can’t spare the energy for niceties. I’ll also usually pass them as closely as possibly in order to get full draft advantage. Oftentimes I find that I’m a bit shagged when I get in front, so with the extra effort of coming out of the draft, I might back off a little. More often than not this leads to the other rider passing me. A minute or two in the draft means that I’m recovered enough to pass them again. This could repeat several times. I find it’s important not to acknowledge the other rider in any way as engaging in conversation can mean I completely blow up.

    I find that it often ends in one of a couple of ways - either the other rider comes past me at full throttle, mumbling something that sounds like ‘tanker’ or some such, or whilst behind me, they turn off from the route that I’m leading them on.

    I enjoy the communal aspect of cycling and especially the feeling of comradery.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Yeah If you bust yourself to get around me and then then can't get away from me and drop back and sit on I'm calling you a "tanker" too 😂

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    On the non communication though is that a Dublin thing???? It's rare if ever happened me that someone coming towards me or from behinds hasn't said something or waved, or lifted a finger. Hell I've passed people out walking while I'm on the bike who I'd pass regularly as we're creatures of habit out at the same time around the same place say hello, fine day for it, wave.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,557 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    i say hello to anyone who can hear it when i'm out in the country. dogs, cats, horses, humans, buzzards.

  • Moderators, Politics Moderators Posts: 39,758 Mod ✭✭✭✭Seth Brundle

    Do you say anything before you are passing them in terms of advance notice e.g. "bike up"?

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  • Registered Users Posts: 937 ✭✭✭Luxman

    I’ve been know to communicate with dogs who bark at me as I go past.

  • Registered Users Posts: 545 ✭✭✭MangleBadger

    I always find myself giving a sign of acknowledgement as I pass other cyclists. But 90% of the time I'm riding on my own and listening to music. So if I am overtaking I usually make the effort to pass and keep on going. Obviously I've never been overtaken so I cant comment from that aspect.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    The real trick is to bust a gut to get up to speed, then coast past them while free-wheeling and checking your phone......make it look as effortless as possible, even if you're about to implode.

  • Registered Users Posts: 594 ✭✭✭ARX

    I don't, as you can't assume that a stranger is going to understand what that means or that they'll even catch the words - to them it might just be some randomer shouting two syllables at them. It's the overtaker's job to pass safely, not the overtakee's job to facilitate the pass. If I'm passing someone I just make sure that nobody's about to pass me and them pass them with enough space to allow for them swerving (usually I'm out to the centre of the road or in the opposite lane). I've been passed stupidly close by other cyclists a few times, it's not nice.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,321 ✭✭✭secman

    Got passed last night by a lad in Usher kit at start of Embankment, just zoomed past and nothing said, just about stayed with him holding 10meters until I blew at top , he pulled in at Blue Gardenia for the ICL race, wouldn't have bothered if knew he was a racer 🤣

  • Registered Users Posts: 594 ✭✭✭ARX

    Bonus points for looking down at your front derailleur with a puzzled face as you pass.

  • Registered Users Posts: 937 ✭✭✭Luxman

    More bonus points as you clip out to stretch your leg and keep spinning the other .....

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 49,557 CMod ✭✭✭✭magicbastarder

    you mean to buzzards? no, they do not understand the concept.

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,255 ✭✭✭DaveyDave

    Hopefully someone remembers this episode of Malcolm in the Middle...

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,219 ✭✭✭JMcL

    Don't think it's a Dublin thing - I get a fair bit of it in Waterford as well. In fact, when I was living in Dublin in the early noughties and regularly doing laps of the Phoenix park, it'd be rare that you wouldn't get a wave or a nod. I think it's more just an ignorant "tanker" issue if anything. I'll always give a wave/nod/hi as fits the circumstances when passing (regardless of direction), or being passed