This April has seen some damp conditions to say the least – although we have had some good sunshine in between. This means very changeable conditions especially for road cyclist. To stay safe you have to change your cycling technique. Not only does it lead to some personally soggy conditions! but it also has a significant effect on the bikes tyres and brakes. The cyclist will have to change cornering techniques and be aware that visibility may be well reduced.
Follow these tips from ‘The Real Buzz’ and your chances of ending in a ditch will be much reduced!
Rain affects the grip of tyres on the road meaning that it is necessary to reduce speeds.
Wet bicycle brake pads are less effective in slowing the cycle. To keep the brakes in a condition where they will produce some braking even when wet, it is best to keep some light pressure on the brake pads. The pads rubbing against the wheel rims wipes away the water so they can respond when pressed.
Cornering on your bicycle in the wet
When cornering, it is best to keep the cycle more upright than in dry conditions.Lean the body more into the turn than the bicycle itself.
In heavy rain, visibility can be poor, with water running into the eyes and spray coming up from other vehicles or cyclists. Glasses with clear or yellow lenses produce the best visibility in heavy rain. Also it is best to make yourself visible to others with a brightly coloured rain jacket.
Cycling in a group in wet conditions
When riding with others, it is best not to ride directly behind the rider in front as this throws up spray and grit. Also, stopping distances will be affected in the wet so it is best to keep a safe distance apart to avoid collisions.
There are some benefits – in warm weather, it reduces the air temperature and it it can keep a lot of other road users at home!!