About The GIRO
The GIRO was formed in 1993 in Sutton Coldfield and has grown to over 120 members.
Most of our members are based in and around Sutton Coldfield, Four Oaks, Streetly, Shenstone and Lichfield and we also have a large group of riders based in and around Solihull.
We are named after the Giro D’Italia, the leader of which wears a pink jersey, and which is represented on our distinctive pink, navy blue and white ‘Classic’ Club clothing.
We have sponsored many young, local riders who have all gone on to compete in Elite and Pro level racing. This includes Dan Martin, shown above winning the National Junior Championships in the distinct GIRO colours, and is now a Pro rider who recently signed a two-year contract with UAE Team Emirates and is a winner of a stage of the Tour de France.
Our members support and are involved in a wide range of cycling activities: touring, road racing, time trialling, cycle cross and mountain biking, and we organise regular social events, cycling holidays and a Training Camp in Majorca in March.
We have our very own annual Sportive event, the aptly named Midland Monster– three challenging routes that take you through the scenic Stafffordshire Lanes and into the Lower Peaks with the longest ride being 107 miles, a beast of a ride that takes in some of the most challenging climbs in the that part of the Peak District.
Frequently Asked Questions
We will always be happy to help you if you are new to riding and please feel free to ask. There is no such thing as a silly question.
Am I fit enough for a Club ride?
A club ride is a group ride, not a race. The ideal club ride is one where everyone starts and ends the ride together; all having enjoyed the company and riding with others.
Most often there will be more than one ride, with different average speeds and distances, and it is better to start on a slower, shorter ride and progress than to struggle on a quicker longer one. If you aren’t sure, ask about which ride will suit you best or, if you are new to road cycling, we will ‘buddy’ you up with an experienced cyclist until you feel you are fit and experienced enough to stay with your chosen group.
As a ‘guide only’ to choosing the most appropriate ride, our weekly rides are categorized as:
‘A Group’ – probably more suited to experienced and very fit riders, most typically those who have raced and/or are training for an event. Riders wanting to ride with this group should be capable of riding at an average speed of 16-18 mph for around three to four hours.
‘B Group’ – probably more suited to the average recreational cyclist and for those less interested in competing or for those just wanting to ride more comfortably for three to four hours at average speeds of 14 – 16 mph in a group.
‘C Group’ – definitely more suited to new and unexperienced riders and is highly recommended for riders who have never ridden in a group or simply want to find out what riding with a Club is all about.
But more importantly, you don’t have to be a member to join us on one of our rides.
How far do you ride and will there be a café stop?
Typically, our Sunday and Wednesday Club rides are 50-60 miles in total, weather dependent, but our Friday Club ride is a little shorter – around 40 miles with a break between 12.30 and 1.00 around half way. As many of our rides invariably go north of Sutton Coldfield towards Whittington, we usually stop for lunch at The Hub Café at the Forestry Centre in Rosliston. Our Monday ride is a shorter 30 mile ride and goes out past Kingsbury Water Park and stops on the way back at the café at Middleton Hall around 1.00 pm.
Will I be OK riding in a group?
We look out for each other; we don’t do things that will endanger others, and we point out any potential hazards, such as pot holes and parked cars. Typically, a club ride will be two-abreast when safe, singling out where necessary. Riders at the back will call out for cars passing. We keep an eye out for riders who experience any problem. Experienced riders will ride close behind each other, but you may find that you will need a ride or two to gain confidence if you aren’t used to group riding. Don’t be afraid to let others know that this is new to you; they will give you room and help you to gain confidence.
What happens if I have a puncture or a mechanical failure?
We will stop and help if anyone punctures or has a mechanical incident or a fall. Riders at the rear will always let the group know if anyone is being “dropped” (left behind).
If I have a problem, how will I get home?
If you do have a problem and are not familiar with the roads and how to get home we will guide you back. In general, our rides are “no dropping”, but if the group does agree to split for any reason then someone will make sure that everyone knows the route and has everything that they need to get home safely.
Road safety and the public image of the club, and cycling in general, is vital to the successful continuation of cycling and cycle sport on UK roads. We do everything we can to ride safely and to promote a good image by being considerate and respectful to all other road users.