'The Catch' – An event to brighten up just about any ride. What makes them all the more special is that you never know when the next one will present itself. The relatively lightly trafficked roads that are the stomping ground of the society mean that these can be a rare occurance, but somehow that makes them all the sweeter.
There’s nothing like catching sight of a fellow cyclist in the distance to focus the mind. The subconscious leads you into giving that little bit extra, just see if you’re catching them. Slowly but surely you’re closing in, so it’s time to take stock. This is an important part of the procedure, and it’s often one people overlook.
Intially you must assess the target to ensure they qualify. Failure to do so is likely to lead to embarrassment. In the society we have adopted some guidelines against which any potential catch is compared. If they are on a bike with either a)smaller diameter wheels, or b) knobbly tyres they are immediately ruled out. Likewise anyone wearing off road cycling attire. Lastly, children, and elderly ladies are not considered fair game.
Assuming that guidelines are met, it’s time to make a move. It’s important to get this right, as it can all unravel if you get this stage wrong. Easy does it is the key, you wouldn’t want to warn the target of their imminent capture. Then as you get to within a couple of bike lengths, up your effort and accelerate to make the pass, making sure you offer a cheerful and friendly greeting as you pass.
All you need to do now is make it stick, so it’s time to really lay down the V, and don’t under any circumstances look back! As you disappear into distance due consideration can be given to your efforts. Extra kudos is earned if the catch is on a more expensive bike than yours, or is wearing a team replica kit.
Just remember though, next time, you could be the catch……