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Starters / Adventurers

The Club's regular base for Go-Ride activities - every Saturday in termtime - is Sutton Grammar School's Walch Memorial Sports Ground, 86 Northey Avenue, Cheam, SM2 7HJ on a Saturday morning (time: 10:00 - 12:00). Unfortunately we cannot use the carpark at the site, so parents/carers are asked to park nearby and escort their child(ren) to the area that we use there.

Go-Ride, British Cycling's programme for young people, is all about having fun on a bike, learning to ride with skill and confidence and trying mini versions of the sport, all delivered in a safe, off-road environment by trained coaches. The activities can be adapted to all levels of rider, so both those new to the sport and experienced riders are welcome. There will be opportunities for racing for those interested.

The Club still uses the names Starters and Adventurers for the riders at Northey Avenue, but the youngsters are now sorted into activity groups by ability rather than age. The usual format on a Saturday morning is a skills session, followed by a short ride within the grounds, which are surprisingly extensive. Once we are sure bike-handling skills are up to it, groups might be taken for longer rides outside the grounds - but always provided there are sufficient accompanying adults. Lead coaches are Gavin Cook (Starters) and Julian McGovern (Advenurers).

There are also opportunities to learn road bike techniques via special sessions in Overton Grange School playground. Lead Coach for this activity is Nick Woolven.

In its 10th Birthday year, the Club initiated a series of monthly "Birthday Events" to encourage competition without pressure. Members are placed in teams of mixed age and ability and have enjoyed various styles of cycle racing, albeit all on the grass at Northey Avenue. Those not previously keen to race have been happy to join in a team event. It is planned to continue this type of event in 2010.

As well as acquiring bike-handling skills, members need to know how to look after their bike and carry out simple tasks such as changing an inner tube. The Club's Award Scheme therefore includes both types of skill.