Q: I want to race with a team—and win. Does ERTC do that?

 A: Do we ever! From recreational riding to top-level racing, we have the people and support to get to the podium in road, track and cyclocross! Some of our most distinguished current and former members are Terra Manca, extreme endurance athlete and Taiwan KOM winner Marg Fedyna, Olympic triathlete Paul Tichelaar, and pro racer Aaron Schooler.

Q: Do I have to race if I join the club?

 A: Heck no. Many of our club members ride recreationally. Some of them enter grand fondos, some are triathletes, some are hard-core racers. Do what you like!

 Q: What am I supposed to wear?

 A: We want you to love riding. Comfort and safety are the keys to a great riding experience. You’re connected to your bike at three points: pedals, saddle, handlebars. So cycling shoes and clip-in pedals, cycling shorts with a chamois lining (nothing between you and the shorts—everyone asks that the first time), and gloves (strongly recommended). Helmets are mandatory on ALL rides. A bike jersey with rear pockets to hold snacks, phone, tools, cash. Eyewear is really important. You don’t need $200 Oakleys but there is debris on the road and you need to protect your eyes.

Check the weather forecast and be prepared for anything—this is Alberta, right? Vests, arm and leg warmers, rain capes—all of these options can make or break your ride. Your jersey has three big pockets—use them for this important equipment. Sunscreen is vital! Look for a sweat-resistant brand to reduce the likelihood of sweaty sunscreen dripping into your eyes while you’re riding in from to me—thanks!

Q: What kind of bicycle do I need?

A: Any mechanically sound road bicycle is acceptable. If you are in the market for a new bike, there are many great bike shops in YEG that can help you out. Talk to fellow riders to find out what kind of bike will best meet your needs.

Q: What should I bring with me?

A: Bring a rain coat if it might rain. You need to consider the possibility that you will end up on your own on some rides. Pack food (power bars like Cliff and the drink of your choice—we suggest drinks with carbs, like gatorade). Your repair kit should include at least one spare tube, a patch kit, tire levers, a multi tool, a hand pump or CO2 cartridges. Bring your phone, and some cash for times when we stop at rural last stations to top up on food and drink.

Q: Can you teach me to do repairs on my bike?

A: We can teach you the basics, like how to change a tire/patch a flat, fine-tune shifting and braking cables, etc. Some club members are pretty good mechanics—you will find them when you need them!

Q: How fast and how far should I be able to ride on my own before I can join?

A: That depends on which club ride you want to come on. Generally speaking, you should be able to hit 25-30 km/h to come on the entry-level rides. The best thing to do is come to one of our mandatory Wednesday introductory rides!

Q: How do I join the ERTC?

A: You can pay for your membership online through Zone4, our online vendor. Join the ERTC.

Q: Do I have to pay for a membership to go on a ride with ERTC?

A: Yes (refundable for 3 weeks). For insurance purposes, everyone on an ERTC group ride MUST be a member. Having a non-member riding with the group nullifies the insurance. We have a 1 ride policy where you can ride with us for 1 group ride before registering. After that, there are no exceptions. Ever.

Q: Can I get a refund?

A: Yes. If you decide that the ERTC is not the club for you, you can get a full refund on your ERTC membership fee—until July 31. After July 31, or 3 weeks from your join date, whichever is later, we can only remit $40.

Q: How much does membership cost?

A: Membership for the year costs $110, plus a $5 administration fee charged by our online vendor. It’s a fair price, considering the benefits!