October Spokesperson

In this issue:

Tales From the Velodrome

  • By Bill Bourne
  • OBC Social - Track Cycling
  • When: Wed., October 18, 6:30pm – 9:30pm
  • Where: 78 Lisgar St., Ottawa

Track is the most social and inclusive of all cycling disciplines. “Everybody Rides!” Come hear stories that will give you a sense for what a blast it is to ride the track. Along the way, we’ll introduce velodromes and talk about our 3 “local” tracks: The Mattamy National Cycling Centre in Milton (site of the 2015 Pan-Am Games), the Forest City Velodrome in London Ontario, our other indoor track, and the outdoor velodrome at Bomont. We’ll talk about the kind of riding sessions that are available, and how to get started with track riding.


But the focus will be on stories and photos that demonstrate what a great discipline track riding is. How I got trained to ride at Forest City Velodrome by a 13 year old. How track allows riders of all ages and abilities to ride together. Who is that middle-aged women in a T-shirt and capris on the back of a tandem? Meet Louis, a wonderful service dog who follows the action from the infield.. Why is Steve Bauer giving that young women a head start in a sprint race? And why is everybody smiling? Learn how I discovered that Jeff Douglas, the host of CBC’s “As it Happens” makes a great cappuccino, and what a fast cyclist he is. And how I ended up riding a motorpace training session with the Canadian women’s under-23 cyclocross champion with Steve Bauer coaching.


How could you NOT want to try Track Cycling after an introduction like that? Thanks Bill! You have got to come out and see this presentation. I recently reached Bill via email, and he sent me his write up '... from the ferry on the way to Sicily...' . You've just got to love this guy!


The presentation is at the HMCS Bytown Officers' Mess (Naval) CROW'S NEST at 78 Lisgar It begins at 7:30 p.m. 'ish'. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Look for the anchor on the lawn directly across the street from the south entrance of Ottawa City Hall. And, there is a cash bar to boot. I hope to see you there.

Note: there is limited free parking on the east side of the building. Get there early for a spot.

George Gonis - OBC Social Director

OBC Golf Social ‘Nine and Dine’

  • OBC Golf Social ‘Nine and Dine’
  • Amberwood Village Golf & Country Club
  • Friday, August 24th, and Friday, September 15th, 2017


In September, six of us OBC golfers (yes, there are at least six of us in the club that cycle and golf) played nine holes at the splendid Amberwood Village Golf & Country Club in Stittsville. Our very own OBC club president, Jenny Moore, was one of the six! After finishing play, we sat down to a great meal at ALE (Amberwood Lounge & Eatery), the restaurant upstairs from the Proshop, and socialized the evening away.  It was a splendid day weather-wise which made the whole event most enjoyable.


The 9th and finishing hole (Micheline, George, Lloyd, Jenny, Nick, & Karen).


The ‘Crew’ gathered for dinner.

Please note that four OBC members ‘Nine and Dined’ in August, and we had a great time as well. I missed the opportunity to take pictures, but our group, included Parham, Micheline, Karen, and myself. Parham, a beginning golfer, made several skillful drives and putts. Way to go Parham!

George Gonis - OBC Social Director

Eddy Merckx TT

The "once in a few years" Eddy Merckx TT made a reappearance this year at the August 31st open TT. The idea of the Eddy Merckx TT is to use your standard road bike for a time trial - and ride like the Cannibal. The other part of an EM TT is to bring out a vintage (or neo-vintage) bike - for some this is a bike that dates to the Merckx times, for others, a modern steel bike is their ride.


Peter Tregunno

Successful OBC Youth Intro to Cyclocross

...and now ready to race!

The OBC Youth Program held a four session program at the start of September to introduce our young athletes, ages 8 to 14, to the wonderful sport of cyclocross.   The objectives were to reduce intimidation related to the sport and to get the kids ready for their first race of this year's Eastern Ontario Cyclocross Series.   


With two Sunday morning technique practices and two Thursday evening races, our 18 registered athletes ‎(9 boys and 9 girls) truly learned how fun this sport is. On Sunday the 25th, their presence was felt among the very large number of kids at a balmy start to the Eastern Ontario Series at the Renfrew Fairgrounds.


Gregory Douglas

The One Metre Rule

Many of my cycling friends tell me they are quite happily noticing that motorists are beginning to obey the one-metre rule (one and a half in Quebec) and giving them plenty of room when they pass.

I notice that some cyclists are not quite so considerate when it is they who are doing the passing. Although this occurs mostly on the bike (multi-use) path, I see it sometimes on the road as well.

I don’t pretend it’s everyone, but it seems that cyclists really do not like slowing down. If there’s a pedestrian or slower cyclist ahead on the bike path, most cyclists give ample clearance, but far too many don’t even cross the yellow centre line and I’ve seen some clear with inches to spare – even with no oncoming traffic.

I don’t know whether it’s worse  or not, but when there is an oncoming pedestrian or cyclist and a slower-moving bike or pedestrian in front, passing between them is thoughtless and dangerous. The same is true of passing on a blind curve. You don’t like it when a car does it to you, but too many cyclists have no problem doing it to a pedestrian.

What I propose is a little bit of Golden Rule: pass slower vehicles and pedestrians with at least one metre clearance. If you can’t give that metre, don’t pass until it’s clear to do so


Bob Hicks


There is a famous cycling book by John Forester called "Effective Cycling;" I think it is comprehensive, well-written, and deserves to be read by all serious cyclists. In addition to all the good advice in it, he argues that "many cyclists who have developed their worries more than their skills are strong advocates of rear-view mirrors. They argue that with such mirrors, they never have to turn their heads, and that mirrors are thus a necessity for cycling safety. In [Forester’s] opinion, their emotional response indicates that they are relying upon their mirrors to alleviate fears rather than to accomplish safe maneuvers."

I'm a reasonably skilled cyclist; I raced for almost 40 years and can turn around and look behind me while riding a pretty straight line. Still, I'm a strong proponent of bicycle mirrors and have trouble understanding why so many cyclists go without them. First of all, it is no small benefit to feel safe if you're cycling for fun and, in my experience, using my mirror helps me to actually be safer. I don't need to look at it constantly, but I do glance at it at frequent intervals and immediately know what's happening behind me. I'm confident and comfortable in traffic and, in over 35 years using a mirror, have only had to get off the road a couple of times for a car that looked like it wasn't going to give me enough room. When I want to merge left, I already have a good picture of the traffic situation before I do my shoulder check.

This column, however, is not aimed at convincing you to use a mirror, but to tell you what mirror to use. There are only two; all the rest are junk and should never be considered.

  • Third-Eye Bar End Mirror (for drop handlebar)

C:\Data\mydata\OBC\Education\Mirrors\3rd eye bar end.jpg

  • Mountain Mirrycle Mirror (for straight or mountain handlebar)

C:\Data\mydata\OBC\Education\Mirrors\Mirrycle stock.jpg

C:\Data\mydata\OBC\Education\Mirrors\Mirrycle modified.jpg

My criteria for an acceptable mirror are these:

  1. Clear image
  2. Large field of view
  3. No vibration (stable image)
  4. Unobstructed view behind

That’s it. It doesn’t need to be unbreakable; in fact, I break a Third-Eye mirror every couple of years and always have spares on hand.

All other mirrors fail either for vibration and/or large field of view. The mirrors I recommend have three-inch, convex glass that shows a wide field of view and does not vibrate or jiggle.

There is another mirror many of my friends tell me they cannot live without: the Take-A-Look eyeglass mirror. Well, I can live without it. I have one and have spent many hours trying to love it, but cannot get over it’s critical flaws:

  1. the field of view is tiny
  2. the image is not stable
  3. it takes far too long to evaluate the image in the mirror
  4. a rider on drop bars will have to sit up to see over their shoulder

C:\Data\mydata\OBC\Education\Mirrors\Take a look.jpg

Aside from being very well made, the Take-A-Look has one virtue my recommendations do not have: you can still see behind you when you’re out of the saddle.

You will find the Mountain Mirrycle in most bike shops. Unfortunately, although they carry the Third-Eye eyeglass/helmet mirror, no bike shops in Ottawa to my knowledge carry the Third-Eye bar end mirror and you will have to order it from someplace like Amazon.

It’s possible you may disagree with me about some of the points here so let me know what you think about any or all things mirrors.

Bob Hicks

OK Cycle & Adventure Tours

OK Cycle & Adventure Tours October 17th presentation on Barge/boat-bike tours will be held at the Main Branch of the Ottawa Public Library 120 Metcalfe corner Laurier Room B125 at 7:00. Doors open at 6:30. Limited space.

Rsvp katherine@okcycletours.com

Club Office Information

170b Booth Street (Downtown Ottawa at the corner of Booth and Albert)

Office Hours

Mon - 3 PM to 8 PM     
Wed - 3 PM to 8 PM
Sun - 12 Noon to 4 PM

Mailing Address

Ottawa Bicycle Club
Post Office Box 4298 Station E
Ottawa, ON K1S 5B3

Office Administrator

Laura Jane Johnson : E-mail

OBC Contact Information

Telephone 613-230-1064
Fax 613-230-9504

Find us On-line

Webmaster Jeffrey Furry : E-mail 

Club website
Discussion Forum


Editor - Lynn Sones : E-mail

Submissions: newsletter@ottawabicycleclub.ca


Member Services

Club Clothing Boutique

Bike Shop Discounts

Club Calendar  

Board of Directors

The Board of Directors is the de facto management body of the OBC, with powers defined by the Ottawa Bicycle Club Constitution. Directors of the Board are mandated by club members to conduct club business on their behalf through elections held at the Club's Fall Annual General Meeting.

2017 Board of Directors

President - Jenny Moore
Vice President - André Gauthier
Treasurer - Ron Stoneham
Secretary - Jason Clark
Marketing & Communications - Lynn Sones
Touring - Nicolas Déry
Social - George Gonis
Racing Events - Peter Tregunno
Rideau Lakes Cycle Tour - Guy Warwick
Youth Program - Greg Douglas
Education - Bob Hicks
Touring Events - Scott McDougall
Director Without Portfolio - Malcolm Townsend

Board Meetings

Meetings are held on the first (non-holiday) Monday of each month to discuss Club business in an organized manner.



Committees may be established by the Directors to support the activities of the Board and activities relating to specific events, such as racing, socials and the Rideau Lakes Tour.

Club Members

Members are welcome to attend Board meetings and find out more about how the club is managed. Members are also welcome and encouraged to assist with specific portfolios or events by approaching a director.

How to Become a Member

Club application forms are only accepted electronically via the on-line registration site.

Ottawa Bicycle Club Objectives

To conduct, encourage and promote cycle racing, cycle touring and recreational cycling;

To assist the cycling community at large in the promotion, encouragement and understanding of all aspects of cycling and related activities;

To ascertain, defend and pursue the rights of cyclists;

To promote youth cycling;

To carry on the above objectives in affiliation with the Canadian Cycling Association;