December Spokesperson

In this issue:

December Message from the OBC President, Scott McDougall


As you may have heard, a new Board of Directors was elected at the OBC’s Annual General Meeting last month.  The Board is bidding a fond farewell to several members who decided to step down, and also welcoming several new ones:  Larry Sargent (returning after a lengthy coffee break!), Gail Tannenbaum,  Mark Manners, Cindy Vineberg, Jim Brennan, and Doug Corner

At the same time, past president Peter Tregunno, outgoing president Jenny Close, Andre Gauthier, Lynn Sones, and one-year Director Malcolm Townsend are leaving.  Under the leadership of Peter and Jenny, the club has leaped forward into new club offices, online membership registration, online registration for Rideau Lakes and other touring events, and a true ebusiness model.  They’ve also maintained the reputation and goodwill that the OBC has built up over many decades of operation, and addressed many new requirements from the Ontario Cycling Association.  Andre’s contribution to the club’s touring events business processes, migration to GPS for day tour maps, and innumerable other things also has to be recognized.

Perhaps a short self-introduction as your new president is in order.  I’ve been a member of the OBC for nearly 20 years, with 10 on the board in various capacities.  I restructured and then coordinated the Tuesday evening tours for several years, stood up the marketing/communications portfolio, introduced on-line business processes for touring events, and most recently served as Vice President and member of the Club Executive.  I have a day job, but it doesn’t take me away from Ottawa very often so I will be available for meetings, club events, and other responsibilities of the office.  

As with most volunteer organizations, I recognize that the buck stops with the president, and sometimes for the most mundane administrative activities.  This includes our relationship with the Ontario Cycling Association, or OCA.  You may be aware that our club activities are insured via the OCA, who also provide access to competitive events as an affiliate. In exchange for their cover, we’re required to provide extensive information and documentation regarding our club activities, and comply with a number of policies.  I was personally attracted to the OBC 20 years ago by how well it was organized, and its focus on safe group cycling, so we already have the tools to meet OCA requirements.  All of this is largely invisible to you, as a member of the OBC, but rest assured myself, the Board, and the club administrator work hard to keep on-side with the OCA, and ensure you are protected by this cover. You may also wish to consider this when comparing the OBC with other cycling groups and clubs, and should ask what kind of structure and coverage they provide.

Going forward, it seems to me that the club has entered a slight dip in the road, and the way ahead is not as clear as it was a few years ago.  We offer several great programs, but we need to ensure that everything we offer continues to be organized and executed superbly.  The OBC has benefited from numerous dedicated volunteers, who have delivered our programs wonderfully, but we need to be mindful that stretching the volunteer cadre too thin is not sustainable in the long term, and will inevitably degrade the quality of our programs.

The first order of business of the new board, after assigning portfolios, will be to take a look at our strategy:  what are the club’s actionable objectives, what is its capacity to deliver on those objectives, and what’s the roadmap. Inputs to that discussion will be:


  • a consideration of what’s going on in the recreational/athletic environment, including demographics, other entrant organizations, other substitute activities, political attention, volunteer availability
  • the recent member survey
  • your comments and suggestions (please send us email!)

Finally – Club Treasurer Ron Stoneham and a dedicated working group (Laura and Isabel) are doing a facelift in the club’s Booth Street office: new flooring (at landlord expense), window coverings, soft seating.  They’re doing this to make the club a more welcoming place – and as always, there is free coffee and free Wifi for members!  Come by during office hours, and talk cycling, check out the kit for sale, or just hang out  – you are always welcome.

Looking forward to a great year for the OBC –


Annual General Meeting and Awards Presentation  

This year’s AGM was one hour…the financials were reported on (a small deficit as budgeted for, the elections of six new members to the Board (congratulations to Mark Manners, Larry Sargent, Gail Tannenbaum, Doug Corner, Cindy Vineberg and Jim Brennan) and presentations on the Rideau Lakes Cycle Tour and the results of our first ever OBC Survey.  All the details are in the AGM Report and Presentation Deck (see website).  And then it was Awards time.  See photos below and details on our website.  There was much discussion and mingling among our veteran and younger members around the food tables.  Thanks to Laura Jane Johnson and George Gonis for making it happen.

President's Award...Peter Tregunno with Jenny Moore

Best Junior ... Jacob Lacroix with Shawn Clarke (Coach) and Noel Harrington (Program Director)

Rider of the Year...Carson Miles with Shawn Clarke

Open Time Trial Winners...1st, 2nd and 3rds in their categories

OBC 2018 Open House, Sunday, December 16th  

From 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
OBC Club Office, at the corner of Albert & Booth

We will see you next at the OBC Open House, coming up this Sunday, December 16th at our very own OBC Office, at the corner of Booth and Albert. Please come by and say hello between 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Come and meet a host of new incoming board members to share the spirit.

Be prepared to have fun! We will again have all sorts of treats and eats (e.g., wraps, sandwiches, and cheese, fruit, vegetable platters), including made to order waffles with maple syrup, and Peter Tregunno approved candy canes!. Hot steaming Equator Coffee, tea, hot chocolate, and a wonderful assortment of other beverages are being served.

For those of you who haven’t seen the OBC Club Office recently, we have had an awesome face lift. Highlights include new flooring, matching bookcases, a Ron Stoneham inspired front door logo and window dressings.

We hope to see you there!
George Gonis - OBC Social Director


Track Season is Here

The roads are snow covered and cold. Another great cyclocross season is history. Time to get indoors on the track! By the time you read this, we’ll already have three trips in the books.. Two “all comers”, open recreational trips to Forest City Velodrome in London, and our first “Milton Race Weekend” - two days of racing at the Mattamy National Cycling Centre.

Thirteen riders, from age 11 to 63 took part in our first open track weekend at Forest City Velodrome. We received a warm welcome from the FCV community, who really appreciate our enthusiasm and support. 

These weekends are suitable for everyone from recreational cyclists who are trying the track for the first time, to experienced competitive racers, and follow a common format:

  • Friday Night: Get set up on rental bikes, and get settled in. We take beginners through the basics of riding a fixed gear bike, and getting up onto the track. We go over the protocols for riding at FCV, do some paceline riding, and take some time for riders to play around on the track
  • Saturday Morning we ride in an open controlled recreational group riding session with the FCV community. This is a bit like a “club ride” on the track… there multiple pacelines of different speeds
  • Saturday afternoon our youth participate in structured training sessions with the Kallisto FCV club youth program
  • Saturday evening we have private track time. What we do depends on who’s on the trip, but we generally do a mix of skills development, some fun fast efforts, and allocate some time for individual riders to do whatever they want
  • Sunday morning we have more private track time
  • And we finish off Sunday morning with another recreational group ride.

In my experience, these weekends are by far the best way to learn to ride a track, and get comfortable “riding the boards”. You really can go from being a newbie to being a trackie in a single weekend. The small track, lots of group riding, and the varied riding we do will make you ready and confident to ride any track anywhere.

We’ll be making more trips this winter. If you are interested in trying the track, contact Bill Bourne at 

For our first outing our OBC Junior Racing Team was out in force. That allowed us to get our junior men practicing riding aerobars on the track, and to practice riding team pursuit.

Ben, Cedric, Kyle, Nathan, and Brett working on pursuit exchanges

Our youngest rider, Grayson is 11 years old, and had fun learning to ride a fixed gear, and get on the track.

Grayson getting some help from an FCV coach


OBC Youth with FCV Coach Art Adams in Youth Structured Training

Jamie Harrington working on skills. (The first step in learning Madison exchanges)

OBC Youth and Junior Programs

With snow on the ground, and it generally feeling like winter, it can be tempting to put the bike aside for a few months. Instead, many of our youth and junior riders are still riding and will continue to do so as cyclocross season ends and track racing season begins!

In addition to regular participation at the Eastern Ontario Cyclocross Series, several OBC youth and junior program riders competed at the Canadian National Cyclocross Championships held in Peterborough, ON on November 10-11th.  Conditions were challenging with riders facing snow, a tough muddy course, and a bitterly cold wind that took the temperature down to -8C.  Congratulations to the following on their competitive efforts: Robin Daniels (U15; 4th), Theo Woodford (U19; 27th), Mia Grieve (U15; 5th) Jensen Grieve (U17), and Maude Pflouffe (U23; 9th).

Starting in early November, OBC Youth and Junior riders began weekly fall/winter indoor spin training sessions for those looking to continue to improve their bike fitness, to prepare for track racing at the Milton velodrome, and/or to enjoy the riding company of OBC friends and teammates.  A special thanks and acknowledgement to Cyclelogik for supporting youth cycling in Ottawa by letting us use their amazing spin studio! Meeting over the winter will mean that our riders hit the spring training and races as a tighter knit group ready for action.

OBC Youth & Junior riders and coaches after a hard November training session.

The 2019 Junior Racing team kicked off their preparations for next season with an informal team meeting at the Movement Co. Chiropractic in the Glebe. This was a great opportunity for athletes and families to show up, ask questions, fill out registration forms, try on team kit sizes and place an order on the great Argon 18 team bike for next year. For those who wanted (or some needed) a bike fit, Luc, the owner of the Movement Co, was on hand to dial them in using his knowledge of the human body plus his high tech STT fit system. It really was a one-stop-shop for getting 2019 started. The team was able to hang out in a relaxed environment and get to know the new members a little better. The team and staff all went out for dinner once the fits were wrapped up to complete the bonding experience. Excitement for 2019 is already building!

First Ever OBC Members Survey

The results of the members survey were presented in a slideshow at this year’s AGM on Monday, November 12. The purpose of this survey was to ask for some feedback from the members on a variety of topics such length of membership in the club, which activities they participated in and so on. Approximately one third of the membership, or 290 members, took the time to participate in the survey. Included below is a link to the slideshow. On three of the slides, there are links to a summary of comments from members on three specific questions:

  1. What do members think of the present OBC jersey and associated clothing?
  2. What are the reasons members join other clubs? 
  3. What members think could be done to improve the OBC?

The board would like to thank those members who participated and who took the time to include constructive comments on the running of their club. The board is always looking for people with fresh ideas, interested in supporting the club through ongoing participation in various activities. Members do not need to join the board to help out. As you will see when you read the variety of comments, members have some very good suggestions. Please contact the OBC office if you think you have the time to help out. 

Survey Results Slideshow

Congratulations to the five winners of the participation draw for a 2019 OBC membership.

  • Hugh Lindley
  • Mathieu Mallette
  • Chris Lawson
  • Stephanie Sothcott
  • Manny Agulnik

Eric Burpee 

Andre Gauthier

OBC-RLCT June 8 & 9, 2019

Here we roll…again!

On January 31, 2019 registration opens for the 48th edition of the Tour. 
The Tour website is currently undergoing updates including information on volunteer participation and description of areas in need of dedicated volunteers including:

  • Conlon Farm Perth Coordinator (2 days)
  • Algonquin College Coordinator (2 days, with option for 1 day)

Anyone interested in the above two positions before details are posted on the website; please contact Susanne Reid 

We are also in the process of enhancing our Tour Marshal/Ambassador program this year. If there is a Sports Nutritionist among our OBC members and you are interested in our plans to enhance Marshal training in the area of nutrition, please contact Susanne Reid using the above link.

Wishing everyone Happy Holidays from your RLCT Committee.

Red Revert - an Accident Waiting to Happen

I’ve written before here about the Red Revert, a traffic management practice designed to speed the flow of vehicles on major roadways. When a lightly-traveled road crosses and a traffic light is installed, a right-turning vehicle on the minor road can trigger the light sequence but there is no need to give a green light to the minor road. In this case, the major road gets a yellow light, a red light, and immediately back to green; the minor road never gets its green light.

The city has never made any effort to notify motorists, cyclists, or pedestrians of this practice. It has never made any effort to identify where these intersections are or how a vehicle (read bicycle) might inadvertently trigger one of these reverts while waiting to go through the intersection.

Aside from the frustration of seeing an expected green light remain red while cross traffic resumes with a green light, there is a serious danger waiting for cyclists that you should understand. The next five pictures will explain what can happen.

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1. Cyclist on right stops for red

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2. Cyclist sees red cross light and prepares to advance

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3. Knowing they are about to get green light,cyclist advances into intersection

4. Suddenly, cross light reverts to green. Stopped car conceals cyclist from oncoming motorist

5. Oncoming motorist strikes cyclist

I’ve met with the city to try to change the way they manage the red revert or at least to get them to publicize it. In the meantime, however, I would advise you to keep your wits about you when cycling through any intersection.
There are many of these “Red Revert” intersections in the city. Some that I’m familiar with include:

  • Carling Ave just east Holly Acres Rd, where the bicycle path crosses
  • Holly Acres Rd north of the Queensway at Aero Dr and the bicycle path
  • Moody Dr at Corkstown Rd
  • Holland Ave at Tyndall St
  • Clyde Ave, south of Carling at Doheny St

Bob Hicks

OBC 'Build Your Own Sandwich' Fall Picnic

We did it again! The Fall Picnic took place at the OBC Office on the corner of Booth and Albert. The picnic was integrated into the Sunday Ride, and many other members dropped by as well  to build a sandwich. Not only did we eat, but there was wonderful company to share the day with. Hot coffee and tea were served along with a large selection of cold beverages from pop to juice, along with loads of bottled water. There were scrumptious snacks ranging from potato chips, cookies, freshly cut watermelon, fruit trays, popcorn, and yes, even candy canes.

It starts off with a large choice of different sandwich meats and assorted cheeses tucked inside either a bun, assorted breads or a wrap. You then added sliced veggies to your base, then smothered it with your favourite topping such as hummus, mayonnaise, ketchup, honey-mustard and/or relish. To complete your creation, the Panini press was waiting to warm things up, just enough to melt that cheese, releasing all things good in a mouth watering burst of flavour. There was also decaf coffee, as well as gluten free and meat substitute options for those with dietary concerns. What could be more fun at the tail end of a big ride?

Thank you so much to all those who dropped by to say a friendly 'hello'. It was a real treat for me to have such interesting and engaging people to chat with.

The left overs were gratefully accepted at the Ottawa Womens’ Shelter along O’Connor. I hope to see you at our OBC Open House in the middle of December. Watch for details in the Spokesperson and on the OBC website ( event calendar.

Take care,
George Gonis - OBC Social Director

Social - California Bicycle Experience (`Eroica) By Byron Johnson

Byron Johnson`s presentation of his participation in the North American version of the Classic Bicycle meet, referred to as an `Eroica` (more correctly ‘Bici Eroica’), was very entertaining and terrifically informative. To begin with, I had never heard the term Eroica (pronounced Air- oh’ - ik - a, with the accent on ‘oh’). It has its origins in the early Tour de France races. The riders were admired so much so that they were thought of as ‘heroes’ for slogging through the harsh road surfaces and struggling over steep topography. Parts of Byron’s ride in the only ‘Eroica event in North America, based in California wine country, simulates such early Tour de France challenges. Tough conditions surprised Byron as he was expecting a smooth and generally flat ride, based on cycling on old technology. The second component of the California Eroica was the requirement to ride on an authentic pre-1987 built bicycle. Even the cycling kit and accessories are expected to predate 1987. Byron brought in some ancient pedals and shoes. You were locked in by baskets with no hope of escape in an emergency. I bet this made fans in Europe put the early cyclists on the platform of a hero as well. In European ‘Eroicas, very strict standards of judging and course marshalling are applied to all contestants. Incidentally there are also ‘Eroicas in the Orient. Riders in California are left to the honour system to comply with the rules.

The North American ‘Eroica dates its start back to 1986 ( About 1100 enthusiasts bear down on Mont Diablo, California every year. There is little in the way of accommodations in this part of California, so many of the cyclists stay in motorhomes, trailers, and even tents. Mont Diablo is situated halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, close to the Pacific Ocean. There are three major passes that cover about 20% of the route. The route itself has vehicles confined to local traffic with many restricted access signs throughout. There are two vineyards and one olive grove the cyclists stop at. The first of the vineyards offers wine samples. The second offers plenty of exceptional food. At first, the vineyard passes are paved, however, they devolve into gravel road beds, with tough, steep pitches, some upto 15 degrees. It is common for cyclists to walk their bikes up these slopes. Even driving a car is tough on these roads. Not surprisingly, this area is great mountain bike country. Keep in mind, the ‘Eroica rules state that you must use wired tires of 25 mm or less! The Pasolivo Olive Grove is situated on the Kilr Pass - some 15 kms long with 400m of climbing. Pasolivo hands out olive oil and bread for the now very tired cyclists. Byron pointed out this pass is very similar to the Chemin de la Montagne in Quebec.

Cyclists head out to Mont Diablo in early April and follow their choice of a short, medium or long route through the California countryside, with the medium distance being 108 kms. The start of the long route is at 7:30 a.m., the medium route is at 8:00 a.m., and the short route is half an hour later. For the most part, all participants finish around the same time, some five hours later, that includes the stops. One more item of interest is the ‘Concour’ - the serious devoted cyclists bring their mint condition bikes to be officially judged. Some 200 antique bikes are put on display for all to admire and, according to Byron, it is a spectacle to take in. The demographic is mostly older cyclists, with men being the larger component of the participants. There are friendly community-minded people all along the event route, as well as a lot of repeat riders that have become good friends, which fuel the pleasant atmosphere of the event.

Byron’s memory of the whole kit-and-kaboodle was it was a leisurely ride, but as he looked back on his slide presentation, the tough hills came into play.

George Gonis - OBC Social Director

Cuba Cycle Tours

Tom Robertson of has been offering cycle tours to Cuba for twenty years and only does a few each year.  The tours are fully supported with Cuban cycle guide and very experienced driver.  Tours are geared to all level of cyclist with daily rides averaging 60 to 70 kms.  Maximum 17 cyclists so early booking is very essential.

For tour details go to and click ‘sports tours’

To book contact

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
170b Booth Street
Ottawa, ON K1R 7W1

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
Google Photos
Discussion Forum


Editor - Lynn Sones : E-mail



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.

2018 Board of Directors

President - Jenny Moore
Vice President - Scott McDougall
Treasurer - Ron Stoneham
Secretary - Jason Clark
Marketing & Communications - Lynn Sones
Group Rides - Nicolas Déry
Social - George Gonis
Racing Events - Peter Tregunno
Youth Program - Noel Harrington
Education - Bob Hicks
RLCT & Touring Events -  André Gauthier
Director Without Portfolio - Malcolm Townsend
Director Without Portfolio - Eric Burpee
Director Without Portfolio - Bill Bourne

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;