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Please Note
Ride 4 Williams Syndrome is a fully sanctioned by the Ontario Cycling Association (OCA). All cyclists must follow the Cyclist’s Responsibility Code. Safety is our number one priority, and all cyclists must obey all rules of the roads, including stopping at stop signs and traffic lights. Please be alert and attentive, and have a safe and fun ride!

OCA safety


RFC Arrows1

At this point in the season, the majority of individuals are seeing real fitness gains; however, one must remember not to ignore some of the basic rules.

TOP 10 SAFETY TIPS FOR Ride 4 Williams Syndrome

  1. Ride 4 Williams Syndrome is a charitable bike ride.
  2. Ride at your own pace and fitness level.
  3. This is not a race event.
  4. No more than 2 cyclists wide in a lane of traffic.
  5. Remember, you are traffic.
  6. All rules of the road apply as per the Highway Safety and Traffic Act.
  7. Mandatory stop at all stop signs, and obey traffic signals.
  8. Use hand signals to communicate to motorists.
  9. Ride your selected route to ensure familiarity and that you are physically able to complete the ride.
  10. Mandatory certified bike helmet to be worn during the ride with a proper bike in working order.

From seasoned racers to novice recreational riders, everyone can benefit from brushing up on some generic rules. Please see the Video's from GrandFondo Canada, because they do a great job going over key points regarding safe group riding. It is narrated by Alex Stieda, a former Canadian Pro-Cyclist that rode in the 1986 Tour De France.

Rider Safety
Certified Helmets are MANDATORY.

Obey the rules of the road. Conduct yourself with the same consideration as you would expect from any other road users, particularly motorists. Aggressive behaviour and gestures by cyclists will alienate motorists and could lead to endangering other cyclists. Know and use all the basic hand signals.

  • Traffic: The lead rider must take responsibility for those behind when approaching turns, intersections, transitions from multi-lane to single-lane, etc.
  • Traffic lights and stop signs: Do not cross an intersection, even if the traffic light is green, unless you are sure that the whole group will be able to cross safely before the light changes.
    • If the group becomes split at a traffic light, the leading riders should then slow, or stop in a safe place, to allow riders to re-group.
  • Crossing major highways and uncontrolled intersections: Do not act individually. Car drivers see the group as one entity and expect it to act as one.
    • The rider at the front takes charge, directing everyone not to cross until there is a gap in traffic large enough for the entire group to safely cross the road.
  • Do not hold up following traffic: Ride single file on a single-lane, especially on busy roads where motor vehicles are frequently passing.
    • On occasion, you must “take the lane” for your own safety. This is both legal and practical (such as a narrowed construction zone).
  • Emergency situations: Your government ID and emergency contact information should be on each rider and easily accessible.

Riding in a Group - GranFondo Canada Safety

Rider Etiquette

  • Respect your fellow rider. Any concerns with disruptive conduct or riding etiquette that have not been resolved should be discussed with the ride coordinator.
  • Be predictable, and ride in a consistent manner. Do not swerve, accelerate, or brake unexpectedly.
  • Anticipate the moves of the cyclists ahead of you. Look ahead at what is happening on the road.
  • Indicate your intentions - use common hand signals.
  • Indicate hazards with hand signals or your voice.
  • Never half-wheel (overlap your wheel with the rider ahead). Either ride directly beside or directly behind.
    • Half-wheeling is only done in an echelon, which requires considerable skill and practice.
  • Do not ride in or near the shoulder of the road: more debris increases chance of a puncture, plus when you ride at least ½ metre out from the shoulder, you make it easier for the rider behind to follow your wheel. NOTE: this applies to all formations (single pace-line, double pace-line, echelon etc.)
  • Strong riders should do longer pulls at the front than weak riders.
  • Regardless of how long the ride is, the front group rides fast. The back group drops nobody (there is a No Drop Policy).
  • When you see your fellow rider struggling, help them.
  • If you are getting dropped in the fast group, make an effort to get back on track.
  • If you see someone getting dropped that is only temporary because of the terrain, tell the group to ease the pace so they can get back in, recover, and then contribute to the group effort.
  • Wait until you are at the back of the pace-line/group to reach for your water bottle/jersey pocket etc.
  • Challenges and wagers between riders/are natural and welcome in any group ride but not to the point where it causes the group to be strung out for kilometers. When your “sprint for the sign” is finished, allow the riders behind to re-group.
  • Be self-sufficient and also ready and willing to support other riders.
  • If you do not ride in a straight line, you will be politely asked to ride at the back of the group.



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Roger J. Barrett
Ride 4 Williams Syndrome
Corporate Head Office

  • 2737 Keele Street Suite 110
    Toronto, ON M3M 2E9
  • 416-398-8300