BETA — Ride Speed Categories

Average ride speeds depend upon many factors such as wind, elevation gain, road condition, type of bicycle, and rider fitness level. Speed categories below are based on average riding conditions in the relatively flat cycling paradise of Central Illinois. Many Wheeler members enjoy recreational group rides at about the C-ride level pushing into B-ride level when the stars align correctly!

  • A-ride (fastest) -average speed  > 16 mph – No one I know who regularly rides with the Wheelers
  • B-ride – average speed ~ 14-15 mph – Show & Go when only faster riders “show” or participants decide to break into faster and slower groups.
  • C-ride – Most common Wheeler average speed ~ 12-13 mph. Includes no-drop breakfast rides, most weekend Show & Go rides with recreational riders setting the pace, Full Moon rides, and event rides such as the 4th of July Breakfast Ride. Note that Show & Go rides my break into two groups to accommodate participants ride speed category and distance.
  • D-ride – average speed ~ 10-11 mph – Mellow rides and June training rides.
  • E-ride – average speed < 10 mph – Novice riders, early May training rides.

Ride Speed Categories Adapted from Wabash River Cycle Club


  1. The ride speed categories are still Beta and not yet specifically used for our rides. They are presented here as a communication tool and way for riders and leaders to agree on speed expectations, as well as set expectations for leaderless Show & Go rides.
  2. If you are unsure of your abilities, start at a low speed and work your way up. Our no-drop Training Rides in May and June are an excellent way to gauge your ability while you get in condition for the riding season. If you are a new club member, it is better to err on the low speed level and be confident you can finish the ride. You can always try a faster or longer ride the next time!
  3. The small range of about 2 mph is useful as much more than that and it’s difficult to keep a group together!  By the end of the summer most riders are typically edging into the next highest category as the riders have gotten fitter through the summer.

Yours in continuous improvement! RB

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