San Remo. Milan – San Remo.
8am: Saturday, March 16
Sticking to the tried and tested route, we’ll start with a coffee at San Remo before heading uphill and north to Milan. At Milan we turnaround and take a more direct route back to the bakery.

Steaming Nostril: Waterloo Cycling Club
11am: Sunday, March 24
A brand new event for the 2013 season! Cyclocross, mountain bikes, single speeds and hybrid bikes are recommended. The 65km course consists of 55% farm and dirt roads, 40% rail trail and 5% paved road. The course is a loop route that starts and ends at Lions Hall in Elmira.
Details at:

Paris – Ancaster
8am: Sunday, April 14
The 20th annual spring classic. Head on down to Ancaster to support ECC riders as they tackle the new, longer and more challenging course. Details online at

Danish Ride
8am: Saturday, May 4
A longer, more challenging route is set for the second edition of the Danish Ride. Extra hills are needed to burn off the scrumptious treats that await us at the turnaround point.

Ride For Heart
6am: Sunday, June 2
Join the fun and raise money for Heart & Stroke research. Or click here to donate online to support an ECC Rider.

Ride To Conquer Cancer
Saturday & Sunday – June 8 & 9
Join the fun and raise money for cancer research at Princess Margaret Hospital. Or click here to donate online to support an ECC Rider.

Centurion: Horseshoe Valley
Saturday & Sunday – June 15 & 16

Centurion: Blue Mountain
Saturday & Sunday – September 14 & 15

*The photo is of a wicked bike designed by olli erkkila.

Pub Night = awesome

Thanks to all the ECC members who made it out to Pub Night. It’s great to see folks off their bikes and in street clothes. Many double- and triple-takes were needed to recognize some of our members resulting in many laughs. Good friends, good food and cold drinks made for a great evening.

Cycling Caps!

We’re compiling an order of custom cycling caps. Please reply if you want one. The design is in the works but will complement our jerseys. The cost will be $25 or less. The more we order the lower the unit cost gets. These are high-quality, moisture-wicking, cycling specific caps. Timing is 10 days to 6 weeks depending on our final order quantity, style and design.

Tour De France – Fantasy League

Any interst in a TDF Fantasy League? The race starts on Saturday so we’ll have to get it set up right away. Please reply to confirm your interest. This is a free event just for fun.

Upcoming Events

  • September 14 – 16: Centurion Canada in Collingwood. Please take a look at the site and reply if you are interested in participating. At Pub Night half a dozen riders “committed” to participating. As well there are a number of riders from our IMAX Ride To Conquer Cancer team who interested. We will look into registering as a team, and arranging lodging (cost to be determined) but need to know how many riders are interested. The registration fee increases on July 15 so now is the time to decide.
  • June 2, 2013: Ride For Heart. We’ve formed an ECC team. Be sure to join us!
  • June 8-9, 2013: Ride To Conquer Cancer. We’ve formed an ECC team. Be sure to join us!

The week ahead

Most weekdays at 6:00am there is a group ride around the ECC North Loop starting at 6am from Kingsway and Twyford. To confirm that there will be a ride simply reply to this email stating what day(s) you want to ride.

It’s the Canada Day long-weekend commemorating Canada’s 145th birthday! What a great reason to go for a ride!! On Saturday we’ll leave from Lakeshore & Royal York at 6:40am and head to Humbertown for 7am. From there we’ll head out to the airport before cutting back through Mississauga for a 50k – 80k route (depending on how the group is feeling). On Sunday we need a ride leader – unless folks want to go for a spin at 5:45am from Royal York & Lakeshore (back by 7:30am). On Monday we’ll do a fun spin through the city hitting some of the “famous” climbs of the Don Valley before cutting back across town along Davenport. Meet on the bridge at Palace Pier at 1:30pm. The ride should take roughly 2.5 hours – or less if we skip some of the hills, or push the pace.

Safety Tips

When riding our bikes we must obey all City of Toronto Bylaws and abide by the Highway Traffic Act. A law that many/most of us ignore is that of a working bell or horn. The decision to ignore this law could land you an $85 fine. Also be sure that if you’re riding within 30 minutes of sunrise or sunset that you have a white light on the front of your bike and a red light at the rear.

Click here for a brief summary from the MTO
 of some bike specific laws.

*Photo from

Ryder won the Giro!!!

For the first time ever O Canada was played, and a Canadian was standing on the top step of the podium at a Grand Tour. The great Steve Bauer was the previous best finisher placing fourth in the 1988 Tour De France. After two truly epic mountain stages (stage 19 clocked in at 6 hours and 18 minutes for the 198 mountainous kiliometres followed by stage 20 of 6 hours and 54 minutes for 219 steeper and more daunting mountainous kilometres including a finishing climb up the 48 hairpin turns of the Stelvio Pass) the race came down to the final day individual time trial. Ryder trailed Joaquim (El Purito) Rodriguez by 31 seconds entering the day. Over the course of the next 28.2km Ryder took back that 31 plus an additional 16 seconds to claim the win.

Club Rides This Week

Weekday morning rides take place almost every morning. Please reply via email if you’re interested in riding at 5:40am with us – confirm the day(s) and we’ll reply with the meeting point(s). For the weekend we’ve got an easy day on Saturday before the Becel Ride For Heart on Sunday. (Click the link to join our team or donate.)

Saturday: Meet at 12:45 at Lakeshore and Royal York, or 1:00 at Humbertown for an easy 30k roll through Etobicoke and the Humber River Valley.
Sunday: There isn’t a group ride scheduled but that shouldn’t stop you from getting out there and riding!

Club Sponsors

We are thrilled to have some great sponsors for our club including Railway City Brewing’s Dead Elephant, and

Dead Elephant is tasty India Pale Ale available at your LCBO. The beer is crafted by Railway City Brewing , a St. Thomas micro-brewery. They are committed to supporting cyclists like us and if you are ever in St. Thomas, they welcome stopovers and tastings at their brewery. Check out for more info. We’ll plan a Saturday trip and ride out that way later this season. is a brand-new Canadian online cycling retailer. They open their virtual doors on June 1 and have created a 10% off coupon code for us to use. But before we start saving please “Like” their Facebook page here. Once their store opens we can use the code to receive 10% off all purchases. If you’re intersted in making a larger purchase please let me know as the store owner is willing to offer a greater discount on larger purchases.

In the coming weeks we’ll introduce our other sponsors. And if you’ve got a connection or an interest in sposoring the club please let us know. We’ll be ordering additional apparel later in the season with space for new sponsor logos.

You should go for a ride today!

Now that was a terrific weekend – I hope everyone enjoyed it! The Amgen Tour of California wrapped up another terrific race with Robert Gesink of Rabobank taking the overall GC. Over in Italy Ryder “Weight Of A Nation” Hesjedal is battling with Joaquin Rodriguez for the Maglia Rosa in the Giro.

Wednesday: A few ECC riders are meeting at 6pm for a 50k ride starting at Lower Base Line and 6th Line.
Thursday: Meet at 5:45am at Lakeshore and Royal York for a 25 – 30k ride through Etobicoke.
Friday: Meet at 5:45am in front of Campbell’s Soup on Birmingham for ECC South Loop repeats.
Saturday: 6:30am at Royal York and Lakeshore for a 90 minute tear out to the Ford Plant and back.
Sunday: 7:00am at Royal York and Lakeshore or 7:15am at Humbertown for a 50k or so ride up to the airport.

Ride Events This Season

So far we have confirmed ECC riders taking part in the two Vitess Gran Allenamento rides, and the Blue Mountain Centurion. If you’re interested in participating please reply via email so we can connect all of the riders – carpooling, accomodations, meals, etc.

** Note the corrected date for the Vitess Gran Allenamento on September 9.

It’s still a bit brisk at 5:45am but the view of the sun rising over the city more than makes up for it. I took this shot from the top of the bridge on Islington over the train yard. A crescent moon, a fiery sky, the CN Tower, it’s got it all!

We had a good weekend for riding – I hope that everyone got out and enjoyed the weather.

It’s still a bit dark and cold for most of our riders to start morning rides outside but if anyone is up for it I will be riding repeats of the 4.2km loop of Birmingham, Islington, Judson, Royal York on Tuesday and Thursday morning from 6am to 7am (as long as the weather co-operates). It’s a short loop with a climb up and over the train tracks on Islington. Join in and bail out at anytime. I plan to do this loop every Tuesday and Thursday morning throughout the summer – pushing the start time to 5:40am as the temperature and daylight hours increase.

Online Club Registration & Store!
Our OCA affiliation is now active, and you can register online for the club! You can also purchase your club jersey through the store at the same time. Click here to complete the registration process and pay for your jersey.

Paris To Ancaster
On Sunday April 15 the 19th annual Paris To Ancaster bike race takes place. A few ECC riders are participating and we wish them well. For those not familiar with the event it pays homage to the great one-day bike races in Europe, most obviously Paris-Roubaix (which takes place tomorrow – Sunday, April 7 – see more details below if you want to watch it). The race is approxiamtely 55km and runs from Paris to Ancaster in southwestern Ontario. It includes stretches of pavement, gravel roads, rail trail, single-track, tilled farm fields and mud chutes.

Watching World Tour Cycling Events
Sadly the folks at Sportsnet and TSN don’t think that Canadians should be able to watch world tour bike races on TV. This means we have to seek out alternative sources online. I rely on the following sites to get my fix: both provide links to sites offering live streams. is a terrific source for torrent links to recently broadcast events. has a significant collection of live streams ready for your viewing pleasure.

Paris-Roubaix. Hell Of The North!
The most famous one-day bike race in the world. This is the race to win, and to watch. 257km or racing punctuated by 27* pavé (cobblestone) sections. This is a war of attrition with a great many of the riders who start the race abandoning due punctures, crashes, or that it’s just too damn hard on their bodies. The winners of this race are the true hard men of bike racing – and in recognition of their victory they are given a piece of the course in the form of a cobble. The photo to the right is from the race, on one of the cobble sections. If it rains, or has rained in the preceeding days, this is a muddy mess of a bike race. And yes, they are riding traditional road bikes with skinny, slick road bike tires.

Here’s an amazing video shot during the 2011 race.

Bike Locks

After spending thousands of dollars on our road bikes the last thing we want to do is see them get stolen. To that end most/all of us keep our bikes in the safety of our homes when we’re not riding. But what about when we’re out on a ride? We certainly don’t want to carry around a 10 lb. Kryptonite u-lock! With that in mind there are some great alternatives perfect for the quick stops at roadside rest stops, coffee shops, etc. Abus and Master both offer pocket sized cable locks that provide a quick bit of security for those quick stops.

And if you want something functional and cool, check out the Küat Water Bottle Lock.

I’m not a fan of our mayor Rob Ford. In particular his cancelling of bike lanes. That said if he’s able to establish a network of cycling paths the connect the city similar to the network we rode today I’ll be a happy cyclist. But I still won’t vote for him.

Six riders braved a gloomy, foggy Saturday morning to tackle the route. Two Chris’, two Mike’s, Paul and Debbie. Our route took us north on Royal York to Weston, and then we were into the trail system of the Humber River. And what a great trail system it is! Kilometre after kilometre of uninterrupted cycling criss-crossing the Humber many times before exiting at Thistletown Regional Centre (a children’s mental health centre). From there we stuck to the side streets before hitting Martin Grove for a final “climb” up to Steeles and a quick downhill, downwind sprint to Milan.

At Milan we chatted,  used the facilities and regrouped for the return journey. The return route traced the park to Weston and then continued along the shores of the river before hitting the climbs on Scarlett and St. Mark’s. By this point the day was getting a bit long and we headed for the lake, skipping Baby Point, Alpe d’Humber and any other hill we normally seek out.

The final stretch from the lake to San Remo was uneventful but filled with a little extra zing as we were all anxious to get off our bikes and relax. Once we got to San Remo an espresso hit the spot before we all went our separate ways.

Thanks to all who participated – I thoroughly enjoyed it and look forward to the next Etobicoke Cycling event.