(1) By now, many of you have heard that a rider was killed when she was struck from behind by a motorist while riding on the road shoulder on one of the anniversary events held in Texas. That rider’s family has sued not only RUSA, but the RBA personally, claiming that RUSA and the RBA are responsible for her death. While the rider’s death is sad, the lawsuit and the claims in it are deplorable. Let me be clear: Your responsibility for your safety on a randonnée is yours, not RUSA’s, not your RBA’s, and not any other volunteer’s. If you do not feel safe riding, then do not ride. Period. If you think the road conditions are lousy, the weather sucks, there’s too much traffic, you’re tired, you’re hungry, you’re too hot or cold, other riders are squirreley, your bike isn’t working right, … whatever the issue is that you think causes you to be or feel unsafe … just stop. Get to safety. And then we’ll figure out how to get you home. But to think or suggest or file a lawsuit claiming that RUSA or your RBA is responsible for your safety and if you get hurt or killed because you get hit by a car, you touch wheels with another cyclist, you run over some tracks, bad pavement, or road kill, you get lost, your lights flake out, you get bit or knocked off your bike by a dog, or anything else that every single cyclist knows is a possibility every single time they get on a bike is somehow the fault and responsibility of your RBA or another volunteer or RUSA, then do not do randonnées. All road cycling is dangerous – among other things, you are sharing the road with other vehicles that outweigh you by tons and that can move 10 times your speed – and randonnées in particular are unsupported and require you to be self-reliant and self-sufficient in ways that other events do not. They are long. They are hard. That is what this sport is. Accept that and the risks inherent in cycling, or don’t ride. Please call me if you would like to discuss this or have any questions or concerns about it.
(2) In the wake of this lawsuit, RUSA’s insurer did not renew the insurance policy that covers RUSA and event volunteers. Alternative, short-term insurance arrangements have been made, but they have caused the elimination of the permanents program until further notice and they have significantly restricted the flexibility RBAs have in scheduling brevets and conducting workers’ rides. Rest assured that the 2019 brevet season in Central Florida is on. You can confidently make your plans to do these events. If there are changes to how these events are held that impact you as a rider, I will let you know about them as far in advance as I can so that you’re not surprised by anything.
(3) Because of the suspension of the permanents program, we will offer a 200K RUSA-sanctioned brevet in December. Registration is open; check the events page for the details and to register. We hope this additional, last-minute event helps quench your thirst for riding year-round. There is also a 100K on 12/15. Hope you can join us!
(4) Our audax rides are unaffected by any of this; these are not RUSA events. Please come join us for those fun events. The first one is coming up on January 12!