Rider Name Ford Isbey
Team Formerly First City Cycling
Category  Road and MTB riding
Occupation International Sales Manager for Feedback Sports
Age 57
Years in the Fort 17
Hometown Asheville NC

After over a decade of leading the Wednesday and Saturday Open Rides, Ford Isbey is stepping down. Fort Collins Riders have been looking forward to Ford’s email updates since 2006 when the ride was known as the Lee’s Ride and left from Lee’s Cyclery on Lemay and Harmony.  I personally would like to thank both Ford and Rod Wahle for leading the rides and for their efforts to keep the ride safe and organized. 

For over a decade, Ford Isbey has been calling the shots on the SOR and WOR rides.
YGR: When did you start
doing the WOR ride? What was it called then?

  • : It originally was the County Cork ride, it started in 1992. 

YGR: When did you start leading the ride? How did that come about?

  • : The Cork ride stopped at the pub because the County Cork owners sold the business…the group moved to a start at Lee’s South parking lot in 2003.  The Wed ride was eventually put on by Laurel Street Racing in 2004….then two other teams that evolved from Laurel Street continued to lead the ride.  Eventually, the ride started being associated with FCCT.  It was around that time that Rod and I were asked by FCCT to lead the Wed and Sat rides.

YGR: Who led the ride before you took it over?  

  • : It was led and put on by the owners of the County Cork Pub.

YGR: Do you think you’ll continue to do the ride?

  • : On occasion Rod and I will do the ride.

YGR: When was the ride at its height (number of riders/strength)?  

  • : The County Cork ride had a minimum of  80-90 riders show up each week and it would swell some weeks to 110-120 riders. 

YGR: How has the ride changed?  

  • : The Cork ride was totally a group ride which stayed together for an entire route.  As it grew in numbers and riders at differing riding levels started showing up in increasing numbers, eventually, along the route, groups would develop according to the speed and effort preference they wanted to do that evening.

YGR: How many people are on your list serve?  

  • : 100-120 ?

YGR: What have some of the challenges of leading the ride been?  

  • : The Wed. rides at some point along a route would increase in effort and speed, so it was understood at some point it would become a fast-paced weekly event. The Saturday ride was always a GROUP ride….which stayed together and always stopped for riders that may have had a flat or mechanical.  It was an endurance pace / talking pace for the entire route….no sprints or tempo where it no longer became a group ride…  That format has now changed, it’s the way the ride has evolved. 

YGR: What do you see as challenges for the ride’s future?  

  • : Numerous riders have commented they feel the SOR ride has turned into a Wed. night WOR format or, WNW or TTH, etc.  It depends on what the group wants to do as formats and effort each week and finding consensus amongst all the riders.   

YGR: Has anyone agreed to takeover leading the ride?  

  • : I’ve heard there are riders are trying to put together a group of ride “leaders” to forward routes each week and they’re targeting sharing the ride responsibilities.

YGR: What tips do you have for whoever takes over leading the ride?

  • : Obey the traffic laws, emphasize each week the group ride smartly.

YGR: If you were to continue leading the ride, what changes would you make?

  • : Rod and I added some changes as the ride “evolved” however, over time, it became evident some in the group (but not all) wanted revised formats…during the rides….so it presented the perfect time for others to take over handling and managing the rides.

YGR:  Favorite memory from leading the ride?  

  • :The lasting memory of the ride is the camaraderie of riding together and seeing people you enjoyed riding with week in and week out.  More favorable memories when it was a different theme when the group stayed together for an entire route….and then many riders would meet at a bar/restaurant and enjoy, dinner, laughs and swap ride de-briefs, it was a super atmosphere, lots of laughter and humor in the air and solid friendships and riding mates….that was a CORE aspect of doing the County Cork ride and the ride when it moved to Lee’s South….there were 30-40 people every week that would end at the Cork and have a great evening….the owner reserved the deck outside every week….those rides were a blast and the best hands down.

YGR:  When did Rod Wahle start doing the ride?

  • : Rod started doing the County Cork Ride….1992 or before.

YGR: How and when did he start helping to lead the ride?  

  • : When Laurel Street Racing was formed and the rides left from the Lee’s parking lot he and I were asked to be the ride leaders.

YGR: Favorite WOR route?

  • : WOR: Glade Rd. clock-wise direction…  SOR:  Red Barn route.

YGR:  How did you decide on routes?  

  • : We did our best to mix up the direction and terrain of the route each week: Climbing one week, flats and rollers the next, etc.

YGR:  How many route options were there?  

  • : 25-30 ? for the Wed and Sat. rides

YGR:  Are you handing over your Map My Ride account to (new ride leader) or how does that work?  

  • : The new ride leaders are creating their own routes.