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What is i-Team?


Guy_Watson

What is i-Team?

i-Team (The Internet Team) is a cycling club, affiliated to British Cycling, Cycling Time Trials, & more - so you can represent i-Team.cc in races and organised cycling events, wherever you live in the U.K. or Worldwide. i-Team is not a commercial organisation or owned by a company - it is run by it's members for members - so we won't try to sell you something.

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Members young and old come from all walks of life and compete in all forms of cycling at all levels - some are complete beginners, some win races. We don't care what bike you ride or how fast you ride it, as long as you respect the history of the sport and share our passion for cycling.

How & When Did i-Team Begin?

i-Team was founded in the Portsmouth area in 2003 by Guy Watson with support & encouragement from John Hayles (Rob Hayles' Dad) - none of us really knew if the club would grow any further! But i-Team quickly took off because a lot of non-club cyclists got what we were about - or probably more accurately, what we were not about.

Back then, we might not have been steeped in history, but that meant we could easily adapt to our target market - the thousands of new cyclists who were taking up the sport. By 2005 the i-Team had 270 members, and in association with then sponsor Wheel2Wheel, entered a team of 40 members and guests in the Etape du Tour.

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On 19/11/2003 i-Team became one of the first clubs in the U.K. to become Go-Ride registered and on 28/11/2014, i-Team was awarded Sport England ClubMark status, the universally acknowledged cross sport accreditation scheme for community sports clubs.

What is an 'Internet Cycling Club?'

Before Twitter & Facebook, and long before a lot of clubs even had a web site, i-Team.cc (the Internet Team) provided a dedicated social media website that reached out to cyclists wherever they were, and also allowed members to easily interact with each other, without having to physically get down to a club house meeting (the idea being to maximise the time available to meet up and cycle with each other.)

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Because we were ahead of the curve in anticipatting the Social Media explosion, we've had time to grow and adapt organically, and continue to provide our members with something that is unique to i-Team.cc: - a private, safe, professional and friendly environment for our members to meet up on-line, to discuss their passion for cycling and arrange rides with each other.

So, like most clubs, we use Facebook, Twitter & Instagram to reach out and make public announcements - but our members use private forums to discuss club business, plans for future rides, give feedback, encourage each other, ask questions and pass on experience.

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Doing Things Differntly, Doing Things Well, Olympic Gold Medals, 100's of Members...

  • Members only - no trolls, no put downs from people who don't know you
  • Everyone uses their real names and photographs in their member profile
  • Quality information - coaches are British Cycling Level 1, 2, & 3 qualified - members are experienced - (Know it all's don't seem to hang around long)
  • In time, other members will get to know you really well and be able to help you with specific answers
  • Ask basic questions without fear - everyone remembers that we all started out knowing nothing!
  • And because members use their real names and images in their online profiles, members can get to know each other more easily and recognise each other when they meet up out on the road - simples! :)
  • As well as introducing 100's of cyclists to the world of club cycling, our British Cycling qualified coaches organise The Portsmouth School of Cycle Racing. i-Team has been proud to help many members young and old progress in their chosen sport, and some have gone on to win National, World & Olympic titles, including Jon Dibben, Joe Truman and 2012 Olympic Champion, Dani King M.B.E.

Some of our original ideas may now have been duplicated by other clubs ( with our blessing,) but what makes i-Team unique is the sum of all it's individual features:

  • i-Team is genuinely open to all, including complete beginners - of course, like any organisation we have some conditions to protect the interests of the existing members and for child protection purposes
  • The organisation is set up to be as lean as possible - what you see is what you get - the Team Founder looks after most of the administration, so that members can organise social events and ride their bikes
  • If you are U.K. based and want to ride with other members, membership of British Cycling is a pre-requisite to becoming a member of i-Team. As well as supporting the organisation that sends riders to the Olympics - this means that members should be adequately insured in the event of an accident and this is why i-Team is the club with the largest number of British Cycling members in the South Division
  • Member-only club runs on Saturdays (why were clubruns always only on Sundays?)
  • Ladies only rides
  • 3 choices of club jersey design (Official Red, Pink, Retro)
  • First club to put a QR Code on their clothing!
  • We were ahead of our time with regard to placing quality coaching at the core of what we do and placing a big emphasis on getting young riders learning skills while enjoying riding their bikes.

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Quality Team Clothing (Only available to members)

  • Fantastic quality and good value - thanks to Champion System
  • Sizes XXS to XXXL in Race, Club, Womens and Youth specific cuts
  • Members order their kit direct from the manufacturer

Team Hub

Since 2003, i-Team has offered it's members access to the i-Team Members Hub - a private social network that offers many oportunities for members to engage with the club and communicate with each other. Of course a lot of clubs have bulletin boards and / or forums - and there are some really good cycling forums out there that you can use for obtaining information - but none of them offer all of what the i-Team Member's Hub offers:

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Forums - Meet, Chat, Ride: Ask questions, make suggestions, plan rides, get advice, have your say

  • One you've recieved your password for our Team Hub, you'll have access to forums with 100's of topics and 1000's of replies including: Road Racing, Circuit Racing, Track Racing, Time Trials & Hill Climbs, Triathlon, Off-Road Racing, u18 Racing & Coaching, Overseas Sportives, U.K. Sportives, Official Club Rides, Member's Rides, Ladies Ride Group, Routes & Tests, Commuting & Leisure, Metric Century Challenges, Coaching Advice, Club House, Tea Stop, Pro Racing Fans, New Stuff & Wish Lists, Tech Help & Equipment Choices, Sales & Wants, Reviews & Recommendations,The Rules, Archive
  • Members can use their profile settings to have a regular digest of all new posts automatically sent to them - choose which topics to ignore and which to follow

Personal Messaging - Send a message to one member, or multiple members all at once.

  • Messages remain in recipients' inbox and recipients are alerted that they have mail.

Personal Blog - Record your own mission statement and objectives to help with motivation, write about your experiences

  • Keep it provate or open to other membrrs for their comments, support and feedback

Calendar - Featured packed events calendar. Encourage other team mates to accompany you on an event or ride

  • Register your intention to attend an event, and see who else is attending.

Status Updates - Write down what's on your mind - other members can reply

Low Cost Membership Subscriptions - all of the above plus more for a low annual cost

  • Full Senior Membership - £25 per year
  • Associate Membership - £15 per year
  • Youth / Concessionary Membership - £10 per year
  • Family Membership - £1.50 per family member added to a Full Senior Membership
  • No joining fee - just purchase an annual membership subscription
  • Membership subscriptions paid every January
  • Join after September 1st and the following January to January subscription is included

Yearly Targets Events:

Every year a core group of members get together for a yearly target, normally an overseas sportive. In 2004 & 2005, i-Team member's formed one of the biggest club entries for the Etape du Tour. In recent years, focus has switched to the La Marmotte and we will be returning again in 2014 and we also have a team returning to the Ronde van Vlaanderen.

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Weekly Club Rides:

Every Saturday, i-Team organises rides from Rowland's Castle in Hampshire for the following categories:

Members also get together throught the year for Sunday and mid-week rides.

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Racing:

Although we aren't a Racing Team, every season we get race wins. We have a hardy group of 'weekend warrior' 3rd and 2nd category riders who take part in local races and Surrey League events. Our original year one members are now mostly veterans but thanks to our big Youth Development section, there is a talented group of Juniors in the squad. As well as Road and Circuit Races, our members take part in Time Trials, Track and Cyclo Cross.

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Club Promotions:

From the start, i-Team members have put something back into the sport. Our first club promotion was the 2004 Women's Cycle Racing Association National Road Race Championships and every year we have organised road and circuit races for Surrey League.

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Youth & Junior Talent Identification & Development:

In just 10 years, our hall of fame of home-grown talent includes:

  • World, European & Olympic Gold Medalist, Dani King M.B.E.
  • Olympic Podium Team rider, Jon Dibben
  • Olympic Development Team rider, Joe Truman

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Club Structure:

i-Team is a cycling club that's run by our members for our members (we are not a commercial organisation and we won’t try to sell you something.) Our members buy into our ‘What you see is what you get’ philosophy and this, together with our professional and friendly approach has created a great community spirit.

We don’t go in much for committees, we have a strong identity as a team and we are always forward thinking and together, we are allways looking for ways to develop as a club and improve what we can offer our members. Our straightforward, professional and friendly approach maintains a great community spirit and is why around 150-200 members (mainly from Hampshire / West Sussex, but also from across the U.K. & Worldwide,) have chosen i-Team to be their club.

Team Founder Guy Watson still provides direction and undertakes administration for the club in his spare time, we have a dedicated comittee for Youth Development and Go-Ride activities, and i-Team is constantly evolving as more members step up and organise events and help run their club.

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Edited by Guy_Watson



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