08/19/2015

A new Cycling Club in Sutton : Club Velo Sutton

By Olivia Ranger-Enns

BCN correspondent

Cycling has always been a popular sport in the Eastern Townships. On weekends, it’s commonplace to see groups of cyclists in tight, colourful jerseys and shorts winding their way up and down rolling valleys and hills. But Danny Boulanger, President of Club de Vélo Sutton, is hoping to make cycling even more hot. On June 28, Boulanger and 43 new members of this brand new club took to the Sutton Streets.

Divided into three groups (beginner, intermediate and advanced), the groups took off in front of le Cafetier, what some people laughingly call Sutton’s local watering hole. Although the weather was difficult, to say the least (persistent rain mingled with violent winds) the cyclists were adamant to finish the course. It was very safe, as Boulanger assured. The groups are always guided by one leading cyclist and rounded up by a trailing cyclist. The groups are divided thus: beginners cover a distance of 20 to 25 km, intermediates cycle between 25 and 30 km, while the advanced groups cover a distance of 30 km and up.

Boulanger expanded on the mission of the club. “I have always thought this region to be beautiful, and I decided to found a club where people can appreciate the territoire even more. We get to highlight the beauty of cycling while enjoying the countryside. That’s why we always plan to stop for lunch at a vineyard or a local restaurant, to really get the full experience,” said Boulanger, who owns property near Sutton.

Working with seven other members on the administration committee, Boulanger was pleasantly surprised at the number of positive reactions he got. After all, he has been promoting his club for only one month. “We’ve already got a long list of sponsors, such as the Cafetier,” put in Lillian Beauregard, Vice-President in communication and marketing. “More and more sponsors are cropping up. And we’re really pleased that PowerWatts has associated with us,” she added, referring to an indoor training system used to optimize cycling performance and fitness.

With his white Labradoodle Bacchus at his feet, Boulanger went on to elaborate on a more personal angle to cycling. “I took up cycling seriously about five years ago, because I wanted to lose weight,” said Boulanger, who used to weigh around 230 lbs. Now, fit and tanned, Boulanger keeps it up to stay healthy and in shape. “Cycling is a great sport because, as opposed to jogging, it is a low-impact sport,” he argued. “It’s also a group sport. That’s what I am planning: members can work out, enjoy a good local lunch, and make friends and socialize.”

The plan is to organize cycling outings every Sunday, starting off at 9:00 a.m. every morning. “I am hoping to keep these events going until October 15,” said Boulanger, who also noted that members can plan their own, perhaps smaller and in tandem more intimate outings during the week by going on the website and bringing everyone up to date on their availabilities. All they have to do is click on the section titled: Create Your Own Outing.

A one-year membership comes at $125 and includes a jersey, a member’s card, rebates from the club’s partners, as well as other privileges. You can also try it out as a visiting member for $10 per visit.

For more information on the club, visit the website www.clubvelosutton.com.

Photo credit: Olivia Ranger-Enns.

Cut line: Danny Boulanger and Lillian Beauregard pose with the brand new jerseys for club Vélo Sutton.