RIDING on Zwift is the new craze taking junior cyclists by storm.

And the indoor training initiative set up by Warrington club North Cheshire Clarion for its junior riders is not only being commended by British Cycling but is attracting participants from all over the country too.

North Cheshire Clarion Juniors have set up a Zwifters group to ensure their juniors continue their training, remain fit and well while also keeping in touch with their friends during the coronavirus lockdown.

Zwift is a virtual training world, an online platform that allows cyclists to ride, train, race and chat from the comfort of their own home.

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Established to keep the North Cheshire Clarion juniors together at this difficult time and to ensure they continue their training, it has quickly evolved into a north west group, with juniors from other clubs also joining in.

Eastlands, Sport City Velo, Bolton Hotwheels, Liverpool Century, Rhyl CC, Harry Middleton CC are just some of the north west clubs to have jumped on board, while riders from Matlock CC, Mid-Shropshire Wheelers and even Fenland Clarion in Peterborough have got involved too.

The group includes riders of all ages and abilities and ensures the keen cyclists are able to continue to ride with their friends while keeping fit.

A structured approach with coach-led sessions held Monday to Friday ensure the juniors ride together no matter what their level.

Monday starts with a warm-up, building up to criterium and road races later in the week.

Friday is always a social ride.

NCCJ coach and co-founder of the initiative, Chris Jones, said: “The interest in the group from our region’s youth cyclists has been incredible and the feedback we have received from the riders and their parents is really positive.”

Gary Scott, NCCJ coach, added “It’s been fantastic to see the huge response from kids and parents.

“They are really motivated riding every day on Zwift together with their friends at a time when they would normally be racing together at weekends.”

The initiative has attracted national attention.

Si Wilson, Go-Ride coach at British Cycling, said “It’s great to see that the passion we all have for cycling is being used to adapt new ways for riders to keep active physically, but also maintain those social links with riders across our network of HSBC UK British Cycling Go-Ride clubs.”

Contact goridencc@gmail.com for further information about becoming a member or visit northcheshireclarion.co.uk/ncc-juniors

NCC is a British Cycling Clubmark accredited Go-Ride cycling club which aims to provide bike-handling, core cycling and group riding techniques in a fun environment.