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Free! Join Struggle on Zwift for Donny Chain Gang!

In the absence of his much-loved Leeds Chain Gang, Struggle’s Director Matt Mannakee has become a regular on the Donny Chain Gang (DCG) which moved to Zwift during lockdown.  

Led by Russ Downing of Downing Cycling every Tuesday & Thursday, this indoor group ride has helped Matt fill the huge hole left by the lack of races and events during 2020. Therefore we’re really pleased to be supporting DCG this week.

Donny Chain Gang

What is Donny Chain Gang?

Donny Chain Gang is an infamous local group ride frequented by professional cyclists and handy local riders located in the Doncaster area. 

Cycling Weekly Meets Donny Chain Gang

Since the pandemic, ex-professional rider Russ Downing has successfully moved the Donny Chain Gang to Zwift - and the virtual platform has allowed the rides to grow exponentially.

Russ Downing said: “We have people from all over the world coming online on Tuesday and Thursday nights and we broadcast it on YouTube.”

Cycling Commentator Matt Payne provides exciting commentary live on YouTube to a community of 1,800 members on their DCG Facebook Group, with over 300 riders taking part every Tuesday and Thursday evening.


Yorkshire Post Reports on Donny Chain Gang

Who is Donny Chain Gang For?

Taking DCG to Zwift has also allowed Russ to cater for varying ability levels. The ride begins at 6pm with a steady group ride at 2.5watts/kg. Acting as a Yellow Beacon, Russ types instructions and keeps the group in check, riding like a well-oiled machine. 

Understanding Watts/kg

Once the ride progresses Russ lifts the pace until - with a “GO GO GO” - the ride becomes a test of fitness until the finish line. Staying with the front of the group is commendable, as you’ll be crossing the line with the likes of Scott Thwaites, Connor Swift and Russ himself. 

The rest of the field form groups based on their ability level and then fight it out for their bunch gallop to the line.

Alternatively there is a Red Beacon who continues to ride at 2.5w/kg throughout. Whether you ride steady and enjoy the company of the Red Beacons and Co, or you’re just hanging on to finish with them, DCG will provide a great group riding experience during these isolating times. 


Women’s Donny Chain Gang

On selected Wednesdays every month DCG hosts a women’s only ride for all ability levels. Sign up to the Donny Chain Gang Facebook Group for upcoming dates. 

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Tuesday 26th at 6pm: We’ll be taking in the Harrogate UCI Road World Champs Circuit in it’s entirety. It’s an undulating circuit with some testing climbs. 

Thursday 28th at 6pm: On Thursday we’re staying flat with a crit around Harrogate Town Centre. 

If you enjoy the experience and want to support DCG you can become a member and benefit from exclusive DCG offers. Become a member >>


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