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Thread: brevets anyone?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    Toronto
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    brevets anyone?

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    I have a buddy who wants to get into randonneuring this year (his dream is to finish Paris Brest Paris by the time he turns 30-which is a bit of an impossible goal since he's almost 29 and it isn't running this year or next). Since breaking up with my ex and coming to the conclusion that riding with her is going to be pretty much impossible, I am in serious need of a new touring buddy, so this is pretty much perfect. I'm insanely excited about riding with this guy since we've done a fair amount of riding together already and he's a great person to tour with. Even better, he has a couple friends that I know and love that are also completely stoked on the idea. I know exam season crushed my soul a little too much since I can't imagine anything better than 40 hours in the saddle right now. We're doing a southern Ontario self-dictated 200k brevet at the end of March (time limit of 13.5 hours) and a 600k from Toronto to Montreal the first week of May (40 hour time limit). It's beyond awesome to have something like this to look forward to through the winter. It's going to a long one. I flew back into Toronto yesterday and while looking at the tiny amount of snow already on the ground I couldn't help but wish for spring.

    Only issue, which isn't really much of a problem as long as we keep on top of training, is that I feel like I should be some kind of worried (right now I'm just excited) about that much time in the saddle. I've done regular daytime touring but never the 24 hour version. Anyone have any experience with this sort of riding and have any words of advice? Or headlight recommendations since there will be a lot of unlit night riding?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    San Francisco Bay Area
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    Maillotpois, Jobob and I have all done some brevets. Maillotpois is the craziest and she has done a 600K and a couple of 400Ks. I stop at 209 miles - the length of the longest double century I did. I was working toward a a brevet a month in 2008 , but got sick of riding during the tenth one. As a result of that, I've got less than a 1,000 miles on my bike this year. Jobob has been the sanest doing long rides every so often.

    Keep it fun and enjoyable.

    Veronica
    Discipline is remembering what you want.


    TandemHearts.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
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    Quote Originally Posted by applegum View Post
    Anyone have any experience with this sort of riding and have any words of advice? Or headlight recommendations since there will be a lot of unlit night riding?
    Heh, you've come to the right place, grasshopper.

    Words of advice? I dunno. Run & hide?

    To get you started, do a forum search on the words brevet, randonneuring (assuming any of us spelled it correctly, heh), RUSA (that's short for Randonnuers USA, the governing body for randonneuring in the US), permanent (what randonneurs call the self-dictated type of brevet), UMCA (UtraMarathon Cycling Association).

    You'll find all sorts of stuff -- good, useful, and otherwise -- from many of us here.

    The RUSA and UMCA websites have lots of good info on training.

    That should get you started. Welcome to the insanity.

    2009 Lynskey R230 Houseblend - Brooks Team Pro
    2007 Rivendell Bleriot - Rivet Pearl

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Memphis, TN
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    Well, the next running of pBP is 2011, so maybe he'll get, I plan on being in Guyancort cleberating an age that ends in "0: in 2011, too(I'm not not going to tell the other digit)
    Brevets are a lot more like tours than the typical "training ride" . Maybe that's why I like them.
    You do have to be willing to ride at night (duh!), but I woundn't worry about time in the saddle so much, as I really can't fit much riding in typical weekday
    One good thing is that you can build into it. i.e., the expiernce in the 200K helps out with the 300K, etc.
    Lights : I use a CygoLite MityCross 300 and a Black diamond headlamp and two Planet bike Superflashes for the backl. I also ride a Bacchetta Strada Recumbent, so take that with a grain of salt
    You may also be aware that us 'mericans have to ride full series both years to qualify for 2011 quotas, not sure if that applies in Canada(I noticed that you put RVA as your location, but are planning on riding the Ontario, Canada(I live next to the "other" Ontario, CA) series
    I'd give the 200K a whirl and see if you like it. You've got time to prepare(our 200K is this saturday)

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Veronica View Post
    Jobob has been the sanest doing long rides every so often.
    Hey, who you calling sane?!?

    Oh, wait ... nevermind.

    2009 Lynskey R230 Houseblend - Brooks Team Pro
    2007 Rivendell Bleriot - Rivet Pearl

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    You... because you never got in your head to do them month after month after month...

    Veronica
    Discipline is remembering what you want.


    TandemHearts.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    Marin County CA
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    The saddle time should build on itself to where it's not that big a jump. Try out a few 200ks first and see how you do. That's a great distance. Having someone to ride with can really make the time pass faster if you're compatible.

    Riding at night: It can take some getting used to riding in the dark. I did my 600k with very little night riding experience. (I did the 600k with only a handful of double centuries under my belt and nothing longer than that.) Anticipating riding through the night was very stressful to me throughout the day of the 600k. It turned out to be not so bad, but I had some equipment failure issues and kinks I could have worked out beforehand if I had practiced riding at night.

    When I did the full brevet series later on, I vowed to practice night riding. So I would get up at 3 or 4 am and do a ride in the dark around my house, in familiar safe territory. Helps you get used to new lighting equipment, etc. That really helped, especially with the transition to a Schmidt hub and light system.

    Headlights can be tricky on longer rides. You will definitely want one that you can take off the helmet during the day because that weight is NOT something you want on your head for 30 hrs. I did my 600k with a Nite Rider Moab - it's like a flame thrower and puts the light where you look. However, for my 400 and 300ks I switched to a fork mounted E6/Schmidt hub system. I actually prefer that to the headlamp. I like the feeling that I am self-sustained and have unlimited battery (I carry spare bulbs). I do carry a LED light as a back up and of course (NON FLASHING) tail lights.

    If you have other questions I'm happy to weigh in.
    Sarah

    When it's easy, ride hard; when it's hard, ride easy.


    2011 Volagi Liscio
    2010 Pegoretti Love #3 "Manovelo"
    2011 Mercian Vincitore Special
    2003 Eddy Merckx Team SC - stolen
    2001 Colnago Ovalmaster Stars and Stripes

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    2,617
    Chiming in too...

    Agree with many points - mainly, trying out your lighting gear ahead of time. I did a 300K that I would only be in the dark for a few hours. Well, dark is dark, no matter how long it's gonna be. I didn't have strong enough lights to see far enough ahead on descents, and I didn't have any helmet light. When you start hearing rustling in the brush next to the road, it's nice to be able to look and see what it is. Or isn't.

    And, plan out the runtime of your lights and add a few hours of cushioning - lots of things (temperatures) can effect how long battteries will run. If your controls are at stores, think about lights that use AA batteries so you can easily stock up.

    And have fun!!!!!
    For 3 days, I get to part of a thousand other journeys.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    Ohio
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredwina View Post
    ... I also ride a Bacchetta Strada Recumbent, so take that with a grain of salt...
    Okay, one recumbent mentioned... I am curious as to what other bikes the rest of you are riding for all those hours and hours (and more hours!) of saddle time?

    I deleted most of my post after I realized how rude I may have unintentionally been to applegum. Sorry for the interruption. I guess when I read your post and saw that you were going to be somewhat close to my location it motivated me. I admire your planning ahead in preparation.
    Last edited by wnyrider; 01-04-2010 at 11:52 AM. Reason: tamed back post

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by wnyrider View Post
    Okay, one recumbent mentioned... I am curious as to what other bikes the rest of you are riding for all those hours and hours (and more hours!) of saddle time?

    I have an Eddy Merckx Team SC scandium frame, race style. Probably the only scandium frame Merckx to do a 600k since most people are on steel or other retro type bikes....



    I also have a Colnago outfitted with the Schmidt hub, but the most that one has done is a 400k:

    Sarah

    When it's easy, ride hard; when it's hard, ride easy.


    2011 Volagi Liscio
    2010 Pegoretti Love #3 "Manovelo"
    2011 Mercian Vincitore Special
    2003 Eddy Merckx Team SC - stolen
    2001 Colnago Ovalmaster Stars and Stripes

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    2,617
    I've used a carbon Bianchi for some 24-hour stuff and a few 300K brevets, and a carbon/ti Colnago for some too. I have a full ti Colnago that did an intown/urban 24-hour race - it was quite comfortable.
    For 3 days, I get to part of a thousand other journeys.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Memphis, TN
    Posts
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    From experience, you'll see a wide variety.
    Steel touring relaxed bikes are popular, but I've dne most of my brevet on a Cannndale CAAD 7 frame. I've also got a Roubiax for hiller rides.
    PS I pulled A DNS on the 200K I was having some issue with muscle cramps over the weekend, and I've lost my inner randonuese

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    2,617
    Quote Originally Posted by Fredwina View Post
    From experience, you'll see a wide variety.
    Steel touring relaxed bikes are popular, but I've dne most of my brevet on a Cannndale CAAD 7 frame. I've also got a Roubiax for hiller rides.
    PS I pulled A DNS on the 200K I was having some issue with muscle cramps over the weekend, and I've lost my inner randonuese
    Good job on listening to that inner randoneusse! She always knows best!
    For 3 days, I get to part of a thousand other journeys.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    West of Toledo, OH
    Posts
    95

    Pbp 2011

    My partner and I are hoping to qualify for PRP in 2011. We will be doing the Ohio series which is reasonably close to Toronto. You can get more information from the Ohio Randonneurs website at http://www.ohiorand.org/

    A great ride for becoming comfortable riding at night is the National 24 Hour Challenge in June in Michigan. It is an UMCA cup event. http://n24hc.org/ The night loop is a 7 mile rectangle (all right turns) with a sheriff at each corner. This is its 28th year so the community knows the cyclists will be on the road all night. And with 350 or so cyclists, you are never alone on the road in the dark. It's a very well organized, fun event.

    We ride our 2005 steel Co-Motion Primera Co-Pilot tandem which is heavy but comfortable.

 

 

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