Print Story Sleepless in the Saddle
By rdskutter (Wed Aug 15, 2007 at 01:56:13 PM EST) bicycle.race, fat, bottomed, girls, will, be, riding, today, look, out, for, those, beauties, all, year (all tags)
I raced in Kona Sleepless in the Saddle at the weekend and had a great time.

The whole thing was a bit short notice, when we first entered we were put on the waiting list because the race was full, and I only found out on the Friday morning that we were racing.

My bike was missing some essentials. The two outer chainrings were bent and the rear disc rotor was bent (All courtesy of Easyjet and their moron baggage handlers). I nipped out at lunchtime to get replacement bits, rebuilt my bike in the evening, and then got picked up at 9am on the Saturday morning to go down to the race.

The course was a good mix of technical and non technical sections. I managed all of the descents on my first lap which just shows either how much my riding has improved, or how confidence-building the course was.

It was dry til about 1am, after that the rain came in for 2 hours and made everything slippery, the course was dry again by about 8am.

My night laps were my most enjoyable and fastest laps. I'm very pleased with my lap times and generally very pleased with how my riding is improving. I climb fast and my decents are getting much faster, I still struggle to find the line through tight singletrack. I didn't walk a single bit of the course.

Joolz, the legendary photographer who photographs all the events got this great photo of me.

I did a double lap at about 7am in the morning and it wasn't until I had just started the first lap that I noticed that my Marzocchi Bombers (front suspension forks) had been leaking air. I bottomed out on everything for the whole two laps, and recovered from some worrying front wheel slides, but on the plus side, it made my climbing more efficient. I borrowed a shock pump and got them pumped up in time for the lap after that.

Here are the results for our team. We came 50th out of 83 mixed teams, and that's good considering that we were a 4 person team, whereas most mixed teams were 5 people.

Just out of interest, I've gone through the results and found all the other teams in the mixed category with only 4 riders.
High Peak Cycles were 24th
The High Peak Cycles A Team were 46th.... You've put all the slow people on the A team?
Fig Racing Rolls (Us) were 50th
Team AT1 were 74th

Our A Team (Fig Rolls Racing) came 4th which was superb. They would have needed another lap under their belts to get onto the podium.

Lap 24 was a really sloppy changeover. Luke came in at about 45, I got to the coralle at about 46, so he spent 13 minutes looking for me then finally came back to find me on the hour. I noted down the changeovers that were slow so that I could work out the actual racing time for those laps:

Lap 24 was a 13 minute changeover, bringing the actual time racing down to 47 minutes.

Looking at the full results for the mixed category I reckon we could have made up 3 places if we had nailed the changeovers. Also, if we had managed to get another lap in as a result of getting the changeovers timed better then we may have made up another 5 places.

When I handed over to Steve, I came in at midnight, and Steve went out at 6 minutes past on Lap 13, so Steve's actual time for that lap was a speedy 45 minutes.

I'll be entering Dusk til Dawn in October, hopefully in a team of 3. That's a 12 hour race in the hours of darkness between 8pm Sat and 8am Sunday.

So that's what I did with my weekend. It's the best weekend I've had in ages, and I hope to do enter single 24 hr bike race in the country next season...

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Sleepless in the Saddle | 6 comments (6 topical, 0 hidden)
nice race by LinDze (2.00 / 0) #1 Wed Aug 15, 2007 at 07:09:02 PM EST
Nice race, do you do many endurance rides? Right now Im staying across the street from Laguna Seca/Fort Ord in CA. Lots of locals out everyday training for the annual 24 Hours of Adrenaline and Sea Otter Classic races.

Does EasyJet charge for bike handling? We flew Zoom from LGW to JFK a while back with 2 touring bikes. They dont charge for the oversize/weight boxes and everything came out pretty well.

-Lin Dze
Arbeit Macht Frei

Races by rdskutter (2.00 / 0) #2 Thu Aug 16, 2007 at 12:13:04 AM EST
I've done 3. I did a Red Bull 24hr about 5 years ago, then I did the Bontrager 24/12 at the end of July this year, which was a washout.

This is the first time I've taken an endurance race seriously.

I was chatting with our A-team between laps. They were saying how they just you to race them for fun, but when they started to take care over getting the changeovers spot-on, and putting more effort into training, they started to get good results. For example, Fig Rolls racing came 6th in Sleepless last year, and 2 and 3rd (two teams) in the Bontrager 24/12 this year.

Does Easyjet charge for bike handling?

Yes. £20 each way, and that gets you a total luggage allowance of 32 kilos (normal allowance is 20 kilos). Anything over 32 kilos gets charged at £6 per kilo. We misread the insturctions and thought that we had 52 kilos in total (32 for the bike on top of the 20), but actually you only get 12kg for the bike,)

So after paying £60 quid in excess baggage charges, easyjet then go and cause £80 worth of damage to the bike.

Absolute cunts. Next time we go to the alps, we're taking the ferry and driving over.


[ Parent ]
Correction by rdskutter (2.00 / 0) #3 Thu Aug 16, 2007 at 12:14:40 AM EST
s/They were saying how they just you to race them for fun/They were saying how they just used to race them for fun/
[ Parent ]
Another take by ad hoc (2.00 / 0) #4 Thu Aug 16, 2007 at 05:21:13 AM EST

Nice work. by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #5 Thu Aug 16, 2007 at 03:24:17 PM EST
Is it just that everyone looks the same in the MTB world, or has your photo been in Singletrack (or at least on the STW website) before?

Must ride more. Must get a job so I can afford to service my bike (bent hanger and flat shock). Must live somewhere with bloody countryside.

Sounds like you had fun, anyway.

Not I by rdskutter (2.00 / 0) #6 Sun Aug 19, 2007 at 01:25:27 PM EST
I don't think I've ever had a photo of me biking published in a bike mag, at least not to my knowledge.

It's true that all biker photos do look similiar. The pose is always the same and there's not much variation in build. The face is usually covered in mud and sweat, overshadowed by a helmet peak, and set in a grimace expression.

Could have been anyone, officer.


[ Parent ]
Sleepless in the Saddle | 6 comments (6 topical, 0 hidden)