Long Distance Competition/Ultracycling, Randonneuring and Endurance Cycling Do you enjoy centuries, double centuries, brevets, randonnees, and 24-hour time trials? Share ride reports, and exchange training, equipment, and nutrition information specific to long distance cycling. This isn't for tours, this is for endurance events cycling
View Poll Results: Which bike for a 200k ride?
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Poll: Which bike for my 200k attempt?

Old 04-22-19, 12:04 PM
  #26  
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Right off the bat, in addition to being lighter, I see you have a power meter on the Giant. I would be using your power metrics to pace yourself to do this 200k.
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Old 04-22-19, 04:46 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by downtube42 View Post
Whichever one is more comfortable. Nothing else comes close.
This
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Old 04-23-19, 12:36 PM
  #28  
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If you think that selecting the right bicycle is the big challenge to a successful Brevet - you're already priming yourself for failure.

You most likely need to focus your talents at discovering a comfortable starting pace. Since brevet riding is all about self sufficiency and preparation - any attention to racing or performance riding during the event is likely to hurt more than help.

Only athletes of some accomplishment should consider riding racing bikes on brevets. Apparently -that's not you......
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Old 04-23-19, 12:40 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by Richard Cranium View Post
Only athletes of some accomplishment should consider riding racing bikes on brevets. Apparently -that's not you......


How do you define "some accomplishment"?

Does it make any difference? We all wish to save a little energy on the ride.
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Old 04-23-19, 02:20 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post


How do you define "some accomplishment"?

Does it make any difference? We all wish to save a little energy on the ride.
^This! A fellow rider asked me on Saturday's 200K how wide my tires were on my Litespeed Vortex. I told him he should have said narrow as they are 23mm. I needed to conserve some energy because the wind coming out of the north was brutal and I'm not the least bit aerodynamic. That bike was the right choice for me for those conditions.
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Old 04-23-19, 02:30 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post


How do you define "some accomplishment"?

Does it make any difference? We all wish to save a little energy on the ride.
Seriously! One of the things I really like about randonneuring is that people don't judge. Chat about minutia of bike/equipment/food/strategy as far as the day is long (day and night, really, we're randos after all), but anyone who shows up and rides on whatever equipment is welcomed, from the folks who can set course records on anything to full-value riders who need every advantage they can eke out of their equipment.

(The only thing being judged is that you have reflective/lighting gear after dark )
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Old 04-23-19, 02:37 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by antimonysarah View Post

(The only thing being judged is that you have reflective/lighting gear after dark )
I'm will judge people about their safety equipment! And I'm sure there are those who look at me and think that I resemble a Christmas tree on wheels But I'm all about minimizing risk in the urban settings that I often ride. I want my husband to have a solid case in the event some distracted driver takes me out.
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Old 04-23-19, 02:37 PM
  #33  
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I was ill prepared; 25lbs over weight, little training; failed to eat enough, solo, no bike computer, etc. I did not finish. So, I am trying again;
My forum posts really are aimed at cutting through the BS and honestly answering questions - even if my answers are unflattering. In this case, my experience suggests Vinatgerando's new brevet attempt should be done with a conservative choice of equipment. In reality all Internet advice is guesswork - and I am guessing Vintagerando needs to get quite a bit more saddle time before riding "light."
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Old 04-23-19, 03:21 PM
  #34  
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I also like looking at the diversity of equipment choices people make for a brevet. I staffed the final control on the 200k @GadgetGirlIL rode Saturday, so I got to see all the riders and all of their bikes as they finished. There didn't seem to be much correlation between bike weight and finishing time. Plenty of lower times on heavy bikes and higher times on light bikes. Once again I conclude that pretty much any bike will do on a 200k if you are in decent shape.

We did have an unusually high number of DNF's on Saturday. Not sure why really. Curious @vintagerando, was there a specific reason for the DNF on your last attempt?
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Old 04-23-19, 03:25 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
Plenty of lower times on heavy bikes and higher times on light bikes.
For the record I would have been 1 hour less slow but stayed to render assistance at mile 40 along with 2 of my riding companions due to an unfortunate accident that sent one of our riders to the hospital. And both of those riding companions would have finished much earlier but they were having GPS issues and I was the navigator of the group.
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Old 04-23-19, 03:43 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by GadgetGirlIL View Post
For the record I would have been 1 hour less slow but stayed to render assistance at mile 40 along with 2 of my riding companions due to an unfortunate accident that sent one of our riders to the hospital. And both of those riding companions would have finished much earlier but they were having GPS issues and I was the navigator of the group.
In the true spirit of randonneuring! And you still finished with plenty of time to spare.
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Old 04-23-19, 03:53 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
I also like looking at the diversity of equipment choices people make for a brevet. I staffed the final control on the 200k @GadgetGirlIL rode Saturday, so I got to see all the riders and all of their bikes as they finished. There didn't seem to be much correlation between bike weight and finishing time. Plenty of lower times on heavy bikes and higher times on light bikes. Once again I conclude that pretty much any bike will do on a 200k if you are in decent shape.

We did have an unusually high number of DNF's on Saturday. Not sure why really. Curious @vintagerando, was there a specific reason for the DNF on your last attempt?
I didnít finish for the follow reasons: over weight by 25lbs, insufficient water/ food during ride, no bike computer, riding solo.
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Old 04-23-19, 04:08 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by vintagerando View Post
I didnít finish for the follow reasons: over weight by 25lbs, insufficient water/ food during ride, no bike computer, riding solo.
Hopefully you can address all of those things before the next attempt.

Here's an interesting article from the 2007 PBP. A Survey of the Equipment in Paris-Brest-Paris 2007 I haven't seen one for the more recent events.
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Old 04-23-19, 08:46 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by antimonysarah View Post
Seriously! One of the things I really like about randonneuring is that people don't judge. Chat about minutia of bike/equipment/food/strategy as far as the day is long (day and night, really, we're randos after all), but anyone who shows up and rides on whatever equipment is welcomed, from the folks who can set course records on anything to full-value riders who need every advantage they can eke out of their equipment.

(The only thing being judged is that you have reflective/lighting gear after dark )
Yes, this is the randonneuring community I know. Not, "hey dude what have you done? ", "what are your accomplishments". Well, most people don't judge; seems we have at least one poster that is more interested in my riding resume. The original post was supposed to be just a simple query. Possibly I could have added more info about what I have done since the failed attempt.

Bottom lines seems to be the following: I should ride the bike I am most comfortable with and the weight difference will have little bearing on success and failure.


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Old 04-23-19, 08:50 PM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by Richard Cranium View Post
If you think that selecting the right bicycle is the big challenge to a successful Brevet - you're already priming yourself for failure.

You most likely need to focus your talents at discovering a comfortable starting pace. Since brevet riding is all about self sufficiency and preparation - any attention to racing or performance riding during the event is likely to hurt more than help.

Only athletes of some accomplishment should consider riding racing bikes on brevets. Apparently -that's not you......
If a post could have a theme song, sort of background music to the post, I think the Village People's "Macho Macho Man" would be perfect.

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Last edited by vintagerando; 04-23-19 at 08:52 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 04-23-19, 10:11 PM
  #41  
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A big part of finishing a brevet is being able to deal with things that don't go how you would have liked. Responses in this thread could be a metaphor. Think about it.
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Old 04-24-19, 12:46 AM
  #42  
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Working. No sense pushing.
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Old 04-24-19, 07:37 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by vintagerando View Post
Bottom lines seems to be the following: I should ride the bike I am most comfortable with and the weight difference will have little bearing on success and failure.
'
I would say this is true. The people I have seen that have had trouble finishing a 200k have not really had equipment issues, particularly not related to weight of their equipment. Since time might be an issue for you, probably the main thing to keep in mind is not wasting time at controls. It's easy to sit around and talk with people that are just going to ride away from you. If you do use time not moving, it better be important.

Also, what you eat is important. You don't really need electrolytes, but if my diet consists of too much soda/water/sugar, that doesn't work all the way to 200k before it starts to just sit in my stomach because of electrolyte imbalance. So I try to get chocolate milk or V8 at controls, and get food that has significant salt content. I train to ride without eating very much since it happens so often.

On last weeks 400k, one of the early controls was closed and I was counting on that for real food. My eating plan went out the window at that point, and I was stuck with eating sugar and soda, since that was what I had with me. So my stomach was a mess before the halfway point. I really couldn't eat much the rest of the way. That resulted in a really slow time, but I finished. Don't give up. If that happened on a ride where I had to keep going, like a 600k or 1200k, I would have been in trouble. But even then, it's not a huge setback. On the return trip on PBP in 2011, I ate at loudeac (782km) and immediately threw up. So I got on my bike and rode to the next control. I was a little surprised at how little it mattered.
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Old 04-24-19, 08:56 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by kingston View Post
Hopefully you can address all of those things before the next attempt.

Here's an interesting article from the 2007 PBP. A Survey of the Equipment in Paris-Brest-Paris 2007 I haven't seen one for the more recent events.
Yes. Extremely interesting article, everyone should read it.

Here's the link again, just to make the point.

A Survey of the Equipment in Paris-Brest-Paris 2007
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Old 04-24-19, 08:56 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
On the return trip on PBP in 2011, I ate at loudeac (782km) and immediately threw up. So I got on my bike and rode to the next control. I was a little surprised at how little it mattered.
I had a similar thing happen on one of my first 300s or 400s. Sometimes, barfing is what your body needs to do on a brevet. Randonneuring is weird.
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Old 04-24-19, 09:18 AM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
Yes. Extremely interesting article, everyone should read it.

Here's the link again, just to make the point.

A Survey of the Equipment in Paris-Brest-Paris 2007
Thanks for sharing this article. While I have no desire to ride those distances, I could relate to the finding that the slower riders suffered more in inclement weather. In addition, I can see where it would be more tempting to just DNF in adverse conditions if you had friends or family that had accompanied you on the trip.

I was surprised about the finding regarding tire width.
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Old 04-24-19, 09:24 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
Yes. Extremely interesting article, everyone should read it.

Here's the link again, just to make the point.

A Survey of the Equipment in Paris-Brest-Paris 2007
The data are fascinating; the conclusions are...uh, mostly conjecture, IMHO. Not a huge amount of thought about causation. (Like the "riders with their families there were more likely to DNF" = advice to not bring your family. Perhaps riders who knew going in they were going to be up against the time limits and thus more likely to DNF were thus more likely to bring their families? Or riders with young children were more likely to both bring their families and be undertrained because of the time parenting takes. Are riders with dynohubs slower because of the dynos, or do slower riders choose dynos because we spend a LOT more time riding at night on brevets and are pickier about our lighting? Or, or, or...) But that report is also from some of the crowd that gets kind of weird about the PBP DNF rate.

But we've wandered more than a bit off-topic. Have fun on the brevet, vintagerando!
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Old 04-24-19, 05:17 PM
  #48  
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While it might be conjecture, riding for close to two days in total rain and down quite long hills on totally water-covered roads, including riding in the night after the start through the rain, is somewhat more challenging than many think. Even more so when your life and ride partner is carrying significant injury from a crash in a qualifier ride quite some time before and in another country..

When one gets on the train from their retirement point on PBP to return to their campsite, see how surprised they are at the large number of other riders also on board -- let's say at least 100, and this was a regular train, not one a day. There was no weirdness about the withdrawal rate from that PBP.

As to the OP, keep in mind that riding in randonnees is not a competition among participants. One of the more fascinating aspects of the sport is that the self-acclaimed fastest riders rarely remain in it for 10 or 15 years, let alone become organisers of events in the future. Looking up the weather forecast can be helpful in choosing the gear to take, and if there is any sign of rain, fenders can be highlights.

And, chat with others who may be entering the next event. If it's a regular annual one, they will likely have a good idea of what some of the challenges might be. Be very cautious, however, of anyone who says you can ride with them -- very minor variations in comfortable speed can become hugely challenging after several hours.

Randonneuring requires an element of practice riding, and keeping a tab on what feels good to eat, drink and rest, as well as the most appropriate equipment -- bike including fit and comfort, clothing and carrying equipment you might need. Add to that a bit of research about the terrain to be ridden, as well as distances between potential supply and rest points. And what sort of speeds you may have to maintain to remain not the fastest of the participants, but capable of finishing within the time limit.
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Old 04-24-19, 08:21 PM
  #49  
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that was an interesting article, but it showed that most things don't really matter. I had family with me on PBP, and they caused me stress, but not much. I used to use a hydration pack, but I later came to the conclusion that it led me to drink too much water and stopped using it. I had a spoke break on PBP and I knew 2 other people that replaced wheels on the ride. It takes a long time to get a wheel there. I finished with my rear brake open because of the broken spoke. I almost overcooked a couple of corners due to that when I was hurrying back to the finish.

I think the inconclusive results may have convinced them not to write it about more recent PBP's, but I wish they would do it this year.

It's clear to me that rainy 1200k's will have a high DNF rate. Stuff that people would live with if the weather was better just seems like a really good reason to quit.
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Old 04-24-19, 08:53 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
It's clear to me that rainy 1200k's will have a high DNF rate. Stuff that people would live with if the weather was better just seems like a really good reason to quit.
Often people, including us, just don't anticipate that the rain can persist in an event like that. As I recall, it was one of, if not, the wettest PBP ever run.

When we withdrew, I went to the shower available at the checkpoint, and my shoes and socks were so wet that my feet had hugely wrinkly skin that was reddish and indicated the start of trench foot. Riding my fixed gear wasn't reason as it was also well equipped with fenders.

The odd part about the whole thing is that we both had waterproof covers over tops of the shoes, as well as relatively waterproof pants. Nope, pretty well no real help.

Nice thing, though, was getting back to our campsite and finding the tent that we bought at Decathlon in France after crossing the English Channel by ferry, was still waterproof and remained that way until we departed on the rest of our European trip, during which the weather was much drier, except for parts of Britain..
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