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Ms 150

Old 04-21-19, 10:18 PM
  #651  
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Just get your packet this week before go time, and get all your labels on your jersey and bike the night before. But you probably know all that already.
Have you ever done an overnight event? I don't know what the other MS events entail. Are you riding solo or with a team? If your solo you need to either bring a tent and set up in the self camping area, or you need to rent a tent from the Academy Sports tent encampment. I think they still sponsor it - check the event website. Or if you got a hotel in the area then nevermind. But staying at the fairgrounds overnight is part of the great time of this event. Lots going on during the evening.
Make sure your luggage is dropped off in time wherever you're starting from. Check the website for those logistics or contact the MS. I ride with a team so we drop off luggage the morning of at our own starting point and they truck it to la Grange and it's waiting at the team tent. You will have to get yours from a luggage pickup when you roll in. Then the next morning get up really early to pack and get your luggage on the correct return truck so it's at the right sorting spot in Austin.
And I really mean get up early because the line starts to form early and if you're late you will be waiting for an hour or more in a sea of thousands all queue for the start. The ZZ Top alarm sounds at 6am. It's best to get up right away if you have a lot to pack.
Bring shower shoes or sandals for the shower trucks. Bring soap and a travel quick dry towel. Bring some comfy evening clothes. Be prepared for a chilly morning start. Bring arm warmers or a pack away jacket you'll most likely need them to start.
Decide which day 2 route your going to do. The challenge route through Bastrop State Park is beautiful and a ton of fun with some incredible descents but conversely there are a lot of steep climbs and they come right after the next. I'm not sure how it would be on Fixed gear - mighty hard if think. If your aren't prepared physically I'd stick with the Express route. It's less exciting but safer and faster.
If you're taking a bus back to Houston just make sure you and your luggage end up on the right one that takes you back to your starting point.
The finish line is definitely designed more around teams because all their tents are there and there isn't a lot for individuals to do. If you've got special MS credentials definitely get into the VIP only areas. Also stand and watch people finish for a while - it's a great sight.
There's probably more so let me know if you have any specific questions.
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Old 04-21-19, 10:45 PM
  #652  
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Hi Joe!

Great to have you along on the ride. Sci guy gave you some good advice. I think the Academy tents on the baseball field are sold out, so your biggest challenge will be where to sleep on Saturday night. I have never stayed at La Grange, so I am not sure what will be available for solo riders.

Jeff
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Old 04-22-19, 04:56 AM
  #653  
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Thanks for the tips. I am set for the rookie tent at LaGrange. What kind of structure is that? On some of my other rides I have slept in a barn and high school.

I am starting from the Rhodes stadium. How crazy is that in the morning with traffic? Can I just park there and walk to the luggage? I was thinking of riding from the hotel with my luggage on my back. Is that warranted?

I looked at the routes and nothing looks too scary. I did the NYC ride last year which was 100mi with 5800' last year fixed.
https://ridewithgps.com/routes/28217228
It had a few 10% climbs. It looks like the worst section is 5-6% on the challenge route with long climbs.

You sold me on the challenge route. I am looking forward to seeing the real Texas. I have been to Texas 20+ times over the years. Always for business. Mostly I see the airport, hotel and a factory. The only exception is Austin, where I have spent some time. It is a great place. I hope to see the country between the cities.

I do have VIP status, so I can go to all the nice areas at the finish.

I am looking to try chicken and waffles. Is that a thing in Texas? Can you recommend a place?

Ride Safe,

Joe

Last edited by bmwjoe; 04-22-19 at 04:58 AM. Reason: Forgot to mention VIP status.
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Old 04-22-19, 07:36 AM
  #654  
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Chicken and waffles is not really a Texas thing. I'm sure you can find it down here, but it's not the region's signature food. This time of year, a crawfish boil would be great. Brisket is an excellent option of course. Plus, if you are a beer drinker, there are a ton of great Texas craft brews. The big guys, St. Arnold and Karbach both have huge MS150 teams and can't be missed at La Grange. Smaller ones like Back Pew, Bearded Fox, and Town in City each have teams, but you'd have to hunt around to find them. I'm sure everyone is willing to let folks sample their beverages. I know us at Back Pew in the RV lot will have plenty of frosty beverages. Come find us and ask for me (Scott Preston) and introduce yourself if you want. It would be nice to meet you.

It's my fifth BP MS150 and it's a good ride. Lots of riders and the spectator support is fantastic. Being in the VIP tent, you already have a good group that is friendly and familiar to guide you around and show you a good time. The weather looks great (not gonna jinx it, not gonna jinx it...) so enjoy the ride!

Katy is a popular starting location. I've never started there, but from what I have been told it's very well managed and traffic flows great.
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Old 04-22-19, 09:12 AM
  #655  
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If you are riding the shuttle bus from Austin back to Houston, it will drop. you off at Rhodes. Do you want to have to ride back to your hotel from there? There is weekend parking available at Rhodes. If it were me, I would park there.

Stop off in Fayetteville for a bit on day 1. Most of the small towns on the route tolerate our ride as we pass through. Fayetteville has a party. After you pass the town square, you will make a 90 degree turn to the right. A few blocks past the turn, on the right is a lady who literally backed thousands of cookies for the riders. Stop and have a cookie.

Chicken and waffles. I haven't tried them, either, just haven't figured out the big deal. Sounds pretty good for carb loading. Let me know what you learn.
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Old 04-22-19, 09:33 AM
  #656  
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If you take the park route on day 2, you're gonna wanna do the superman on your bike coming down the smithville hill - like that guy on the fixie in that now famous video Pretty sure that's where I hit my max speed of 38 mph (according to Strava).

But in all seriousness, be VERY mindful of the riders around you in the park. With so many ups and downs, many people don't know how to properly descend and lose control and run into people - or can't make the climbs well enough. I've done this ride 4 times, and almost each time there's been a major injury in the park. Our first year they stopped the regular route people because an ambulance and a medivac chopper had to get through into the park to airlift someone out who crashed.
I've been fortunate enough to leave early with my VIP friends at the front, but if you leave later at the back of the pack you'll be surrounded by a bunch of inexperienced people who think they can do whatever. So, just be careful.
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Old 04-23-19, 04:47 AM
  #657  
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Originally Posted by the sci guy View Post
If you take the park route on day 2, you're gonna wanna do the superman on your bike coming down the smithville hill - like that guy on the fixie in that now famous video Pretty sure that's where I hit my max speed of 38 mph (according to Strava).

But in all seriousness, be VERY mindful of the riders around you in the park. With so many ups and downs, many people don't know how to properly descend and lose control and run into people - or can't make the climbs well enough. I've done this ride 4 times, and almost each time there's been a major injury in the park. Our first year they stopped the regular route people because an ambulance and a medivac chopper had to get through into the park to airlift someone out who crashed.
I've been fortunate enough to leave early with my VIP friends at the front, but if you leave later at the back of the pack you'll be surrounded by a bunch of inexperienced people who think they can do whatever. So, just be careful.
I see the Smithville hill and it is on my route. We have hills here in PA and I am up for it. I have managed over 200 rpm on my fixie, however, I have brakes and I am not afraid to use them. My advice I give others is don't write a check at the top of the hill that your legs can't cash at the bottom.

I will be careful. My home ride is the City to Shore. It is the 2nd biggest ride with 5-7k riders. There are several crashes every year as there are riders with all levels of experience and testosterone. The state of NJ also helps by making sure there is sand at the apex of most corners. I do my best to look ahead, keep some space around me and ride my own ride. Riding in a crowd can be fun, but you need to be careful.

I have had a lot of brisket in Texas, and it is good. I like the Iron Works in Austin. Thanks for the heads up on Crawfish. I forgot about them. Yum! I am going to try chicken and waffles. I will let Yelp guide me. Seems like there are some good places.

I am in rookie camping in La Grange. What is the "tent" like. Will I be sleeping on concrete, grass or asphalt?

My bike arrived in Katy yesterday I just loaded ZZ Top Tres Hombres onto my I-pod. Gotta get in the mood.

They call PA the Pothole State. What are the roads like on the route? I was thinking they would be nice smooth asphalt as you don't get the freezing we get here. However, I just read about the expanding clay soil that you have in Austin, that makes road building very difficult. What can I expect?

Ride Safe,

Joe
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Old 04-23-19, 01:10 PM
  #658  
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The roads are a mix. Lots of decent pavement, and LOTS of chipseal that rattles your brain for frickin' ever and ever. The BEST news is they paved the majority of the route through the state parks. The last 1/4 is still holey potholed chipseal - unless they paved it between last year and this year. The main roads are a mix. Roads in TX are pretty bad - especially here in Houston because the coastal plain has a million microfaults and is constantly shifting on the sands beneath. There's no bedrock like in good ol' northeastern Appalachia. (I'm actually from and grew up in Syracuse, NY, so I'm familiar with the best part of the country )

Looking back at what you said, and looking a little on the MS site, it looks like the Rookie Team tent is a brand new thing for this year for small teams. Looks cool. You'll need an air mattress or a cot (according to the MS site). Otherwise you're sleeping on the grassy/muddy ground. I would suggest running to Academy Spots or REI and picking up a single person inflatable air mattress.
I did the travel/backpack sleeping bag type pad & laying on a few tables to be off the ground before and IT SUCKS. Last year I got an air mattress with inflator is it's a world of difference.
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Old 04-23-19, 02:35 PM
  #659  
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I didn't realize there was a thread for the MS150 or I would have posted earlier. I'm riding for the first time this year but I did to the Bike Around The Bay in October which is a similar distance two day ride. I feel pretty well prepared except for some logistical coordination with transportation and family members. I'm riding with Team Shell. I'm so excited for this!
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Old 04-23-19, 09:00 PM
  #660  
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Originally Posted by the sci guy View Post
The roads are a mix. Lots of decent pavement, and LOTS of chipseal that rattles your brain for frickin' ever and ever. The BEST news is they paved the majority of the route through the state parks. The last 1/4 is still holey potholed chipseal - unless they paved it between last year and this year. The main roads are a mix. Roads in TX are pretty bad - especially here in Houston because the coastal plain has a million microfaults and is constantly shifting on the sands beneath. There's no bedrock like in good ol' northeastern Appalachia. (I'm actually from and grew up in Syracuse, NY, so I'm familiar with the best part of the country )

Looking back at what you said, and looking a little on the MS site, it looks like the Rookie Team tent is a brand new thing for this year for small teams. Looks cool. You'll need an air mattress or a cot (according to the MS site). Otherwise you're sleeping on the grassy/muddy ground. I would suggest running to Academy Spots or REI and picking up a single person inflatable air mattress.
I did the travel/backpack sleeping bag type pad & laying on a few tables to be off the ground before and IT SUCKS. Last year I got an air mattress with inflator is it's a world of difference.
I planned on bringing my air mattress. Now I will also bring a ground cloth.

I ride a retired track bike with 23c tires. I was looking forward ribbons of smooth asphalt. Oh well. Sounds like I will feel right at home on the Texas roads.

Ride Safe,

Joe
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Old 04-24-19, 03:07 AM
  #661  
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My two favorite places for Chicken and Waffles are the Breakfast Club (Travis Ave. in mid-town Houston) and Jupiter Pizza and Waffles (Town Center in Sugar Land).

MS150 update:
It looks like we got 9K plus riders for this year event.

Yipppeee
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Old 04-24-19, 04:38 AM
  #662  
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There is a probability that the Katy start (Rhodes Stadium) will turn right when exiting the stadium and head North to the direction of Morton Rd instead of heading South to Highway 90 due to I-10 construction in Brookshire.
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Old 04-24-19, 06:14 AM
  #663  
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MS150 Re-routeing

Originally Posted by SAGit View Post
There is a probability that the Katy start (Rhodes Stadium) will turn right when exiting the stadium and head North to the direction of Morton Rd instead of heading South to Highway 90 due to I-10 construction in Brookshire.
They are tearing down the FM1489 bridge crossing I-10 this weekend (West side of Brookshire). Traffic along old hwy 90 is expected to be heavy as cars try to get through the area. The Rhodes start is being re-routed to avoid it.


Leaving Rhodes Stadium, the ride goes North on Katy Hockley Cutoff and turns West on Morton. The route continues West on Morton to 362 where it turns South to BP1. It's the regular route after that.

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Old 04-24-19, 09:20 AM
  #664  
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I love the MS150 but man I cannot wait for it to be over so all the dolts riding way too fast without signaling or calling out in terry hershey are gone. I mean, it's a short MUP with tons of walkers and joggers and dogs and these idiots just scream through it like they're racing in the Tour. As a rule abiding bike commuter I seriously despise these people.

I don't know why you even bother riding in THP when GBP is right frickin' there and its long and empty.

I hate people.
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Old 04-25-19, 03:30 PM
  #665  
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I made it

I arrived in Houston and picked up my bike at the bike barn. I have it all together and even had time for lunch. Now time for a ride around Katy


Bike arrived A-OK


Ready to roll


Lunch
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Old 04-26-19, 06:50 AM
  #666  
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Yesterday I rode around a bit and checked out the venues. Is Rhodes for high school?

Big stadium!


Dinner. Crawfish, yum.


Setting up for the expo.
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Old 04-26-19, 09:46 AM
  #667  
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Weather is looking absolutely fabulous this year, thank goodness! I'll be rolling on day one with a 30 yr anniversary NWCC jersey on my *****en bright red Diamondback. rolling mostly solo. Say hi if ya see me!
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Old 04-27-19, 03:47 AM
  #668  
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I rode about 45 miles checking out the local trails. Very nice. Hard to think it was all flooded.
This is the way too have crawfish.



Yum!


The expo was great.
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Old 04-27-19, 04:17 AM
  #669  
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Have a fun and safe ride this weekend, y'all.
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Old 04-29-19, 09:32 AM
  #670  
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So...?? How was it!
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Old 04-29-19, 02:10 PM
  #671  
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Dat 2 start


Finnish



In the park
The ride was great. I had a great time. The 4-5% climbs were right in my wheelhouse. I averaged 17.5 each day. The pavement was like buttah. The ride through the park was spectacular. I loved the cheerleaders. The views were spectacular.

Fayettville was fun. Town folk just passing out beers. That was a first for me.

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Old 04-29-19, 02:21 PM
  #672  
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I only saw about 8 single speed bikes and 2were fixed. There was a sweet Wabi and a serous looking Aveton with a tall gear. The best was a guy on a 53 high wheeler. I did not realize how wobbly they were underway .

BBQ chicken was the main meal at the BP150. It is the VIP meal at my home ride.

I had a great time. Thanks for the tips.

Ride Safe
Joe
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Old 04-29-19, 02:29 PM
  #673  
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Great weather, though the unexpected headwind the last 30 or so day 1 hurt a bit. Challenge route was awesome. First time I've gotten to do that for a variety of reasons. Bike/people shuttles at the finish was supper crappy yet again. Overall had a fantastic weekend!
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Old 04-30-19, 10:17 AM
  #674  
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Horrible allergies this year kept me from training. I came very close to not riding. I was not prepared. But I rode it slowly and made it all the way. Had a good time. Will do it again next year if at all possible.
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Old 04-30-19, 03:33 PM
  #675  
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First of all, thanks to all of you for riding and raising funds to beat MS! I was diagnosed with MS in 2006, so thank you for riding from all of us with MS.

We started at our house, which is about 94 miles from LaGrange. Joined the route at Clay and Barker Cypress. Day 1 sucked...3 flats...2 of them were slow leaks that took a while for me to realize that it shouldn't be that hard to ride. We rode very well, and averaged in the high 17s to Bellville, feeling good at lunch. After Nelsonville on Day 1, the heat and my MS combined to make it a real challenge for me, but I managed to finish in a very unexciting 9 hours. When the temp gets above about 78-80, it is like somebody flips a switch and fatigue just starts building in my legs. As long as I stop to cool down periodically, I can keep going, but I just can't do 15-20 mile stretches without a break anymore when it is over 80 and sunny. Lots of time fixing tires and lots of time spent trying to cool off in the shade really hurt our pace, but overall, we finished strong with my wife doing a lot of the pulling in the afternoon.

Day two was like a carbon copy of day 1, except I didn't have any issues with flat tires. We took the express route since we just haven't done enough training this year to want to do the steeper climbs without being a nuisance to those around us. We hit lunch just after 9am and then it was like a repeat of day 1. It got above 80 and my legs just started to shut down on me. We still made a good pace to the finish and crossed the line a couple of minutes before noon, but the stretch from lunch to the finish was pretty painful at times. My quads literally were trying to seize up on the big hill right before 71 after lunch. I dropped down to 4.5mph at one point and thought briefly that I was going to have to stop and walk. I am sure the photographer got some Tommy Voeckler-esque shots of me grimacing and trying to force my legs to keep going near the top.

All and all, it was pretty good weather and a good time, but for many reasons this year was more difficult physically for me than many of the previous MS150s I have done (this was #15 ). Every time I got frustrated or upset at my lack of ability to keep up the pace I wanted, or had to ask my wife to slow down (yes, I was humbled to that degree both days), I just took a moment to look around and reflect about how many people were out there riding, raising money, volunteering, cheering, etc. for all of us with MS, and I was able to just push the negativity away and keep going. So thanks again to all of you, and if you see me out there next year, feel free to ask me to take a pull, as it is the least I can do for what you all are doing for me.
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