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Old 07-08-08, 06:05 PM   #1
ElJamoquio
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EQ #1729: Guttering/Michigan Cobbles

Last year, second lap of a two-lap RR. Going up the last hill, five miles or so from the finish; I take point, and we whittle down the number from ~50 to ~10. It's only a two minute climb, though so the others can't be that far behind.

At the top it's flat. No one comes around me. I don't want to do any more work, but I don't want to slow down and let the chasers back on, either. I go to the gutter. There's a bunch of potholes there, generally rough pavement... where I, at least, would back off of the wheel in front of me in order to keep the rubber side down. After about a minute, everyone realizes I'm there to stay until someone else goes to the front. Eventually someone comes around and takes us to the middle of the road, where there's decidedly better pavement.

Did I commit an egregious sin?
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Old 07-08-08, 06:14 PM   #2
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Up to them to come around you. If they chose to wheelsuck, so be it.
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Old 07-08-08, 06:25 PM   #3
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I've deliberately headed to the rough pavement for similar reasons. I made the 'V' behind my back so guys knew to follow my line but it allowed me to string the group out single file (my goal).

If those on your wheel don't like the line you are setting down it is up to them to come around.

It isn't exactly the gentlemanly thing to do, however.

If you had any juice left you could have jumped into the rhubarb. If guys followed then the effect would have been the same but maybe a bit safer.

In the end, the road, the gutter, the potholes, the cars and motos are all part of the race. I use them all (but I'm not always a popular guy).
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Old 07-08-08, 07:03 PM   #4
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You'd be even more right to attack through the rough pavement.
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Old 07-08-08, 07:13 PM   #5
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Not even a question, a totally acceptable move. You took a risk (breaking a wheel etc), and the choice was for others to take the same risk or do something to avoid it. If you dove into a wet corner really fast, it'd be the same thing - you take a risk, others can take the same or do something to avoid it.

- At a flat airfield course lined with untrimmed hedges I'd ride through a lot of the overhanging branches to find shelter in the crosswind.
- I had kevlar belted tubulars for a while, they were actually pretty good against cuts and such. At the (old) Harlem Crit I used the broken glass - debris - pothole shoulders to move up.
- I've also taken advantage of my bunny hopping skills (not height, more like efficiency) to use huge potholes to move up in a very big field. I'd ride through/over them, other guys would ride around - at one race, with 130 starters and an enormous pothole in the middle of a steep hill, I used the pothole to move up (I even had 17mm tires on 17mm wide rims, for what reason I don't know but I was young and dumb). 13 finishers, I was one of them.

Hey, if you can deal with some road feature other folks can't, tough luck for them.

The only sketchy thing would be to deliberately guide a guy onto a wet manhole cover or the like in a corner.

cdr
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Old 07-08-08, 10:24 PM   #6
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No sin, totally legitimate. No one will be happy, but that's their problem. Like CDR says, deliberately leading another rider into real peril is pretty bad, but using the course to force others to make decisions about using or saving energy is part of the game.
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Old 07-09-08, 12:40 AM   #7
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The only sketchy thing would be to deliberately guide a guy onto a wet manhole cover or the like in a corner.
Rode a crit in the rain in Montreal where two of the corners (including the one leading into the finish) had manhole covers in the natural line. No fun.
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Old 07-09-08, 06:16 AM   #8
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They're almost always in the natural line. That's where the public utitilies are located.

The old Tour de Michigan was famous for having shiny manhole covers and roubaix-esque potholes in the apex of every turn.
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Old 07-09-08, 07:46 AM   #9
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In a race thats cool.... If it was a training ride not so much (talk to Botto about a training ride he did while in Memphis)
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Old 07-09-08, 07:53 AM   #10
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Not even a question, a totally acceptable move. You took a risk (breaking a wheel etc), and the choice was for others to take the same risk or do something to avoid it. If you dove into a wet corner really fast, it'd be the same thing - you take a risk, others can take the same or do something to avoid it.

- At a flat airfield course lined with untrimmed hedges I'd ride through a lot of the overhanging branches to find shelter in the crosswind.
- I had kevlar belted tubulars for a while, they were actually pretty good against cuts and such. At the (old) Harlem Crit I used the broken glass - debris - pothole shoulders to move up.
- I've also taken advantage of my bunny hopping skills (not height, more like efficiency) to use huge potholes to move up in a very big field. I'd ride through/over them, other guys would ride around - at one race, with 130 starters and an enormous pothole in the middle of a steep hill, I used the pothole to move up (I even had 17mm tires on 17mm wide rims, for what reason I don't know but I was young and dumb). 13 finishers, I was one of them.

Hey, if you can deal with some road feature other folks can't, tough luck for them.

The only sketchy thing would be to deliberately guide a guy onto a wet manhole cover or the like in a corner.

cdr
Ok. I was trying to be far too diplomatic with my original response.

If guys are trying to pin you to the front (and you don't want to sit up) drive it straight into the gutter.

The men will follow and the boys will will find themselves gapped off the back.

Then drive, drive, drive.

When you look up the selection should have been made and it's time to get to work.
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Old 07-09-08, 07:53 AM   #11
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They're almost always in the natural line. That's where the public utitilies are located.

The old Tour de Michigan was famous for having shiny manhole covers and roubaix-esque potholes in the apex of every turn.
Yea, but Dale sprayed a line around them, so it was totally safe.

I would equate riding into rough with riding riding in the "wrong" gutter into a cross wind. Totally acceptable, but to me a sign you don't necessarly want to work together.
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Old 07-09-08, 07:59 AM   #12
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... I made the 'V' behind my back so guys knew to follow my line
...
Is this a common signal? I've never seen it (although that doesn't mean much). Thumb and index finger or index/middle?

/hijack
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Old 07-09-08, 08:06 AM   #13
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Is this a common signal? I've never seen it (although that doesn't mean much). Thumb and index finger or index/middle?

/hijack
It's like the 'V' for Victory held upside down against your lower back. It tells the rider behind you that there is crap to the left and right and that they should follow your line through it.

Very useful at times.
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Old 07-09-08, 08:41 AM   #14
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It's like the 'V' for Victory held upside down against your lower back. It tells the rider behind you that there is crap to the left and right and that they should follow your line through it.

Very useful at times.
In MI you might as well tape a picture of your hand to your back. Because crap left and right is pretty much every road all the time.
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Old 07-09-08, 08:52 AM   #15
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I do this all the time. Last night at the 'nighter too.

Anyone know where to get a taxi around here?

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Old 07-12-08, 04:41 PM   #16
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It's like the 'V' for Victory held upside down against your lower back. It tells the rider behind you that there is crap to the left and right and that they should follow your line through it.

Very useful at times.
I was wondering what that was. I never saw that hand signal until a week ago sitting on the wheel of a cat 2. In the 4s, we just ride over everything and fall down.
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Old 07-12-08, 06:24 PM   #17
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I was wondering what that was. I never saw that hand signal until a week ago sitting on the wheel of a cat 2. In the 4s, we just ride over everything and fall down.
The upper cats point that stuff out and fall down for other reasons.
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Old 07-12-08, 07:17 PM   #18
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The upper cats point that stuff out and fall down for other reasons.
Like that.
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