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  1. #1
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    London to Brighton

    Not having much time to get on the net at present- and even less time for riding but the Wifes pool is usable and it is not the end of May yet. Still tons to do to finish it but the pool is filled- filtration is working and no leaks. Just have to get the Heater wired up for the Summer (We might get one this year) and do the decking but that can wait for a while.

    A couple of weeks time and I have a ride to do. London to Brighton and it is run for the British Heart Foundation. It is a big ride. Only 54 miles and only two slopes that can be called hills. Even if I don't get much riding in over the next week or so- I will be able to do it without thinking- except for one thing and that is the other riders taking part. These will not be accomplished riders. That is where the big comes in. It is not the milage- nor the 10% average hill for 1 mile about 5 miles from the end. It is the size of the event. There will be 33,000 riders- most of whom will be trying to knock me off my bike.

    And can you imagine trying to do this ride with any speed. The only ones that will are the early starters at 6am but the starts are staggered with 6 start gates and batches of 100 leaving every minute from each gate alternately. Should get everyone away by 11 am. We have a start time of 8am so plenty of time to admire the scenery and show off the 50+ jersey.

    Attachments are of the start line- The top of the one hill on the route and the traffic jam after an accident that required the Air Ambulance to attend the injured.
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    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  2. #2
    Climbing Above It All BikeWNC's Avatar
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    I think I would start at 5am with lights to avoid that quagmire. 33,000 riders! Dang.

  3. #3
    Senior Member gcottay's Avatar
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    Do anything like most of the 33,000 riders make it the whole 54 miles?
    George
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  4. #4
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    The joy of a picture of people WALKING uphill. I'd fit right in.
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  5. #5
    rck
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    Yeow! I like a charity ride as well as anyone that, however, is a bit much!

  6. #6
    Senior Member big john's Avatar
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    I don't want to nag, but be careful around those people. When I rode motorcycles off road, dangerous riders were called squids. Watch out for the squids.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by big john View Post
    I don't want to nag, but be careful around those people. When I rode motorcycles off road, dangerous riders were called squids. Watch out for the squids.
    Ha ha. Used to ride dirt bikes at Dove Springs (Red Rock Cyn), Indian Dunes and Gorman. Haven't heard the term SQUID since then. Plenty of them at those places, esp. Indian Dunes.

    Eric

  8. #8
    Yen
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    Glad to hear the pool is coming along, stap. But a heater for the summer?

    You're right, you won't need any training for the distance on that ride. Just an IV of vallium to help you cope.
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  9. #9
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    Crammed in tight like that, you could probably pass out and still move along with the pack without being noticed.

    Good job on that pool, BTW.

  10. #10
    Senior Member SaiKaiTai's Avatar
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    Those are sure some weary looking people walking up that hill...

    It still amazes me that you consider a mile long 10% climb to be routine. Yikes
    '13 Felt Z3 - '08 Jamis Aurora Elite - ('07 Giant OCR C2)

  11. #11
    Senior Member RoMad's Avatar
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    I think that would be a fine ride for your tandem mountain bike. Most people would get out of the way for you and if they didn't you would probably fare better than them. We go on a ride once a year with a lot of others, but not as many as yours, and I have a hard time staying comfortable on my road bike for 4 hours at 10-12 miles per hour. We ride with my wifes sister, and that is as fast as she goes. We still pass people at that speed. What scares me on rides like these is that there is always a few groups riding in pace lines at speed. On our last big "event" ride I saw three crashes.

  12. #12
    Senior Member big john's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EricJ View Post
    Ha ha. Used to ride dirt bikes at Dove Springs (Red Rock Cyn), Indian Dunes and Gorman. Haven't heard the term SQUID since then. Plenty of them at those places, esp. Indian Dunes.

    Eric
    Yes! I used to go to those places. Indian Dunes for a quick after work ride, Jawbone Canyon for the day, or camp at Dove Springs. Gorman in the summer, pretty cold there in winter. I've taken my mountain bike on the Tejon Trail from Lockwood Valley to Gorman.

  13. #13
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Try to answer a few questions- Lots drop out and there is a sag wagon. A sag wagon? Trucks and big trailers in fact and plenty of them aswell. But many do get to the finish and on the most unsuitable bikes. Postmen doing it on "OLD" (1940's) post bikes single speed and 40lbs. They passed me one year up the one hill. Time trial bikes with 54/21 as the lowest gear- that didn't climb the hill. The riders may walk most of the slopes but they do get to the finish. And plenty of old Tourist bikes- 40lbs and sturmey archer 3 speed gears. And as to the walking up the slopes. From about 20 miles out- there will be walkers up every slope. From 10 miles out and the unfit riders will be calling for transport home and at 5 miles- there is a large green set up with medic stations and refreshments for the really unfit lot.

    Big problem is staying in one piece on this ride so perhaps the Tandem would be suitable. Any one hits that thing and we do not notice it. A good solid bike to take the hits but not really a bike to enjoy for 6 hours on the road. Plus it is my intention to ride back afterwards as it is only 30 miles to home from the finish. That tandem would be heavy by the end.

    Now on the Pool- That is the wifes project and I am being nagged to get out there right now and do some more work on it. And the heater for the Summer? Yep--- That is necessary. With air temperature it will only get up to around 25 deg C and a few cool days and that temp will drop. So a heater for our British Summer will ensure that the wife will use the pool in the evenings. Then I can leave her in happiness while I get out for a ride.

    And SKT- I have been riding a bit longer than you so 10% hills are the norm for me. The 15% take a bit of doing and anything over that is a challenge. Just give it a couple of years and you will be looking for hills instead of the "Slopes" you are doing now. Don't believe me? What were your hills like last year? The slopes you now do in 5 minutes less time than last year. But get me to do a 20mph average on a flat run for 40 miles and I won't be doing it. Different legs and different mind set for different uses. Now if I could get to be quick up my hills-------

    And on the ride- pics of typical riders- and the lots of people is at "One" of the refreshmentstops. I do not stop enroute unless it is necessary- but I also know of a couple of "Pie" cafes just off the route .
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    Last edited by stapfam; 05-24-08 at 07:36 AM.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


    Spike Milligan

  14. #14
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    50 miles in 6 hours with 33,000 participants? Sounds like a ride for a "beater bike".

  15. #15
    Lincoln, CA Mojo Slim's Avatar
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    I'm no Lance Armstrong, in fact, I'm no Lance anything, but I have been at the back of a large pack of inexperienced riders before (due to an equipment failure, but that's another story). Wobbling from side to side, jumping off to push their bikes up the slightest incline, not paying attention to anyone around them except their girlfriend riding next to them on a shoulder wide enough for only one bike. You really have to keep your wits about you. But hey (in this case) each of them raised a bunch of money for the charity and they are out there on a bike. I still love 'em. Even admire them for attempting something out of their comfort zone.
    Truth is stranger than reality.
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  16. #16
    Senior Member
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    Enjoy the London to Brighton, Stap

    Mrs Geez and I have done that a few times, on singles and tandems - and found it really tricky on the tandem. Too many people, too unpredictable, leaving too little space. Lots of forearm muscle strain from covering the brakes! And the biggest problems on the climbs, especially on Ditchling Beacon when the road is full of walkers and pushers, hard to keep a slow moving tandem upright.

    The last few years we've done the Hampton to Hove instead - similar route, far fewer people and more regular cyclists. I'd recommend it. This year it's July 13th, I think

  17. #17
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wobblyoldgeezer View Post
    Enjoy the London to Brighton, Stap

    Mrs Geez and I have done that a few times, on singles and tandems - and found it really tricky on the tandem. Too many people, too unpredictable, leaving too little space. Lots of forearm muscle strain from covering the brakes! And the biggest problems on the climbs, especially on Ditchling Beacon when the road is full of walkers and pushers, hard to keep a slow moving tandem upright.

    The last few years we've done the Hampton to Hove instead - similar route, far fewer people and more regular cyclists. I'd recommend it. This year it's July 13th, I think
    The Big "H" is a fantastic ride- Run for a mentally handicapped charity and it does see a lot of Tandems on it. Good strong rider up front and a Mentally handicapped youth on the back. Did get annoying one year when I was designated a minder, along with 5 others, for 3 handicapped lads. They were on their cheap store bikes and the rest of us on MTB's with slicks. On the flat we could not keep them moving but first hill and they were gone. And the next hill and the next----. They were good friends and decided to save their energy for the hills.

    And have been thinking about what bike to use on the L to B. Tandem with an 8am start is going to be heavy to push up the hills. The road bikes are precious to me so it is a choice between the Bianchi and the OCR. Both will be able to take a knock so might save a bill by the end of the ride.

    Edit

    And Mojo- They hope to raise around $10 million on this ride for the British Heart Foundation.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


    Spike Milligan

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