Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. #1
    Gios
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    France
    My Bikes
    Pinnacle Rokh, Look 586, Merckx Corsa 01
    Posts
    145
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Etape du Tour - worst experience on a bike

    I posted here a while back before doing this ride, so for those interested, a (small) report.

    Basically, 200+ very hilly kms in the Massif Central in France.

    To cut a long story short, DNF. My first. Though out of 6500 registered, only 1900 did: 2000+ took a look at the weather predictions and had the good sense not to show up. Of the rest of us, over half dropped out.

    I didn't drop out because it was difficult, or hard, or in a sense, beyond me. I stopped, like many/most, when I couldn't grip the levers enough to brake, I couldn't change gears, hold a bidon, get a bar out of my pocket etc. etc. We got caught out by extreme weather up on a plateau, that had us all drenched, frozen and in various states of hypothermia. At the first food stop (67 km), when I realised I couldn't go on (and shouldn't given that there was worse ahead), I was sent to a quickly set-up emergency centre, where ambulance workers sorted us out. I felt shocking, couldn't even hold my phone still long enough to text or call my riding buddy, but there were people there far worse than me and in a very distressed state. I certainly felt for the other 50+ riders, because we (they) were the ones that seemed the most affected.

    Credit to ASO, the organisers, who managed to get on top of a potentially disastrous situation quickly.

    For anyone interested in reading further, various reports, blogs, videos etc. amongst the following:

    http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/news/...e-du-tour.html

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qUZpV31uxIY

    http://www.strava.com/rides/to-saint-flour-958844

    TV report (in French, but images tell the tale)

    http://auvergne.france3.fr/info/la-m...onglet=videos&

    and a thread here, with reports from various participants, not to mention a couple of smug critics: starts half way down page (first part is re the previous EDT):

    http://www.bikeradar.com/forums/view...89262&start=20

  2. #2
    Travelling hopefully chasm54's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Uncertain
    Posts
    7,090
    Mentioned
    11 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Ouch. Pity. There's always the risk of extreme conditions up there, and you made a good decision to back off rather than put yourself in danger.
    There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.

  3. #3
    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Montgomery County, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    6,471
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Despite your title, I'm guessing you learned a great deal on that ride. Some learning, however, if more difficult at the time than others. Glad you had the sense to stop.
    A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking. - S. Wright
    Favorite rides in the stable: Indy Fab CJ Ti - Colnago MXL - S-Works Roubaix - Habanero Team Issue - Jamis Eclipse carbon/831

  4. #4
    Senior Member volosong's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Antelope Valley, SoCal
    Posts
    2,510
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by bing181 View Post
    I posted here a while back before doing this ride, so for those interested, a (small) report.

    Basically, 200+ very hilly kms in the Massif Central in France.

    ...

    TV report (in French, but images tell the tale)

    http://auvergne.france3.fr/info/la-m...onglet=videos&
    Wow! Incredible cycling conditions. Looks like most people were prepared. Guess just not quite enough. You were smart to stop. Tough start for MondoVélo, (article says it is the first ride they organized).
    Deut 6:5

    ---

    "Ha ha! You fool! You fell victim to one of the classic blunders - The most famous of which is 'never get involved in a land war in Asia'".
    - Vizzini during his "battle of wits" with the Man in Black

  5. #5
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Milledgeville, Georgia
    My Bikes
    2014 Specialized Crave Pro 29, 2014 Specialized Crux EVO Carbon Disc, 2012 Black Mountain Cycles Monster Cross, 2011 Specialized Roubaix SL3 Expert Compact, 2009 Salsa Casseroll, 2003 KHS Milano Tandem, 1986 Nishiki Cadence rigid MTB
    Posts
    12,800
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    That is some harsh luck! I would guess that many people had quite a lot invested in doing that ride and it must have been quite a blow to have the weather ruin it. Kind of makes one think about considering an insurance policy. I guess there is such a thing as vacation insurance.(?)
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Terex's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Jersey - outside the bibs.
    Posts
    3,479
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    "6500 registered"

    That's primarily why I would never enter one of these.

    In general, committing a lot of time and resources to any single event like this - that that can go wrong very quickly for many reasons - has always seemed like a bad idea to me. You are in France, so not as big a stretch as for many of us. I've had friends who've flown to Europe for large single day event who've had such bad experiences that they felt they wasted a year of their lives in preparation.
    "It could be anything. Scrap booking, high-stakes poker, or the Santa Fe lifestyle. Just pick a dead-end and chill out 'till you die."

  7. #7
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    6 miles inland from the coast of Sussex, in the South East of England
    My Bikes
    Dale MT2000. Bianchi FS920 Kona Explosif. Giant TCR C. Boreas Ignis. Pinarello Fp Uno.
    Posts
    19,915
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Been around Mountains and desolate places since I was about 15 so I do understand what the weather can throw at you. I also did 16 years of serious mountain biking up on our local hills so Know what even a little bit of rain with wind can do to you. But luckily our local hills are close to home so if it is that bad I can always find a sheltered route home.

    BUT to plan and train for a ride like that and you get to the start and start wondering. If you thought about it- you would not have left the Hotel. How long will the weather last?- Can I afford to carry all that warm clothing if it warms up?- And I have trained for this ride and I am going to do it.

    You did the right thing by attempting to ride- but did better by pulling out when you did.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


    Spike Milligan

  8. #8
    Senior Member gcottay's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Green Valley AZ
    My Bikes
    Trice Q; Volae Century; TT 3.4
    Posts
    3,772
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Best wishes for great rides in the future. A benign universe would certainly owe you and the other weather victims some splendid days.
    George
    Laissez les bon temps rouler

  9. #9
    Senior Member teachme's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Nederland, Texas
    My Bikes
    2011 Specialized Sectuer, 1988 Bianchi
    Posts
    1,441
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Courageous story! Sounds too hard core for me. Kudo's for giving it a valiant try.
    Official member of the Brotherhood of Clyde...

    Lets stop diabetes! Click here: http://main.diabetes.org/site/TR/?px...nal&fr_id=8067 to donate to the Tour de Cure.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    722
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Jeez, who would think you'd get these kinds of conditions and temperatures in central France in the middle of July.

    Colorado, yes, France ?

    I know that I would be prepared for snow and sleet in Colorado but would never have thought to bring along enough rain gear and clothing to survive that in France.

  11. #11
    Gios
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    France
    My Bikes
    Pinnacle Rokh, Look 586, Merckx Corsa 01
    Posts
    145
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by teachme View Post
    Courageous story! Sounds too hard core for me. Kudo's for giving it a valiant try.
    Ouff, not really as courageous as that. Situations like this develop over an hour or two, and in reality, it was only when i stopped and saw the carnage around me that I started to really assess my own situation. There's a great (kind of funny) post on that bikeradar forum from a guy who basically blacked out and ended up in a ditch, and I'm glad I didn't get that far. I don't regret doing it, or pulling out, though it's hugely disappointing. Certainly toughened me up a bit though! HTFU indeed ...

  12. #12
    Senior Member John_V's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Tampa, Florida
    My Bikes
    2012 Colnago Ace road bike, 2010 Giant Cypress hybrid
    Posts
    3,305
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    The video tells it all. No translation needed.
    HCFR Cycling Team
    Ride Safe ... Ride Hard ... Ride Daily

    2012 Colnago Ace
    2010 Giant Cypress

  13. #13
    Senior Member CHAS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Silverthorne, Colorado
    My Bikes
    Rawlings Drakkar, Specialized Roubaix, Pivot, Challenge Trike, Tandem
    Posts
    636
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Good thing you were smart enough to stop when you did.
    It is good to know the organizers could manage to set up emergency facilities. They have run out of water twice at the stop on Mt. Ventoux that I know of.
    The year I went 9000 signed up. The weather was better.
    Watch the TdF the next two days. There is snow on the Alps.
    Pivot 5.7
    Rawland Drakkar 650B love it with 38mm Soma tires
    2009 Specialized Roubaix Ultegra
    Santana Fusion Tandem
    2010 Specialized TriCross
    Challenge Concept Trike
    One knee scoped so far.

    Homophobia is so gay.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •