Rode Bike Racing
Hey everyone, I'm just now getting into racing and do not know much about it. Was looking for advice and such. Right now I have a cheap SE Draft Lite fixed gear with a 42:14 ratio. If I entered a race as a category 5 which is what I would have to being it will be my first race, do you think I'd do good? Or should I get a geared bike? My only thing is I can't spend any more than 350 for a bike at this point. Thanks for any advice!
You probably need to get a geared bike for a few reasons. The first is that you must have two brakes on your bike, and I suspect that isn't the case with most fixed-gear bikes, though I'm not certain. Second, the issue with SSFG is that you will always be in the wrong gear. Going up hills your gear will be too big, and you won't be able to pedal fast enough, and going fast on the flat, or god help you downhill, it will be too small, and you will not be able to keep up with the guys with 52x14.
You'd probably be best served by waiting a bit and saving your money for a new bike, or hunting around your local craigslist for a bike with gears.
Do you have a velodrome nearby? Their bikes cost about the 1/3 to 1/2 of the equivalent road bike. You can get a respectable piece of kit for £200 (Used Langster Pros even!).
I doubt most events would allow a fixie to enter...
And whether you would do good, the only way to find out is race.
You're definitely gonna want a geared bike, especially if you're doing anything with hills on it. For that: Craigslist is the best source. Example of some bikes I found locally under $350: http://baltimore.craigslist.org/bik/3800424303.html http://baltimore.craigslist.org/bik/3790180283.html (close to $350) http://baltimore.craigslist.org/bik/3803219820.html http://baltimore.craigslist.org/bik/3770609614.html
I started with a performance road bike last season and I worked two jobs over the summer and made enough to buy myself a nice road bike, so that is what I would recommend for now. Get something used, work hard and you'll have what you need.
Thanks everyone. I asked on here and then I actually went up to the bike shop I go to for all my bike necessities and asked them about it. Next month I'll have enough for a tier 2 bike; so I'll be getting that next month and I also talked to a guy that races on the team there and with the times I was getting on my fixed gear going 30 miles and such, I was invited on the rides they carry out and to the winter training in shop this winter. He told me the same thing; "Just get a road bike, and you'll be good". The owner and co-owner are already aware of my presence in the cycling community here in Columbus and are excited about having me enter the competitive arena next season, and so am I! Thanks again, guys!
Best of luck to you.