Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 02-23-12, 06:36 PM   #1
Allegheny Jet 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Allegheny Jet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Medina, OH
Bikes: confidential infromation that I don't even share with my wife
Posts: 5,708
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Gravel road race tire question

I'm entered in the sold out Barry-Roubaix gravel road race next month in Michigan. I'm in the 55+ division and believe that we will start in a wave which includes everyone in the 45+ and up races. I have not done the race but do know a few riders who raced there before. One can't predict the race conditions and the final race course will be determined up to the day of the race. The reports I have gotten suggest that a cross bike is in order and a road bike would be good except for the single track section and the skinny tires on loose gravel.

I have a Trek XO1 that I race cross with and a Specialized HardRock Comp 29'er that I could use if the conditions are really poor. I also have a Specialized CF Roubaix with a compact crank. I was able to mount Kenda Kwick 30mm tires on the wheels and there is clearance under the Sram brakes. I also have several sets of cross tires including Conti Speeds in 35mm and Mud 2's in 33mm to use on the Trek XO1.

I don't know how tight the gravel is on the roads and would like to ride the Roubaix with the 30mm tires. Looking at images of the race last year I see guys lined up with mtb and cross bikes. I am thinking that the Roubaix could give me some advantage at the start while the race sorts itself out.

Anyone done the race? How about racing on a gravel road? I seek the collective wisdom and experience of the Cylclocross Forum.

I do plan on riding on gravel and dirt roads in W PA next weekend but don't want to assume those roads will be made of the same materials.
__________________
oldschool areodynamic brick
Allegheny Jet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-12, 08:09 PM   #2
adam_mac84
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 614
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I rode the course a week ago... If it is warm, it will be sandy... if frozen, hard and fast, the 2 track has taken more than a few riders down lately due to frozen icy ruts. There is a section of deep sand like 8 miles before the finish that is deep sand. I'd run a CX bike with file treads. Those kwicks are super heavy, maybe invest in some Mich Jett's

I did the 35m loop. PM if you have specific questions
adam_mac84 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-12, 08:12 PM   #3
adam_mac84
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 614
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
oh, and don't be tempted into running too high pressure to be 'fast'. Read up on tire pressure and rolling resistance. We ride a lot of gravel, and i find that the lowest pressure possible without pinch flatting is best. Depending on if you are racing or riding (and don't want the hassle of a flat).
adam_mac84 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-12, 08:07 AM   #4
Allegheny Jet 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Allegheny Jet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Medina, OH
Bikes: confidential infromation that I don't even share with my wife
Posts: 5,708
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks for the road info. I did not know about sand, that is something else to consider making a wider tire choice viable. I will be doing the event as a race, so speed is important, and I will experiment with different tire pressures to determine speed vs handling. I have a cabin in W PA that has a 1.4 mile rolling gravel access road and I just might take my PT wheel and try various options and compare HR and watts at a certain speed. There are lots of rolling gravel and dirt roads in the area that average about 75-100/mile of climbing that should be a good prep for the race.
__________________
oldschool areodynamic brick
Allegheny Jet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-12, 09:55 AM   #5
adam_mac84
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 614
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
oh yea, i would certainly go with a wider tire and a CX bike. There is only a couple of spots, but if you are racing you may be off your bike in some of that sand (if you run too narrow/high pressure)..
adam_mac84 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-12, 10:10 AM   #6
XLR99
Senior Member
 
XLR99's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Medina, OH
Bikes: 85 Cilo, '91 Bianchi Volpe, '00 Gary Fisher, '74 Raleigh SuperCourse, '06 Soma Groove, '09 Nashbar X
Posts: 275
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'm glad I checked in here! I'm also going to B-R, but looks like I'll be doing it as more of a ride than a competitive event, due to a nagging back injury that's kept me from doing much real riding for awhile now (not that I'm 'competitive' in the normal sense when fully healthy ). I was planning on using my cx bike with crossmax tires and slightly higher pressures than I'd use on a dry cx race, and bringing Mud2s in case it's really soft or snow covered.
XLR99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-26-12, 05:11 PM   #7
Allegheny Jet 
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Allegheny Jet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Medina, OH
Bikes: confidential infromation that I don't even share with my wife
Posts: 5,708
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks for the tire advice adam_mac84. I raced on the Conti Speed 34 file treads and put a compact on my cross bike to give more gearing on both ends. I put 55 lbs in the front and 60 lbs in the rear. I was able to ride on the shoulder of some of my local country roads to get the feel of gravel since we don't have any gravel roads in my locale. I raced the 55+ race leaving in the 4th wave. I was able to ride through most all of the first section of double track but had to walk up the hill with everyone else on the sandy section with 8 miles to go. I ended up with a 18.46 ave and 3rd place in my race.

It was a great and hard race which is well organized and I hope to be able to do it again next year.
__________________
oldschool areodynamic brick
Allegheny Jet is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:48 AM.