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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 05-16-05, 01:29 PM   #1
jgsjr
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MS 150 Red River Challenge on a fixie

MS 150 Red River Challenge on a fixie.

Ride report (NOT a solicitation for funds)

Once again, the predominately-South winds of North Texas turned 20mph head winds for the MS 150 Dallas to Ardmore, OK. The good news,…It didn’t rain….much. I started at the usual 48x16 but changed to 48x18 at about 40 miles because of the headwind. I got some surprised reactions from riders at the beginning of the ride. I guess they thought a guy on a fixed gear would probably finish with the obese on comfort bikes. But about half way through they became a bit more interested as I passed them going uphill and they passed coming down. This continued until the turn off for the century loop (an extra 12 miles) which I took and the others didn’t. The bad thing about the Red River Challenge is that the first day 90% of the time you are heading North into a head wind, which helps explain the terrible time of 5 hours 59 minutes for the 100 miles. The last rides came in at 8:00pm, thirteen hours after the start – these were the people I was impressed with over weight, out of shape, comfort or K-mart bikes but still managed to ride the entire course.

Traffic control was unbelievable, SAG vans were everywhere, motorcycle “escorts” where everywhere. Local bike shops had repair areas at every rest stop. Every rest stop was over flowing with food and drink. It was the widest variety of food I have ever seen on a ride (bananas, cookies, trail mix, peanuts, protein bars and even Twinkies).

The second day was the 62.5 miles and started with a mass start as state troopers closed off the bridge over Lake Texahoma for all 2,300(est) to cross in one mass formation. After that, it was 62 miles of Oklahoma rolling hills and 3 hours and 10 minutes to the finish line.

I will probably do it again next year or the Ride to the Beach this October, on my fixed gear of course. The best part had to be (like on most rides) is to riding along with a group at a pretty hefty clip, when someone notices and says, “Wow, a single speed.” And I reply “Fixed.” The look on their faces makes it all worth it.
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Old 05-16-05, 03:53 PM   #2
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Cool. I think I'm going to do the one here in central MO this year. You don't happen to know if they require a brake, do you?
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Old 05-16-05, 07:06 PM   #3
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Front brake is not required as far as I know of. For free repairs on the road you need to have your bike inspected at a local bike shop, but it is not required to ride. When I wheeled my bike into the shop and asked for an inspection the mechanic came to take it in the back. He glanced at it without taking it back and slapped an inspected sticker on it. Nothing to inspect he said.
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Old 05-16-05, 07:41 PM   #4
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They probably don't "require" a brake, but if you're doing those kinds of distances, you probably want one for the descents! Riding brakeless in the city is one thing, but doing a century brakeless is quite another.
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Old 05-17-05, 07:36 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fugazi Dave
Cool. I think I'm going to do the one here in central MO this year. You don't happen to know if they require a brake, do you?
these things are organized at the state association level, so you might want to inquire locally. here in michigan they are quite explicit about requiring helmets but say nothing about brakes; there are also different minimum ages for the two rides. if you want to keep your cards close to your chest you could just ask "what are the rules" and there will probably not be anything about brakes. but you should ask first.

incidentally, i'm planning on 200 fixed miles for the (so-called) metro detroit ms150 this year. the most i have done in previous years has been 150 over two days, or 100 on single days.
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Old 05-17-05, 09:04 PM   #6
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I rode the MS 150 (City to Shore) in Philly last year. They did not require brakes... just a helmet. Actually, the repairs were free whether you had your bike inspected or not... they just didnt bother to ask. I busted a few tires on the ride and they just pulled over and changed them for me... which was pretty sweet. One guy busted a spoke and they fixed that as well. sweeeeet.
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Old 05-18-05, 11:55 AM   #7
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i havent done the local shorerides at this point, but the 62.5 mile one for the cancer association or whatever makes a point of having brakes for both wheels on its website citing NJ State law...
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Old 05-18-05, 02:03 PM   #8
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Hey guys I just wanted to leave a little note a apprectiation for you guys that do the MS rides. My mom was diagnosed with MS about 4 years ago and it has been very tough on our family. So anyone who does one of these rides gets a big up in my book, these rides mean a great deal to me and my family.

The MS ride is how I went from a casual cyclist to a 4,000+ miles a year cyclist. I don't know how to explain it, I just wanted to do a huge event that would be some how symbolic of the challenge she was facing; if that makes any sense. Anyway I am doing my 3rd one this weekend (1,400 dollars raised as of today), the 170 coast the coast, plus the first day their is an option to do a century to it will be more like the MS 190. I am still debating doing it fixed. The only thing stopping me is the fact that my road bike was a sort of a gift from them for the first MS ride (I had done all my training for it on my mtb), so their is some degree of senitmental value there.

Anyway thanks everyone who is doing or has done one of these rides and congrats on doing an MS ride fixed!
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