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  1. #1
    Newbie SimicRecluse's Avatar
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    Is it okay to show up to a racing event with a low-end fixed gear?

    I'm somewhat new to road bikes, but have been commuting on ****ty walmart bikes most of my life. It wasn't too long ago that I actually did any research on road bikes, and the bike I have now is a Vilano Rampage, of which I am slowly upgrading the various parts on it. I just want to test the waters with road bike racing, and see if I even remotely want to do this as a sport and move up in terms of getting quality bicycles. So would it be frowned upon or look silly to show up to an event with a low end fixie (when everyone else is probably going to have a geared racing bike)? The event in question I am considering is the 28 mile event El tour de Mesa http://www.perimeterbicycling.com/el-tour-de-mesa/ and while it is a charity racing event, it is still a racing event. I'm not really sure how well received fixies are in the biking communities in general because they seem to get a bad rap, especially flashy lower quality ones, and I wouldn't want to show up only to be ostracized, or get a lot of hate or weird looks for it, or would people just not care especially at a charity race, and just be happy to see others enjoying their hobby aswell? Alternatively am I worrying about this too much and should I just not care?

    And to clarify: my expectations of this race are too finish, I have no delusions of even placing remotely high - though riding moderately quick over the course of 28 miles is within doable for me as I am somewhat fit - though I would think the 70 mile race is out of my league
    Last edited by SimicRecluse; 02-19-15 at 02:23 AM.

  2. #2
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    Nobody will care unless you are in a paceline. As long as you stay out of the pacelines and hold a reliable line, you will be fine. But unless you are a beast, you won't be "racing" if you never draft anyone.

  3. #3
    Fresh Garbage hairnet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SimicRecluse View Post
    Alternatively am I worrying about this too much and should I just not care?
    You are correct! If you want to race then get a USAC license and try out cat5 racing. You will need a freewheel and brakes, then you crush some souls on your SS.
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrodzilla View Post
    I often need to flip my brain to the freewheel side when reading this forum.
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  4. #4
    T13
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    Yeah dude, show up in some dirty jeans, with a 200$ bike and a screwdriver in yer water bottle, and don't come in last.

  5. #5
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    1) The only equipment restriction I can see is about aerobars.

    Rules | El Tour de Mesa

    2) I doubt you'll be on the lowest end bike there

    3) This looks like an organized group ride, not a race or "racing event," however you define that term.

    4) Ride your bike, don't crash yourself or others, and have a good time.
    Last edited by caloso; 02-19-15 at 12:06 PM.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  6. #6
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    If anyone has a problem with what you ride ----- THEY have a problem, not you!

    Enjoy your ride!

    "Retirement is the best job I ever had!" Me, 2009


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  7. #7
    T13
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    Cheap, flashy bikes get "a bad rap" from people who really like bikes and bike stuff, because not only are they tacky, but usually the people riding them are people who are fad followers, here today gone tomorrow(hopefully).

  8. #8
    Senior Member Huffandstuff's Avatar
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    I raced almost all of last track season on a #kilott , didn't stop me from podiuming every time.

    Also, tour de mesa isn't a race, just go out and enjoy the ride.

  9. #9
    Senior Member TenSpeedV2's Avatar
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    I took my fixed gear to a couple of events last year and got those looks from a few people on geared road bikes. They were not races, but they were group rides at a faster pace, and both were in the 50 mile range. Fixed gear? I had no problems keeping up, and passing quite a few of them. It is all about the rider, not the bike.

  10. #10
    Fresh Garbage hairnet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wanderer View Post
    If anyone has a problem with what you ride ----- THEY have a problem, not you!

    Enjoy your ride!
    +1 I did my first charity ride in October with my 80s road conversion. 150 miles, I got weird looks until later in the ride when I didn't look half as tired as so many others there. Lots of haters
    Quote Originally Posted by Scrodzilla View Post
    I often need to flip my brain to the freewheel side when reading this forum.
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  11. #11
    T13
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    Only the spandex wearing, helmet mounted dentist mirror crowd might give you dirty looks. If they do, then you are doing something right.

  12. #12
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T13 View Post
    Only the spandex wearing, helmet mounted dentist mirror crowd might give you dirty looks. If they do, then you are doing something right.
    That made me smile. Thanks!

    "Retirement is the best job I ever had!" Me, 2009


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  13. #13
    Newbie SimicRecluse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wanderer View Post
    If anyone has a problem with what you ride ----- THEY have a problem, not you!

    Enjoy your ride!
    Thanks for all the comments, this is making me feel much more confident about this

  14. #14
    A Schooner IS a sailboat Wspsux's Avatar
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    Every weird look you get should bolster your pride! Have a blast!

  15. #15
    Senior Member zazenzach's Avatar
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    if you are already regularly doing 28 miles, then go for it. as long as you finish and have fun, that's all that matters.

    however if this is your first rodeo, I dont think Id want to do something like that on a SS. 28 miles with inclines and hills wouldnt be fun.

  16. #16
    Senior Member JeremyLC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zazenzach View Post
    if you are already regularly doing 28 miles, then go for it. as long as you finish and have fun, that's all that matters.

    however if this is your first rodeo, I dont think Id want to do something like that on a SS. 28 miles with inclines and hills wouldnt be fun.
    Did you look at the elevation chart, though? The first 2.5 miles or so is downhill, followed by 8.5-ish miles of gradual climbing then 17 miles going down. (unless I misread it) I think the OP will be fine, as long as s/he's not overgeared for the climbing portion. Plus, if it's anyhing like the rides here in TX there will be rest stops with water, gatorade, and TONS of sugary snacks every 5-10 miles.

    To the OP I'd say don't sweat it, just ride at a comfortable pace, enjoy the scenery, and don't be afraid (or ashamed) to stop if you need (or want) to. If you're not enjoying it, there's no point being there.

    You'll see all levels and varieties of bikes, some nicer than, and likely some not as nice as yours. Usually no one cares what you're riding.

  17. #17
    Clark W. Griswold
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    You should go in some sort of bad arse costume. Your bike won't matter much if you are racing in a dragon suit or something like that. Have fun with it and you will be fine.
    Quote Originally Posted by jhess74 View Post
    just flip it over to fixed and forget about brakes. check out the documentary "premium rush" for more info.

  18. #18
    Not actually Tmonk TMonk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huffandstuff View Post
    I raced almost all of last track season on a #kilott , didn't stop me from podiuming every time.
    Time to upgrade tough guy!
    "Your beauty is an aeroplane;
    so high, my heart cannot bear the strain." -A.C. Jobim, Triste

  19. #19
    THE STUFFED Leukybear's Avatar
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    There's no shame in a cheap bike. Let your legs do the talking.
    Quote Originally Posted by Night_shift View Post
    NICE! But my quads destroy wheels with less than 32 spokes.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Huffandstuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TMonk View Post
    Time to upgrade tough guy!
    It's on the list, just bought a road bike and track tubulars this month so should be upgrade time by late this season or next winter. Racing on the leader now cause it's got a longer top tube and stiffer.

  21. #21
    Senior Member chas58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elvo View Post
    Nobody will care unless you are in a paceline. As long as you stay out of the pacelines and hold a reliable line, you will be fine. But unless you are a beast, you won't be "racing" if you never draft anyone.
    +1
    The only real problem is pacelining. If you are doing any serious racing you will need good pacelining skills, and a fixed gear won't work well with that (unless everyone is riding FG, like at the velodrome). But if you are just having fun riding on your own, check the rules, be respectful, and have fun.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Philasteve's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SimicRecluse View Post
    I'm somewhat new to road bikes, but have been commuting on ****ty walmart bikes most of my life. It wasn't too long ago that I actually did any research on road bikes, and the bike I have now is a Vilano Rampage, of which I am slowly upgrading the various parts on it. I just want to test the waters with road bike racing, and see if I even remotely want to do this as a sport and move up in terms of getting quality bicycles. So would it be frowned upon or look silly to show up to an event with a low end fixie (when everyone else is probably going to have a geared racing bike)? The event in question I am considering is the 28 mile event El tour de Mesa El Tour de Mesa | Perimeter Bicycling and while it is a charity racing event, it is still a racing event. I'm not really sure how well received fixies are in the biking communities in general because they seem to get a bad rap, especially flashy lower quality ones, and I wouldn't want to show up only to be ostracized, or get a lot of hate or weird looks for it, or would people just not care especially at a charity race, and just be happy to see others enjoying their hobby aswell? Alternatively am I worrying about this too much and should I just not care?

    And to clarify: my expectations of this race are too finish, I have no delusions of even placing remotely high - though riding moderately quick over the course of 28 miles is within doable for me as I am somewhat fit - though I would think the 70 mile race is out of my league
    You'll be fine everyone is there to have a good time. You should feel no pressure at all, just go and have fun..........This guy had no worries and showing up on a pink child's bike at a charity ride in Philly.

    Last edited by Philasteve; 02-20-15 at 12:46 PM.
    Bye-bye Mom, it's now me and my black metal friends.

  23. #23
    Senior Member sickz's Avatar
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    it matters to you. im a firm believer that you have to like what you ride to bring out your best. function and form.

    if you enpower yourself by laying the smack down with inferior equipment, then by all means do not remove the goodwill price sticker. insult to injury if ya could snag a win with one. handle that.

  24. #24
    Not actually Tmonk TMonk's Avatar
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    until you start routinely losing races by less than a wheel length, I wouldn't worry at all about your equip and just try to race fast
    "Your beauty is an aeroplane;
    so high, my heart cannot bear the strain." -A.C. Jobim, Triste

  25. #25
    Senior Member iTripped's Avatar
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    Showing up at a race with a cheap bike didn't stop this guy from stomping all over the field.
    http://www.pedalroom.com/member/itripped

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