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Old 02-10-17, 09:11 AM
the sci guy 
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Originally Posted by Fett2oo5
Hey sciguy, I'm new to the sport (6 months) and BlueBonnet Express will be my first organized ride. I'm excited, but a little nervous from not knowing anyone, nor how these rides typically go. In particular water and food stations, mechanical help, etc. Would it be possible to link up before the race?

Also, is there a thread that introduces newBs to rides? I like to be prepared for events, so I'm eager to soak up as much information as I can.
Do you mean at the ride (not a race!) before it starts, or days beforehand? Because I can certainly meet up with you the morning of when we get there.

You really need not worry. I was nervous when I went to my first which was the Ravens Revenge ride all the way up in Conroe. I soon found out these rides are very well organized and a well oiled machine.
Bring two water bottles on your bike - you'll most likely never go through both before hitting a rest stop. At the first rest stop I usually empty one water bottle and fill it with Gatorade.
The stops are usually 10-12 miles apart sometimes more sometimes less depending on the ride and area.
I didn't know anyone on my first ride and I've ridden probably the majority of these t-shirt rides solo as well. It's still fun because you'll chat up riders you pass or meet at a rest stop. Or just relax and enjoy some you time. It's great either way.
Arrive early to get your packet and put on your numbers on and get some coffee or snacks before the start.
Then just suit up and wait to roll! There are lots and lots of riders so you'll usually be near someone. The routes are well marked and the map you get usually has a phone number of a SAG vehicle to call if you get lost.
If you get a flat or break down some other way just flag down a fellow rider or a ride marshal and they will help you fix it if you can't yourself. Or the SAG wagon will pick you up and take you to the next rest stop.
Don't stress - you'll leave all the worries behind after the first 2 miles. I did. Now I look forward to these every year!

The Bluebonnet in particular is a popular and well attended ride. It can be very very windy though. My first time I did the 50+ ride and I was only out there with a handful of people and it was absolutely brutal wind. But that's cycling in Texas!

Rest stops are fully stocked with drinks and energy snacks and bathrooms. Worry not. Bring your own food if you want too.

You'll have a great time.
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