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El Tour de Tucson....coming soon.

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

El Tour de Tucson....coming soon.

Old 09-14-10, 02:07 PM
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JRonaTrek
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El Tour de Tucson....coming soon.

So, I've been riding for almost 1 year. I loved it from day one. I did 1 ride so far, it was a ride, and not a race....but i treated it as a race, along with a few others, ended up coming in 6th. but then again, it wasnt a race.

So, this whole time, i've been working at getting faster, getting into shape, i lost 26 lbs. so yes, i have gotten faster.

I am doing the "tour de Tucson" anyone know what to expect. A few friends of mine, along with myself will be riding there.


just want to get an idea as to what i am getting myself into.
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Old 09-14-10, 02:32 PM
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I thought about doing this, and still might. I decided to do the Heart of AZ Century first though a couple weeks before. The Tour de Tucson is just so expensive for what it is. I don't personally feel like it's worth it to spend $150 for gas and entry fees just for an almost flat century and heard there is a gravel section as well.

Look forward to hearing some info on it though, never know I might end up spilling the dough anyways.
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Old 09-14-10, 02:50 PM
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Dammit, you have more posts than me!
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Old 09-14-10, 03:01 PM
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The TdT is very well organized - clear starting areas, cops at every intersection, and frequent rest stops. The large number of riders makes for a really fun experience; no matter how fast you are you'll probably be able to ride in a group the whole way.

There are no gravel sections to ride, but there are two wash crossings where most riders dismount and push or carry the bikes.
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Old 09-14-10, 03:04 PM
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I just heard about this ride on today's ride and was going to look at for a trip. I also was going to see if there is a January ride anywhere warm. The might have more appeal.
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Old 09-14-10, 03:12 PM
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Originally Posted by bdjouppi View Post
The TdT is very well organized - clear starting areas, cops at every intersection, and frequent rest stops. The large number of riders makes for a really fun experience; no matter how fast you are you'll probably be able to ride in a group the whole way.

There are no gravel sections to ride, but there are two wash crossings where most riders dismount and push or carry the bikes.
So is it a race? or is it a ride?
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Old 09-14-10, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by dbikingman View Post
I just heard about this ride on today's ride and was going to look at for a trip. I also was going to see if there is a January ride anywhere warm. The might have more appeal.
I know that there is a Tour de Phoenix, after the TDT, and i think it's in January....but i am not positive.
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Old 09-14-10, 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by JRonaTrek View Post
So is it a race? or is it a ride?
As far as I know it's a ride, but sort of in a Gran Fondo way to where it's timed. It's not a road race or anything.

BTW, you going to race in the spring? I'll be starting for the first time this spring once the crits and stuff start back up and looking forward to it.
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Old 09-14-10, 03:20 PM
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Originally Posted by JRonaTrek View Post
I know that there is a Tour de Phoenix, after the TDT, and i think it's in January....but i am not positive.
The Tour de Phoenix is in April. I'm not sure of any 2011 Jan/Feb rides yet, will have to keep an eye out when it gets closer to time.
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Old 09-14-10, 03:23 PM
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The Tour De Tucson is a ride, not a race. Or so it is advertised. Tell that to the guys that complete the 109 mile ride in 4:24 as part of a team. I did the ride last year as my first major event, and really enjoyed it. As stated above, it is very well organized with more than enough aid stations and law enforcement along the route. Just be prepared for the large crowd. Last year had around 10,000 riders. That being said, there were not many crashes and most riders (at my ability level) were just out to complete the century, not compete.

I am doing it this year and would recommend it to anyone who asked.
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Old 09-14-10, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Creatre View Post
I thought about doing this, and still might. I decided to do the Heart of AZ Century first though a couple weeks before.
I'll most likely be helping out for the Heart of Arizona, as I've been riding with the club (Bullshifters) that runs the event.

The swag this year will be really nice Merino-wool arm warmers: Tough ride; great goodies.

And there are a lot of people training really hard for Tucson. I'm sure there will be a pre-race announcement about how it isn't a race. Then the race will start.
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Old 09-14-10, 05:07 PM
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It's a timed event and a big percentage of the riders will treat it like a race. I'm sure you'll get atleast 10th place!
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Old 09-14-10, 06:29 PM
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I was considering doing one of the AZ tours until they started up with that lame anti-immigrant crap. After that I decided to take my money elsewhere. I even told TNT that there was no way I would participate if they were going to AZ.
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Old 09-14-10, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by iconicflux View Post
I was considering doing one of the AZ tours until they started up with that lame anti-immigrant crap. After that I decided to take my money elsewhere. I even told TNT that there was no way I would participate if they were going to AZ.
TNT? I'd rather get deported!
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Old 09-14-10, 06:35 PM
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I did it last year, it was great! Nice course, lots of aid stations, just enough hills.. I hit a wall out on Tangerine, downhill into a headwind.. Stopped at the aid station by the Interstate to take a break.. Last aid station too, had great pumpkin bread as a snack..

I'd recommend it to anybody. The only suprise I ran into is after the second wash crossing, coming out of that subdivision, there was a crazy hill that I was in my granny gear and standing the whole way.. I didn't expect it..
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Old 09-14-10, 08:10 PM
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Several co-workers have done this event and speak highly of it. Ill be riding with them this year. I have found the courses in mapmyride.com and exported the files into google earth to watch a fly over of the course and hills.
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Old 09-14-10, 09:29 PM
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Officially: not a race.

However, many (most?) riders ride it to establish a personal best time. And yes, up front, there are even riders who race it to "win" (i.e: be the first over the finish line) although there are no prizes.

The racers start the ride first. The farther back in line you are at the start, the less "racy" the people around you will be. Riders are arranged at the start in groups organized by expected finishing times. The first is "Platinum" (sub-5 hours). This section is reserved and is by qualification/invitation only. Next is "Gold" (sub-6 hours), then "Silver" (sub-7) and finally "Bronze" (sub-10, I think). Many riders arrive early in the AM in order to get a good spot up front. The forward spots are filled up by 5:30am and the ride doesn't begin 'til 7:00! I'm in the platinum/reserved section, and I still get there about 5am.

There are several routes (109-miles, 80-, 60- and 30-miles, I think those are them). The 109 has about 4-5,000 riders start all at once (called a "mass start"). Then the others add another 4,000 rider along the course. All routes finish in the same spot, but start in different locations. Avoid TNT riders (green & purple kit) like the plague.

There are many rolling hills, with none of them approaching "real climb" status. However, at the end, after 90+ miles, they can wear on you. There is one, short, steep wall at about the 60-mile mark. It's maybe 1/4 mile long, then it's over. There's about 3,000+ feet of climbing in the 109-route.

There are two dry creek beds. The first is short and possible to ride through (it's somewhat hard dirt). However, if there's too many people in it at once, you'll have to walk at least part of it. The second is mostly sand. You'll have to walk most of it. If you do ride any of it, beware large rocks hidden under the sand that will catch your front wheel.

It is usually very cold at the 109 start. Most riders wear "throw-away" clothes while lining up. But the temps warm-up throughout the day, until it is very nice. Police control the intersections until about 2:00pm or so, holding car traffic to let riders through first.

I have never once used any of the SAG stops, so I cannot comment on them. I would assume they are excellent. The finish area is awesome. Riders can even get free massages (for cost of gratuity)! Lots of water and fruit available (free) and some food vendors (pizza is a favorite!) for a price.

All in all, I will keep going, even though it does cost me $300+ for the weekend (registration, food, gas, hotel). I would recommend it to any cyclists to try at least once. It is an experience not to be missed.
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Old 09-14-10, 09:52 PM
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On a side note, if you look up Tucson on Google Earth, the picture was taken last year at the time of the race. You can follow the route and zoom in and see riders. It was taken shortly before the start of the 35 mile event and you can see the large mass at the start line at Ironwood Ridge High School (La Cholla and Naranja on the North side of Tucson). Knowing this, I was actually able to find me at one of the aid stations waiting for the rest of my group on Moore Rd. Ok, so it is actually a blur, but it is exactly where I was waiting, talking to friends that came out to support us during the race. Kinda cool. By the way, good description of the event above, but one of the rules specifically states that you are not allowed to ride through the washes (although the people trying to win do).
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Old 09-14-10, 10:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Tribronc View Post
you can see the large mass at the start line at Ironwood Ridge High School (La Cholla and Naranja on the North side of Tucson).
https://bit.ly/cL64du
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Old 11-03-10, 08:02 AM
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Going this month.
Should I be prepared for goatheads?
Sealant? Anti-flat strips in the tires?
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Old 11-03-10, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by CHAS View Post
Going this month.
Should I be prepared for goatheads?
Sealant? Anti-flat strips in the tires?
It is Arizona, where the state flower should be the cactus. However, I have only had a couple of flats here in the past year. I am running the Michelin Krylion tires which are a little more puncture resistant than a standard tire. Gatorskins are even better out here. Most who cycle here run some sort of puncture resistant tire. I don' think sealant is necessary. Standard road debris and occassional glass. But, they do sweep the course the night before, so hopefully, debris is at a minimum.

Good luck and enjoy! It is a great event.
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Old 11-03-10, 12:47 PM
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Its a great ride and I recommend doing it if at all possible. Don't miss it.
I had planed on doing it this year again but health issues stand in the way.
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Old 11-03-10, 12:56 PM
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Re: Tour De Tucson

I did it last year. Going this year also. It was a fun century. A word of caution though. Be careful in the first 5 miles or so as there alot of riders who for some strange reason think they are going to finish in a 1/2 hour by charging from the start line. It gets kind of dangerous. This is where you'll see dropped water bottles and some crashes.
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Old 11-03-10, 01:40 PM
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ill be there!
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