Dive Ride - Review

Discussion in 'Australia and New Zealand' started by Cheezo, Apr 24, 2006.

  1. Cheezo

    Cheezo Guest

    Just to put things into context, this was only my second organised
    ride…. my first being the Around the Bay (100km version) last year. I
    have only been riding about 9 months and average about 80km/week.

    I was pretty apprehensive on the morning of this 180km ride.
    Unfortunately my love of late night Poker kept me up till 1:30 so I only
    got about 4 hrs sleep prior to the event – not a great start.

    Registration was a breeze and I started the event at 7am hoping to be
    done by about 4pm. Weather was cold and a bit windy but thankfully no
    rain. Was going well hanging on to the back of a big group until 9km in
    when my front tyre let go in a major way… managed to avoid causing a
    huge accident and got down to changing tubes – good thing I had the
    spare… took me about 25mins b/c I have only ever done it once before and
    never out on the road. Then had the problem of dirt/clay in the cleats
    so spent ages cleaning that up before I could click back in. Got going
    again but was way behind the pack….

    I amused myself on the way to Gisborne (first stop) by counting how many
    cyclists I went past as I started worrying about having to finish in the
    dark… went past about 70 cyclists (many of whom were changing tyres) and
    then 2km from Gisborne the front tyre let go again…. I cracked… was on
    the phone to wife to pick me up but just then the CBD Cyles van cruised
    past and I waved him down… 2 x new tubes (back was also flat and small
    hole in the tyre) and a new front tyre (big hole) later I was back on
    the road… apparently near the start the CBD guy said heaps of people got
    flats due to a few broken bottles on the road… didn’t surprise me – I
    had already been abused by about 5 motorists while minding my own
    business! Is this typical on organized rides or a northern/western
    suburbs thing?

    Got to Gisborne 1.5 hrs behind schedule so cruised through… hooked up
    with another guy (who ironically had also been through 3 tubes and a new
    tyre) and we pushed each other on to lunch at Trentham (80km mark) where
    it was freakin cold. Salad for lunch and about a 20min stop and we both
    decided to push on for the finish although we both knew some the
    toughest climbs lay ahead.

    Pushed on to Greendale through some incredibly steep hills… had to stop
    and walk up 2 of them (I only have 2 x chainrings on the front – now I
    know why 3 might come in handy). The benefit of the climbs were the
    steep decents where I hit my fastest ever 68.9km.

    The last 60 kms were ‘relatively’ flat and I managed to push on to the
    finish although my legs were cactus by the end and I was pretty cold and
    miserable. Finished just before 5pm. Stats from my computer were
    182.3km, 7hrs 58mins, avg. 22.8km/h (may have been a bit inaccurate due
    to excessive wheel removal and changing!!!)

    My thanks to the organizers – great event (MUCH better organized that
    2005 Round the Bay) and you never know I may be crazy enough to do this
    ride again one day.

    So in summary, my ‘Lessons Learned’
    1. Get a decent night’s sleep before a big ride
    2. Practice changing tyre tubes at home to get faster at it
    3. Practice more on hills…. Very different to flats – should I change to
    3 chainring?
    4. Riding with others is easier – get some people to ride with next time
    5. For some reason some motorists like to abuse cyclists
     
    Tags:


  2. Bleve

    Bleve Guest

    Cheezo wrote:
    > Just to put things into context, this was only my second organised
    > ride.... my first being the Around the Bay (100km version) last year. I
    > have only been riding about 9 months and average about 80km/week.


    You bit off a lot, well done for chewing it all! Doing a moderatly
    hilly imperial tonne + 20km is a big day out for anyone, let alone
    someone with the low mileage you have in your legs!

    Re your question concerning front rings, what do you have on the back?
    A 12:27 is often enough to get you up just about anything if you're not
    too heavy (I am too heavy, and that's what I use) with a regular 53:39
    front ring combination. Or, you may benefit from what's known as a
    "compact crank" which is just a fancy way of saying a smaller front
    "little ring" and a crank that's designed to fit such a thing. Cheaper
    & nicer than a triple front.
     
  3. Cheezo

    Cheezo Guest

    Thanks for that Bleve.... i'm not really down with all the bike
    terminology but i just looked up the web and found my bike (Specialized
    2004 Allez Elite with Shimano 105 9spd)... looks like i have a 12:25
    cassette on the back and a 53:39 on the front (I'm confused.... why are
    they called chainrings on the front but a cassette at the rear)....
    anyway thanks for the tip - will look in to either the different
    cassette or the compact crank.

    Bleve wrote:
    > Cheezo wrote:
    >> Just to put things into context, this was only my second organised
    >> ride.... my first being the Around the Bay (100km version) last year. I
    >> have only been riding about 9 months and average about 80km/week.

    >
    > You bit off a lot, well done for chewing it all! Doing a moderatly
    > hilly imperial tonne + 20km is a big day out for anyone, let alone
    > someone with the low mileage you have in your legs!
    >
    > Re your question concerning front rings, what do you have on the back?
    > A 12:27 is often enough to get you up just about anything if you're not
    > too heavy (I am too heavy, and that's what I use) with a regular 53:39
    > front ring combination. Or, you may benefit from what's known as a
    > "compact crank" which is just a fancy way of saying a smaller front
    > "little ring" and a crank that's designed to fit such a thing. Cheaper
    > & nicer than a triple front.
    >
     
  4. Resound

    Resound Guest

    "Cheezo" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > Thanks for that Bleve.... i'm not really down with all the bike
    > terminology but i just looked up the web and found my bike (Specialized
    > 2004 Allez Elite with Shimano 105 9spd)... looks like i have a 12:25
    > cassette on the back and a 53:39 on the front (I'm confused.... why are
    > they called chainrings on the front but a cassette at the rear).... anyway
    > thanks for the tip - will look in to either the different cassette or the
    > compact crank.
    >

    They're generally chainrings on the front but cogs at the rear. The cassette
    is the collection of cogs, hence a 12:25 cassette is a collection of cogs
    ranging in size from 12 to 23 teeth. They're all sprockets really, but it's
    historical usage and provides sage and arcane mumblings for the cogniscienti
    to produce in front of the youngsters.
     
  5. TimC

    TimC Guest

    On 2006-04-24, Resound (aka Bruce)
    was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea:
    > They're generally chainrings on the front but cogs at the rear. The cassette
    > is the collection of cogs, hence a 12:25 cassette is a collection of cogs
    > ranging in size from 12 to 23 teeth. They're all sprockets really, but it's
    > historical usage and provides sage and arcane mumblings for the cogniscienti
    > to produce in front of the youngsters.


    Shouldn't that be sprocketniscienti?

    --
    TimC
    I got told by a friend's ex-girlfriend that she could tell I was
    a Linux geek from the way I *walked*. -- Skud
     
  6. Resound

    Resound Guest

    "TimC" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected].
    > On 2006-04-24, Resound (aka Bruce)
    > was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea:
    >> They're generally chainrings on the front but cogs at the rear. The
    >> cassette
    >> is the collection of cogs, hence a 12:25 cassette is a collection of cogs
    >> ranging in size from 12 to 23 teeth. They're all sprockets really, but
    >> it's
    >> historical usage and provides sage and arcane mumblings for the
    >> cogniscienti
    >> to produce in front of the youngsters.

    >
    > Shouldn't that be sprocketniscienti?
    >

    See, I thought about that but stayed away. Not that I'm not prone to
    thinking "Ooh a line! Let's LEAP over it and see what happen!" but that was
    just tacky :p
     
  7. Claude

    Claude Guest

    "Cheezo" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > So in summary, my ‘Lessons Learned’
    > 5. For some reason some motorists like to abuse cyclists


    True, but I don't think the fact that they're motorists is the defining
    characteristic. I prefer to say that there are some people (mainly bogans
    in my experience) who, while they're driving, like to abuse cyclists.
    They're the sort of people who would abuse cyclists from the footpath, the
    pub or anywhere that is convenient.
     
  8. beerwolf

    beerwolf Guest

    Claude wrote:
    >
    > "Cheezo" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]
    >> So in summary, my 'Lessons Learned'
    >> 5. For some reason some motorists like to abuse cyclists

    >
    > True, but I don't think the fact that they're motorists is the defining
    > characteristic.


    Agree with this.

    > I prefer to say that there are some people (mainly bogans in
    > my experience) who, while they're driving, like to abuse cyclists. They're
    > the sort of people who would abuse cyclists from the footpath, the pub or
    > anywhere that is convenient.


    Except that the abuse comes more usually when they are within
    a vehicle, because they feel safer there and able to make a fast
    getaway if the target looks like wanting to return the compliment.

    --
    beerwolf (remove numbers from email address)
     
  9. Claude

    Claude Guest

    "beerwolf" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > Claude wrote:
    >
    > Except that the abuse comes more usually when they are within
    > a vehicle, because they feel safer there and able to make a fast
    > getaway if the target looks like wanting to return the compliment.


    I agree, but what I'm trying to say is that as cyclists we shouldn't
    demonise 'motorists' as a group because practically all adults are, or would
    like to be, drivers. Most adult cyclists are also drivers, no doubt. Our
    problem is with a small group of the population who like to threaten us. As
    you say, they are most inclined to do this while they're driving, probably
    because they think cyclists 'unreasonably' slow them down.
     
  10. MalP

    MalP New Member

    Joined:
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    I read Cheezo's account of the Great Divide Ride and thought I must have been on a different ride weather wise - what a difference a few minutes on the road can make regarding rain. I got soaked!

    I started with the first group at 6:50 with the intention of, hopefully, not being out the back of everyone for the entire day, figuring that as I dropped off one group another would be along soon. It pretty much worked.

    With the weather before the start deceptively warm, and the forecast for clearing showers, I left my longs in the car and carried my rain jacket. It looked like the showers had cleared already. As the road climbed, though, the rain appeared and stayed light but steady for most of the run to Trentham. By the time I reached there, toes were numb, finger were numb; I was wet through and freezing cold. The option of taking the (80 km ride option) bus back was very tempting. :rolleyes:

    After lunch around the fire drum (thanks Trentham Lions club:)), with which I was able to dry out somewhat, I headed out for the remaining 100k, ostensibly downhill but, as Cheezo mentioned, with some serious little (and not so little) climbs. Some beautiful countryside, quite good roads, good company, and even a slightly favourable breeze from about Bacchus Marsh home. My only significant problem (other than cold and wet in the morning) was a major cramp in my calf when I pulled away from traffic lights 6 km from the end. I'm sure I looked a sight at the traffic island in the centre of the intersection. (Why is it that the calf cramps? I would have thought it's doing the least amount of work.) Along the way I saw a bunch of punctures being repaired (bad luck to the guy 3 km from the end!) and one broken chain.

    As for motorist problems, the worst I had was one car tooting as they approached a group from behind. In contrast, while stopped at lights only 5 km from the end, two young guys in a souped up rice burner pulled up alongside of me and asked why there were so many bikes around. After I explainded the ride, they said to watch out up ahead, because there was a car show on and there were a lot of hoons about. Any bogan sterotype you could name would have included the two of them, but was not the case.

    This was my first real hit out for my Specialized Roubaix and I love the bike. Very happy with my decision to go with compact cranks (50/36 - 12/25), not being concerned greatly that I spin out at about 70k. Ride time just over 7 hours, 182 km, average 25.5.

    All in all, a fabulous day, albeit a freezing morning for me. The organisation was great, good signposting on all and marshalls on most corners, a warm fire at the lunch break, and a great post-ride venue, massage and drinks. The cherry on top was raising over $50,000 for the Starlight foundation. I'll certainly be back next year - with a better rain jacket and more miles in my legs. I highly recommend this ride. Oh, and extra kudos to the guy I saw at the end who did the ride on a single speed (not fixed). He said the only trick was getting the gear right. I had enough problem with that, and I have 20 of the damn things!

    Mal
     
  11. alison_b

    alison_b New Member

    Joined:
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    I have to agree with Cheezo and MalP. It was a great ride, and really well organised. A definite again for next year. The website has some photos from this year up:

    http://www.greatcycling.com.au/overview.html

    (somewhere there is a map and profile of the ride too)

    As for the weather, well, I thought it was fantastic! I did the 80km ride last year as well and it was just *foul*. I still remember the sick feeling of having my bike and I picked up by the wind from the shoulder of some disgusting hill and deposited in the middle of the road, all in a blinding rain!

    After that, pretty much anything was going to be good. It was very cold, and a bit of a headwind for most of it, but we missed the rain other than a few light sprinkles (not enough to grab out the wet weather gear). It helps to be running late (we missed the actual start and got told "just go!" :) ) after celebrating one of my kid's 18th birthdays.

    A highlight would have to be Anthony from CBD encouraging us with the ringing of cow bells from his van whenever he passed on the way between dozens of puncture repairs and apparently numerous chains and assorted wheel disasters.

    It's a really friendly ride - a good mix of people either toodling along or racing their butts off, all pretty relaxed (though less talk and singing on the hills!). Well run, very welcome and plentiful lunch, and the fires at the lunch stop were fantastic. And all for a good cause :)

    ali

     
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