First Time Racers, Tips and Tricks

Discussion in 'Racing and Training' started by JOx2, Oct 8, 2008.

  1. JOx2

    JOx2 Active Member

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    Looks like there will be a lot of newbie racers racing soon.

    Experienced, Pro and Expert racers we need your support. Post your tips to make our first race more enjoyable. :wave:

    \\:D/:clap:

    Do's and Dont's
     
  2. gooseaholic

    gooseaholic Active Member

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    First CC, I could use some tips.
     
  3. Rockinthecasbah

    Rockinthecasbah A.D.D. Unleased

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    tip # 1
    ride your bike fast
     
  4. mfoga

    mfoga Intense Whore

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    But not to fast you cant finish:?:
     
  5. sdyeti

    sdyeti New Member

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    Basics:
    1. Test out whatever nutritional supplements (gels, drinks, bars) you want to use before race day on a training ride.
    2. Run through everything (clothing, bike, etc) a couple days in advance.
    3. Give yourself enough time to do an easy warm up.
    4. Despite everyone's best advice, you have to also experiment and find out what works best for you!

    For CC/VQ/really long days in the saddle:
    1. Chamois butter (I use Body Glide and like that better)
    2. Dress in layers
    3. Bring a big enough pack to store said layers when it warms up
    4. Music
    5. Liquid nutrition (Perpetuem is my choice)
    6. Solid food treats that have psychological value (that make you feel good but are not enough to sustain you...my choice was fruit leathers, chocolate)
     
  6. dstepper

    dstepper Over the hill

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    Get Mechman to train ya....:steppie:
     
  7. ThinkFast

    ThinkFast Member

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    1) If it's your first race you probably aren't going to win...so have fun.
    2) If you have been racing a while and you do win, that just means someone faster didn't race (duh)...so have fun.
    3) Don't forget to have fun.
     
  8. davidB

    davidB Active Member

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    freaking out for the mt sac race jojo? :lol:

    in the few races i've done i've quickly realized a few things and i'm always learning what to do better next time.

    -Pace yourself at the start. You'll end up exhausted barely into it if you got full sprint right off the start. trying to keep up with people well above your speed once the race starts only has you get so tired you are too tired halfway into the race and you're being caught by others in your class you'd otherwise beat.

    -Make sure you have the basics if you want to finish. This is for the shorter races obviously, not CC/VQ. A tube, tire levers, co2, powerlink, and multitool is what I usually carry. This stuff fits in my jersey and pockets. Some people in the beginner classes go with their camelbak with everything in it they would usually carry. This is totally fine and no one's going to care. It's all about being comfortable.

    -Have your stuff ready the night before. Make sure the bike works properly too.

    -get the legs moving a little bit before the race. Nothing like stiff legs once they say "go!"

    -If possible, ride the course ahead of time, which helps A LOT in knowing what's coming up next, when/how to spend your energy, and when to being able to take a drink if you're using water bottles.

    -know when/how to pass others, and know when others would like to do the same. Most people are cool about passing, or getting passed, but make sure they hear you and know what side you're going on. And don't be stupid about it. It's better to wait a second than to cause a crash.

    -remember to have fun, whether you're DFL or not
     
  9. chevrolegs

    chevrolegs Active Member

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    subscribing to this thread! thanks!
     
  10. live_in_hilo@yahoo.com

    [email protected] hilo boi

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    im thinking on trying a race this year. basically just to try something before i die. so, if im 29 and race the super beginner dh class (if there is one) should i keep my head high or ride in shame? maybe ill just try too have fun.
     
  11. sdyeti

    sdyeti New Member

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    ^^When racing isn't fun, it isn't worth doing, IMHO.
     
  12. Zippy

    Zippy Small, but Mighty

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    Exercise a little courtesy. Yeah it's a race and it's OK to make people work a little to get around you, but deliberately blocking isn't cool.

    Go hard and have fun!
     
  13. office

    office Member

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    If you can't preride the course ahead of time (which is best but not always feasible), ride the first 1/4 mile, then ride back to the start and ride the last 1/4 mile or so. A little scouting goes a long way, especially since these are the areas where:

    1. You will likely encounter the most traffic during the race
    2. Probably in the worst condition (sand, erosion, rocks)
    3. Trailheads can be full of intersecting paths and get really confusing. Take a wrong turn and it can ruin a race

    Always review the signs that you will encounter during your first race. Usually directional signs, hazards, etc. Its sometimes written on the back of your number plate or on a slip of some kind.

    Yield to faster riders when safe. If you are nervous about this, just know that the faster guys usually find a way around you regardless. :) Remember, you aren't racing the expert/semi-pro classes so don't let them throw you off your pace.

    If you are racing a guy in your class you don't always have to immediately yield, especially if you anticipate a spot where you might be able to lose him (say you are a faster descender and there is some fast singletrack coming up). This is a race after all. But if you know you are totally holding someone back ALWAYS yield when you can do it safely.
     
  14. JohnnyDalton

    JohnnyDalton New Member

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    Commit to an event, sign up online, show up 2 1/2 hours early (or more) to figure out parking, registration (yes, you'll still have to wait in line even if you prereg), bathrooms, then relax for 30 minutes before warming up. When you go to the next race, you'll be an old timer!
     
  15. Upsidedown1

    Upsidedown1 Peddler

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    For beginners this is not as helpful since you are doing a sprint for the most part, but don't go out and try to hard and make stupid mistakes in the process. A crash is bound to happen. Believe me I found out the hard way after moving up to sport class. Was trying way to hard... to the point that I made those dumb mistakes and now am out and off the bike for awhile due to knee injury. These races are long enough that you can make time up in other ways.
     
  16. tribe guy

    tribe guy New Member

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    make sure you have a big bank roll. racing isn't cheap. get as much support as you can and don't forget to have fun.
     
  17. OffRoadie

    OffRoadie Roadie in Exile

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    Whether you win or lose, all participants should be proud.
     
  18. dubjay

    dubjay Having upgraditis is OK

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    Here are some tips for CC.

    Ride at your own pace
    You'll be much more comfortable going at your own pace. Going too fast, or even going too slow will cause you problems.

    Ride what you know
    Don't mess with your bike setup the week before the event. Ride what you're comfortable with. For example - skinny race tires - they might help you climb faster, but wait till you get to Upper Holy Jim :lol:

    Only bring emergency food
    Just carry some gels and some food in case you bonk. The aid stations are well equipped. Think of it as a Clif Bar Buffet. There are also bananas and oranges, as well as Cytomax and water.

    Train early
    Get a head start on training and work on your base miles. Get comfortable spending long hours in the saddle. Starting to do long rides 2 weeks prior to the event isn't going to benefit you much.

    Learn what your body needs
    You can usually get away with just drinking water on short 1-2 hour rides. Anything longer, and your body will start developing an electrolyte imbalance - which usually results in headaches, fatigue and possibly cramps. Try out some sport drinks during your longer training rides. If that's not enough, think about adding some Endurolytes or something to the mix.
     
  19. Kritter

    Kritter Member

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    Long before race

    Set your goals. Do I want to just ride the race or do I want to actually beat some people?

    Figure out your HR zones and train in them knowing how long you can go in each zone is good information and you can gage yourself.

    Train dont just ride unless you are looking to just ride the race then just continue riding. Riding and training are none in the same. Does it take the fun out of cycling? Yes, but if you want to do well you need to train. It all depends on your competitiveness and goals.

    Race

    Make sure your equipment and yourself is 100%

    Ride at your own pace and try not to get passed once you are out far enough on the course that it has thinned out meaning the faster people in your class are in front of you and the slower ones are behind you and then work at picking one person off at a time. Being passed by faster classes doesnt count but anybody who started the race behind you should be theoretically slower.

    Breathe

    Hydrate

    Dont crash

    I saw several ass over elbows crashes at bonelli that took people out of the race and the course wasnt even technical. There is no reason anybody should crash themself out of a CC race. A wash out or tangle up maybebut not an assover elbows crash. If the terrain in a CC race is too technical for you, you need to practice more.

    Bring more then 4 beers for the finish line

    Bring freinds and family to take pictures and root you on

    Have fun

    PS im no experienced racer on bicycles thats for sure but my dirtbike race prep crosses over.
     
  20. BFloFoxRider.

    BFloFoxRider. New Member

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    ok, i have found, in DH at least, that a smooth run is a fast run.
    Guys try to go out and run as hard as they can, and end up overshooting a corner or something, and end up losing time.
    Also, dont snap too fast or you will use up all your energy.
     

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