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Getting ready for Sportivs

datpat64datpat64 Posts: 85
edited December 2009 in Road beginners
So I'm well into the Winter routine and enjoying it that much I've entered a couple of early season Sportivs (the first I've done as I've only been riding 6 months).

I'm after a bit of advice around gear and accessories rather than the training side. Can I get away with enough bits in small saddlebag and pockets or should I take a small backpack ?

Early season so maybe still Arm Warmers, tubes, multitool and splitter and drinks. Was considering a bladder backpack which would give me enough liquids but mate reckons the events we've booked are very good for drinks and food stops.

Advice welcomed !


  • bobtbuilderbobtbuilder Posts: 1,537
    You shouldn't need a backpack. Essentially it's a long ride with food + drink available.

    So, between the two of you, you need spare tubes, tyre levers, pump, multitool, etc.

    Take some energy bars or gels to keep you going as nutrition is really the key to longer distance riding.

    As for clothing, it will depend on the weather on the day, but generally speaking, layers is the way forward. A good fold-away jacket for wind / showers would help as well.

    Finally, the length of time spent in the saddle can be uncomfortable, so make sure you have shorts, etc. that you are comfortable in for a long distance.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 79,667
    Yeah, you should be able to fit 2 tubes, levers, tyre boot and a multi tool in a small saddle bag for a sportive. Shove some food in your pockets with your pump. Just eat regularly and drink regularly even if you don't feel like it. :wink:
  • CiBCiB Posts: 6,098
    Don't lug pints of fluid around all day - take a couple of nuun tablets (Google it...) and add them to water picked up en route. Much easier. They don't taste great, but they don't weigh much either.

    All you need then is what you'd take on any decent ride - tubes, pump, the Allen keys that fit your bike (so not a whole stack from 1mm up to 25), 1 drinks bottle, a bite to eat if you think you need it, a bit of cash and the phone for emergencies.
  • you should have 2 food / water stops for a 100 sportive one at 35 and the other at 70 (rough mileage); with the weather the way it is (not too warm) a bottle of fluid should last 35 miles no problems, gels are great too however they give a false sense of energy in that you may come down very quickly from the energy rush so be careful. I would recommend trying them on a normal ride to judge the effects on you and your body. as others have said with regards to kit.

    If you can get in a peloton all the better try and stay with it as you will cover the distance with much ease compared to soloing it. When you do drink take small amounts in rather than a gulp as you can only use small amounts of fluid and the rest with pass through you giving no Hydration benefit.
  • Oh I almost forgot pre-ride food is most important, I normally polish off a load of porridge made with water; then I add Condensed milk, Bananas and honey to taste, eaten about 1 – 2 hours before the start.
  • I did my first sportiv in September after getting back into cycling in May. 80km ride, and like you was unsure what to expect.
    I ate well before I travelled (probably about 1 1/2 hours before start) but didn't fret too much about what to carry with me. Took 2 750ml bottles, ones with water and one with an isotonic drink (Lucozade sport I think) and a couple of bananas in back pockets. As it turned out, there were stacks of bananas at the start and at the feeding station, about 30 miles into it, along with biscuits and water at the same places.

    As for kit, I took 2 inner tubes, tyre levers, contact card (just in case it all went wrong!!!!!!!) and pump. Most good sportivs will be reasonably well marshalled and will have a support van running along the course should anything more than a puncture happen.

    As for clothing, only you can judge that on the day, but load the car up for the worst and leave behind what you don't need.

    Above all, just get out there and enjoy it. I'll be looking at doing a couple early season depending on winter training.
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  • Just completed the Wattyl Lake Taupo ride in NZ. I have previously been more of an MTB rider but opted to ditch the Camelback as there are plenty of water stops.
    Small saddle pack with tube/lever/patches/CO2 inflator & multitool, side pockets on my top with gels/bars and a second inner tube, middle pocket with a lightweight showerproof jacket.
    As it was warm I ditched the arm warmers.
    Weather was drizzly with slight rain, I wore the jacket after a long downhill when I cooled down a bit too much.

    My mutiltool is just an allen key/ screwdriver set: i did carry a couple of chain pins for my Shimano chain but no splitter.
    This is a very well organised ride though: 11000 participants with roving motorbike repairmen, water & electrolytes at the drink stops & fresh pineapple at the finish!
  • Oh, and ID plus money: NZ notes are plastic so they are waterproof: stashed in a ziplock with some tissue paper.............those energy gels can play havoc with the guts.....

    and 2 bottles with a pump as well...
  • bigpiklebigpikle Posts: 1,690
    very interesting and helpful thread guys.

    I will also be taking part in my first sportives next year, so this is helpful info.
    Your Past is Not Your Potential...
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