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Human Race - Chiltern 100 Sportive?

jonny_trousersjonny_trousers Posts: 3,588
edited October 2016 in Commuting chat
Anyone ever done it in its earlier guise? I've recently signed up and was wondering how challenging it might be. Doable on a standard chainset?

Ta
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  • Anyone ever done it in its earlier guise? I've recently signed up and was wondering how challenging it might be. Doable on a standard chainset?

    Ta

    Doable yes, but how enjoyable will depend on your climbing ability and the cassette you have
  • london-redlondon-red Posts: 1,266
    Did it a couple of years ago and found it bloody hard work. The sheer number of hills means it's difficult to get into a decent rhythm and the organisers seek out every possible climb they can to maximise the hurt. Definitely doable on standard gearing, but you'll wish you had a granny gear.

    I used a 50-34, 11-23 and wish I had another couple of gears at times.
  • CiBCiB Posts: 6,098
    I've done it, on a 53/39 11-25. Some of it's hard work but as that's what the bike had that's what I managed with. None of the route then was impossible, just challenging. The 11-25 is on the winter bike now and the good bike runs 11-28, which is adequate for the all the hills that I meet in this part of the world.

    What's the worst that can happen? You might end up walking up that short beast of a climb where the route pops out parallel to the A41 down near Berko at about 90 miles, but it won't kill you.
  • Cheers lads! My hill climbing is average at best and I'm using 53/39 12/25. I'll take the matter in hand.
  • Yes... it is tough... no single climb is a killer, but 21 of them kill you eventually. There are around 2,600 mt of real climbing, which for this side of the world is good going. Some climbs are steep, up to 16-20%... a compact is desirable for the second half of the ride
    One of the toughest days on the bike I remember...
  • Yes... it is tough... no single climb is a killer, but 21 of them kill you eventually. There are around 2,600 mt of real climbing, which for this side of the world is good going. Some climbs are steep, up to 16-20%... a compact is desirable for the second half of the ride
    One of the toughest days on the bike I remember...

    :lol: What have I let myself in for?!? Actually I'm quite excited now. It gives me something to train for.

    While we're talking compacts and I'm in the mood to display my ignorance, what exactly needs to be swapped over from a standard on a Campag setup? Last guy I chatted with about it suggested you couldn't swap chain rings alone, and would need a new crankset, but said the same cassette and chain would work. Was he right?
  • Yes... it is tough... no single climb is a killer, but 21 of them kill you eventually. There are around 2,600 mt of real climbing, which for this side of the world is good going. Some climbs are steep, up to 16-20%... a compact is desirable for the second half of the ride
    One of the toughest days on the bike I remember...

    :lol: What have I let myself in for?!? Actually I'm quite excited now. It gives me something to train for.

    While we're talking compacts and I'm in the mood to display my ignorance, what exactly needs to be swapped over from a standard on a Campag setup? Last guy I chatted with about it suggested you couldn't swap chain rings alone, and would need a new crankset, but said the same cassette and chain would work. Was he right?

    Sounds close to right.

    Swapping chain rings depends on BCDs, or bolt circle diameter (skip this if you know it). Look at your crankset. There are five bolts holding the chain rings in place. The circle mapped by those bolts is the circle in BCD.

    Campy uses a 135mm BCD on its standard rings (everyone less uses 130mm) and 110mm on its compact rings (like everyone else). The smallest chainring that you can fit onto a 130mm BCD pattern is usually 38t. A quick look at Ribble suggests that it is 39t on a 135mm, and even third parties such as Stronglight don't make anything smaller (can't rather than don't - there's just too much circumferences to get anything less than 39teeth round the ring).

    So you'll need a compact chainset - you can't just swap the rings.

    Once you've done that, your cassette, shifters and mech will all play just fine with their new friend, though you will have to lower the front mech so it is close enough to the new outer chainring.

    You'll likely find that at that point your chain is dragging on the stays though, so you'll need to take some links out of it (or, if you're planning to switch back to standard at some point, buy a second chain).
    Swim. Bike. Run. Yeah. That's what I used to do.

    Bike 1
    Bike 2-A
  • Yes... it is tough... no single climb is a killer, but 21 of them kill you eventually. There are around 2,600 mt of real climbing, which for this side of the world is good going. Some climbs are steep, up to 16-20%... a compact is desirable for the second half of the ride
    One of the toughest days on the bike I remember...

    :lol: What have I let myself in for?!? Actually I'm quite excited now. It gives me something to train for.

    While we're talking compacts and I'm in the mood to display my ignorance, what exactly needs to be swapped over from a standard on a Campag setup? Last guy I chatted with about it suggested you couldn't swap chain rings alone, and would need a new crankset, but said the same cassette and chain would work. Was he right?

    Sounds close to right.

    Swapping chain rings depends on BCDs, or bolt circle diameter (skip this if you know it). Look at your crankset. There are five bolts holding the chain rings in place. The circle mapped by those bolts is the circle in BCD.

    Campy uses a 135mm BCD on its standard rings (everyone less uses 130mm) and 110mm on its compact rings (like everyone else). The smallest chainring that you can fit onto a 130mm BCD pattern is usually 38t. A quick look at Ribble suggests that it is 39t on a 135mm, and even third parties such as Stronglight don't make anything smaller (can't rather than don't - there's just too much circumferences to get anything less than 39teeth round the ring).

    So you'll need a compact chainset - you can't just swap the rings.

    Once you've done that, your cassette, shifters and mech will all play just fine with their new friend, though you will have to lower the front mech so it is close enough to the new outer chainring.

    You'll likely find that at that point your chain is dragging on the stays though, so you'll need to take some links out of it (or, if you're planning to switch back to standard at some point, buy a second chain).

    :D Thanks!
  • Other thing about the C 100. Used to be a very friendly event and people used to be reasonably behaved on the road... this is no longer the case. We can thank Strava for the army of wannabe a racer that attend the event now targeting segments along the way. Descents in the Chilterns are dangerous... there is gravel and often the descent ends up in a T junction with, yes you guessed it, gravel at the bottom. Road surface is pretty bad too and in recent years there have been a few nasty accidents. My advice is to take it easy... don't worry about finishing in under 7 hours or getting a silver standard or nonsense like that, just watch out for hidden dangers, of which there are many. There are also some picturesque views and other good reasons to enter the event
  • mrolimroli Posts: 3,622
    I don't think its necessarily Strava - its kind of a lot of people turning out thinking that they are in a race. The last one I did, I bawled out a rider who was riding through red lights and riding like a c*ck. Its not Strava, its people being d*ckheads.

    re the Course - it is largely up and down - no Chiltern climb is massively long, but they are often pretty sharp - as Ugo says, up to and occassionally over 20%. The cumulation of the hills can be really tiring - a couple of years ago, it was BOILING hot and I started to cramp at anything over 7%, which was pretty much every hill!

    It is normally well organised with decent stops (although the voracious grab everything you can merchants have moved in a little bit) - as Ugo says though, rough, steep, gravelly roads. Take care. Some lovely bits on the ride though.
  • I've entered. The route passes my front door at around 75 miles which means it will be tough to not stop in for a cup of tea / leg massage / hide in shed until it all goes away...

    On the positive side I can go and train on the actual route. Last Friday I did 30 miles and 5 of the hills without too much distress so if I add a hill once a week fromm now to the event, I should be OK. I'll be running a compact with a 27 cassette as a minimum.

    I'd second the comments about safety, some of the descents are certainly sketchy.
    <a>road</a>
  • Thanks for the advice and warnings, all! I must admit, I do like going a bit mental on descents, but I know there is a time and a place for doing so.

    A compact and serious weight loss needed then!
  • Thanks for the advice and warnings, all! I must admit, I do like going a bit mental on descents, but I know there is a time and a place for doing so.

    A compact and serious weight loss needed then!


    And a recce... this is a shorter and easier event which takes in a similar route... it can give you an idea of where you are 5 weeks before the C 100

    http://www.southernsportive.com/index.p ... tid=140427

    If you don't want to pay, just tag along and follow the arrows
  • mrolimroli Posts: 3,622
    Or have a look at Garmin Connect or mapmyride or one such and see if you can pick up the route for the Medio and do that beforehand and freestyle it - still 75 odd miles and a really good warm up.
  • meastmeast Posts: 19
    Not too long until this now.

    Going up in a week to do the medium route as a warm up.
  • jeepiejeepie Posts: 495
    I'm doing this and really looking forward to it.

    I've a dilemma -

    my winter bike is an audax bike which is fairly heavy and not as quick as my road bike - it has 25mm tyres. But it has SRAM Apex 11-23T.
    my road bike is lighter with lighter wheels and 23s. It's got 12-25T though.

    Which do you think it better for this ride? Lower gears or lighter bike?

    Like Jonny I'm average at climbing. I ride to work. But don't have time for massive rides or lots of training due to kids. I just wanted to train as much as I could on the commute and do the best I could on the day. Thoughts?
  • mrolimroli Posts: 3,622
    Dude - if you've go the same crankset on both bikes then your road bike has lower gears (12-25) than your winter bike (11-23)?

    If it is the other way round, you could just swap your cassette and chain over from your winter bike to the road bike and give yourself a lower gear. Ideally you want lighter bike and lower gears! But no need to go crazy over it. You just might "enjoy" it more if you're not having to haul a tired body over the sharp climbs...
  • jeepiejeepie Posts: 495
    Oh yeah - Thanks Mr Roli for pointing out the deliberate mistake - yeah it's 32 T not 23 T on my winter bike. As my mates have said it's not really in the spirit of it to do it on very low gears so road bike it is!
  • mrolimroli Posts: 3,622
    A compact and 12-25 will be fine. Just don't go too hard too early - there is a lot of climbing in the back half.
  • jonny_trousersjonny_trousers Posts: 3,588
    I'm really worried about this now. Since having to quit cycle commuting about 8 weeks ago my fitness has dropped massively and I've been finding my riding to be a bit of a struggle. I think I might have to opt for the shorter course or even consider binning the ride all together. Very depressing.
  • Kieran_BurnsKieran_Burns Posts: 9,757
    I'm really worried about this now. Since having to quit cycle commuting about 8 weeks ago my fitness has dropped massively and I've been finding my riding to be a bit of a struggle. I think I might have to opt for the shorter course or even consider binning the ride all together. Very depressing.

    If you do you will regret it. Just go out and do the best you can. The worst will be that you'll have to stop / walk some hills and you'll be slower.

    So what? You'll still have faced up to the challenge. I've done some grim rides in the past and really not enjoyed it at the time but always look back and am glad I tried.
    Chunky Cyclists need your love too! :-)
    2009 Specialized Tricross Sport
    2011 Trek Madone 4.5
    2012 Felt F65X
    Proud CX Pervert and quiet roadie. 12 mile commuter
  • I'm really worried about this now. Since having to quit cycle commuting about 8 weeks ago my fitness has dropped massively and I've been finding my riding to be a bit of a struggle. I think I might have to opt for the shorter course or even consider binning the ride all together. Very depressing.

    If you do you will regret it. Just go out and do the best you can. The worst will be that you'll have to stop / walk some hills and you'll be slower.

    So what? You'll still have faced up to the challenge. I've done some grim rides in the past and really not enjoyed it at the time but always look back and am glad I tried.

    Is the correct answer. You're more likely to regret not doing it.

    Oh, and take a large dose of MTFU will you?
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,759
    I'm really worried about this now. Since having to quit cycle commuting about 8 weeks ago my fitness has dropped massively and I've been finding my riding to be a bit of a struggle. I think I might have to opt for the shorter course or even consider binning the ride all together. Very depressing.

    The medio fondo is still very challenging and takes in most of the nicest bits... the granfondo is a bit of a beast if you are not in good shape. I always found the last 20 miles horrible even when I was in good shape
  • jonny_trousersjonny_trousers Posts: 3,588
    Thanks all! Yeah, I really don't want to pull out. I think the shorter, 75 mile, route will be challenging enough for now. Crossing my fingers for dry and wind free weather.
  • jeepiejeepie Posts: 495
    Jonny - please carry on and do the big route. I'm very much hoping for the best but I wanted a real challenge. It's inspiring to hear that people like me i.e. you :D are doing the ride. I've trained the best I can on the commute to work and done a few hills but I'm no Contador. I'm really looking forward but I expect it will be a massive challenge. That's what you've signed up for isn't it?
  • jonny_trousersjonny_trousers Posts: 3,588
    Jeepie wrote:
    Jonny - please carry on and do the big route. I'm very much hoping for the best but I wanted a real challenge. It's inspiring to hear that people like me i.e. you :D are doing the ride. I've trained the best I can on the commute to work and done a few hills but I'm no Contador. I'm really looking forward but I expect it will be a massive challenge. That's what you've signed up for isn't it?

    I'll maybe go for it, mate. Hopefully there'll be some kind of split off point later in the route and I can see how I'm doing then.
  • jeepiejeepie Posts: 495
    Sounds like a good plan Jonny! Best of luck :D
  • meastmeast Posts: 19
    The event pack is now online -

    http://humanrace.co.uk/event-informatio ... event-pack

    The medium route looks to cut off pretty early on and do the second part of the ride.

    Hopefully there's enough info on there to put your mind at ease!
  • coopster_the_1stcoopster_the_1st Posts: 5,158
    Jeepie wrote:
    Oh yeah - Thanks Mr Roli for pointing out the deliberate mistake - yeah it's 32 T not 23 T on my winter bike. As my mates have said it's not really in the spirit of it to do it on very low gears so road bike it is!

    Unless you are a good climber, 12-25 is not enough gearing IMO. Many of the climbs are less of a slog with a 28 on the back especially when you tired after 80+ miles.

    It's always better to have another gear than get off and walk
  • ugo.santaluciaugo.santalucia Posts: 26,759
    By the time you get to Whiteleaf and Kingston Blount you wish you had a triple, if not a moped... :wink:
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