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Gearing for Raid Alpine

fraybentosfraybentos Posts: 8
edited June 2018 in Tour & expedition
I'd appreciate the collective wisdom of the members of this forum.

At the end of July I've signed up for the RAID Alpine and am trying to figure out the correct gearing, I appreciate there are many variable to this: Speed, Weight, relative fitness etc so here goes...

I'm 54 71 KG and have an FTP of 221, I ride regularily (approx 6000 miles per year) and hold my own in most groups, that said I don't race nor would consider myself competitive at that level

I currently ride a Wilier Izoard (Circa 2010) with Centaur groupset 50/34 and 29/12 (short cage rear mech)

I've read lots of recommendations about going for a 32 cassette however to do so would mean more significant changes, having various sorts of options (including going to Shimano) the 2 I'm down to are these:

1. Replace the cassette for a Centaur 30/13, the largest I think will work - though appreciate its above what campag say they will support but see posts where members have it working in practice

2. Upgrade the groupset to 11 speed Record (something I've always wanted to do tbh) where I can utilise a Potenza 32 cassette

Clearly option 2 is significantly more costly so appreciate input from those with experience of the RAID whether a 32 cassette is required

Many thanks...


  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    I've not done the ride - BUT - I've never heard anyone complain of having too low a gear on hilly rides. Your ride more than qualifies.

    As you want to do it anyway - option 2 would work for me.
  • thegreatdividethegreatdivide Posts: 5,799
    You sound like a pretty fit chap so a 50/34 and 12/29 should get you up all the climbs on the route (it’s what I use for over there) but if you want to go down the upgrade path then I’d suggest save a bit of cash and get Chorus over Record unless you fancy the bling and need the 11 logos in red (some folk do – like me).
  • kingstongrahamkingstongraham Posts: 25,886
    I think you'll be OK with 34x29. I had 34x28 when I rode it a few years back, and it was fine - there's nothing long and really steep. Do you know what's the steepest sustained climb on your route?

    That said, if I'd had more gears, no doubt I'd have used them...
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    The OP says he's always wanted to upgrade the groupset - so if you're not gonna do it for a ride like this - why would you bother ?

    Come on people - read between the lines ! ;-)
  • kingstongrahamkingstongraham Posts: 25,886
    True - you'll want the 32 when you go to the Dolomites. Might as well do it now.
  • thegreatdividethegreatdivide Posts: 5,799
    Do you know what's the steepest sustained climb on your route?

    I reckon the Pre is the stinger in the route.
  • kingstongrahamkingstongraham Posts: 25,886
    Do you know what's the steepest sustained climb on your route?

    I reckon the Pre is the stinger in the route.

    Yes, I've got that as an hour at 8% average with the second half averaging 10%. I do remember that being quite a climb with my gears. Very pretty though.
  • Thanks All, think I'll save cash and go with the gearing I already have.
  • imafatmanimafatman Posts: 351
    29-32 is not a great difference, about 3kg worth. Can you lose 3kg between now and then? :P
  • whoofwhoof Posts: 756
    I've ridden this route with a slight lower (25.4") gear than yours (31") and had no troubles as the gradients aren't steep.
    Although my gearing was a bit lower I am; 15 kg heavier than you, my bike was a nameless tubed cheap steel thing a good 4 kg heavier than yours and on the up-hills I had two rear panniers. So I would say you should be fine with the gearing you have as long as you have not over-estimated your fitness.

    It's a lovely ride, enjoy.
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