Monday, 23 June 2008

Etape 2008 tips from down under

Andy C forwarded a few useful tips from an Aussie he was cycling in Wales with and has did the Etape last year :

i) Take an old fleece or jumper to the start which can be thrown away. It can be very cold first thing and from lining up in the queue (half an hour before the gun) to starting to pedal (half an hour after the gun) it took them an hour of standing around with their bikes. Lots of the locals were ready for this and just chucked their old jumpers in a pile - Richard got very cold and it took him a long time to warm up the muscles again despite doing a short early morning warm up ride.

ii) Likewise with water bottles - the locals took two on their bikes and had one for the hour delay which they sipped and chucked before pedalling.

iii) This chap was the first person to show him the quickest way to change a tube. Andy was doing 5 - 6 mins at best. He got me down to 3 mins after a bit of practice. The pros do it in two apparently, but then they just replace the whole wheel!

Apparently the process involved cannisters which do have their drawbacks, particularly if you have a few punctures and run out of cannisters.

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