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ride in rain, slick roads...(8 posts)

ride in rain, slick roads...jayz
Apr 18, 2001 8:58 AM
this is my first year racing road, and with the great weather we have been having up in the Northeast..im sure that i will have to do at least one race in the rain...however..im pretty nervous about this.

any input on how to handle the bike, pack, etc with slick roads?
maybe i just get a little too scared..but i always feel like i am teetering on the edge of going down...actually, i always felt this way on a motorcycle in the rain as well...

any help? thanks
-j
re: ride in rain, slick roads...Mass Biker
Apr 18, 2001 9:41 AM
A few pointers:

* run lower tire pressure than normal
* do not go barrelling around turns like you normally do (less "lean" than usual)
* brake before you need to (and certainly before you begin to enter a turn - nothing worse than someone in a pack braking THROUGH a turn)
* ride towards the front of the pack (you should do this anyway to stay in the mix and away from the stop-n-go monkey business that goes on the middle/back of the pack)
* let other riders know where you are (a tap on a thigh, a "got your left" where necessary)
* run 700x23s (do this anyway on New England roads, right?)

Rubber side down. - MB
re: ride in rain, slick roads...MrCelloBoy
Apr 18, 2001 10:00 AM
It's amazing to me to see how fast the Pro's ride on wet roads. I have an image burned into my memory of Marco Pantani in the TDF that he won a few years back, pulling away from the camera motorcycle during a rainy descent off of one of the big mtn. passes.
The tips above are great. I'd add to stay relaxed and avoid any sudden movements as much as possible. And remember that starting to slide doesn't necessarily mean you're going down. I've recovered from a few slides by maintaining balance, staying off the brakes and avoiding the panic brake grab that used to screw me up. Just train yourself to not tighten up when things get hairy. Mountain biking is a good cross train for hanfling when things get loose.
Other stuff to watch for...Greg Taylor
Apr 18, 2001 11:34 AM
Keep an eye out for manhole covers, etc. -- anything metal will be slick. Same goes for painted areas on the road (lane dividers, cross walks, "STOP" signs). They can get slick when wet.
and,...Haiku d'état
Apr 18, 2001 10:37 AM
i'm not a racer, but i play one in my head whilst watching the tdf tapes or riding the trainer.

my $.02 is...to be comfortable riding wet roads, train on wet roads. i'm training for a couple long organized rides and one multi-day mountain ride coming up in the next 2 months. going to have to travel and there will be expense involved for each. i'm not going to NOT ride them 'cause it's cold OR wet. so, i've been riding in the rain, cold, dark, whatever it's like out when i have time to ride. spent two hours in drizzling-to-pouring thunder/wind/some lightning last thursday evening. i was surprised to hook up with another (strong) rider at the end of that ride.

this can be more fun than dry, depending on your mood. ever stand outside in the rain and just get wet? there's something alluring about (1) getting soaked, and (2) riding in stuff other recreational-types (like me) wouldn't even consider.

be safe!
and,...MrCelloBoy
Apr 18, 2001 11:25 AM
Gotta agree with you Jeffers!
I remember many a rain ride feeling pretty smug watching car drivers trying desperately to get into their cars without getting wet while I happily pedaled by (drenched but warm). There's something great about being in the select 1 percent.
Remember, we are all about 75% water anyway....Greg Taylor
Apr 19, 2001 5:04 AM
...and a large number of us will spend lots of $$ to go to sunny places for the opportunity to jump and swim in water, yet we get bothered when it literally drops out of the heavens for us to play in. Go figure...
re: ride in rain, slick roads...CIARAN.
Apr 20, 2001 6:49 PM
Jayz,
A good set of Michlin Supercomps 77*20 or 23's should do the trick.Also a steady nerve will help a lot.Remember when in the pack on wet roads everybody feels the same.I know bceause I'm racing in Ireland and we get a lot of rain here.
Hope this helps,
Ciaran.