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future in biking?(16 posts)

future in biking?U23biker
Jul 30, 2002 10:04 PM
I am looking for some advice. I have been biking for several years now, no racing but just biking. Im now 18 and I am serious about biking...its no longer a sport for me its a ritual/passion. As far as my abilities, i have no problem going on long rides (ie 80mi) doing a pace around 25-27 with 1min+ pulls all throughout the ride. I have the "bikers build" and i am extreemly healthy. What does it take to go pro? Training tips? Racing tactics, and what would be a good first race? Should I invest in a TT bike in addition to my road bike? or should I just upgrade my current bike (Trek 470 -old trek style)? Well i just dont want to list questions, but any help/advice is extreemly welcome.
re: future in biking?rbb
Jul 31, 2002 3:30 AM
Before you go debut as a pro you may want to race first. It's a completely different game while racing. RACE! RACE! RACE! RACE! RACE! That's my advice. And if you stick with it and get the results that merit some sort of sponsorship then good for you. Worry about a TT bike later on after you actually RACE! Don't mean to drag you down but dude, WAKE UP!! Going pro is going to be a long and exhausting experience, I mean I wish you all the luck in the world in fulfilling your dreams, but why don't you set some short term goals- like placing top five in a cat5 race or something more suited to an entry level racer. Wish you luck, but remember get the experience first- RACE!! RACE!! And RACE some more!!
re: future in biking?Tim Field
Jul 31, 2002 3:49 AM
I now feel really crap! 25- 27 mph on average for 80 miles!!
Keep the grains of salt handy while perusing this board...Scot_Gore
Jul 31, 2002 4:17 AM
They'll come in handy for:
Bike Weights
Resting Heart Beats
Average Speeds
Hill Grades
Top Speeds

Anyone else got others?

Hah! I'll keep that in mind. (nm)jtferraro
Jul 31, 2002 5:00 AM
weight of riders themselves, durability of lightweight stuff (nmColnagoFE
Jul 31, 2002 5:51 AM
annual mileage, bike prices, spouses' attitudes! nmdzrider
Jul 31, 2002 6:07 AM
Well . . . I don't know what you need salt for . . .morrison
Jul 31, 2002 6:28 AM
when you have my luck, skill, and physique.

My bike weighs 12 lbs, me resting heart rate is 17, my average speed is 31, I can climb nearly vertical hills in a 52/16 with a cadence 85, and I don't know my average speed b/c I go too fast to see. I'm blessed with a 124 lb. body with a body fat percentage of 2%. I routinely ride 80 mile rides at 34 mph, and I've thought about going pro, but I don't want to show anybody up, so instead, I think I'll just lie here in bed until I wake up.
Don't feel badfiltersweep
Jul 31, 2002 4:45 AM
Even an "old man" like myself is up to that type of task with the right small group.

U23- You can't just "go pro"- and a good "first race" is some "no-name" local race. Before you upgrade your bike, should should check out your local cat 5 racing scene and start taking your lumps. It will be full of people who all "think they are fast." It will probably be a humbling experience- but it will at least give you a perspective on how you want to upgrade your bike. I don't know that I would want a $2000+ bike in a cat 5 race, since the risk of crash is quite high, and they won't let a TT bike even near the course. I do know a few people who have very nice rides, but ride a 105 level aluminum bike on race day... with a nice (not great) set of wheels.

Seriously, get some experience and a perspective before you make any major decisions or drop any money. I lot of people think they are really fast or have great handling skills until they experience their first race. I'm not trying to discourage you in any way- or talk down to you... rather I'm suggesting that there is usually a big gap between racing expectations and realities, and I usually like to make reality based decisions.
I didn't realize there were so many crashes w/Cat 5 racing...jtferraro
Jul 31, 2002 5:13 AM
Interesting that some riders choose a less expensive bike w/105 & nice(not great) wheels. How prevalent is this?

I didn't realize there were so many crashes w/Cat 5 racing...No_sprint
Jul 31, 2002 7:00 AM
It isn't that there are so many more crashes in cat 5 racing, it's just that crashing is part of the sport in crit racing period. There are typically more in cat 5 too. Lots of fast riding, aggressive riding, tight corners, elbow touching, wheel touching, etc.

This is typical for my team: Riders throughout that cats choose Cannondale far and away. First, it's the team bike (cheap and many times free). It's American and entirely replaceable through our deal very quickly. People beat them up and don't care. Many of my teammates have multiple bikes and pull out the Coppis and Calfees and Serottas and Hollands for other than race day.

You will rarely see an experienced dude break out his beloved for race day. Most of the time when racers ride so much that what looks like a beater is the race bike. It's quite noticeable when some complete rookie enters the field for the first time on his brand new Trek, Postie setup down to the shades.
Thanks for the info - I appreciate it. (nm)jtferraro
Jul 31, 2002 10:18 AM
as Eddy Merckx said, "Ride Lots" (nm)ColnagoFE
Jul 31, 2002 5:52 AM
I thought Doug Sloan said that.....(nm)Softrider
Jul 31, 2002 9:33 AM
only in repeating "The Cannibal's" training advice (nm)ColnagoFE
Jul 31, 2002 10:04 AM
don't buy anythingDougSloan
Jul 31, 2002 10:18 AM
First, don't buy anything, yet. Find a local race group/team and ride with them. Have them give you some pointers. Then, race. If you don't race stupid, you'll get a pretty good idea fairly quickly.

As far as tips, for free you learn a whole lot by perusing the internet. If that doesn't work for you, buy some books. Go to Amazon and do a search for "bike training" or racing.

Buy stuff if you get good or get extra money. Meanwhile, you'll need some money just to go racing for license fees, uniforms, travel expenses, entry fees, etc. Those are a higher priority than equipment.