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Crit drinking(27 posts)

Crit drinkingAndante
Jul 8, 2002 11:36 AM
Doing my first race this month, a Cat 5 Crit. How is water handled, does one run two big water bottles, or just run dry for 50 minutes, or are there volunteers passing out water as you go by, or what? I have to travel to go to this race, as there are no races in my area at all (or else I would just go down and see for myself. Thanks!
re: Crit drinkingbrider
Jul 8, 2002 11:42 AM
For any crit, start with what you'll need -- no hand-offs. For 50 minutes (long by most Cat 5 standards), you'll only use one bottle, maybe half-full (more if it's really hot). You may be able to get by dry, depends on how you handle things. If this is your first race, you'll probably find yourself hard pressed to even grab the bottle, let alone drink from it. You might decide to pitch the bottle with two laps to go (make sure it's okay to do so -- ask the ref prior to the start) just to lighten the load for the final sprint. If you're not contending for a top spot, then just hang onto it.
re: Crit drinkingWoof
Jul 8, 2002 12:59 PM
why chuck it if its almost empty if not completely empty, plus its more aero with the bottle(s).

I don't recommend doing a crit dry. You will want to drink something for sure.


Woof the dog.
re: Crit drinkingkaiser
Jul 8, 2002 6:55 PM
hang on to your bottle, because I'm the guy who inevitably gets caught riding over your failed bottle tosses. This aint the tour, and if you drank anything during the race, the 1 oz of unaerodynamic plastic won't bog you down any. I always chuckle when I see a field full of cat 5's tossing their $5 water bottles with 2 to go in a 30 min race. This is also where I collect $5 water bottles off the side of the course (I just desanitize them at home with boiling water)....always good to know there's an endless supply of wealthy cat 5's to subsidize my racing expenses.
You bastard, I want my bottles back!BigLeadOutGuy
Jul 9, 2002 7:49 AM
so thats where all my dropped water bottles are going!!!
thats too funny kaiser =)
keep the collection growing =)
re: Crit drinkingschills
Jul 8, 2002 2:36 PM
I always start with a full small bottle. However, I'm usually only able to grab a sip at the start line just before the start. Once the race starts I can't get to the bottle. Too much going on and I'm not likely to take my hands off the bars in the middle of the pack on a crit. The courses I race on are usually 1 mile in length with 4 right angles. No chance for me to get a drink. I run dry after that first sip. More experienced riders may grab a drink, but I can't.
practice itDuane Gran
Jul 8, 2002 4:26 PM
I would bring half the 3/4 of a bottle of water. Drink plenty in the 15-30 minutes prior to the start. A well executed drink should only take 4 or 5 seconds if you are smooth. You should be capable of grabbing the bottle without looking and pedalling at the same time. Likewise, you should be able to return the bottle to the cage without looking while still pedalling. If you can't do that, expect:

1) Swerving and consequent cursing in your direction
2) Losing speed and getting passed

Actually, you might expect #2 unless you work hard to avoid it because people like to take advantage of any distraction. Any way you slice it, crits hurt like hell and you might as well not be thirsty in addition to the pain. ;)
re: Crit drinkingkaiser
Jul 8, 2002 6:45 PM
If you honestly thought there might be volunteers passing out water, then you are certainly wet behind the ears ;-)

Bring one bottle, and drink when you have a crits, it's easy to choose a specific spot every lap or so to grab a drinkie. be sure you grab the drink fast, and practice getting the bottle back into the cage...don't get caught in a turn with a bottle dangling from your teeth.
re: Crit drinking--Could use a Gel/Gu FlaskBryanJL
Jul 9, 2002 9:46 AM
In addition to using a bottle, whether half full, quarter full, or whatever, another technique I use is to instead fill a gel flas with water for a quick shot.

But, this must be said:

Like other posts mention, you must be able to insert and reomve that bottle without looking, one handed, in close proximity to other riders. That's harder than it seems.

I have yet to really get thirsty during a crit. Yes, my mouth does get a little dry, but you can get saliva flowing by pushing your tongue forward against the roof of your mouth--it usually helps me, anyway.

HYDRATE BEFORE the crit. Use your special sauce, whatever it may be--Accelerade, Cytomax, Gatorade, plain water, whatever. Drink a bottle before hand during warm-up, make sure to have enough time before race starts to hit the porta-potty and get to the line.

Lately, I have been using a gel flask with water for a quick shot, and guess what---I use it all up after the race ends. Go figure.

Good luck---and if there are cycling clubs in your area, seriously consider joining one. It will help tremendously in terms of getting more wisdom, and practical experience.

Good luck,

re: Crit drinkingVoodoo
Jul 9, 2002 9:51 AM
Did you think "voluteers" would be passing out little sippy cups at 28 MPH?
YAahhm, gottta crit drinking. UUuurp! (nm)Sintesi
Jul 9, 2002 10:43 AM
really, is everybody just too darned cool for a camelbak?JS Haiku Shop
Jul 9, 2002 11:09 AM
granted, you don't want to wear a 100-ouncer capable of carrying a picnic lunch out there, but what's the big deal? i'm reading a bunch of "drink and hydrate before, but not during", "make sure you're 100% comfy getting at and replacing the bottle without looking", and, "be certain you can handle a bottle in close proximity". even in fast club rides, without a bunch of corners, bottles go astray and are huge hazards. why not a small, aero/form-fitting hydration pack instead of bottles? is it just the "fred" factor, or what?
Im with you!mtber
Jul 9, 2002 11:14 AM
But then again, I have a visor on my helmet and wear MTB shoes, too.
even I'M too cool for a helmet visor (just kidding) NMJS Haiku Shop
Jul 9, 2002 11:20 AM
really, is everybody just too darned cool for a camelbak?kaiser
Jul 9, 2002 1:19 PM
Unfortunately, I think the Fred Factor is the issue here. I've never personally used a camelback (or even tried one), but if it made it any easier/safer to drink, and hence keeps me from cramping, then I'm all for it.

Heck, I may as well go and buy one and try it.

And I also race with hairy legs...I raced for years with shaved legs, and after my 13 year layoff, found no compelling reason to return to the practice...Thank God I don't give a damn what people think about how I look anymore.
really, is everybody just too darned cool for a camelbak?LC
Jul 9, 2002 1:20 PM
I would wear the helmet visor before the camelback in a crit. Your center of gravity becomes higher and you all know how crutial the corners are in a crit. I often do a weekday crit and force myself to reach for the bottle just for the practice. You just have to pick your spot (away from the corners) and time (when the pack slows down.)
well, for me, it made things a hell of a lot easierweiwentg
Jul 9, 2002 3:06 PM
the drinking tube was right by my shoulder. and I never was affected by the higher CG - you don't have to fill the damn thing to the brim.
and finally, YMMV of course, in all the crits I've been in, the only time anyone slowed down was in the corners. what would you do, then? ;)
anyone good with numbers care to pontificate?JS Haiku Shop
Jul 10, 2002 5:14 AM
(no wise cracks, please)

if i weigh 190-200#, am 6'2", ride a 57cm bike weighing around 21#, and am wearing a camelbak aerobak (no cargo, just 50 oz of water), what's the effect on CG?
Why I'm opposed to CamelBaks,TJeanloz
Jul 10, 2002 5:59 AM
I've never been in a race where somebody rode with a CamelBak, but I have been on club rides with them, and I think they're dangerous. How? The person wearing the CamelBak puts this 3" hump on their back which prevents the rider behind them from seeing over their shoulders as well as they might like to. It might be a small quibble, but every time I've been behind somebody with a CamelBak, I feel like I've been blinded.
Maybe a HAWG but...mtber
Jul 10, 2002 6:10 AM
an Aerobak is pretty small and, well, aerodynamic. I hardly think that an Aerobak w/ 25oz (1/2 full), at most, would block the vision of the rider behind you.
It's surprising,TJeanloz
Jul 10, 2002 6:58 AM
Even with the road version, because of the way it sits up between the shoulder blades, it causes vision problems, for me- this might be a non-issue for everybody else.
what about people taller than you? nmJS Haiku Shop
Jul 10, 2002 6:57 AM
what about people taller than you?TJeanloz
Jul 10, 2002 9:48 AM
For reasons that I cannot explain, taller people don't have nearly the same effect- probably because people aren't sitting that much higher, and everybody is hunched over.
what about people taller than you?JS Haiku Shop
Jul 10, 2002 10:57 AM
i've found myself looking around people while drafting/sitting in line. kinda like you see on the one-on-one sprints in tour tapes, where the guy in back pokes his head outta the side every now and again. that said, i'm 6'2". my "soft focus" tends to be through the frame more than OVER the guy in front. then again, to each his own!
dude, try being 5'4" in a men's fieldlonefrontranger
Jul 11, 2002 11:54 AM
and THEN come complain to me about not being able to see.

Somehow I've always managed. I've never noticed that Camelbaks add anything significant to the occlusion, since it's their *ss that blocks my line of sight anyhow. I tend to just look "through" or around them with soft focus, like JS Haiku mentioned.

I do the "gopher" thing too (pop my head up for a peek from time to time). Other than that, I simply trust that the guy in front of me isn't going to ride off any cliffs or into any chasms.
well, you're used to one thing and he's used to anotherweiwentg
Jul 12, 2002 1:55 AM
TJ is used to looking over people. he's what, 6'3"? and when Camelbaks occlude his LOS, this is disturbing.
you, on the other hand, are used to looking at people's butts, as am I. Camelbaks make no difference.
draft me, then :) nmweiwentg
Jul 10, 2002 4:11 PM