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Anyone done the New York Five Boro Bike Tour?

Discussion in 'Touring and Adventure Cycling' started by steverob, 7 Jan 2017.

  1. steverob

    steverob Über Member

    Found out over Christmas that I'm going to be in New York the same weekend they're holding their closed road sportive, the Five Boro Bike Tour and even better, the entries go on sale this Tuesday (it's first come first served, not a ballot like RideLondon). While it's only 40 miles long, I'm very tempted to enter, but thought I'd ask in case anyone here had ridden it before (or knew anyone who had) to see how they got on with it.

    If I do it, my main query at the moment is what bike to ride it on - while it looks like there's plenty of places in NYC that are willing to rent bikes for the event, I don't know whether to go for a road bike or a hybrid. I ride a roadie here in the UK and so would normally feel most comfortable with that, but given that some of the YouTube clips I've watched of previous year's rides show that the road surface is in parts pretty poor and that with the sheer amount of other riders (it looks more like the later hours of the FreeCycle in London for anyone who's done that) and the potential for heavy rain like there was in last year's ride, I think the wider tyres and more forgiving nature of a hybrid might be a safer bet.
  2. robgul

    robgul Guru

    My cycling in NY has been quite limited but, based on road surfaces alone, I'd go for a hybrid.

    steverob likes this.
  3. reppans

    reppans Active Member

    I've ridden it a few times, altough decades ago - once on a nice roadie. I wouldn't worry about the roads, pretty sure they'll keep the routes easy/smooth enough for the lowest common denominator rider. The crowds and volume of people are another issue, though - keep your distance from weak or aggressive riders, a crash can turn into a dog pile in front of you with the Wildebeest herd coming up the rear. You can't expect to ride in safety at the front either, they pace the front and as a result, it bottlenecks too.

    Any bike will be fine. Personally, if I do it again, I'd take my Brompton which would be a whole lot easier to deal with for the hours you'll be on foot (start, finish, bottlenecks, festival, ferry), and it might come in handy if you can move to the pedestrian passenger line on the Staten Island Ferry return trip, or decide to bail out and take a subway back.
    Richard Fairhurst and steverob like this.