My first audax

steveindenmark

Legendary Member
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It took me 60 years, but I rode my first audax yesterday, just to say I have done one. 200km.

I must admit, its not really my thing. But I am aware many people like them.

I was under the impression that it would be an individual effort ride. As soon as it started the other 7 riders got into a peleton and off they went. It was more like a club ride.
I didnt mind. I inteded to ride alone. Tri bars.. You cannot use tri bars said the organiser. I checked this beforehand. You cannot use tri bars in PBP but everything else seems a grey area. Apart from that, I did not intend to ride in a group. I rode with tri bars.

First control was a church in the middle of nowhere and my instruction was to find someone to sign the card. There was nobody so I took a photo. Similar scene at the second checkpoint. Is this allowed?

Too many big roads to ride on in such a beautiful part of Denmark.

I enjoyed the ride and maybe its because I am not used to the system and it was all new to me, that I really didnt take to it. Maybe its because I like to plan my own routes on quieter roads.

I got in at 9 hours 45 minutes which is the goal I was aiming at.

A beautiful day but windy though.

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Spiderweb

Not So Special One
Location
North Yorkshire
Well done Steve!
Bottle cage mounts on the forks are a great idea when you need to fill your main triangle with bags.
Looks like a Specialized, what model and what bike packing bags are you using?
 

DCLane

Found in the Yorkshire hills ...
I'm wondering if your first audax was run a bit differently to others?

Last Saturday, although it was a PBP qualifier, there must have been 100 riders heading for Skeggy on the 300k I took part in. Some rode alone, others in groups. I saw a lot more tri bars than in previous years.

It may have been because it was a mid-week event?
 
OP
steveindenmark

steveindenmark

Legendary Member
Its the Specialized Roubaix Tiagra. Its a 10 speed and in hindsight I should have gone for the 11 speed Ultegra. But I like Tigra gears. They work regardless how much crud gets in them.

The frame bag is an expandable Blackburn bag and is really good. I usually have a Restrap Holster on the back and that is excellent. Far better than Apidura of which I have had 2.

The bottle mounts are velcro and are from Rose bikes and are solid. I find them really easy to reach. Not exactly aero, but I have a Wahoo Bolt to compensate.
 
OP
steveindenmark

steveindenmark

Legendary Member
I'm wondering if your first audax was run a bit differently to others?

Last Saturday, although it was a PBP qualifier, there must have been 100 riders heading for Skeggy on the 300k I took part in. Some rode alone, others in groups. I saw a lot more tri bars than in previous years.

It may have been because it was a mid-week event?
You may be right Colin. He asked me if I was going to Paris. Would PBP qualifiers be pushing the speed a bit?
 

DCLane

Found in the Yorkshire hills ...
You may be right Colin. He asked me if I was going to Paris. Would PBP qualifiers be pushing the speed a bit?
Yes, as 200km is the minimum distance. On my 200k last month the speeds were definately higher as riders prepare for their 300/400/600 qualifiers. In the UK it's also attracted riders from the sportive set, some of whom treat the ride as if they're racing. Not that I've ever done that ... :whistle:
 

Dogtrousers

Kilometre nibbler
I was under the impression that it would be an individual effort ride. As soon as it started the other 7 riders got into a peleton and off they went. It was more like a club ride.
Its ride how you like. Some people ride in groups, chaingangs, gaggles, twos and threes. Some ride solo. Whatever takes your fancy. There are no rules on riding solo or drafting.

I often find myself playing leapfrog with club groups. They zoom off, then one has a puncture. I trundle by. They zoom past then stop for a wee. I trundle by. They zoom past then take a wrong turn, get back on the route and zoom past again. I keep trundling. They stop for an hour having coffee and cake and chatting. I get my card stamped and press on. They zoom past ...

If I'd found controls that were supposed to be manned but weren't I'd have just pressed on and not bothered with validation. Validation doesn't mean much to me personally.
 
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OP
steveindenmark

steveindenmark

Legendary Member
Yesterday. It was a go faster peleton and me. I saw them leave from the start and didnt see them again.

I was just a bucket list thing for me. Ive done it and ticked the box.

I found my bike had a rear flat tyre this morning. So thats what slowed me down.:rolleyes:
 

lane

Veteran
Which Audax was it?
 

lane

Veteran
When I do Audax I am usually towards or at the back. Quite often ride on my own sometimes spend a bit of time riding with someone. Doesn't matter though - do what you want - so long as finish in the cut off time same points as everone else. I have only ever riden one 200 though so only ever got 1 point.
 

Domus

Veteran
Location
Sunny Radcliffe
Due to do my second one on Wednesday, 100k
My first one was another 100k in February, I got in before the cut off time but I noticed at the start a small group leave before the official start. Is this normal practice? If so I can't understand having such precise cut off times. ie the time on Wednesday's 100K is finish by 17.16.
 

Ajax Bay

Veteran
Location
East Devon
I noticed at the start a small group leave before the official start. Is this normal practice? If so I can't understand having such precise cut off times. ie the time on Wednesday's 100K is finish by 17.16.
They shouldn't. It's disrespectful to the organiser who may have safety notices or other words of wisdom to share before saying "Well you may as well go then, I suppose" hopefully releasing the riders at the advertised time.
But audaxes are pretty relaxed affairs and very few see the merit in policing these things. Maybe the group who left early had to get back to their mums.
The completion time is the designated start time plus the distance (note this may not be the advertised distance but the 'minimum' distance) divided by the minimum speed (although BRM level audaxes (specifically the 200 and 400) are 'different' - see the AudaxUK website for the maximum time for riders to take if they are to be noted as 'finishers').
 

YukonBoy

The Monch
Location
Inside my skull
You will find that the feel of an Audax varies with organiser. The rules give a framework but there can be a lot of differences in route selection, control locations, the start / finish, the riders who are attracted to an event and dare I say it the welcome from the organiser and helpers. Some will be relaxed about minor infringements others will take a dim view. So worth trying an Audax from a different organiser to see how it compares.

As for the go faster bit, they might just be seeing where their fitness is at before they step up the distances. Some may be worried if they are fit enough and may hang on for dear life in the peloton to gain some time before they need to drop off the back.

I find solo riding easier than as a group. Team riding of an Arrow means you have to make many compromises to your preferred speed, stops, eating etc. But a combination of a bit of everything as the ride unfolds generally works well. But being firm about your own needs during a ride is important.

There's an Audax I ride the reverse of the first 5km getting yo the start. I see a few who have clearly set off early without permission. They get upset when I point this out but it's up to organiser as to whether it matters. There are no prizes at stake , it's only a 100km one.
 

Ajax Bay

Veteran
Location
East Devon
I find solo riding easier than as a group. Team riding of an Arrow means you have to make many compromises to your preferred speed, stops, eating etc.
As our Easter Arrow team leader I consulted with all the team members (at the pub every Wednesday) to get a consensus as to how far between sit down eating, which would not necessarily coincide with route definition controls (for which PoP is all that's needed). I carefully researched the 'eating' options and these were all good (note: no real non-McD options after 11pm). We garaged at 89k, sat down at 154k, ice creamed at 203k, at 230k sat down (in a kind Daventry CC clubman's kitchen for beans, sausages on toast ++), and McDonalded at 300, 367 and 413k (22nd hour control), before York 2 hours later. The only other stop we made (in a pace line of 4) was to pull more clothing on as it got rather colder than forecast. In the ride debrief (tomorrow at the pub) I'll see to what extent team members experienced feelings of 'compromise'. One team member went through a weak patch (power/speed) from midnight till 4am (and then the magnetism of York rejuvenated him) but otherwise, all was good (body part complaints borne/suppressed in privacy).
Of course an Arrow (riding as a team) is quite different to any other audax - I suspect those who prefer their own company will, almost by definition, not enjoy riding with others as much.
 
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