Archive for April, 2010

Cue Sheet and GPS Files for April 24 Mother of All 300Ks ACP Brevet

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

The cue sheet for the Mother of All 300Ks brevet starting at the Super 8 Motel in Middletown, VA at 5:00AM on April 24, 2010 is now posted at Cue Sheet - 20100424 Mother 300K Brevet. Registration and bike inspection will occur from 7:00-8:30PM on Friday evening and 4:00-5:00AM on Saturday morning near the front of the motel.

Since this is the first brevet of 2010 with mandatory bike inspection, Article 10 from the RUSA Rules for Riders is quoted here. Note that spare “bulbs” are not needed for LED lights. But a second, redundant lighting unit is recommended for both front and rear lights.

Article 10

For night riding, vehicles must be equipped with front and rear lights attached firmly to the vehicle. Lights must be turned on at all times during hours of darkness or other low-light conditions (rain, fog, etc.). At least one of the rear lights must be in a steady (rather than flashing) mode. All riders’ lights must meet the requirements of local laws. A rider is not permitted to cycle at night or in other low-light conditions without working front and rear lights attached to the vehicle; therefore backup lighting systems and/or spare bulbs are strongly recommended in case the primary system fails and cannot be repaired on the roadside. Each rider, whether riding in a group or alone, must fully comply with this requirement. Everyone must use their lights!

During hours of darkness or other low-light conditions, all riders must wear a reflective vest, sash, Sam Browne belt, or some other device that clearly places reflective material on the front and back of the rider. During these times all riders will also wear a reflective ankle band around each ankle. (Due to their unusual seating position, recumbent riders may modify their reflective torso devices to show better from front and rear.) Other reflective devices on clothing, shoes, helmets, and machines are encouraged for increased safety - but they are extra and may not take the place of the minimum items listed above.

Any violation of these night riding rules will result in the immediate disqualification of the rider.

The link to the GPS files is posted below. But please read this information before downloading them. Always get a copy of the final cue sheet. That final cue sheet contains the official route, so in case there is a conflict with the GPS file, you should resolve the conflict in favor of the cue sheet. Use the GPS as a handy-dandy adjunct. Keep your wits about you, as the GPS cannot notify you of road hazards — it is up to you to ride safely.

We strongly recommend that you set your GPS to the settings below. We cannot guarantee that these will keep you on the official route, but if you have your GPS set some other way, it is entirely possible that it will take you off route, possibly onto unsafe roads. Go to the Setup->Routing page and set as follows:

Guidance Method: Follow Road
Follow Road Method: Shortest Distance
Next Turn Pop-Up: On
Follow Road Options:
  Off Route Recalculation: Prompted
  Calculation Method: Best Route
  Calculate Routes for: Car/Motorcycle
  Avoid: (set to none – the route itself should control this)

By the way … make sure that your GPS either has maps already downloaded, or select the relevant maps around the routes.

GPS files are posted at GPS Files - 20100424 Mother 300K Brevet.

Fleche Roster & Final Results

Friday, April 16th, 2010

Last updated: 27 April 2010  

10 teams with 45 riders started the DC Randonneurs 2010 fleche .  35 riders from 9 teams earned an official finish (pending final approval by RUSA and ACP).

One team (Anciens and Poets) started on Friday morning and finished on Saturday morning. They had very warm temperatures (80s) on Friday and mild temperatures at night. But they had to fight the same strong northwest winds that the other teams did on Saturday, plus rain and nighttime thunderstorms as well. As if that wasn’t enough, Randy Mouri’s carbon handlebars broke (he wasn’t injured, thank goodness), and it took time to improvise a splint from a frame pump and duct tape. All of these delays meant that the team had no chance of reaching the Marriott in time. They did the right thing by selecting alternate 22-hour and final controls, and it turned out that their modified route was just long enough - 361 km - to qualify for an official finish.

The other nine teams started in mild (60F) temperatures on Saturday morning. But the temperatures dropped steadily all day and night into the 30s. Any riding into the northwest quadrant was SLOW due to the strong headwinds from that direction. But at least there was no rain. In the end, eight of the nine teams arrived at the Key Bridge Marriott by their designated finish times and the riders enjoyed a tasty and sociable breakfast in the Marriott restaurant. The one exception was the Blue Ridgers who abandoned as a team during the night rather than leave one of their struggling members alone out on the road. (Very classy move by the Blue Ridgers!) Some individual riders also had to abandon due to illness and other causes, but all of their teams still had at least the three riders required for an official team finish.

Here are some facts and statistics:

  • The 2010 award for dedicated captain goes to Team Rouge captain Bill Arcieri, who lost his control card at their second control so didn’t qualify as an official finisher, but continued the full ride anyway, guiding his team to an official finish.
  • The 2010 award for best save goes to Team Anciens and Poets for their route modification that turned out being just long enough for an official finish! They also win the award for luckiest team since the receipt that they lost was from the control where I met them in Harpers Ferry.
  • The longest route was ridden by Team Velo Espresso Gelato at 388 km.
  • The youngest team was Team Velo Espresso Gelato (Lane Giardina, Ed Felker, Mary Gersema, and Mike Ross) with an average age of 42.5 years.
  • The oldest team was the Blue Ridgers (Tom Reeder, Hank Greenblatt, Fred Robbins, and Alex Sanchez) with an average age of 60.3 years. The oldest finishing team was the Carnivores  (Crista Borras, Bill Beck, Mary Crawley, Chris Mento, Kelly Smith, and Chuck Wood - Grrrrrr!) with an average age of 58.7 years.

Congratulations to all of the riders who participated in this year’s fleche.

ACP 300km brevet - May 8 - Frederick, MD

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

Starting from the Frederick Motel 6 (formerly Quality Inn), we follow roughly the same route as last year. The ride heads north, skirting South Mountain as far as Thurmont and then turns west to climb the ridge on MD77 through Catoctin Mountain State Park. Just short of the summit, it heads roughly north-north-east into Pennsylvania and through the rolling apple and peach orchards of Adams County. From Arendtsville, it turns north-west and begins a long, stair-step climb with many steep sections, ascending the false summit before Big Flat (altitude 1650 feet) before a rapid descent to a stop sign, followed by the real climb to the summit of Big Flat (altitude 2040 feet). Nine miles of mostly downhill brings riders to a much needed rest stop and control in Shippensburg. The terrain moderates in the Cumberland valley northeast to Bloserville. The return trip heads east and south through Mount Holly Springs, then crosses South Mountain and takes several miles of easy rollers to East Berlin. The final miles remain mellow, heading southwest to Thurmont ending with a few rollers paralleling US15. After crossing US15, we’ll take a new route into town on Opposumtown Pike.

Controls: Frederick, Shippensburg, Bloserville, East Berlin, Frederick.

2010 Frederick 300K 3D Map

ACP 300km brevet - April 24 - Middletown VA

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

The Contrary Mother

This is an improved version of the original 2005 Mother of all 300k’s, in reverse and with no mileage on US522 (ugh). As shown in the elevation profile, it consists of fabulous scenery hard won by lots of climbing of hills of all variety (see Endless Mountains 1240km). Don’t forget to bring lots of low gears.

Elevation Profile - 20100424 Contrary Mother Elevation Profile (click for larger view)

From the Middletown Super 8 there is a relatively mild warm-up stretch to Green Spring Road where, after a long slow descent, there is a significant ridge and fast downhill into the volunteer control at Siler. There are more big rollers through Cross Junction and Whitacre on the way to the WV border in the orchards of the aptly named High View.

The route then descends to the control in Yellow Springs and the Cacapon River and follows the lovely Cacapon River Road to Capon Bridge on US50. Some serious climbing and descending through beautiful wooded and streamside terrain leads to a much needed break at the Slanesville General Store for pizza or subs. You will need the fuel — for the next 75 miles, between Slanesville and the summit of Wolf Gap, there is very little that is flat, and there are seven notable climbs averaging more than 600 feet apiece.

After continuing east along WV 3 - much easier in this direction - as far as Points, the route then turns south for some terrific long views from Jersey Mountain Road and then brings the riders back to US50. The Mountain Top Restaurant or Liberty convenience store offer a possibility for some calories in anticipation of the hard stretch to Lost River.

This section consists of many long slow climbs and descents with an occasional very steep section for distraction. The roads follow streams through farmland or forest and the top of each climb can be marked by the flow of water - you will be happy when it is going your way.

The control at the Lost River General Store serves excellent pannini, espresso drinks, milkshakes and various gourmet fare in an idyllic setting. Make sure you’re well supplied for the continued climbing back into VA and the rigors of Back Road. Coming out of Lost River, there are two roughly-800 foot climbs between you and the VA border; Mill Gap is moderately long and very steep in spots, then there is a fairly long downhill to catch your breath before the climb over Wolf Gap. Be very careful on the downhill, there is often gravel in the turns, and some are not well signposted. Once you are on Back Road, it is actually slightly downhill overall, but you might never notice given all the climbing. A few more moderate ups and downs and one big drop and climb at Cedar Creek bring you back to Middletown, the finish, pizza, and the well-deserved feeling that you’ve conquered a very tough brevet.

Cue Sheet and GPS Files for April 10 Warrenton (Old Rag) 200K ACP Brevet

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

The cue sheet for the Warrenton (Old Rag) 200K ACP brevet starting at the Howard Johnsons in Warrenton, VA at 7:00AM on April 10, 2010 is now posted at Cue Sheet - 20100410 Warrenton 200K Brevet. Be sure to park either at the high school indicated on the map or along Waterloo Rd. Do not park at the HoJos or nearby businesses. Bring lights, especially in case of morning fog or rain.

The link to the GPS files is posted below. But please read this information before downloading them. Always get a copy of the final cue sheet. That final cue sheet contains the official route, so in case there is a conflict with the GPS file, you should resolve the conflict in favor of the cue sheet. Use the GPS as a handy-dandy adjunct. Keep your wits about you, as the GPS cannot notify you of road hazards — it is up to you to ride safely.

We strongly recommend that you set your GPS to the settings below. We cannot guarantee that these will keep you on the official route, but if you have your GPS set some other way, it is entirely possible that it will take you off route, possibly onto unsafe roads. Go to the Setup->Routing page and set as follows:

Guidance Method: Follow Road
Follow Road Method: Shortest Distance
Next Turn Pop-Up: On
Follow Road Options:
  Off Route Recalculation: Prompted
  Calculation Method: Best Route
  Calculate Routes for: Car/Motorcycle
  Avoid: (set to none – the route itself should control this)

By the way … make sure that your GPS either has maps already downloaded, or select the relevant maps around the routes.

GPS files are posted at GPS Files - 20100410 Warrenton 200K Brevet.

ACP 200km brevet - April 10 & August 14 - Warrenton VA

Sunday, April 4th, 2010

The ride starts at the “Howard Johnson Inn” at 6 Broadview Avenue in Warrenton, VA‎ (540 347-4141‎). Checkin starts at 6am and the brevet starts at 7am. Pre-ride bathrooms are available in the Burger King, just N of the HoJos, on Broadview. Please do not park at the HoJos, unless you are a guest.  There is street parking on Waterloo, just west of the HoJos.  If you want off-street parking, park at the High School which is at Waterloo and Van Roijen St, about three blocks from the HoJos.

From Warrenton we head generally southwest passing through rolling horse farm country with the Blue Ridge Mountains as our backdrop. We parallel the Blue Ridge as far south as Madison where we begin our return to Warrenton after a stop at the friendly, well-stocked Yoder’s Country Market. The route is fairly gentle as we wind our way to Syria in the shadow of Grave’s Mountain. A moderate climb followed by a 3-mile descent puts us up and over the Old Rag Grinder. A series of steep and unrelenting rollers–lovingly known as The Three Kings and The Meanies–will consume us for the next hour or so prompting many to re-fuel at the Laurel Mills store with the sweet, spring water that flows nearby. Country roads bordered by stone fences carry us through Ben Venue and into Flint Hill and the final control at the reopened Orlean Store. A final climb over Piney Mountain brings us back to the HoJos in Warrenton. Estimated total elevation gain : 8,000 feet.