Saw a rider on Mille Cymru (1000km audax) in 2014 arrive at the Betsy Coed control on the time limit on day 3. It was sub zero in the night in June. He ate, put head down for 15 mins doze and then was out of the door. He finished about 30 minutes out of time but what a battle to try to finish in time till the end. The kind of audax he will remember for a long time, compared to the ones you finish easily.
I did ride the BCM in 2018. According to Garmin/Strava it was 6333m climbing. I noticed this year’s edition is not listed as a 8000m brevet on the ACP list (a 600km brevet with 8000+m climbing is now a requirement for the ACP10k award).
BCM is a lovely event. Prepare for both bitterly cold (nights) and very hot; in 2018 it was near freezing in the night yet on the 2nd day someone had to quit because of heat stroke!
Kings Hostel can/will be packed… I had a 1/2 length inflatable pad and a light sleeping bag with me and had 3+ hours of sleep under a table in the lounge. Oh, bring earplugs
I’ve only failed to finish an audax twice. Both times were mental failures (1 went past my parents house) and I could have finished if I’d had the need to really.
The time I was actually sick (like throwing up proper sick) I still finished in time because I needed to (PBP qualifier)
The hilliest ride I did, I actually felt the freshest at the end - good weather helped, but hills with good descents are easier than grinding out into a headwind for me.
Thanks for the advice!
Great information on this thread, thanks all for contributing.
A bit off the training topic, but I’m prepping for my first 600k in late April, and am curious to ask what sort of tail bag setups any of you might have? I was able to fit all my spares/food/etc. in a decent size handle bar bag for the 200, 300, and 400, but don’t have spare space for any extras.
Any suggestions of what works well and why would be appreciated! I’ve been riding a 2021 Trek Emonda. Thanks!
I don’t carry anything extra for a 600 over a 400. What extras were you thinking of carrying that you didn’t have on your 400?
For the 600 I have a large Apidura under saddle bag.
Still toying with getting a Tailfin Rack
For the 600 since this will involve a sleep (in my case) I add the following over a 400 (no sleep)
600km or Overnight Stops
- Spare Bib Shorts
- Spare socks
- Airline size toothbrush/paste
- Mini hairbrush / Comb?
- Chamois cream / Sudacrem 30g
- 2x Powder instant Porridge
- SiS Recovery Powder
- SiS Go Powder (for Day2)
- Anker PowerPort Atom III Slim (UK Plug to 4 USB Ports)
- Charging cables for each device
Sometimes we get lucky and in my upcoming 600 the sleep is at a community hall and the organisers will take a drop bag for you which reduces the amount of stuff you have to take.
Mainly a change of bibs and some extra food. The route isn’t super remote, but gas stations in small town Georgia in the states will be closed for an unknown reason from time to time so I’d like to be prepped in case.
Thanks @davidkcowie this is fantastic!
I did my first Audax of the season yesterday - Kingston Wheelers 210km Gently Bentley
I had read prior to riding this article
and had never really considered displaying Power whilst riding Audaxes with the thought, it is what it is.
However yesterday on the 3rd leg I needed to make up some time and put on NP, IF and 30s Power. It got me motivated a bit and resulted in IF of 0.75 for 8 hours of riding.
I’ll now be interested to see how this compares to my other Audaxes (maybe list IF by distance?)
For the same ride last year I had 0.78 but was a bit faster as I had a group for the 2nd half.
Below is my IF now mapped to distance. There is quite a bit of variation which I guess depends on all the factors such as route profile, weather, groups or not and personal condition.
0.78 is my high water mark the past three years for a 200K. And I DESTROYED myself on that ride.
I record my multi-day rides as individual days, so many of the lower IF rides are really Day 2, Day 3, or Day 4 of longer efforts on gassed legs. And sometimes it’s just a nice day out for a long cruise away from the stresses of life!
Here’s a similar chart, with some annotations for last year specifically. I also broke things down by day, and you can see that huge drop off from the first to second day of the 1200 I did last year… and boy did I feel it too.
Hilariously the dot just above 84 is the first official brevet I ever did – clearly I did not have a particularly strong sense of pacing! The 300 from last year (which was particularly hilly) was a triumph at the time and in retrospect.
I have a February 100 with an IF of 0.865 but it’s not something I track in ride. I see power or heart during audax as something to keep a cap on, so I don’t burn too many matches fresh and early on in a ride. A 100 I see as something to have fun on, with no caps. Less than 6 mins stopped on this one.
The one thing I don’t want audaxes to turn into is staring at numbers on a screen. Do enough of that when doing intervals on a turbo.
Most of us lose time when not moving. My last 200 I spent 1 hour 20 mins stopped. I’ve had that as low as 10 minutes before. Keep your stops efficient and you can achieve the same elapsed time whilst riding a lot easier, with less toll on the body.
Just saw this thread now, cool!
I’m based in Norway, but did the Bryan Chapman Memorial in 2017. Definately one of the prettiest rides I’ve done. Also getting to experience the UK Audax scene was awesome. Loved how the controls were manned, and that it was a whole happening. When you ride here in Norway, you’re all on your own and your controls are basically gas stations along the route.
But yeah, BCM was hilly for sure. And steep! Some of the Welsh climbs are brutal. Kinda short, but so so steep! The views are stunning though, so the ride is HIGHLY recommended if you can get a spot.
Another randonne worth mentioning is the Jotunheimen Super Randonnee, which is a little over 600 km’s long and with over 10.000 meters of climbing. It was also brutal, but has some proper climbs and stunning views.
Will hopefully manage to qualify for my 3rd PBP this year, so might see some of you out there on the roads in Frace in August!?