Battenkill 2019

Hey all! I am getting ready to start training for Tour of Battenkill that is in early May. Most likely going to do SSB1/2, general build and rolling road race which will take me right up to the race. Has anyone done this event before? Any tips or things you wished you knew? Basically its a 75 mile race with 13 hard pack dirt sections, some being climbs. Most of the climbs are relatively short and punchy with about 5000’ of elevation gain. Does doing the rolling road race specialty sound right?

Thanks in advance!

I did the race last year. It was a blast. I did SSB Mid Vol1/2 and rolling road race which was excellent. You are definitely using the right plan. To shake things up this year, I am doing Hunter Allen’s Tour of Battenkill Training Plan for Build and Peak. One tip is try to get comfortable riding on dirt/mud. I do not have access to hard pack where i live so I definitely rode less confidently on the off road sections. I lost time there. I was not comfortable descending on 25mm wheel at 35 plus MPH over muddy and rutted roads.

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Awesome, thanks. I’m in the same boat-no where around me with dirt roads to train on.

Did it last year as well. I wasn’t targeting it as an ‘A’ event, and just shuffled my workouts around the bigger day. I was probably just in the beginning of SSB2 during Battenkill, and found the event fine. The climbs can be very steep, but are never too sustained.

That was my first year of structured training or bike racing whatsoever - my FTP was around 250 then with a w/kg of 3.3ish. It was a tough but manageable day. The route is absolutely gorgeous, you’ll have a killer time.

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Awesome. Really looking forward to it.

I’m also signed up for it. May do Hell of Hunterdon in March as well

I did it last year also. Chilly, damp, and fun. The dirt roads have a lot of mud and potholes, and those nearly took out quite a lot of people on descents.

Never raced this one, what style tire are you ladies and gents using?

Yes I’m planning to do the race too. So I was trying to figure out which one for speciality rolling road or climbing road.

I was leaning towards climbing for this plan ?? Wasn’t sure or should go rolling ??

Haven’t gotten that far into my planning yet but leaning towards gatorskins right now.

It seems like none of the climbs are very sustained so rolling road appears to be the better option. That being said I’ve never done it so basing it off race reports and the profile of the course.

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Yea I think I’m going to do the base and go into the build phase and see what happens

Climbs are like 1-2 miles and 300-500 ft. I was not super fast, but you’re talking a lot of 5-10 minute climbs.

I’d be curious if people think of that as “rolling”, since that’s about the size of all the climbs for road races in this area. :slight_smile:

I wish I could remember the persons name from reddit/r/Velo who wrote this - I copied and pasted it to my notes about a year ago and it is a very smart way to do a battenkill specific training ride. I’ve done battenkill 2 times and will be back again this year - although doing the shorter ride with my daughter this time around since she wants to jump in.
“> My experience is I’ve placed top ten in the pro-1 Battenkill race twice, back in 2013 and 2015, when it was 100+ miles.

-ride z2 for 2 hours. aim to finish the 2 hrs at the bottom of a steep hill (like 10%+ grade and ~100 m worth of vertical)

-climb that hill as hard as you can (will take you about 5 mins). That’s what stage road, herrington hill, juniper swamp, joe bean etc. are like.

-When you get to the top don’t completely let off the gas, aim for sweet spot for another 5 mins, focus on keeping your legs moving. This is what will happen in the race. Either you’ll be in the front group riding hard to get away, or you’ll be back in a different group chasing the front group. It’s frantic.

-let off the gas and coast for 5-10 mins back to the bottom of the hill in recovery mode. This is what happens when a general regroup happens after these climbs. Then it all happens again, except less people will get back on the next time, and the next time, and the next… so

-Repeat 6 times

-Ride home in z2 and do a sprint for your town sign

I wouldn’t do this 14 weeks out mind you, more like 4-6 weeks out. But it’s a workout to consider doing then if you want Battenkill-specificity.

It’s a “capstone” workout, so not often. Like it’s a 300 TSS day if you do it right (basically it’s a full on race sim)… so probably do it just as your final big ride before going into a recovery week

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This is awesome, definitely going to do that. Thanks. Do you think rolling road race or slimming would be the better specialty?

Honestly - either one as long as you make sure you keep your endurance up and know how to pace yourself. If you are riding to win it/vs just finish with a good time will be a big part of the equation.
To be clear - the quoted part was written by someone else on reddit/r/velo a couple of years back and I cannot locate the authors name - but it is really good advice. I would mix it up and put several of the climbs sprinkled throughout your training ride - if your training area allows for such a plan.
I am no climber by any stretch by after having done it twice now my TSS for the ride was 288 last year and 266 in 2016.

Super noob question for those of you who have done Battenkill before. I’m thinking about doing it, I’ve done all sorts of long rides but never a long race. I see there are two feed zones but it’s unclear if these are Fondo type zones (people stop and are given food by organizers) or a race type (musettes are handed over by teammates as racers roll by). The website is not clear on this point. My specific issue is I’m likely going alone and won’t have anyone to hand me food!

Fondo type zone.

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Super. Good to know I won’t starve! Thanks.