Whiskey 50 - thanks for the help!

I just wanted to say thanks to TrainerRoad and to this community. I leave for The Whiskey 50 in Prescott AZ tomorrow morning. Even though I found TR late in my planning this program has helped me so much. I only had time to complete SSB1 and SSB2 but the difference I feel when riding outside is insane. The thing that was unexpected was how much i have learned from both the podcast at this forum. Nutrition, strategy, and many other things. In my 20+ years on a mountain bike I had only scratched the surface. The plan is to eat like Nate, (2000 calories during my race) to Rail the Trail like Jonathan, and to heed the pacing wisdom of Chad. Thanks again.



All the best of luck to you!!! Kill it and please report back!!! :+1:


Good luck :+1:t3:

Don’t crash reading that top tube sticker :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:.

I abbreviate mine as much as possible and use as big a font as I can to make easier to read while on the bike.

For example, the first paragraph you could write as:

S: 90-120 min
18 mi
320 BB M S

I have the Grand Junction Off-road in a few weeks. Another Epic Rides event. I hear they put on a petty good event.


Good luck! I’ll be there racing the 30. Will be interested to hear how it went for you when it’s all said and done!


A couple of us users from the east coast will be out there with you too for the 30 miler! Can’t wait!


I’m heading up there tomorrow morning! This is my A race so I’ve been training for this weekend since October. Thanks to TrainerRoad, I don’t think I could be more prepared. All those hours of cursing coach Chad will be well worth it climbing up Skull Valley. Even though we only do half this year.

Looking forward to a great weekend!

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Have a great ride and experience!

How did everyone do? We loved the ride and felt pretty good. Great party afterwards.

That Race was awesome. It was my first 50 mile so there were a lot of lessons but I have to say that I don’t think I could have completed the 50 without the TR training. I just walked in the door after an almost 8 hour drive home. Race report soon!


I did the 50, I made one bad decision doing the “new” climb instead of the regular climb. Great event, although next year they need to not have to 30 riders on the course as the 50 at the same time.

I did the 30, although my rear rim cracked so day over unfortunately 1:45 into it. I was pacing for about 2:40 I think which would have put me 25th ish in men’s open.

I had the same thought on the course being crowded but had a different take on it versus only having them on the course at different times.

Having never ridden in an Epic Rides event before I was in wave 2 for the 30. I can totally understand how many of those in the 50 felt with those in wave 1 of the 30. And for those further back in the 50, that’d mean the 30 mile wave 2. Even I, going off 15 minutes after the first 30 wave, probably passed a good 70 before I lost count prior to the first aid station.

From that point on until my rim cracked I saw those who were about 5th - 20th in the 50 pass me and those around me. And the VAST majority of them were incredibly rude and sometimes even demeaning to those ahead of them.

Simply yelling “50!” over and over again gives someone no right to an immediate pass, especially in tight single track with no room to get off. I can understand a “Different category” call-out, but no one said that and these to me didn’t seem that way. More a “I’m riding 50 miles so move.”

In wider areas there were cases where those being passed needed to yield sooner, but that was a rarity compared to the rude passing.

So first major takeaway is people need to be nicer to each other. Would have smoothed a lot of stuff out and I’m sure made everyone’s experience better. 2,000 racers and it’s going to get crowded.

But second is that I think they need to be more selective somehow about what riders are in the 30 proof waves. Starting by being more selective about wave 1 and things would waterfall to 2 and 3. That way the top end of the 50 proof would be racing with the top of the 30, most of whom are cat 1 anyway, while there’d be better overlap further down.


I rode the 50. Great race, first time in Epic Rides race, first 50 mile race. I have only been mtbing for a couple years, so felt it was perfect for my skill level. Skull Valley was quite hot (coming from Chicago) and then required a lot of focus with the twisty and loose single track on the balance of the course. Really enjoyed the last 10 miles of single track though, so I’d say a great course change even without having done the prior version. Crashed twice, once on the decent of Moby hitting a rock overhang with my bars and almost killing myself off of exposure. Luckily landed on top of my frame with my butt in a rock bike before careening further downhill. Good for me, not so good for the frame. Second time a baby head wash out in a loose corner. Well, need a new whoop strap, boa shoe fastener, and helmet from that one, but otherwise all good.

One of the faster wave 2 participants, I passed a lot of tail end wave 2 30 milers. Speed difference was stark at times, but most people were fairly courteous to each other. Some traffic jams on the tighter areas.

You might next time do the wave 1 30s after the wave 1 50s and then 2s and 2s. Would probably keep all but the slowest of the 30s out of the way, and I typically find the slowest riders are not so serious, so they will jump out of the way quick no problem.

When people are taking themselves a bit too seriously both the passers and the passees is when problems ensue.


I heard some guy yelling “50!” And I thought he was joking. I guess he was seriously trying to get people out of the way. Kind of funny.

You guys should come ride in Western NC. We’re pretty laid back and have awesome beer after all the races.

You might next time do the wave 1 30s after the wave 1 50s and then 2s and 2s. Would probably keep all but the slowest of the 30s out of the way, and I typically find the slowest riders are not so serious, so they will jump out of the way quick no problem.

I think that’d be a good solution. Hopefully Epic Rides gets enough feedback this year where they’ll make some changes next year.

@Wahoowheezewizzard Will have to keep that in mind! Hopefully it didn’t sour too much of your view of AZ though! In all honesty this is the first situation I’ve ever experienced with that type of behavior. 99% of the time everyone’s fairly laid back and respectful.

My first time at the racing The Whiskey, and rode the 50. Had an absolute blast!

I set a very ambitious goal of 5 hours and I finished in 5:12, which I am super happy about. This includes taking the Happy Ending bypass cause I was having too much fun.

I started in the first half of wave 2, and started off pacing very conservatively up the first climb and I got passed by quite a few people. Which caused problems on the first major downhill, but paid dividends the rest of the race.

I pushed the pace harder up the climb from the turn around aid station and I made up quite a bit of time. Then the fun began! Yes the single track was very crowded and Epic Rides needs to do something else next year. @jkingry has a good idea above.

For hydration I tested a new strategy. Most other long races I wear a Camelback Chase and I love it, but I was worried about the heat climbing up fire roads in the sun. So I opted to just use 2 bottles and fill them up at the turn around aid station before the big climb. The first half of the race is mostly on fire roads so I wasn’t worried about being able to reach down and grab bottles, but the second half is pretty tight single track and was worried about not being able to drink enough because of the trail. At mile 31 there is a good spot for spectators to drive to and give hand ups. So I had my mom hand me up my Camelback for the rest of the race. This probably made my race. There was no way I could have drank that much if I just used bottles, and I saved time because I didn’t have to stop at the very crowded last aid station. Best mom in the world for sure.

Overall I had a fantastic weekend. My dad raced the 30 and killed it! Can’t wait for Tour of the White Mountains and The Whiskey next year!

Huge thanks to TrainerRoad, this would not have been possible without their training plans and content. Even a year ago I would not have even thought this was possible.


Nah, there are d-bags everywhere. The whole experience was incredibly positive. Absolutely loved it.

I couldn’t have been happier with my set up. Salsa Pony Rustler set up 29, 140mm in front, 120 rear suspension. Road i9 torch hubs with their Trail 245 wheels. Trails seemed perfect for a trail bike.

Thinking of doing this race next year. Sounds like it was a blast.

Wondering what kind of bike setups people were using? Xc? Trail? HT? Other?

I’m thinking of doing a few other marathon xc style races during the latter part of this year and throughout next and, you know, always n+1.


I saw a mix of everything, Hardtail, short FS XC, long travel fs trail, etc. I used a 100/100 Santa Cruz Tallboy and it was perfect. if anything I beefed up the tires a little too much. Ikon’s or Aspen’s would be the ticket. The event was A BLAST. I would keep the front travel at 120 or less for these marathon XC events. There are some tricky sections but nothing that a step cast 32 100mm couldn’t handle.

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