With a few Gran Fondo’s (Big Ride’s) coming up this Summer/Fall, it’s a good idea to be properly prepared for the event. Gran Fondo Banff, Gran Fondo Whistler and DV100 to name a few!
Here’s a few tips to help you be the best you can be on the big day:
1) Clean your bike, including the drive train. Use a good chain cleaning tool and a good degreaser (I use diesel fuel – as do the pro mechanics) to thoroughly get all of the gunk and grime out of the chain, cogs and chainrings. Rinse with full pressure from your garden hose. Let is completely dry and then apply your favorite lube. I like the ‘dry’ style lubes as they don’t pick up as much dirt.
2) Ensure that your bike is in top working order. If you’re unsure, go to step 1 FIRST, then take your bike to the bike shop that you have a relationship with. Do not leave this to the last minute. Check the tires for cuts, make sure that your electronic shifting battery is charged, check for wear on the brake pads and go through the full range of gears.
3) Review what’s in your spares bag. I like to have 2 spare tubes, 2 CO2 cartridges, tire levers and a small multi-tool in the spares bag. Make sure that the tubes are in good working order and not left over from your last flat!
4) Finally, do NOT over train. You won’t get any fitter by doing long, hard rides in the week before the event. If you’ve been riding all Summer, I’d recommend going for a long ride a week before the event and then a couple short, easy rides in the week leading up to the weekend. Use the same food and drink mix that you use in training. Bring lots of clothes to the event start and choose what you need on the morning..you never know what the weather will do.
See you on the road!