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wradom

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Reply with quote  #1 
Looks like tricky conditions for Saturday if the forecast holds (low 50s, t-storms, winds 10-20 mph). Just looking for any advice at all from people who have ridden this before. I'm looking to be competitive but this is my first true gravel race so I'm not really sure of what to expect, would be happy to finish in the first couple groups. I'll be riding a rigid 29er with 1.95 tires...

Just some questions that come to mind... Is the course really exposed to wind? Any sketchy descents to worry about? Are 1.95s overkill? Is the gravel well maintained or a sand pit? Is the course marked at all or do I really need to pay attention to where I'm going?
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sourmashvelo

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Reply with quote  #2 

Q: Is the course really exposed to wind?
A: Yes

Q: Any sketchy descents to worry about?
A: Maybe, depends on your definition of sketchy. To error on the safe side I would say yes. Take a look at the elevation profile here to get an idea of where the fast descents are: http://www.almanzo100.bike/almanzo-100.html

Q: Are 1.95s overkill?
A: Maybe. Tires are a personal choice. If that's what you have on your bike stick with them. No need to 2nd guess this 5 days before the event. I've seen people ride the Almanzo course on everything from 23mm road tires to 5" fat tires. 

Q: Is the gravel well maintained or a sand pit?
A: Gravel roads exist because cities/towns/counties don't want to maintain asphalt/ concrete roads. Over the course of the route you will see many different gravel surfaces: hardpack, chunky, loose, and sand. If you mix in rain add mud/ peanut butter to that list!


Q: Is the course marked at all or do I really need to pay attention to where I'm going?
A: Not marked. You are responsible for yourself. With that said, there are a lot of people riding in the event so your chances of always seeing someone on the horizon are good. But don't blindly follow a rider ahead of you. They might be spacing out and miss a turn. 

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Zurichman

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Reply with quote  #3 
I am doing my 1st gravel ride this weekend also. The Farmer's Daughter. I don't know how much experience you have with your bike or gravel riding. My first ride I am just going to have fun and to finish the ride and not hate my bike or gravel riding. Good luck and have fun.


Zman

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If it was easy it wouldn't be a memory. You just hope you don't have all your memories in the same ride. been there dun that Zman
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