I've done a 24hr solo once before and despite it being incredibly difficult I managed to ride the whole time and finished in a reasonable position. I did it on my Giant Anthem and was told that full suspension was a must given the hours spent in the saddle. My question is this: would doing the race on a hardtail significantly impact on my chances of finishing?
24hr Solo on a Hardtail
a lot of uk riders use hardtails for 24hr races. Some even have rigid forks and singlespeed.
I think it depends on what you train on/are used to as much as anything.
If you're riding an extra 5lb or 10lb of weight around for 24 hours you have to be convinced of the benefit really?
That's a good point. I've noticed a fair few bonkers riders on singlespeeds doing 24hr races.
I tried Relentless 24 on an NS Surge last year. Not a lightweight race hardtail by any means. Was totally beaten up at 2am and had to call it quits. An Anthem would of been just the ticket I reckon.
I ride a Trance X2 and an Genesis io singlespeed (HT).
Keilder 100 2011 rode the Trance got cut at the penultimate check due to mechanicals.
Mayhem 2012 solo on my Genesis came in the top 10 solo finishers (wish I had registered as a singlespeeder)
I am riding Mayhem again (if I get in)on my singlespeed and I really would like a 29er rigid singlespeed for Keilder.
I felt fresher on my singlespeed than when I did Keilder on my FS. But that's me
I think with singlespeed you get more 'rest' time per lap as you can't just keep turning a bigger and bigger gear on the flatter/slightly downhill bits so you have to stop pedalling and pump.
There only one thing stopping you, and that's yourself!
Of course, it also depends on the course your riding around for 25hrs a lot too!
If you know you can survive the beating, then you'll almost certainly be faster on an HT (for most endurance courses), but if you have any doubts, then get a nice comfy FS and take that
I think it's all relative, as you don't have gears to make going up easier lol.
Most of the Loco Racing team use hardtails for 24hr races, they're not too slow (Huw Thomas, 2012 Euro 24hr Solo champ) included.
Dave Buchanan swapped between hardtails and FS on the Welsh C2C double though, but at 53 hours I think that's ok
200? MoMa on a hardtail. Didn;t race for 24 hours (stayed in bed for the truly grim, torrential rainy bits during the night) but did 10/11 (??) laps.
If you don't mind having the shape of the saddle worn into your arse for a couple of weeks afterwards you'll be fine.
I've done four solos and never had anything other a hardtail (28lbish too - Cotics, Prince Alberts etc). Had a couple of pretty decent finishes too.
Lots of solos get won on hardtails.
You'll be fine!
EDIT: Having seen people finish (and give up) on all sorts of bikes. I'm pretty sure that the bike you're on doesn't make as much difference as how your head is. You've finished one, you know you have it in you, you can finish more.
I have done a few 24hrs solo on a hardtail single speed and found it less mental pressure than gears. The first one I did with rigid forks but it my forearms were agony for the last few hours.
Done 5 solos.
4 on just a full suss, one swapping between HT and FS.
Did a 12hr on an HT.
Done 2 team 24s , one HT and one FS
All of these were fine.
I think it depends more on the course, for something like Relentless I'd want a FS, for Mayhem an HT.
Also, consider relability, less to go wrong on an HT. If I was ever stupid enough to do the Puffer I'd want a SS HT for that.
Some cracking points made there. Thank you.
Ridden strathpuffer solo a few times on a HT but with gears. Can relate to the mental issue of gears, chainsuck really pi$Sed me off one year which resulted in going 1x9 ever since. Also rode the first 12hr summer puffer fully rigid. Forearms took a while to recover but other than that mostly enjoyable.
I solo'd the puffer on a Summer season. No issues with chainsuck or saddle weariness because I didn't have rear sus. If it's what you are used to riding then ride it.
Did my first 24 solo at Mayhem 2011, Scale 29er HT all the way! I did a couple of laps on my FS while the Scale was being cleaned of the mud from the first few hrs and immediately felt the weight up hill, yes downs would have been more comforatble towards the end but for climbing as much as the course did HT made sense and I was comfortable.
It depends what you ride most, in my mind all my training had been on a HT so wasn't willing to risk to long on the FS with a slightly different position. Placed in the top 10 too
I've never used a FS in a 24 hour solo.
When I first did a solo way back in 2006 I wouldn't even contemplate doing one on a HT but since I've started doing them again over the last few years I've only used a HT, the FS vs HT debate didn't really play on my mind. Had a HT, used a HT. Simple.
You can read loads into stuff saying 'if you use this it will be better for that'. Personally I cba with that anymore and use what I have at the time
Will be using a HT again all this season for the several solos I'm planing on doing. Can't wait.
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