Tour Divide 2019

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  • Tour Divide 2019
  • teamslug
    Member

    Starts in about half an hour. I’ll be watching for Alex Watts aka Tea Boy. Rides for Team JMC. First timer. Anyone else to watch for?

    Premier Icon Yak
    Subscriber

    Yeah, watching Alex too. Good luck to all.

    Premier Icon NewRetroTom
    Subscriber

    Josh Ibbett is also a rookie, but I expect him to be fast. He won the transcontinental race in 2015 amongst plenty of other impressive achievements on the bike.

    Premier Icon rOcKeTdOg
    Subscriber

    Watch out for Tim Roberts, he rides with us…..for a while we usually can’t keep up. He’s riding a frame built by smithy bikes

    Premier Icon miketually
    Subscriber

    They’re not doing the mass start, because school, but I believe both Rich and Mini Pips are riding the Tour Divide this summer.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/Byo8_cIFJ_I/

    whitestone
    Member

    Not sure how it compares to previous editions but there are four riders with a target time of 14 days, 6 for 15 days and 8 for 16 days. The fourteen day group includes both Josh Kato and Lael Wilcox who’s stated that she wants to win it outright AND beat Mike Hall’s record. Lael actually put “as fast as I can” but Trackleaders has turned this into 14 days.

    Supposedly there’s been a lot of snow still lying around so that might have an effect on some of the higher passes and slow things down a bit. I’m not sure when TL start showing it but there’s usually two extra rider icons, one for each of the male and female records, so you can see how the riders compare to those. The male record usually has a green icon, can’t remember the colour of the female record.

    Im not sure LW attempt is in the spirit of it all. She is being filmed and followed by journos, one if whom is her partner. That following safety net and seeing a significant nurturing other during the race seems to offer quite a lot of support.

    Im not sure i agree with her actions, but sponsors want a lot for their money

    teamslug
    Member

    I agree with breninbeener. Not really in the spirit of the race imo. Still can’t get my head around how any of the competitors can ride that far solo( ish!!).

    Premier Icon jameso
    Subscriber

    there’s usually two extra rider icons, one for each of the male and female records, so you can see how the riders compare to those. The male record usually has a green icon, can’t remember the colour of the female record.

    The route’s changed since those records were set, it’s now slower/harder going around the Elkford area I think. Later in day one for the faster riders. The record dots aren’t up yet, maybe that’s why?
    So a few riders aiming at 14 days, ie near-on record pace with the addition of a section that adds a good few hours, from what was described online last year.

    RE Lael Wilcox being filmed, I’ll wait to see the film, should be good but it does seem to close to visitation. Maybe she’ll be filmed from a distance and interviewed at each end, commentate on the footage later etc. Matt Lee was said to be OK with whatever they’re planning.

    whitestone
    Member

    @jameso – I think the record dots only appear after a day or two once the field has spread out a bit more. It’s always hard comparing year on year not only because of the weather but the route does change, often because of fires especially further south and when the Yanks say “route closed” they mean it!

    @teamslug – the spots look close but they are actually spread over quite a distance – at time of writing 180 or so riders are spread out over 60 miles, some will be riding in proximity but quite a few will be out of sight of everyone else except at stops.

    Apparently LW’s film crew/journos are also carrying SPOT trackers so presumably Matt Lee will be checking they aren’t intruding.

    Premier Icon jameso
    Subscriber

    when the Yanks say “route closed” they mean it!

    No sh– : ) Mike Hall tried to get access in 2013 when a fire closure shut the route but no go, meant he didn’t get an official record – yet he did 14.5 days on a route that ended up at 2860 miles, >100 more than usual. It does vary a fair bit over the years, the Basin section is meant to be quite different now as well I think.

    dirtyrider
    Member

    Josh Ibbett is also a rookie, but I expect him to be fast. He won the transcontinental race in 2015 amongst plenty of other impressive achievements on the bike.

    been stopped nigh on 8 hours now,

    whitestone
    Member

    His SPOT might be playing up or he’s not restarted it this morning. There’s quite a few not updating for a few hours here and there.

    Anyway, here’s Lael Wilcox with her bike and kit – https://bikepacking.com/plan/lael-wilcox-2019-tour-divide-gear-list/

    Premier Icon metalheart
    Subscriber

    Does anybody have a link to the us forum that usually accompanies the TD (where folks upload photos of the racers as they pass through, etc.)?

    Re Lael, I’m a total fanboi so all you haterz can just **** off… 😉

    It’s a race, wow, a racer has shown up. Surprise.

    If the organiser(s) are happy with the arrangements then it’s within the rulz. We’re way too far down the ‘sponsored’ road to turn back the clock. Where do you stop?

    Love the custom frame job (thanks for the link bob), would love to see her take the overall!

    Premier Icon metalheart
    Subscriber

    Cheers for the link. I tried looking for the forums off the main page(s) but (obvs) failed miserably… 😜

    ETA: bikepacking.net =/= bikepacking.com

    That explains it

    Premier Icon jameso
    Subscriber

    Sophiane Sehili has been gaining on Mike Hall’s record pace marker all morning and has just passed it. I don’t think anyone’s got ahead of Mike’s marker before? Incredible ride so far. 470 miles in 45hrs and he’s not stopped yet. Almost looks as if he’s studied Mike’s stage-post method from his record run.

    Premier Icon jameso
    Subscriber

    ^ Looking at Mike’s record run as a comparison he’d had ~2.5hrs kip by this point.

    Premier Icon notmyrealname
    Subscriber

    Surely Sehili will have to stop soon? I’d imagine 45hrs straight is pretty much the limit of what you can do without a break.

    Premier Icon jameso
    Subscriber

    You’d think so, he has a bit over 40 miles on Josh Ibbet at the moment so he could sleep 3hrs and stay ahead, just. Like 3hrs is much.. Gets interesting once their sleep patterns are all out of synch and they start gaining and losing.

    Premier Icon notmyrealname
    Subscriber

    I wonder if there’s any advantage of doing huge stints like that at the start or are you going to put yourself on the back foot for the rest of the race?

    Only time will tell I suppose.

    whitestone
    Member

    I was reading a piece about the three peaks CX and Paul Oldham (I think) made the comment that you tend to get blocks where the same person wins it for a few years until someone else works out a strategy to beat them. That person then wins for a few years until …

    The block strategy is fine if you can keep it together through the night and the terrain you are moving over isn’t too technical. You are of course relying on your block of sleep not being too long that it negates pushing through. I.e. after 44hrs riding you shouldn’t have more than 4hrs sleep otherwise you might be better doing 20hrs riding, 2hrs sleep, 20hrs riding, 2hrs sleep as you are likely to move faster during the second 20hrs.

    Premier Icon NewRetroTom
    Subscriber

    Is Brant sponsoring current race leader Sofiane Sehili? He is racing in a Planet X jersey.
    Sofiane

    teamslug
    Member

    Alex ( tea boy ) is going well. 400 miles done. Keep going fella

    trail_rat
    Member

    Josh missed a turn ??

    whitestone
    Member

    Josh missed a turn ??

    Looks like it. Apparently the turn is easy to miss as you are on a big fireroad and heading downhill.

    Josh Kato is now about ten miles behind Sofiane Sehili who himself is pretty much on Mike Hall’s record pace. Sofiane had a five hour stop in Helena, after 60 hours of riding!!

    Lael Wilcox is about 30 miles ahead of her own record pace. She also stopped for a good while last night, apparently there’s a cabin in that vicinity.

    littlerob
    Member

    Another one here rooting for Tea Boy.

    trail_rat
    Member

    So how’s that going to work then .

    Is it the same as the ht550 send the trace over ?

    He’s back on track but theres a fair bit missing

    whitestone
    Member

    If you zoom in (lots) to where he went wrong then you can see that the track loops back to the official line. Whether he took that or backtracked to the missed junction is only something that currently he knows.

    Comparing JI’s and Kai Edel’s timestamps just before the turn-off and at the only point after where they currently have a matching ping, before the mistake Josh was about 1hr20 ahead, afterwards he was 40mins ahead so a 40min loss. Again impossible to tell if he backtracked or figured out to carry on.

    AFAIK it’s an honour system and it’s up to each rider to police themselves. If they do something wrong then they are meant to let Matt Lee know but not all the route has mobile reception so it might take a while to do that.

    Premier Icon andytherocketeer
    Subscriber

    I think they have to submit a real GPS track, and I guess they probably take 2 GPS?

    Spot tracker is just 1 read out every 10 minutes, and for emergency etc.  Although, so long as it pings one can often see enough points showing them going the wrong way.

    Still curious to know what happened to that other guy that took a totally different scenic route over a river, round a mountain before the border.  And a couple missed out a bit section after the US border.

    Hopefully JI realised and backtracked, rather than rejoining further on. Unless it was a closed route and was instructed by authorities?

    teamslug
    Member

    Out of curiosity and being a bit of a weight weenie what kind of weight will the bikes with kit weigh? I realise this will vary a lot on how quickly they intend to complete.
    Sounds like Alex Watts has had a bit of a scare with a bear but he’s ok!!!.

    Premier Icon Yak
    Subscriber

    Cor – just seen the post – charged by a bear!!! Blimey. Stay bearproof Tea Boy!

    whitestone
    Member

    Out of curiosity and being a bit of a weight weenie what kind of weight will the bikes with kit weigh?

    The second link in @billoddie’s post (the third one in the thread) shows about half the bikes in use, some list weights, others don’t. The usual thing is to quote weights without food and water since that varies from day to day – some take 4 litre bladders in their frame bags to cope with sections like the Great Basin so might have a total of 6 litres of water at the start of that. A lot are using Salsa Cutthroats (well it was designed with the TDR in mind) which is 10kg. Bags and kit would be anything from 6kg upwards depending on how tough you felt! James has done the ride so is better placed to comment.

    Once you’ve got kit for an overnighter or a long weekend there’s not that much extra you’d take on something like the TDR, maybe a few extra brake pads and the like. It’s within the rules to post stuff ahead via general delivery to a post office so some send spare chains and the like doing that.

    Here’s a breakdown of Lael Wilcox’s kit for the faster end of the spectrum – https://bikepacking.com/plan/lael-wilcox-2019-tour-divide-gear-list/ Perhaps the biggest challenge is the wide range of weather and temperatures – apparently there’s still snow on some of the higher passes further south so likely to be near freezing – and then you’ve got the desert sections where it can get to 40degs or higher.

    Premier Icon jameso
    Subscriber

    Out of curiosity and being a bit of a weight weenie what kind of weight will the bikes with kit weigh?

    You could be at about 4-5kg more than a suitable bike for a competitive racer, depending on layers you wore and what was packed that day. 1kg max for sleeping gear, 1kg for things to keep bike and body running, 1kg additional clothing and a 1kg for electronics, GPS and batteries etc. Then add luggage itself and a few bits that always end up in there.

    whitestone
    Member

    @teamslug – My kit for the HT550 came to 4kg including bags. This was using standard, off-the-shelf items. Very roughly:

    Sleeping – 920g
    Bags – 680g
    Electricals – 740g
    Spares/tools – 655g
    Clothing – 645g
    Sundries – 365g

    All items were weighed at home after any mods I’d made and rounded up to the nearest 5g as that was the smallest weight on the kitchen scales!

    For the TDR I’d possibly take a bit more clothing but it wouldn’t be much more though it would depend on “how” I was doing it. Sundries are things like suncream, etc. I think there’d be a bit more of those. 5Kg would be comfortable.

    Premier Icon charliemort
    Subscriber

    never really followed this before but looked at the tracker for some of the top riders and seems josh ibbett is moving fastest (of the ones I looked at anyway) but stopped more – presumably more sleep. It will be interesting to see if this is a strategy and, if it is, whether or not it works

    scud
    Member

    Josh Ibbett posted last night that he is no longer going to race i think, but is going to enjoy it more and sleep more

    Am I reading the tracker right? Last place has completed 150 miles in 4.5 days? I reckon I could do that!

    whitestone
    Member

    @charliemort – because of the way that TrackLeaders works you have to be careful with some of the figures like moving time, stopped time, average speed. TL was giving Josh Kato about 2hrs stopped time earlier in the race (as far as Ovando) but he told the store owner there that he’d had seven hours sleep by that point. That’s a big margin of error.

    There’s quite a bit of strategy involved in these events: you need to balance speed, rest and resupply. Then you’ve got the weather to contend with – a bit of rain and some of the trails turn to “peanut butter” and are basically unrideable – one rider’s “luxury item” is a spatula to scrape the mud off! Similarly there’s still snow on the higher passes, saw a shot of Togwatee Pass (about mile 1135) from a day or two ago and it’s pushing through snow. The route only gets higher as it heads south into Colorado.

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