Roubaix/Flanders sportive

julianb

10:10 Mon, 5 Sep 2016


Always daydreaming about doing one of these. Wondered if anybody had any thoughts. I'm leaning towards roubaix at the minute. Don't mind smashing myself and the bike up.

julianb

10:10 Mon, 5 Sep 2016


After LBL I find it hard to imagine doing the full distance of anything similar again. It was a great experience to ride the same route as the pros, but it was 50-70km too long to be actual fun. The famous climbs and descents near the end should have been the most enjoyable part of the whole thing, but for me the last hour or so was simply a dead-legged grind over two or three hills too many.

I'd still be very tempted by both (especially Flanders), but I think I'd lean towards doing the "medium" distance and enjoying it, rather than battering myself to pieces before even reaching the bits I actually wanted to ride.


PS. Would also be worried about mechanical issues with Roubaix - I've heard all sorts of horror stories from people who have done it in the past (broken forks, seat-posts, bars, frames, etc.). It's OK if you're riding with a support car, but it would be pretty galling to train all winter and then end up dropping out half-way because of a broken bike.

richard_a

10:34 Mon, 5 Sep 2016


Bend and break my lovely shiny bike in the sub-zero driving Belgian rain??
You are 'avin a giraffe.
But don't let me put you off ;)

I would however be up for somewhere nice and sunny in the summer...

Jim7

13:40 Mon, 5 Sep 2016


I made a mental note that somebody of your fitness was smashed at LBL Richard so will quite happily do the medium. I think the roubaix one starts and finishes in the velodrome making it logistically easier. It's a lottery as to whether something breaks and it's all part of the attraction I suppose. I'm 50 next year so I'm thinking why not give it a go.

julianb

18:28 Mon, 5 Sep 2016


To be fair, LBL has a ton of climbing (almost 14,000ft) and it was very cold and wet - would be easier to sit in the wheels on something flatter. But 250km+ is a serious effort regardless of how fit you are.

[For what it's worth, aside from the hypothermia I was never in danger of not getting around LBL, and after it stopped raining I really enjoyed the middle bit. But the last hour or so was a lot less fun that I would have liked.]

richard_a

20:45 Mon, 5 Sep 2016


I'm 50 next year too. Was thinking of WATCHING Roubaix. Don't think riding it would be any fun at all. I'll drive your support car with wheels, forks, frames and tissues for your blubbin'. Don't do hugs though - don't want your tears and snot on my shoulder.

Mat

22:25 Mon, 5 Sep 2016


Oh come on, you'd be my perfect partner. We could laugh over your broken kneecap.

julianb

23:24 Mon, 5 Sep 2016


I'll be your navigator Mat.
absolutely NO desire to ride it,... unless I could swap to a Fatbike for the cobbled sections

markn

12:20 Tue, 6 Sep 2016


I hate that cobbled bridge over the canal on my commute and its only 10 yards of riding.

TBH I've always fancied riding Arenburg or Carrefour L'Arbres (excuse spelling) on a road bike. Just the 1 sector, just so I have an inkling. But the whole parcours? Just not fun.

Julian. I have some reading for you on Roubaix

Mat

22:19 Tue, 6 Sep 2016


Heh, that canal bridge is a nasty piece of work!

I'd quite like to ride the Roubaix course one day, but not really possible for me right now -- maybe when the kids are older. I'd probably want to do it on an aluminium framed CX bike with 32c tyres or bigger, but not sure if that's cheating...

Adrian O

12:35 Wed, 14 Sep 2016


There is a school of thought that it can be worse on a cross bike. And aluminium would be a bit harsh? I'm going to smash my carbon giant to bits. I don't care.

julianb

16:17 Wed, 14 Sep 2016


Blimey Julian, I could be interested in coming to see the carbon get smashed.
Seriously I might be up for this, just looking at diaries and seeing what time I have to do this or LBL.

macca

12:45 Thu, 15 Sep 2016


David Millar's new book has a very interesting (and long) section on riding the Belgian classics.

newsonoid

16:10 Thu, 15 Sep 2016


I've been persuaded. Roubaix in '18 it is. Approx 60 weeks to prepare. Full sportive distance which is not full race distance but includes all the secteurs. Just under 110 miles. Watch the pros race it the following day... If I can still walk.

Mat

7:48 Sat, 4 Feb 2017


"Watch the pros race it the following day... If I can still walk."
I think the worry should be;
"if I can still wee!"

markn

13:17 Mon, 6 Feb 2017


All part and parcel of the romance of Roubaix.

Weeing will be fine... it will only be painful for a couple of days and the blood should disappear in a week or 2.

Mat

15:52 Mon, 6 Feb 2017


I considered death as a possible alternative to finishing LBL

ciccione

20:09 Tue, 7 Feb 2017


I think you made the right choice.

Mat

20:41 Tue, 7 Feb 2017


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