Drafting is the technique of riding in a pack during a cycling event. A draft zone is an imaginary area approximately three bicycle lengths long and six feet wide surrounding each rider. Basically drafting is a method to increase your speed or decrease your effort by lowering your wind resistance. While on the cycling course, no participant shall permit his drafting zone to intersect with or remain intersected with the drafting zone of a motor vehicle (including authorized race vehicles). It is the athlete's responsibility to move out of the vehicle's drafting zone or to continually communicate to the vehicle to move away. With respect to a moving motor vehicle, the "drafting zone" is a rectangular area extending 15 meters to each side of the vehicle and 30 meters behind the vehicle.
Blocking is basically riding in the wrong part of the bike course. Most commonly the left side of the bike course is for riding while the right side is for passing. Riders who camp out or overextend their stay in the passing lane are blocking. Blocking is a violation in most triathlons.
Bike shorts have a special pad inside them to help you stay more comfortable on your bike seat. The more of a beginner you are the more padding you'd need. And the better you'd feel, the longer you'll be able to stay in the seat. When you look at pro riders of the Tour de France (for example - 160 kilometers on average for 21 stages), all the cyclists have padded shorts. It's because they ride for so long every day. So yeah, for a race like the Impossible Race™ which lasts for 115 kilometers, bike shorts are highly recommended.
Anything with two wheels in your garage can get you started at no extra cost. That being said, because our race is difficult and has long distances and difficult cut-offs, we strongly recommend you to use a proper road cycling bike. The reason being that when you decide to take on longer distances, a road bike will definitely be more comfortable and will take less effort to ride on greater distances. You can look for used road bikes at your local bike shops or you can invest in a new aluminum one. If you're passionate about the sport, keep in mind that, over the years, you will ride thousands of miles on your bike, so you will get your money investment worth.
You don't need a triathlon bike to do road racing or even triathlons. The advantages of a pure triathlon time trial bike are in the positioning. They are setup to keep you more comfortable when in the aero bars and to work the quads less, saving them for the run. Often triathlon bikes are more aerodynamic than road bikes. Both types of bikes are allowed in our race. A TT bike is designed to avoid some of the problems potentially caused by adding tri-bars to a road bike: hunched neck and shoulder position stretched lower back, loss of stability in the aero position, a feeling of being cramped and a reduction in breathing efficiency from the sharper angle between thigh and torso. With a proper TT bike, a steeper seat tube angle opens up the gap between the thigh and torso, with the bottom bracket in effect being further back. The top tube on a TT bike is also shorter, reducing the "stretch" to sit in the aero position.
There is also a greater range of positions for the height of the aero bars on the top tube, allowing the rider to be in a lower more aerodynamic position if desired. Access to the gear levers is also easier on the TT bike, with gear levels positioned at the end of the aero bars. This easy access promotes staying in the aero position and using the gears efficiently rather than possibly not shifting because you don't want to keep moving. Finally there has been some evidence to suggest athletes run quicker off a TT geometry bike compared to a road geometry bike, as slightly different muscles are engaged during cycling.
There are two downsides of a TT bike. The first and more obvious is the cost. Such bikes come up with a significant investment which may not result in significant time improvement.
The second limitation is that TT bikes are designed for racing only. They are not designed for safe group riding or commuting in heavy traffic, as access to the brakes takes slightly longer than on a standard road bike. So in buying a TT bike you will be spending a lot of money on something with limited use. It becomes a purchase for the dedicated time trialist or long distance triathlete who will probably be using it for years to come.
Replicating the position of a TT bike with your road bike using Tri Bars may lead to some problems since road bikes are not necessarily designed for this type of use. When choosing tri bars there are four main considerations: whether to opt for carbon or alloy (with carbon being lighter but more expensive), how suitable the padding is for your arms, the shape of the tri bars; and whether the tri bar is adjustable or not. The choice comes down to personal preference and what's best for your riding position. A good bike shop will be able to advice on what is best for you. However, if you are getting back or shoulder pain from using your clip on tri bars, try bringing your saddle position forward to reduce the stretch in your upper body.
Also try reducing the drop from the tip of your saddle to the aero bars arm pads using a steeper or adjustable stem. Be careful when making any significant changes to your bike position though, as you might sacrifice power in your quest for being more aero and creating a net slowing impact instead (the costs of lower power outweighing the benefit of being more aero). Consulting a qualified bike fitter will help optimize your position. The other key consideration is being comfortable on the bike. Towards the end of the bike leg of a long distance triathlon, it isn't uncommon to see many athletes sitting up and riding on the hoods of their handlebars due to back or shoulder soreness and so sacrificing any sought after aero benefits. As in the trade off of being aero v/s power output, reducing the aerodynamic position for extra comfort can result in a faster overall time. For your first races, unless you have the pedigree to suggest a super-fast time or have the equipment from previous triathlons, spending extra thousands of pounds is not necessary. It's better to have a decent bike, an excellent riding position and then complete a lot of high quality training. Adding on all the bells and whistles might offer more value if you have a taste for triathlon that extends beyond just a handful of races.
Both wheel sizes have advantages and disadvantages. 650c wheels accelerate and climb faster, but they also decelerate faster. 700c wheels are more comfortable and are more readily available if you need a tube on the road. The only people who should be really concerned about wheel sizes are particularly short or tall people. 650c wheels work much better with shorter people, especially on triathlon bikes where the geometry prevents the use of 700c wheels on smaller bikes. Tall riders should stick to 700c wheels.
An indoor trainer is a piece of equipment that will temporarily change your outdoor bicycle into a stationary bike for indoor training. You can use these to ride at night, in the hotter or colder months, or simply when there are no safe roads available next to where you live. There are two common types of trainers available: stationary trainers and rollers.
1) Stationary trainers clamp on to your rear fork and provide a rolling mechanism for your rear wheel. Resistance is offered by wind (a fan attached to the roller), fluid (a fan incased in oil attached to the roller) or magnets. Wind units tend to be the cheapest. Fluid resistance tends to offer the smoothest ride. Magnetic units often have adjustable resistance. If you get a stationary trainer you should also get a block for the front wheel to keep the bike level.
Stationary trainers have the following advantages/disadvantages:
Pros: Excellent for spin/muscle/aerobic training, easier to ride/learn, cheaper (usually) than rollers, some expensive ones have computer interfaces to simulate road conditions; some have more options for resistance control.
Cons: Does nothing for training for balance and form, allows you to coast, cause a lot of wear on the rear wheel, causes more stress to the frame of the bike, requires no thought so can be mind numbing.
2) Rollers provide 3 tubes, two of which are connected by a belt. The front wheel rests on a single tube and the rear rests between two tubes. The belt from the front rear tube to the front tube causes the front wheel to spin with the rear wheel. Resistance is offered by friction and gears (smaller tubes offer more resistance) or a fan unit attached by a belt to one of the tubes.
Rollers have the following advantages/disadvantages:
Pros: Excellent for spin/muscle/aerobic training as well as form and balance, ride is more true to actual road riding, does not allow you to coast, and forces you to concentrate on your workout, less stress/wear on bike.
Cons: Harder to learn/use, more expensive than basic stationary trainers, less resistance options, easy to fall off.
Our advice: The big reason most people avoid rollers is that they have a steep learning curve. The common fear is that you will ride off the rollers and hurt yourself. You can't actually ride off rollers like you might imagine, the only thing you can do is drop the front wheel off of the side of the roller which can cause you to lose your balance and fall. The best tip for learning to ride rollers is to start in a doorway so if you lose your balance you can just stick out your elbow to stop your fall. We believe rollers are far better because they are designed for better cyclists. And that's what we all want to be become. Aim high. Get a roller.
Trying to fix a punctures by the roadside when a race is going on will come with lots of frustration if you're using a basic inflator. Have you ever considered pumping up your tyre at the push of a button? The trick to reducing the hassle of flats is to use those kinds of tools you can easily buy online or at good specific bike shops. The idea is to have you ride again as quickly as possible; reducing the amount of time you're losing during the race. Compressed gas in small and lightweight canisters provides the potential to rapidly inflate a tyre, literally in seconds, saving not just time but heaps of pumping effort. Furthermore, carrying several of those devices is easy, either in a pocket or seat pack, so you needn't worry about getting more than one flat on a ride.
Obviously there's a cost attached to indulging in this luxury of gaining time but with a bulk purchase of replacement cartridges the price is greatly reduced. Remember also that almost everyone would happily part with those given the alternative, at the roadside or the bike park before the race. In order to transfer the compressed gas from the canister to your inner tube you need an inflator head. Before purchasing gas cartridges, make sure they are designed for your inflator head. Some inflators come with a screw on head, some don't. When inflating, and because the metal canister will always get to freezing point as it quickly discharges its gas, it can cause severe discomfort. The hint is to either wear long finger gloves or put some sort of sock over it which will also serve the double purpose of stopping the metal bottle rattling in your bike seat pack. Some of these kits cover the canister as part of the design itself. Get one that's as light and small as your wallet will allow. It needs to be quick and easy to use. When you're tired or in a rush for speed, you don't want to waste your time with a complicated mechanism. This is why a valve or push fit are therefore the best options for fixing a puncture quickly.
Automatic pedals have a locking mechanism that allows you to attach bike shoes with cleats on them to your pedals. This gives you a better connection with your bike. Pedals with toe clips are less effective than automatic ones where you clip your foot into the pedal but they offer the same advantages: you don't just downstrike the pedal, you're also upstriking it. This allows you to increase the muscle power. Suddenly, all of your energy is dedicated to propelling your bike forward. Also, because you're locked into the bike, you have better control of it overall. The only problem with going automatic is that you cannot get off your bike quickly in case of any danger suddenly coming your way. There's an extra step to getting your feet off the pedals, and unless you have trained your instincts to disengage very quickly, you could find yourself uncomfortably glued to your bike. This is why automatic pedals are not made to deal with traffic for example. Clipping and un-clipping takes practice before it becomes second-nature and it's not uncommon for a beginner cyclist to tip-over and fall while learning to use such an innovative device. Do not use them in a race, any race, until you're confident with them. The switch to clipless pedals isn't one you should make until you are already extremely comfortable and confident on your bike. But if you are ready for it, the difference it makes in your riding will be gigantic. Having said that, and again in reference to the strong cut-off times we have within this race, we strongly recommend you to get some and start training with them. This tool will definitely make a difference in helping you make the cut-off.
Yes. Participants should be at least 16 years. We will consider applications of younger cyclists if they are experienced cyclists and can present a note from their parents or legal tutor.
The race begins on 22nd January 2017 at 10:00 A.M. Cut-off time of 5.5 hours for men and 6.5 hours for women.
Any cancellation of registration must be made by EMAIL ONLY. No cancellations are accepted by telephone. Once registered, a participant will not be reimbursed or be able to change races. A participant may only be reimbursed in case of an accident or serious illness to the participant. It is necessary to produce a medical certificate that has been attested by a doctor at least 10 days before the event. In the case of an injury sustained after registration and not completely curable before the day of the race, the organization recommend that the injured cyclist does not put himself/herself in danger unnecessarily and that they cancel their registration and postpone cycling the race until the following year. To do this, the participant must make a request to the Organization's Medical Counsel. This request must be accompanied by a detailed medical file. If the Medical Counsel agrees, the cyclist will automatically be registered for the following year for the same race. His payment will be kept by the race organization.
The road will not be extremely difficult by nature. The cut-off times are the real challenge in this race. The road we have chosen will mostly be flat with some small uphills and downhills
Of course! We are looking for volunteers to help us in managing and refueling aid stations, guiding national and international athletes through the registration process once on-site which will include checking for ID proof, bike checking, checking doctors' clearance, checking the compulsory gear, guiding the participants from Ahmedabad to race camp, explaining the rules of the race camps to the participants arriving on race site, etc...
There will be aid stations regularly located along the entire race route.
There will be water, energy drinks and electrolyte drinks. Fruits, dry fruits, cookies, chips, cereal bars etc. will also be available.
Yes there is. A doctor will be available at all times on campsite and other doctors will be available at certain specific points during the race. We still encourage the cyclists to be as self sufficient as possible.
As a participant you will be given an emergency telephone number that will direct you to one of our medical team 24 hrs. Be aware that there will be portions of the race where phones won't get signal. If you don't feel right, don't wait to feel bad in a remote corner of the forest, far away from an aid station. The best idea would be to stop at the closest aid station. You may then wait for the doctor to come and examine you before s/he let you go again.
The weather will be sunny and hot, around 30-35°C. There should be no wind and the air will be dry. At night, the temperature will drop close to 10-15°C.
There's always a possibility of rain anywhere on planet earth but it is very unlikely.
This will be arranged regarding the number of people to transport and the emergency of the situation. Transportation on bikes or cars will be made available as much as possible but there will be areas where it will take a bit of time for a rescue team to come help you. This means that you should in any case try to reach the closest aid station. If you can't move, tell another cyclist he'll tell the next aid station. Worst case scenario: be ready to spend some time waiting for help, we mean 1-2 hours, max. This is the reason why you should have water and food with you at all time.
You should carry water at all times. Depending on the race you're participating, there's a compulsory list of gear that every cyclist should carry. Check on rules and regulation for the list of gear one should always carry along with him/her.
Besides the aid stations that are more or less 10 kilometers from each other - depending on the accessibility - there's absolutely nothing. This is a semi-self-sufficient race.
No. You cannot transfer your registration to someone else.
No. It's really up to you but considering the difficulty of the race in terms of cut-off times, we strongly advise you to use proper road cycling gear, including cycling clipless pedals.
Sorry, this race has not been designed to be run by a 100% beginner, someone who almost never cycles or hasn't cycled more than 50 kilometers non-stop in his life. Our 115 kilometers race is designed for a person who can train for a minimum of two times a week, 50-100 kilometers each time, for 2 months before the race. It is also clear that this person should also be able to cycle such 50-100 kilometers distances non-stop, without any sort of issue or muscle pain or aches and within the average speed we are requiring to finish within our cut-off times : 28 km/hr.
Our 115 kilometers race is a big serious deal. It is designed for the experienced road racer who is used to cycle 50-100 kilometers patches non-stop. So if you've got a few of those distances under your belt and feel super strong mentally about going further, then the 115 is the right race for you.
The participants will reach base camp on the morning of 22nd January 2017.