Race prep for the SM100 couldn't be much easier. With 2.5 meals provided, kegs of beer reaching plethoric levels, and a nice place to camp with (cold) showers, one doesn't have to come too prepared.
Watts Dixon). Since I dropped out of last year's event to drink out of plastic lawn ornaments, I haven't finished a hundie in two years. Sad, I know. Finish strong or DNF stronger.
But you can't finish if you don't plan ahead...
2010 Shenadoah Mountain 100 taught me a valuable lesson. Just weeks before the event, I had loaned out my tire lever (not pictured) at the Breck Epic. It was immediately broken. I jammed it back in my strap and continued on, not knowing that I had ripped my tube. Fast forward to the SM100, I flatted early on in the race, inserted my damaged tube, and ended up running down a great piece of singletrack until I found someone else's tube/CO2 in the trail (their tape job failed).
Since then, I've learned a valuable lesson. Check your shit before a race. I've talked to lots of other riders. Strap, tape, saddle bag, hydration pack... your fragile tube is getting jostled, vibrated, shook, pinched, slapped by offensive tools, and generally mistreated. I had taken to putting a homemade sleeve around the center of my tube. That was good enough...
until I saw what Canadian Luke was doing at the Breck Epic a few weeks ago.
Last night, I checked my tube over. Unfurl, inflate, listen, smell... no leaks.
Then purge the air, roll tight, seal, replace the valve cap to cover the pokey parts, do the flip/flop fold to make a tidy bundle, and then make a Canadian Luke-style long sleeve.
with a little help.
Keen observers will note that I am using a Mütherload Strap where a Race Strap ought to be. That is not a mistake. I was testing a prototype Race Strap at the BC Bike Race with much shorter straps and a different type of Velcro. Some aspects were an improvement, others not. I never lost my load, but there were some issues. Two days in, I wanted to swap out, but the only other strap I brought was a Mütherload for my rain jacket. So I used it for its unintended purpose.
It worked for me. I know from experience in helping others that it is not ideal under all saddles with all seatposts. Don't try this at home... or do. Sometimes it works, it's clean, and quick. I kinda like it.
Tuesday, race report and all that.
*I spoke too soon. Before I could hit publish, there it was. Here's all you need to know (edited for quality consideration):