For all those 250 of you to grab a place on rapha’s ‘Hell of the North’ paris-roubaix tribute ride, a 100km rollercoaster of mudded paths, gravel encrusted bridleways and er…. actual fields, I thought I would share some tips that might help after my experience last year on this super fun ride. Whilst its not quite as awesome as tips from Michael Barry its a few pointers that may help…
Its essential you are prepared for a non-stressed flat fix. Ensure that between your group you have enough supplies for a couple of punctures, our group escaped with only one last year, but be prepared for the unknown surfaces.
Last year temps were around 20 degrees, and we came home with gnarly sunburn on our arms. Dont underestimate the power of the suns rays just because its springtime.
This year il be wearing my commuter sidi mtb spd’s – as last year I had my ride ruined by the fact id worn speedplays and mud had clogged my cleats meaning I couldn’t engage the pedal, resulting in my sitting almost in tears trying to dig mud out with a twig, only for it to clog up further down the road. Even though the roads and tracks should be dry, there are some mudded sections completely covered by trees, so they will remain damp whatever the conditions.
Its not a race with prizes, so don’t ride with undue care causing danger to those fellow riders around you. Also the drag out there takes a fairly main road through and out Barnet. Here you will be sharing roads with weekend traffic. Ride courteously and safely – this isn’t part of the ride to show off your ‘awesome’ overtaking skills and bike based road-rage. Save that for the grave!