Dave assigned me to bone up on bicycle preparation, maintenance and repair.
He’s picked the wrong man for the job. Though I’ve been a bicycle commuter for 10yrs, I can barely operate a toaster. No mechanical instincts at all.
This became obvious to me when last night I attended a 1hr bike basics course at REI. There was nothing new — but I realized how hopeless I would be on the course compared with the guy leading the workshop.
A couple of general points for all, however:
tune up the bike immediately before the race
tell the techie you are in a race
perhaps put in new inner tubes during the tune up (just in case you have “pinch” wear)
don’t have the brakes too sensitive (or train forward saltos over the handlebars)
practice emergency exits off the bike (normally step off to one side and “run” out)
practice changing gears: multiple cogs quickly
generally keep the bike in an “easy” gear for the next uphill (coast down)
relax on the uphills, try not to stand
on each team we need someone assigned to change flat tires. And they should practice.
Leave a comment if you have more “tips” …