Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Preparing for Andalucia Bike Race 2018

My first big goal of 2018 is coming on the 25th of February: Andalucia Bike Race

  • 6 Stages
  • 400 km
  • 10.000 hm

What happened last year?

I took part in the race last year but it went terribly; My achille's tendon was giving me terrible pain and prevented me from training in the weeks leading up to the race, I had a series of punctures in the race and also I kept having chain drops, and to top it off in the second to last stage I had to abort the race with a broken rear deraileur.

Current Form

This year's preparations have been going better. Weight is looking good at around 72 kg. I've been hitting the Monark HARD (my indoor training bike). I'm producing around 15% better Watts than I was at this time last year.


I haven't quite decided on which bike to use yet: My first choice is the Cube AMS 100 C:68 that I used all of 2017. It's light and quick. But I have another choice. I purchased this bike just a few weeks back and I haven't had a chance to write about it yet. A separate post about it is coming up: Trek Top Fuel 9.9 RSL
The Trek is slightly heavier but I think it may be the best handling bike that I have ever owned.

Currently I'm trying to figure out my tire choice: Last year I went with Rocket Ron 2.1 Snakeskin front and rear. These are wonderfully light tires but I know that I wished for a little more grip in front. So I may go for 2.25 wide this year. Perhaps a Racing Ralph 2.1 in the rear instead of Rocket Ron because they roll better.

Andalucia Bike Race

So what's the race like?

  • It's a hilly race, but not super hilly. There's actually less climbing per stage compared to Beskidy Trophy. The altitude gain is between 1000 and 2000 m per day.

  • The downhills are super technical. I remember last year comparing it to Beskidy and thinking that Andalucia had more challenging and dangerous downhill sections.

  • Each stage starts in a town and has a bit of a transport section (10-20 km) before you get to singletrack. The starts in Cordoba are a bit hectic with too many riders going crazy while fighning for position and I didn't like them at all last year.

  • The first stage is a short single start stage with competitors starting at 30 second intervals. The result determines your placing on the grid for the second and first real stage.

  • The competition is SUPER HARD. Even though I had bad form and an injury coming to the race last year I was super surprised (and disappointed) when I, after what I thought was an okay first stage, found out that I had placed 44th! There are 242 racers starting in my M40 category.

The Stages

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