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  1. #1
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    Firecracker 50 vs leadville silver rush 50

    I'm wondering how the silver rush compares to the firecracker difficulty wise. I did the leadville 50 last year and feel like i'm in better shape this year. The firecracker 50 states that it is 10800 ft of climbing, but after looking at the elevation profile, that seems pretty far off.

    I found someone's gps data from a previous firecracker 50 race here:
    strava.com/rides/firecracker-50-422169
    which states the elevation gain at only 6600 ft. If the race is truly 10,800 ft then I'm not sure i'm prepared for that.

    I'm not trying to win by any means, just finish w/o medical attention.

    If anyone has done both races, could you offer some insight into what I can expect relative to the leadville 50?

  2. #2
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    Hasn't the Firecracker been sold out and wait-listed for several months? If you're already in, do it.

  3. #3
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    Yup, i'm in. I signed up in February I think.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by suicideMike View Post
    Yup, i'm in. I signed up in February I think.
    Should be a great race. I've heard it's very hard from very fit teammates. If you feel crappy you can always stop, chill, eat/drink, reset, and then get back on the bike. I understand and relate to "just finish w/o medical attention" but this one seems too good to pass up.

  5. #5
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    I did both the Firecracker 50 and the Leadville 100 a couple of years ago, and I actually think the Firecracker is a tougher race. That just my two cents though. Racing the Firecracker 50 again this year and looking forward to it.

  6. #6
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    Rear Tire?

    For both races would the suggested rear tire be something with a beefier tread vs. a lower rolling resistance? For perspective, I have been coming in the 10th place +- age division in the Warrior Cycling events this year and hope to be around the same.

    Thanks

  7. #7
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    I haven't done Leadville, but I have done the Firecracker.

    Firecracker is a great race; I highly recommend it. The only issue is that it can be crowded in places.

    I do think it's pretty well agreed upon that the figure for vertical they list is way too high. The race has a lot of climbing, but I think it's closer to 8k than 11k. You can see this if you look at the profile they publish. Add up the vertical on the big climbs and you'll get an approximate number. The software they use must count every little wiggle in the profile.



    Four distinct climbs (1) 1800' (2) 800' (3) 400' and (4) 500' = 3500' per lap, round up to 4000 for all the small stuff.

  8. #8
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    My GPS track had the Firecracker at over 8K in gain....and it felt like more than that. Not sure if it truly has the 10K+ advertised, but there is still a lot of climbing for a 50 mile course. Have fun it is a great event.

  9. #9
    zrm
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    FYI on Firecracker course http://www.mavsports.com/?id=8

  10. #10
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    Firecraker 50 is harder then Leadville 100 due to the more intense race pace of the 50

  11. #11
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    I'm on the waitlist of the Firecracker 50. Pretty far down so unlikely to get in. If I miss I'll probably do the Silver Rush since registration has been extended to July 5th. I'm also racing the Leadville 100 for the first time. What's the elevation gain of the Silver Rush and how does the course compare to Leadville 100? Seems the Firecracker is much harder than the Silver Rush.
    If you ever see a turtle on a telephone pole, remember he had help getting there. Is there anything beer can't do?

  12. #12
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    I did the silverrush 50 last year and my garmin clocked in at 6975 ft of elevation gain.

  13. #13
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    I just checked my garmin from last year and it shows 7037 of climbing in 50.79 miles. It isn't an easy day of riding, but I think for most people who have trained knowing the race is going to take 5+ hours it is fairly easy to finish. The key to me is eating and drinking a lot in the first half of the race to avoid a caloric deficit in the second that can't be made up.
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  14. #14
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    I've done both and I found the Silver Rush to be more difficult. The Firecracker has more elevation gain, but two of the climbs are on dirt roads vs. the Silver Rush which I found to be steeper and looser (never mind the hike-a-bike section). That said, I was out pre-riding the Firecracker course last weekend with a friend who's racing this year and the numerous re-routes due to snow could totally change that course. I'll be interested to see what you think.

  15. #15
    zrm
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    I was the original course designer for the F50 and it was never the intention to make it the hardest possible course. I've always thought that as far as 25 mile loops in the area go, the F50 was on the middle of the road to easier end of the scale. Of course it's a lot of climbing at race pace which is never easy, no matter what the terrain is like.

    As to changes, I can't speak for Westy but he's put a lot of work into the Mtn Pride section that has been really muddy and it should be fine by race day. Little French is a different nut to crack. There is still a lot of snow on the climb and the first 100yrds of the flume. He is trying to get the FS to allow him to use a Bobcat to dig it out (Little French is in a non motorize prescription). If he can't get that it will take a lot of people with shovels. I don't know for sure what his plan B is on that section.
    He's made a change that will cut out the nasty jeep road descent down Rich Gulch. It will have close to, maybe a little more of the same climbing and some fun single track. This has as much to do with trying to improve the fun factor of the course as avoiding a wet/muddy area and it looks like that change will be permanent if folks like it and I think they will.

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