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  1. #1
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    Leadville 100 questions from 1st timers

    So, we got into the Leadville 100 (tandem of course). Have some questions from veterans.

    What tires work well there as I hear it is fairly smooth.
    Is a support crew needed? If not, what is needed to be self-supported.
    Can the support crew person drive to points on the course?
    How far apart are the water stops? And what food will be provided?
    How much water did you carry and how did it work for you?

    Any thoughts or advice is welcomed.

  2. #2
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    Stevoo,

    I have never been anywhere near the place but I did see the movie about last year's race. I think you need a support crew. I am sure they can drive. There are support areas although it seems some riders strategize and skip some of them. Since you can carry so much on a tandem you may consider that. Neither food nor water appeared to be provided. That is what your support team does amongst other things. There are checkpoint w/cutoff times.

    I would say it is worth watching one of the two movies about the race, perhaps in the absence of your stoker. If you search the forums for Leadville you will find a number of other threads on MTBR that may be helpful, eg Leadville 100 - What bike?.

  3. #3
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    What tires work well there as I hear it is fairly smooth?

    We ran Maxxis CrossMark 2.35 front and rear with good luck (and I like these tires on the tandem). I like those tires because the have good rolling resistance but still have good traction. I'm personally not a fan of Pythons or Smallblock 8s on the tandem (these are both poplular tires at Leadville.

    Is a support crew needed? If not, what is needed to be self-supported.

    Support not needed, nice to have though. You can have drop bags at every aid station if you wish. Having extra clothes in case of bad weather is nice. Having the specific nutrition that you are used to having is nice too. You can have both of these with or without a crew. Crew just makes it a little bit faster for your stops.

    Can the support crew person drive to points on the course?

    There are two primary points on the course (acually 4 b/c it is an out and back) where your crew can drive to. I don't think you need your crew at the first aid station (Pipeline outbound). Nice to have them at Twin Lakes outbound and inbound. Getting your crew back to Pipleline 2 in time gets to be a little challenging due to the size of the race and number of crew/spectators in the past few years. I can get you in touch with our first rate crew if you have logistical questions should you decide to go with a crew.

    How far apart are the water stops? And what food will be provided?

    I'll dig up my gps or race guide to give more specifics. The longest you would have timewise is between Twin Lakes and the top of Columbine which should be just over 2 hours.

    How much water did you carry and how did it work for you?

    We use camelbaks. maybe half full? Wife used liquid nutrition in a water bottle along with water in the camelbak. I prefer the reverse - water in the water bottle and nutrition in the camelbak. I find that I don't reach down for the water bottle as frequently as I should, but the camelbak is more convenient.

    I can discuss in as much detail as you wish either on the forum or directly via email - feel free to PM me and we can discuss further. We are not the top finishers, but I completed Leadville once by myself back in 2003 and then on tandem in 2009 and 2010 and am always up for discussing .

    Good luck and happy training!!

    Dan


  4. #4
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    Thanks for the detailed information. That was exactly what I was looking for.
    Stevoo

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    congrats on getting into leadville !
    we did it on the tandem last year... I had done it once before that solo as well.

    Tires: FAST. Unless it is very wet, the fastest rolling tires you can find will work well... but make sure they have some volume to them for the tandem. We used continental race king 2.2s last year and they were absolutely perfect for the conditions... light and fast rolling, but still relatively high volume. We ran tubeless on front and a tube in back... but only because I couldn't get a reliable seal on the rear that I was comfortable with. I guess I should also mention we are on a fandango 29er.

    Hydration: in endurance races hydration and nutrition are of paramount importance. We both used camelbaks.... and we started with one bottle each on the bike as well. We rolled through aid 1 at pipeline without stopping, then stopped at twin lakes outbound and picked up bottles.... so we started the big columbine climb with half full camelbaks and 2 full bottles each on the bike. we grabbed 1 bottle each at a quick stop at twin lakes inbound.... then took a longer stop at pipeline inbound for another bottle and stoker refilled camelbak. There is one other non-official aid station at the top of st keevins inbound, but they only have water... we took full advantage of that and grabbed a bottle each to get us to the finish from there.

    The aid stations are great and have everything you need.... but can get VERY crowded. If you have your own crew, you can get in and out of the aid stations much faster. there is actually a "crew only" aid station just before the start of the columbine climb.... this is the place to set your aid up if possible in order to avoid the huge crowds at twin lakes...

    If you go to this page:
    http://www.leadvilletrail100.com/lt1...e/results.aspx
    you can see the full results sheets. The time check points are the aid stations... so you can get a really good idea of how long it might take you between the various aid stations if you look for riders who finished around your expected time.... I believe time between aid stations is much more relevant than distance between them.

    hope that helps a little
    andy applegate

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    Quote Originally Posted by caraapp
    congrats on getting into leadville !
    we did it on the tandem last year... I had done it once before that solo as well....

    ...hope that helps a little
    andy applegate
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

    Ummm, listen to what he said. They won the tandem division last year and set the tandem course record!

  7. #7
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    Thanks to all of those that have replied on and off the list. Very helpful information.

  8. #8
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    My wife and I challenged our friends to ride tandem this year after we watched the movie last fall. We all got in! Here's to a few more tandem first timers!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by phantom59
    My wife and I challenged our friends to ride tandem this year after we watched the movie last fall. We all got in! Here's to a few more tandem first timers!
    Woohoo!! Congrats on getting in!

    Remember to have fun - lots of quality time on the bike together between now and mid-August.

  10. #10
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    Must be something about folks that can ride with their spouses... this is a helpful bunch of folks on the Tandem Forum here at MTBR.com! I'll echo Stevoo and say thanks.

    Our two Arkansas crews are looking forward to Leadville this August! And yes... plenty of training time 'til then. We have to get our bikes together this month for a local marathon race on winding gravel roads that'll be a perfect first dual.

  11. #11
    PMK
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    Quote Originally Posted by caraapp
    congrats on getting into leadville !
    we did it on the tandem last year... I had done it once before that solo as well.

    Tires: FAST. Unless it is very wet, the fastest rolling tires you can find will work well... but make sure they have some volume to them for the tandem. We used continental race king 2.2s last year and they were absolutely perfect for the conditions... light and fast rolling, but still relatively high volume. We ran tubeless on front and a tube in back... but only because I couldn't get a reliable seal on the rear that I was comfortable with. I guess I should also mention we are on a fandango 29er.

    Hydration: in endurance races hydration and nutrition are of paramount importance. We both used camelbaks.... and we started with one bottle each on the bike as well. We rolled through aid 1 at pipeline without stopping, then stopped at twin lakes outbound and picked up bottles.... so we started the big columbine climb with half full camelbaks and 2 full bottles each on the bike. we grabbed 1 bottle each at a quick stop at twin lakes inbound.... then took a longer stop at pipeline inbound for another bottle and stoker refilled camelbak. There is one other non-official aid station at the top of st keevins inbound, but they only have water... we took full advantage of that and grabbed a bottle each to get us to the finish from there.

    The aid stations are great and have everything you need.... but can get VERY crowded. If you have your own crew, you can get in and out of the aid stations much faster. there is actually a "crew only" aid station just before the start of the columbine climb.... this is the place to set your aid up if possible in order to avoid the huge crowds at twin lakes...

    If you go to this page:
    http://www.leadvilletrail100.com/lt1...e/results.aspx
    you can see the full results sheets. The time check points are the aid stations... so you can get a really good idea of how long it might take you between the various aid stations if you look for riders who finished around your expected time.... I believe time between aid stations is much more relevant than distance between them.

    hope that helps a little
    andy applegate

    As much as I want to accomplish Leadville, I don't see the altitude playing well with the wife's asthma and allergies.

    With some luck we may try the SM100. Just wondering in regards training, were you two doing training rides of almost 100 off-road miles, right at 100 miles off-road or distances longer than 100? Or did you skip a lot of off-road miles to save wear on everything involved and just focus on hard road miles?

    PK

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