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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by reedfe View Post
    Well I had my first race and I went for a pre-race ride trying to use the bottle but that was just too difficult so I used the camelback on the race. Thanks for the input though guys!
    Cool--whatever works. My buddy uses a CB and does great. He just scales back on tools, etc. he normally carries.

  2. #27
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    My first Mtn bike race is coming up in 2 weeks. I will be be using my normal kit including camelbak and tools. The race is a single 24 mile loop and goes out in some remote areas. I pre-rode the course this past weekend and feel better with full kit. I don't expect to win, I just want to finish solidly in the pack. If it were a short loop course maybe it would be different.
    Joe
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  3. #28
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    Like reedfe ended up doing and like JoePAz plans to do, there really is something to be said for sticking with what you are familiar with for your first race.

    Yeah, maybe you get to the end and think, "Oh, if only I had done xyz differently, I would have placed better," but isn't that the point of a first race? To learn things?

    So to all the first timers out there, do what you are comfortable with. If this is your first race, that implies there will be more races. You can always switch things up then.

    For the record... I posted here 12-1/2 months ago asking "My first race is coming up. What tires should I use?" I ended up riding the tires I had experience riding on, even if they weren't the ones "everybody" said were best for that course. Also, here I am at the end of my first full season (10 races) of racing and I rode every single one with a light pink Camelbak Skeeter cause I can't reliably get a bottle in and out of the cage.

  4. #29
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    Use what is easiest to drink with. First race = might be a good idea to go ahead and use that Camelbak even they they are not "pro-like".

    Good luck out there. No matter what...race a second time in the near future...

  5. #30
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    If you are doing several races it's worth experimenting with both options and see which you like best.

    Like you, I started racing with a camelbak as that was what I was use to, but now race with a bottle. One of the other posters mentioned this, but using a bottle helps teach you discipline when drinking during a race.

    I use to guzzle down as much water as I could as the camelbak tube was always just there. Drinking out a bottle when racing on tight single track is much harder and I drink less.

    I've been doing slightly longer races (20 - 35 miles) and racing with a camelbak I always needed to stop for a "natural break" or two. Using the bottle it saves me a lot of time not having to stop and pee.

    Maybe I've just got a weak bladder though

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbco1975 View Post
    If you are doing several races it's worth experimenting with both options and see which you like best.

    Like you, I started racing with a camelbak as that was what I was use to, but now race with a bottle. One of the other posters mentioned this, but using a bottle helps teach you discipline when drinking during a race.

    I use to guzzle down as much water as I could as the camelbak tube was always just there. Drinking out a bottle when racing on tight single track is much harder and I drink less.

    I've been doing slightly longer races (20 - 35 miles) and racing with a camelbak I always needed to stop for a "natural break" or two. Using the bottle it saves me a lot of time not having to stop and pee.

    Maybe I've just got a weak bladder though
    You don't want to drink too little or too much fwiw... both can be a big detriment to your performance out there...

  7. #32
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    I'm starting to see them more and more at the elite level. I still use a water bottle and if I need two I put the second in jersey. If i need more than two, I have a little PVC stand that i can hammer into ground and grab as I ride by. Free's my wife up so she isn't stressed about missing me.

    I can't imagine having that weight on my back. I'd over heat and I would suck all the water dry in the first 10 minutes. Water bottles I can control amount and how often I drink. This is extremely important during longer endurance races (triathlons, xterra, etc.)

  8. #33
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    The ability to actually see the bottle in the cage and visually measure how much water you drank/have left is also nice. A second bottle placed in an easy to grab spot has worked for me but for the racing I have done the bottle in the cage has sufficient water.

    After a number of races and more attention paid to water intake I can use my camelbak on all my normal rides and really make the water last which gives me more miles if I can't refill.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by rydbyk View Post
    Use what is easiest to drink with. First race = might be a good idea to go ahead and use that Camelbak even they they are not "pro-like".

    Good luck out there. No matter what...race a second time in the near future...
    I finished my first race and I was happy to have my camelbak. Despite being cool (52F) and not using much water the simple fact was that my camelbak was a known deal. I have been riding with one for years and I knew what to expect. I did not need to learn to reach for the bottle and drink mid ride. I never stopped for the entire ride and I am not sure I ever let off enough to grab a bottle and drink. The hose is much easier to reach and drink will not intrupting my riding.

    Now if I practice with the bottle then maybe it would be different, but with all the new things to think about racing vs just riding I happy to not have to think about water. My luck I would have dropped the bottle somewhere and had to do without. My finish postion was not going to be hurt by carrying the pack, but could be hurt if ran out of water due to losing a bottle or crashing tying to drink.

    I also saw 3-4 rides with flats out on the trail and who knows how many happened behind me. Riding with my full kit of spares was nice since it meant I was self sufficent. My "race" might be lost with flat, but it would not mean a DNF either. The extra weight is not going to make a difference for a rider at my level. However being stuck miles from anywhere with no tools would mean a crappy long walk back that would be no fun at all. If I really wanted to "win" then maybe I take the gamble on no mechicals and minimal water, but for a rider's who's goals were to ride well (best of my abilities) and finish... it was not worth it.
    Joe
    2003 KHS Alite 4000 26" Hardtail - XC, All mountain, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  10. #35
    mnoutain bkie rdier
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    I finished my first race and I was happy to have my camelbak. Despite being cool (52F) and not using much water the simple fact was that my camelbak was a known deal. I have been riding with one for years and I knew what to expect. I did not need to learn to reach for the bottle and drink mid ride. I never stopped for the entire ride and I am not sure I ever let off enough to grab a bottle and drink. The hose is much easier to reach and drink will not intrupting my riding.

    Now if I practice with the bottle then maybe it would be different, but with all the new things to think about racing vs just riding I happy to not have to think about water. My luck I would have dropped the bottle somewhere and had to do without. My finish postion was not going to be hurt by carrying the pack, but could be hurt if ran out of water due to losing a bottle or crashing tying to drink.

    I also saw 3-4 rides with flats out on the trail and who knows how many happened behind me. Riding with my full kit of spares was nice since it meant I was self sufficent. My "race" might be lost with flat, but it would not mean a DNF either. The extra weight is not going to make a difference for a rider at my level. However being stuck miles from anywhere with no tools would mean a crappy long walk back that would be no fun at all. If I really wanted to "win" then maybe I take the gamble on no mechicals and minimal water, but for a rider's who's goals were to ride well (best of my abilities) and finish... it was not worth it.
    Excellent. Good to hear

  11. #36
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    I don't race a lot so for me it depends on the race. How much supplies I think I'll need. Ideally, I would like to ride without a camelbak. It's just nice not having the weight and insulation on your back. For long point to point races, a camelbak is a necessity for me. Two tubes, hydration, misc tools and a pump. That's a lot of gear to try and get all on the bike though it can be done. Also, the aid stations may be more than two hours apart depending on the race. A lap race, is a little different. I haven't done any lap races where the laps are much more than an hour, give or take 10 minutes. 1 bottle per hour is the rule of thumb depending on weather and how much you sweat. So for lap races, I'll rely on 1 tube and CO2 plus tool which all fit in a saddle bag. Refill water bottles at the start finish. 1 or 2 bottles depends on the rider and the weather.
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  12. #37
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    if you are a strong rider. just take the camel back and show them what a "tourist" can do. HAHA. piss off the weight weenies.

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by chickenburgerin3d View Post
    if you are a strong rider. just take the camel back and show them what a "tourist" can do. HAHA. piss off the weight weenies.
    Fascinating thing about racing, there's relatively few chumps. Take every advantage you can get.

  14. #39
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    that is true. so any deficiency that you inflict on yourself gives a win more prestige. does it not?
    USAC#370123

    it isn't the bike, it's the legs that make a strong rider.

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by chickenburgerin3d View Post
    that is true. so any deficiency that you inflict on yourself gives a win more prestige. does it not?
    A dude wearing a typical super oversized NFL jersey over Lycra shorts won beginner 45-50 age group in my second race. Hats off to him, that is super street cred - or trail cred - in my book.
    '15 Specialized Epic Expert Carbon World Cup

  16. #41
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    First Race: Camelbak or Bottle?

    I did my first 10 mile race this year without my usual CBS and made sure I drank a lot before race. No problem, but I wonder if lack of water can lead to back being sore, as I was. Naturally, all the guys in camel backs passed by me.

    This is an old thread but to those aspire to race next year, beginners are really fast unless you are in great shape already.


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  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pegleg81 View Post
    I did my first 10 mile race this year without my usual CBS and made sure I drank a lot before race. No problem, but I wonder if lack of water can lead to back being sore, as I was. Naturally, all the guys in camel backs passed by me.

    This is an old thread but to those aspire to race next year, beginners are really fast unless you are in great shape already.


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    How much time did it take you to complete the race?

  18. #43
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    First Race: Camelbak or Bottle?

    Lol.... an hour and a half. I think that it was actually around 9.7 miles. First place came in an hour.


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  19. #44
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    First Race: Camelbak or Bottle?

    I also did my second race 1ht 20 mins without a CB and had no problems other than back being a bit sore.


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  20. #45
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    How much water did you drink? A bottle? As long as I'm properly hydrated before the race, a bottle usually lasts me about 1.5 hours. The sore back is probably just due to putting out a race effort that you're not accustomed to

  21. #46
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    First Race: Camelbak or Bottle?

    I drank about a bottle along with some powerbar before the race. I think that I need to work out the core muscles for my back. People talk about hydrating 24 to 48 hours before the race and I've never done that.... Another thought is that if there is any flat section that is safe for grabbing the bite valve that is the part where you want to try to go fast.....


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  22. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pegleg81 View Post
    I drank about a bottle along with some powerbar before the race. I think that I need to work out the core muscles for my back. People talk about hydrating 24 to 48 hours before the race and I've never done that.... Another thought is that if there is any flat section that is safe for grabbing the bite valve that is the part where you want to try to go fast.....


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    Yeah, if I hydrate like that before a race I end up having to pee all night.

    Wear what you are used to. If it's a bottle, use a bottle. If it's a hydration pack, use that. There will be plenty more races in the future. Just try and finish and have fun.

  23. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by bosbik View Post
    not to hijack this thread..do you guys think a 19 mile course still warrants only a bottle?

    it depends on:

    terrain and the time you are out there producing XYZ watts

    your fitness

    the outside temp and conditions

    one 19 mile ride for me can be 1 hour or 3 hours depending on the chunder
    at 50 degrees 2 bottles for 2 hours is fine. at 80 degrees I will need 2 bottles plus

  24. #49
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    I had the same question.

    My first race I took a small CB and it ran dry too fast as I drank more than expected.
    CB +
    Easier to handle, faster, can hold more water
    CB -
    You have no idea how much is left other than sense/feel, adding a drink mix may be front loaded as it sinks to bottom

    Bottle
    + you know how much is left always, drink mix is easily spread
    - more time with one hand off the bar, more likely to crash, less volume

    I would rather have a CB half full than bottles strictly due to hands on bar time.

    That said, almost all Cat1 racers carry a bottle or two and maybe they have a pit crew on longer rides... dunno.

    I sweat a lot and use Skratch hydration mix for electrolytes and hydration.

    Good luck!

  25. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by office View Post
    Yeah, if I hydrate like that before a race I end up having to pee all night.

    Wear what you are used to. If it's a bottle, use a bottle. If it's a hydration pack, use that. There will be plenty more races in the future. Just try and finish and have fun.
    This.

    I see top level Cat 1 guys using small hydration packs. I prefer bottles since I don't like anything on my back.
    Life will pound away where the light don't shine, son...

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