Keeping Winter Racers Warm- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Keeping Winter Racers Warm

    Our club is holding a fat-bike race, and this year we've made it a team relay. Riders coming off their lap will likely be sweaty and might get cold standing there in wet clothes waiting for their next lap.

    For those of you who have organized or participated in winter relays before, what has your experience been. How are racers kept warm between laps? Is a big bonfire good enough? Renting a tent and heaters is too expensive for our small budget.

    The race is in west-central Wisconsin, so temperatures could get pretty low.

  2. #2
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    Get a sponsor...you know, a place that sells or rents big-azz tents or yurts or something...
    If Huffy made an airplane, would you fly in it?

  3. #3
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    Assuming you have thermal blankets? When I run races, they often have those thin metallic looking blankets they hand out to cold runners.
    Do you have a van(or anybody in your group have a van)? Hanging out in a warm heated vehicle with leg room is a good idea. RV? Bus? Plastic shed??

  4. #4
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    Haven't seen a relay, but a bonfire and hot chili, coffee & cocoa worked for me between the race and raffles, etc. Another snowride I did had a fire, snacks, hot cider and vodka. Bringing a dry baselayer to swap out would make sense for racers.

  5. #5
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    You might be able to borrow a wall tent and heat could be done without a lot of cost.

  6. #6
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    Is the race in Eau claire WI?

  7. #7
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    You can check with the national guard as well, sometimes they can hold winter training where they set up tents and heaters and such.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by wrcRS View Post
    You can check with the national guard as well, sometimes they can hold winter training where they set up tents and heaters and such.
    Yeah, let the tax payers foot the bill. Bad idea! Even if it were for charity, bad idea.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by phat-mike View Post
    Is the race in Eau claire WI?
    Yes, it is.

  10. #10
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    At Farmer's Fat Bike Race last year (courtesy of Farm Team Racing ) they had a pretty good bonfire going which was nice. I would consider doing that and then maybe and outer ring of burn barrels going, so it created a "warm zone".

  11. #11
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    5-6 55 gallon drums and some palettes cut up for firewood. Once the fire gets going and real hot, throw some big dry yule logs in there to keep things going. The back of wal-mart, sears, kmart, etc. typically have a pile of broken palettes destined for the landfill anyway. Of find someone that has a ton of firewood to donate. Is there picnic shelter close by? Sometimes if you put the barrel outside the shelter but close enough you can hold some heat inside. If you don't have barrels, get people to bring their fire pits or post an ad on craigslist for something free or to borrow. You'd be surprised to see people pitch in. Hope that helps. We had a cross race (snow, 10 degree temps) and 6 strategically placed fires kept everyone warm. We even had smores and adult hot cocoa! It was a hit.

  12. #12
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    I did an overnight relay race back in November, temperatures weren't as low as you'll be getting, we were only a few degrees below freezing, but I learnt a lot.

    Coming hot and sweaty from racing a lap, even in those temperatures I soon got very cold. The more experienced/better organised went back to their tents changed and slept (probably not an issue if it's a daytime race). We sat and shivered in the canteen tent. As soon as I finished my last lap and put on dry clothes, not especially warm ones, I felt way better. The other thing that kept me going was hot food but in the middle of the night I had little to no appetite so got colder.

    So I'd say that in addition to bonfires and hot food you need somewhere for riders to put on fresh clothes. Don't know what your setup is, they may be able to go back to their cars to do that?
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