Project 24: Duelling Forecasts

Find all Project 24 posts here!

There’s nothing that will significantly increase the dread of a 24-hour race like the threat of 2 days worth of rain.  Ever since race day came within range of fourteen day forecasts , I’ve found myself flipping between Accuweather, The Weather Chanel, and Weather Underground, trying to make sense of the day-to-day shifts in forecast.  As it stands now (Sunday), it looks as though the Project 24 race bike will be getting muddy.  Or not.  Weather is notoriously difficult to predict, but as we close in on this year’s 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo, the fenders and waterproofs are coming out of their hiding places.  Hopefully, just being prepared will be enough to keep precipitation at bay.

Meanwhile, the bike itself is performing excellently.  Despite a fair amount of what passes for mud and snow in these parts, the fat-but-fast Schwalbe Racing Ralph tires have been fantastic.  At 565g apiece (10g less than claimed), with sturdy SnakeSkin sidewalls, the Ralphs have as much traction in our local loose-over-hard conditions as anything I’ve tried.  They also work surprisingly well in the wet- though if things get particularly nasty, the Truth’s lack of tire clearance will have me swapping the rear out for a narrower Schwalbe Albert.  More updates after the jump!

A package from Exposure distributor Ibex Sports arrived this week as well, containing some serious candlepower.  Both my teammate and I will be running 900 Lumen Diablos on the helmet (with external 3-cell batteries) and 1200 Lumen MaXx Ds on the bars (though on their ~900 Lumen medium setting).  This combination should guarantee that any off-trail excursions are due entirely to operator error.   We also have the company’s 75 Lumen Flare commuter tail light on test- look for an initial review before too long.

With only a few days left before the big day, we’re down to last-minute tweaks and oh crap- don’t forget the [whatever] revelations.  Virtually every piece of cycling clothing that I own will be thrown into a very big bag and at least one Very Important Thing will undoubtedly be left behind.  If you’re traveling to Tucson for the race, keep an eye out and say Hi.  If not, stay tuned for a whole heap of reviews (and maybe even some gear news) from the race!

Comments

voiceofreason - 02/14/11 - 11:53am

Word of wisdom, from years past of torrents of rain in the ole pueblo:

“If there is hints of rain, make sure you have brand new brake pads, and bring at least one full replacement set. If you want to make lifelong friends, bring a set or tow extra to share!”

The super hardpack plus sand our at the willow springs ranch, turns to constant sandpaper when the water gets flowing. Several years ago, everybody went through all the pads local shops could round up out of their stock. After killing the old set of pads that were on my bike, plus a spare set, I ended up doing 3 more laps on a buddy’s cross bike, cause it was the only bike we could find with functional brakes!

-Cory

MattyVT - 02/14/11 - 1:39pm

Check out the national weather service also- http://www.nws.noaa.gov. They’re another accurate datapoint and they seem to update their forecasts more frequently than most.

I hear you on obsessing over the weather for an enduro. It can have a big impact on your race, and there’s not a damn thing you can do except prepare.

marc b - 02/15/11 - 8:11am

‘Reason,

Thanks for the heads-up. I was around for that year and remembered how bikes were *destroyed* after several laps… I was also thinking about bringing a cheap (SLX) chain and cassette, to spare the good stuff if the weather is especially nasty. What I also remember, from the snowy year, is that Junebug doesn’t handle moisture well- hopefully they’ll spare a fun trail from the abuse if things deteriorate. Still, it’ll be fun…

mb

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