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24 Jul 2012

Racing Rutenbrock

I was on my way to Rutenbrock last Friday evening. That's a small town, just across the border, about 55km from home. It's the evening before a race, so I'm taking it realy easy. The speedo is between 40 and 50kph for most of the time. In the 7 or so villages I cross I ride a pace that's low enough for the rest of the world to understand. Yes, I'm in my Evo K, with the roof on. And in the back is my camping equipment for a short weekend. I don't break a sweat, even get a little cold on the final kilometres.

After I said hello and pitched my tent, I eat a pizza with a few others in a restaurant 2km from the temporary campsite in the Bentlage's yard. After this belated dinner we all sit in the yard for another 2 hours and than, one by one, we all crawl in to our tents/campers/vans.

Saturday starts with breakfast. Fresh 'Brotchen' and coffee to get me started for a day that is packed with racing. And normally I don't have coffee with my breakfast, so the extra shot of caffeine is a boost.

Just after 10, I think, we ride to the track. After some thought, and advice, I leave my head fairing in my tent. The track is too much start-stop to ride fully enclosed. I soon find out that doing so is a very wise decision.

Our paddock for today comes with a clean toilet, a canteen and a air cushion for the kids to play on. The track is challenging. The 1st corner is alright, the straight that follows is bumpy. Than comes a sharper than 90 degrees corner followed by a good straight. Corner 3 again means back to 28kph, followed by pushing it up to 45-50 again. The final corner is of-camber and tight too. So a 2.3km round roughly is 4 times a 500 metre sprint.

And after 'one fast lap', I felt not so well. Going flat out at 11am just doesn't work for me. This hard work was good for a 4th place though. Pretty good when you now that I didn't go faster than, perhaps, only 52kph. So my sprints must have been pretty good to leave the lighter 2-wheelers behind. My average was 42.something.

There was nearly 2 hours of rest before the 1 hour race started. This called for a less explosive approach. Now I ended up 6th in the ranking. After 45 minutes I lost halve a minute because I heard a loud noise. It was a Mentos trapped under my Idler. I'd lost it 5 minutes earlier. It took special care to overtake other riders around corners, without constantly locking a wheel or slowing down to much. Had I mentioned before how much I like the handling of Ksynonica J.?

The 10 lap race was easier. We now rode the track the other way around, that made the corners easier,  and it took only half an hour. Now I was able to keep the lightest bikes behind for 6 laps. Again I finished 6th, slightly faster than in the 1 hour, 40 and a bit.

That evening we had a nice barbecue at the campsite. Tired from pushing so hard, but satisfied with the result, I ate and drank enough to fill up the fuel tank again. (I do mention eating often on this blog, don't I?)


  1. What type is that blue velomobile on the second picture? And no: I do recognize the Quest, I meant the other one.

  2. It's called Exxos and is built by someone named Martin. A neat homemade vm.