This race might have been a bit unfair. Rebecca had just come off a 30+ hour “training race” as she preps for the Iditarod. And she doesn’t race short form. So, my challenge to her was a short gravel race, on trails we’d never ridden, with no real idea of when or where it would finish. Sounds like a good time, no?
But before the race, we went on a three hour practice ride to get used to our new bikes. I was on the Evil Chamois Hagar, and Rebecca was aboard her new Giant Revolt gravel road bike, sporting fresh duds from also-new sponsor Velocio. I grilled her for advice on gravel racing, and she delivered the knowledge. Here’s how it all went down…
Rebecca’s biggest tips for gravel racing:
- Get your tire pressure right – You want a lot less than on the road, but a little more than mountain bikers use. Experiment to get it right because you need that cushion to take the edge off impacts and provide maximum traction.
- Draft on the flats, get the hole shot into singletrack – Obviously, this is what won the race for her. Obviously.
Huge thanks to Rebecca Rusch for being a good sport, and to folks at Lyman Agency, Dirty Kanza and SBT GRVL for helping us film our race!