Having recently finished the resto
the obvious next step was to get it muddy as possible, so decided to be the single token retrobike at this year's "Burung Hantu 2013" (meaning Night Owl, or literally 'ghost bird' in Malay language) which is an annual 50km night race / jamboree through the jungles and plantations around Melaka, Malaysia.
I raced it last year on a full susser but this year went the retrobike route and as far as i could tell was the only one there on a full rigid bike with cantis. My sister was over on holiday from the UK and despite having never ridden any kind of competitive race or jamboree before wanted to join, luckily we were very kindly loaned a small framed Charge bike and helmet from my generous mate at the LBS.
It rained like hell for the first hour and the trails were gloopy, slippery and dark (i.e. brilliant!). Temperature was a nice 25degC even while raining. Palm tree fronds might look delicate and pretty in photos but they bloody hurt when they appear out of the darkness and slap you in the face! I used a full water bottle to jet wash my vintage XT derailleur back to life after shifting became stiff and jumpy. My sister lost a bolt but a quick trail fix kept us rolling. We rode at my sister's pace and made it to the finish, she did great for a mum in her '40s who normally just rides 3 miles to work a couple of times a week.
The old rigid steely got some 'WTF is that?' glances from among the hoards of young dudes on their modern rides, but that OK it's fun being the eccentric foreigner.
Burung Hantu is run as a race (300 entries) and a jamboree (1700 entries). A Malay rider from my mate's bike shop team came second in the men's race and my sister, though not classified as a race entry, beat the time of the 5th placed female racer. Not bad then.
It was fun while it lasted
, now i need to refurbish the bike again
.... but it was worth it!
Here's a clip someone took of the start:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TH_0eHXg0eA