I've not been road riding very long, and as I am a long way past my best before date, progress and improvements in my personal performance come slow and hard fought. So, I like to have an informal goal to work towards whether that's average speed, or power output or to ride a given distance, they are each little motivational measures of how I'm doing.
With this in mind, I thought it would be good to maybe have a go at a sportive, as this would give me a chance to ride in company (not something I usually do) and have the additional benefits of someone else setting the route, food stops and backup.
First thing I noticed was the distances; some allow for newer riders like me, and some don't. No problem, I'll just pick one with a sensible distance and maybe push my time a bit.
Then I noticed the routes. Now I understand that there are a few 'notorious' events that are for the hard core riders only, but after that they seem to fall into two types (and I'm generalising like a mad thing here). 1) The gentle pootle around Sustrans trails and nice flat roads. Or (2), the nice ride on quiet country roads, with two, three or four 'brutal and lung busting' climbs that will 'get your heart rate monitor working'.
Now I don't mind a decent workout, but getting off to pass out or puke up at the side of the road with dozens of other cyclist passing me, is not my idea of a fun thing to do on a Sunday. What's worse is that the organisers seem to be trying to out do one another in the brutality that their courses can contain.
Do any of you do sportives?
Are any of you who do, average type riders, rather than hard core roadies like my pal, who at 62 years old likes to ride 160k sportives within the gold medal time
"Try not to punch any clowns"