Home

Just entered. Really excited. Just need to get in training now. Any advice gratefully recieved

19 comments

Avatar
David Arthur @d... [715 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Hit the pave as hard as you can. Take it easy on the road sections

Avatar
FreeTrainerSoftware [11 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

get some super low gearing, its not that you maybe about to get up these things with a bigger gear its the fact that there will be masses of riders that will be walking & getting in the way, so you have to think of this a bit like you would when doing technical MTB! The Paterberg comes really sudden on a tight right hand bend where you will probably be in 53x12 keep an eye out for the banners of it on the way down to it & you should have warning enough to drop to the small ring before its too late. The Koppenberg also comes after a tight right hand bend but this starts a bit more calm & turns into a cobbled cliff further up. We have it as a indoor trainer ride for our free software noted in the other thread . The old Kwaremont is for me the worst of all the climbs as its so long, its will sap everything out of you, I hated racing up this thing back in my day.

Avatar
monty dog [460 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Take shoes you can walk in - so many riders walking on the Koppenberg smearing mud all over the stones makes passage near impossible.

Avatar
Metjas [362 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Experiment with your tyre pressures, i.e. you want them lower than usual and I'd go for 25mm at least. Double bar tape recommended. For me the hardest parts are the long cobbled sections, Maria borrestraat, Paddestraat and another one I forget the name of which is impossibly terrible, flat but it just shudders you to smithereens! Koppenberg certainly harder than Paterberg imo. You want to power over the cobbles, rather than spin, but expect people in front of you to either come to a sudden stop or fall off, yes it is that much fun!

Avatar
smudge [3 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Leffe!

Avatar
Megacountax [19 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes
smudge wrote:

Leffe!

+1!

Avatar
FreeTrainerSoftware [11 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Remember also to see the Flanders museum http://www.crvv.be/en/ You can get a Leffe there also (ask for the double & you will get the slightly more tasty brown version).

Avatar
sorebones [139 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

I've also entered for next year - excited and nervous in equal measures. I am considering tubeless tyres / wheels for my next all-rounder set, would this make sense to help run lower psi and avoid pinch-flats?

It seems like cafe covers for my speedplay cleats might be my first purchase!

Avatar
southseabythesea [150 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

I'm going to swap over my speedplays for MTB pedals and where my off rode shoes, even with covers on I think walking up hill (hopefully I don't have to) maybe very difficult at best.

Avatar
Yorkshie Whippet [553 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Look out for me, I'll be the one flying up the pave only to collapse at the end gasping, no, pleeding for mercy at the end of each.  40

There's a couple of places on ebay that do "permenant" covers for speedplay's For the price I might invest.

Avatar
sorebones [139 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes
Yorkshie Whippet wrote:

Look out for me, I'll be the one flying up the pave only to collapse at the end gasping, no, pleeding for mercy at the end of each.  40

There's a couple of places on ebay that do "permenant" covers for speedplay's For the price I might invest.

I've seen those advertised but was hoping to hear some user feedback before taking the plunge.

Avatar
Blackhound [447 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

You will have a great time, did it a few years ago on the old course. I am a poor climber but I only walked on 2 climbs both times because of mass of riders in front of me rather than because I was unable to. The climbs can be steep but they are mercifully short. Think it was Paterberg and Koppenberg that got me.

Ran 90psi and a 25mm tyre up front. Also make sure your bottle cages are tight - there was a mass of bottles over the road on first cobbled section.

Avatar
jobless [41 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

Don't wear a watch.

Avatar
Jonny7C [64 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes
jobless wrote:

Don't wear a watch.

echo the above - make sure any lights/computer/bottles are well secure.

I wouldn't worry about lowering tyre pressures, being a tad more uncomfortable for a day easily wins over repairing multiple pinch flats.

As for the climbs, don't come over all British if you want to ride to the top of the Koppenberg. You will need to shove and shout. A lot. Otherwise you'll be stuck in the snake of walking riders.

Avatar
middlering [57 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

I'm riding too, 3rd year in a row. Have even signed up my partner this year for the short course.

From my experience:
90psi versus 120 psi won't make much of a difference on the cobbles., but that 120 might mean fewer pinch flats. However, if it's wet, all bets are off.
Long flat cobbled sections are much harder than those revered cobbled climbs. Probably also why I always find Kwaremont more painful than Paterburg.
In the saddle climbing is better than out of the saddle. Either way, go in the highest gear you're able to push for that incline, but not too high to make you stall. I ride most climbs on my spring rides in saddle, just to train myself not to get out of sale just because it's a short step climb.
Finally, steak, beer, frites, coffee and dame blanche. I usually load up on them to make the trip a net validity gain despite the rides  1

Enjoy training for it  1

Avatar
monty dog [460 posts] 3 years ago
0 likes

90psi! Forget that, get down below 5 bar for the sweet-spot in terms of grip and comfort - run the biggest tyres you can fit, simple. Rode the old, full-course version a few times, including one that was over 300km due to a navigation error at DePanne!

The watch comment is good - the vibrations cause the winder to abrade your skin and stings-like-f* if you get sweaty. Likewise, get some decent quality padded mitts and break them in properly - don't wait to 150km to find there's a seam sawing-away on the inside of your thumb.

My favourite climb is the Oude Kwaremont - if you can sustain the power all the way, it's an awesome feeling. Koppenberg is too much of a lottery, there's too many people walking.

Avatar
Yorkshie Whippet [553 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes
sorebones wrote:
Yorkshie Whippet wrote:

Look out for me, I'll be the one flying up the pave only to collapse at the end gasping, no, pleeding for mercy at the end of each.  40

There's a couple of places on ebay that do "permenant" covers for speedplay's For the price I might invest.

I've seen those advertised but was hoping to hear some user feedback before taking the plunge.

Sorebones,

I took the plunge and got a set of the covers. Well worth it in my opinion. Simple pull them over your cleats, click into place and go. Considerably more grip than the metal plate, they are hard so grip on steep wet slopes is limited but still more than without. As they add more height bit awkward when walking, but soon get use. Not lost one yet, (touch wood) and can not see how you could loose one in use. Not noticable when on the bike. A cheap fit and forget improvement.

Avatar
gvn [1 post] 2 years ago
0 likes

I have also signed up with some mates and very excited to go do this...

From reading the posts, I notice that there will be much overcrowding on the climbs..

Can this be avoided (to some extent) if you start at 07:00 when it opens? Or does the bunches end up being so big that overcrowding on the narrow climbs are unavoidable?

I'll be taking on the 140km - anyone out there have a route profile for this particular route showing when to expect the climbs.

Thanks

Avatar
tombourne [22 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

I did Flanders last year and spent the weekend with Jean Marie Wampers, a Belgian ex-pro who won Paris Roubaix in 89 when men were men and all that. His advice was don't get too close to anyone's back wheel on the climbs. This saved me on all the climbs. People just stop dead. Leave a couple of wheel lengths and you can get round them, too close and you're stopping too! It's what cycling is all about.