5 tips to prepare yourself and your bike for autumn
5 tips to prepare yourself and your bike for autumnReady story
In 2022, Jack Thompson aka Jack Ultra Cyclist, is aspiring to raise 1 million Euros climbing 1 million meters of elevation. When you break it down, that’s €1 for every meter climbed. He took on this crazy challenge on the 1 st of January wanting to raise money for three mental health charities on different continents. As part of supporting Jack’s Space Odyssey, as he calls it, we came up with our own challenge ‘Lift Off in Limburg’. Together with our partner Ride Out, we planned this challenge on home ground.
Lift Off in Limburg is a 25km loop with 465m of elevation. The reason for the 25 km loop is that the amount of elevation meters was more controllable instead of making one big loop. Jack had to climb 2500 m of elevation that day. So, with every loop containing 465m of elevation, Jack had to ride 6 loops to meet his quota for the day. The people joining him could do the loop as often as they wanted at their own pace.
It was an early start on Saturday the 13 th of August. We met up at 06:45 at Ride Out where the bus would leave for Vijlen located in the South of Limburg. After having loaded all the bikes on the bus, we left. While on the bus, Jack introduced himself and talked about his challenge. The end goal of this trip was to raise funds for the three charities.
We arrived at restaurant Buitenlust where we reserved the lower terrace for us to use the whole day. We received coffee and ‘Limburgse vlaai’, set up the BBB Cycling tent as we were available for mechanical support, put on our helmets and got the bikes ready. Unfortunately, Jack realised that his electronic shifting was not working. Our mechanic Carlo tried to reset the rear derailleur but it just would not work. This meant that Jack had only two gears to use the whole day. It was going to be a long day for him…
The riders set off to ride the first 25 km loop, starting and finishing from restaurant Buitenlust. They all left together but soon after the start the group already split up. A group of about 8 strong riders rode the loop with Jack while others formed their own group. It was a super hot day, and surviving the heat was already a challenge on its own. After every loop, people topped up with water, drank a coke, had something to eat and repeated the loop. Others chose to take it a little easier, took a nice long break and got back on the bike later. As long as all the riders were back by 4 pm when a late lunch buffet would be served.
All in all, it was a very fun day where challenges were overcome, but most of all, people met as strangers and left as friends. The vibe between all the riders was really good and that’s never a given. On to the next one!