Training for The Allianz Surrey Classic Bike Ride 2018

Firstly congratulations on being part of the Allianz Surrey Classic Bike Ride 2017 and we look forward to meeting you on Sunday, 8th July at the De Vere Horsley Estate.

Whichever distance you’re doing, it’s very important that you are thoroughly prepared for it and ready to take on this amazing challenge. If in doubt, we recommend that you get a check-up from your doctor before performing any physical activity of this intensity.

The fitter you are the more enjoyable the experience will be!

Your Bike

Whatever bike you have we look forward to meeting you on the start line and cheering you over the finish line at Horsley Park.

It is important that you have a suitable bike in good condition in order to complete the Allianz Surrey Classic Bike Ride. You will enjoy your training and completing this challenge in greater comfort and ease and you will be able to appreciate the beautiful scenery by having the best bike for the job.

We recommend that you use a road bike with drop handlebars or a road bike with flat handlebars. Road bikes are light and fast and will help you eat up the miles and fly up the climbs. Tyres will also have a very large impact on speed; slick/skinny road tyres are best. We recommend you go for a good quality puncture resistant tyre and make sure your tyres are fairly new before starting the Allianz Surrey Classic to avoid unnecessary repairs and interruption to your day’s cycling. You should pump them up to around 100 psi, although this will depend on your weight.

When choosing a bike we recommend that you chose the correct gear ratios. You will need three/triple chain rings on the front and most bikes nowadays have 8/9/10 gears on the back. Due to the length and steepness of some of the climbs, we suggest that you have an easy gear so that you can keep spinning your legs.

If you only have two/double rings on the front then it is vital that you have a greater range of gears on the back. You will need a 27 tooth gear to get up the climbs (less if you are very, very fit). We highly recommend that you have the option to use easy gears if / when you need them.

Remember, you don’t need to go out and spend thousands of pounds on a bike. You can buy an entry level road bike from £300 – £700. Alternatively, you can buy second hand which is another way to save money. Also, you can save up to 40% through the Government Cyclescheme,intro.

Your Equipment

First and foremost, you need a good quality cycle helmet, accidents are unpredictable and can happen to anybody, even the most experienced riders. Wearing a helmet is compulsory  on this ride and for your own safety and security we recommend that you acquire a modern, branded helmet and ensure that you know how to adjust and ft it securely. Quality cycle helmets can cost up to £150 but it isn’t necessary to spend this sum to have suitable protection. The main consideration is to source a helmet that is comfortable and is the right fit for you. Don’t be influenced by fashion, brand or colour and don’t economize on this item, it could be the most important purchase you will make for the event.

The helmet should sit squarely on the top of your head, not tilted forwards or backwards. A good bike shop will have a mirror so that you can check the position of the helmet on your head and the staff should be able to help you adjust it to fit perfectly. Straps must be tightened so that the helmet doesn’t wobble on your head and fits without feeling tight or uncomfortable. As a guide, you should be able to see the front of the helmet if you ‘look up’;  just get two fingers between the chin strap and your throat;  and feel the chin strap when you open your mouth wide. Most modern helmets come with additional foam pads for easy adjustment to ensure that the fit is appropriate for the shape of your head. As a general guide, look for a helmet with ANSI 90.4 or Snell certification. This identification means that the helmet has passed a minimum safety standard for competition and will normally be suitable for other purposes as well.

It’s worth investing in a decent pair of cycling shorts which include good padding. Whilst your head is important, 6 hours in the saddle without suitable padding can affect other parts of the body and can soon become quite uncomfortable. Specialist cycling tops are also a good investment as they are generally colourful, lightweight and also quick drying, should you experience inclement weather. Remember, Allianz Surrey Classic Bike Ride jerseys can be purchased through through the online registration system, a great memento of the event and your achievement.

With weather in mind, rain gear can be a useful addition to your equipment. Garments need to be breathable, waterproof and lightweight. When purchasing, check for sealed seams to prevent leakage and ensure that wrist and ankle closures are both effective and durable.

Finally, we will focus on your hands and feet. Gloves, whilst not essential, will help to prevent blisters and sores on your hands. Trainers are OK with toe clips but make sure they have a tread that offers a good grip with a sturdy sole. Shoes can take a lot of wear so don’t take your favourite trainers if you opt for this style of footwear. For serious riding, for a one-day event, we would recommend SPD’s (Shimano Pedaling Dynamics). SPDs are the most comfortable and effective solution for the feet, but it may take a little time to become accustomed to them, so remember to practise in them before the ride.

It should go without saying, but we’ll say it anyway, don’t forget your sun protection. Sunburn can be painful and have serious consequences, ensure you have a good supply of a waterproof, sweat-proof, high SPF sunscreen in your bag.

Please feel free to contact us at the Event Office, at any time, if you need more help.

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