Welcome to the November 6th, Mid-Week Report!
PHOTO OF THE WEEK
PRODUCT TEST: CYCLIQ CAMERAS
When it comes to maximizing highway safety, being seen has always been an obvious solution. As such, we are at the point where almost everyone knows that daytime running lights help keep everyone safer. Motorized vehicles implemented them as standard equipment years ago, and it seems that every day we see more cyclists running lights as well.
Cycliq is a brand out of Australia that hopes to put cyclists further ahead in the safety debate ahead of our motorized friends with whom we share the road daily.
The Cycliq Fly6 CE and Fly12 CE are bicycle lights that have a built-in camera. While a camera alone doesn’t ensure a safer riding experience, when combined with an LED light that runs any time you ride, it’s a different story. Sure, there are plenty of daytime riding lights out there now and cameras are of abundance, but is it simple? No, you need to find someplace to mount both as they fight for the same space. There is the added weight of having two to four different units and all their mounts on the bike, but maybe the biggest deterrent for many cyclists is the headache of remembering to charge both lights and cameras.
The Cycliq Fly12 CE is a 600-lumen headlight with an integrated 1080p HD camera. They both run off the same internal battery with an average running time of eight hours. The Fly6 CE is a 100-lumen taillight that also records in the same 1080p HD with the average battery life at seven hours. The cameras record video and audio with looping footage, so there is no need to clear the memory card each time you use it or worry about it ever being full.
This smart-looping technology utilizes setting and sensors within each unit to identify when an accident occurred “incident mode” and saves a specified length of footage before the incident, as well as 30 minutes after, before automatically turning off. That footage is then locked and cannot be written over until it is unlocked using the Cycliq app or deleted using a computer. Footage can be transferred to a computer for long-term storage or evidence of the incident.
Both the Fly6 CE and Fly12 CE have multiple light modes. There is constant, flash and pulse with high, medium and low in each, as well as off. These settings are all available out of the box, but using the app you can customize them so that you only have to cycle through those you use. These lights are designed to run day and night, offering more visibility to others on the road.
The footage is stored on a microSD card, but it’s not supplied with the purchase of a unit. This does mean you will need to buy two cards if you plan on running both front- and rear-facing units. The size of memory card you choose will determine how much footage you can record before it loops over the oldest footage, so we suggest the max of 32GB to be safe, but if you are on a budget, a 16GB is sufficient. We tried a 64GB card, too, but Cycliq says that 32GB is their recommended max. Both units charge from their USB-C port, and a cable is supplied with each unit.
Using the Cycliq Fly6 CE and Fly12 CE is like any other new electronic accessory. There are a lot of options and settings, but if you take the time to initially set them up and are patient the first time through, it makes every other time simple and quick. There are no screens on the units, so the settings are either displayed with the use of blinking LED combinations or using the app. They do have ANT+ in each unit and offer a Garmin Connect app to also control and monitor their status.
The mounting options are good and similar to most lights on the market. Using aero bars might be the only type to add complexity. There is what they call a universal mount adapter that mounts to a GoPro-style mount. The mounts use a round quarter-turn-style interface that is quick, easy and surprisingly very secure. For added security, we also used the supplied leash just to be safe.
The lights function perfectly and provide more than enough power for night-riding visibility. With its 600 lumens on the Fly12, the high mode was so bright that we relied on the low or medium level. Both lights project light very well during the day, offering visibility a significant distance out and allowing others to make smart and predictable passes.
We did have some trouble when we would stop for a long time or set our bike down when stopping. There are a few settings that will recognize no movement and automatically turn the unit off—when we would set the bike down for a quick nature break or repair, the camera thought we had crashed and went into “incident mode” before automatically turning off. This was an issue at first, because we assumed the cameras were still running and missed portions of the ride footage.
The other part that is a bit of a bummer is there are no displays telling us what is going on. This cuts down on cost, weight, size and battery-life issues, but we can’t remember all the light combinations. This meant we had to rely on the app or just cross our fingers and hope we got it correct. We didn’t use the Garmin app, but other users have told us that it makes it a lot better.
Do running lights make riding safer? Yes, and we try to run them all the time. Does recording your rides make you any safer? Certainly not in the same way that the lights do, but given the many, many times that we hear about cyclists’ versions being dismissed, the on-board camera does provide a level of post-incident insurance by providing a third-eye version that can tell more of an objective story.
There is a nice feeling of security that comes with knowing if something happens that there is a way to prove or disprove accusations. The real bonus is the lights don’t cost a fortune like many other options can, and in our book that’s a big win.
- Lights, camera, action
- Two-in-one convenience
- No display means app-dependent
Weight: 112 grams, Fly6 CE taillight;
195 grams, Fly12 CE headlight
INTRO TO ZWIFT
Races and group rides on Zwift continue to grow in popularity, and while many riders visit Watopia year-round, this is the time of year when even more cyclists jump on the platform as it gets colder outside. I absolutely recommend participating in group rides and races on Zwift. From a training and coaching standpoint, there are some things to keep in mind in order to integrate e-racing into your training plan.
Why race on Zwift?
While the purists and old curmudgeons rant about the evils of e-racing, the rest of us have a lot of good reasons to include it in our training programs.
- It’s fun and engaging: This is probably the only reason you really need. Your bike is a great training tool, as long as you actually ride it. And that’s the trouble for a lot of cyclists, particularly a generation of outdoor riders who have years of built up dread from riding trainers alone in the basement. As you’ll see below, Zwift racing requires a lot of focus and strategy, which keeps riders on the bike and glued to the screen.
- It’s really freaking hard: It doesn’t take that much exposure to very high-intensity efforts to stimulate a training adaptation, but achieving that time-at-intensity takes a level of motivation and focus that is hard for most athletes to achieve during solo training. Drawing a peloton from a worldwide population, e-races can be consistently harder than your local group ride or local race series, meaning you’ll get those max efforts that make a big difference.
- It’s convenient: I love local outdoor group rides, but they happen a few times a week – at best – and if you miss out, that’s it. There are so many group rides and races on Zwift you can jump into a race at almost any time of day or night, with no driving, pinned numbers, or parking lot warmups.
- It’s safe: Let’s be honest, crashing sucks. There are a lot of riders who love to compete but have stopped real-world racing because the risks are too high. E-racing can feed that competitive spirit… from your living room.
Integrating Zwift Races into a Cycling Training Plan
The convenience and availability of Zwift races has led to some interesting problems for goal-oriented cyclists. In some areas of the world, there are enough local outdoor group rides that riders can overdo it, but that’s rare. With Zwift, you can easily e-race yourself into the ground. While the best option is having a coach integrate e-races into your program, here are some general tips for self-coached cyclists:
- Watch your weekly workload: One of the big red flags in training is a sudden and significant increase in weekly workload, because your ambition and enthusiasm can change faster than your fitness can adapt. And it’s not just a matter of weekly hours – which can actually go down if the e-races are short. It’s a matter of intensity and
- Connect Zwift to training software: In order to monitor your weekly workload as you start e-racing, connect to TrainingPeaks or a similar software. And then actually go look at the data! It’s important to get a sense for how the demands of e-races differ from your solo rides, outdoor group rides, and events.
- Start with two e-races a week, in the 60-90 minute range: From a training perspective, e-races are an unstructured, intermittent high-intensity workout. Those have a place in training throughout the year, but they need to be balanced with interval training and moderate-intensity endurance rides so you accumulate enough time-at-intensity to retain and improve power for the full range of efforts required in your goal events. Thankfully, there are plenty of endurance-pace group rides on Zwift, too, and you can build interval workouts within the platform.
- Race your category – or higher: Most e-races on Zwift are divided into categories by watts/kg. As of now, you can jump into any category, and as a matter or etiquette it’s respectful of others to race toughest category you’re ready for. E-racing, however, allows you to “Cat-up”, which you can’t do in USA Cycling races. A Cat 4 can’t jump into a Pro-1-2 criterium, but you can in Zwift. That might be an extreme example, but it is sometimes good to ride group rides and races on Zwift that are over your head. You might get dropped, but you’ll probably dig pretty deep and achieve some great efforts before that happens.
SAGAN GRAN ROADIE-OH NOVEMBER 8-10
For the first time in Southern California, fans and avid cyclists will get the opportunity to hang out with, ride alongside or get a signed jersey from the most popular cyclist on the planet, Peter Sagan. The Southern California Sagan Fondo, the Gran Roadie-Oh version, will actually be a three-day collection of different ways to get to know Peter Sagan on the heels of his recording-breaking seventh Green Jersey victory at the Tour de France. The festivities will run November 8 to November 10, 2019.
EVENT FEATURES – Courses: 150K, 100K, 50K
- 7:00 am roll-out from North City with CHP leading
- Controlled Roads for the leaders throughout
- Chip Timed Routes
- Timed King & Queen of the Sprint sectors
- On-course mechanic support
- SAG Vehicles
- Hundreds of enthusiastic Volunteers
- Unparalleled Finish Celebration at North City with the streets shut down to trafﬁc
- Post Event Feast at Urge Gastropub
- Live Music
- Challenged Athletes Beer and Wine Garden
- Unique 750ml Beer Bottle trophies for ﬁnishers
- Event Tee-shirts for participants
- Opportunity to buy signature event kits from Sportful, plus other merchandise items
- Course safety provided by SD Police, CHP, Sheriffs, Trafﬁc Control and Course Marshals!
Register here: www.roadieoh.com
CTS FIGUEROA MOUNTAIN GRAN FONDO
The city of Solvang, California will be the presenting sponsor for the third annual CTS Figueroa Mountain Gran Fondo cycling event. The event, to be held November 8-9, 2019, is produced by coaching company CTS and is anticipated to bring more than 800 cyclists and families to Solvang for festivities on Friday night and the gran fondo and finish line-party on Saturday.
As a result of the presenting sponsorship, the CTS Figueroa Mountain Gran Fondo will move its packet pickup and start/finish to downtown Solvang from Santa Ynez. Solvang and the Santa Ynez Valley have a long history with national and international-level cycling events, including stages of the Amgen Tour of California. The area is also known worldwide as an ideal location for pre-season training camps for professional cycling teams.
“CTS has been hosting cycling camps in and around Solvang for 20 years, and my personal history with the area goes back further to 7-Eleven Pro Cycling Team training camps in the 1980s,” said CTS Founder and CEO, Chris Carmichael. “We established a year-round training facility in the Santa Ynez Valley nearly 10 years ago and I am honored to have the support of the city of Solvang and the community in this wonderful valley.”
Solvang Mayor Ryan Toussaint added, “The Santa Ynez Valley is a premier cycling destination and we welcome the CTS Figueroa Mountain Gran Fondo to Solvang.”
Kirk Nordgren, Event Director and General Manager of the nearby CTS training facility, said, “We’re proud to partner with the City of Solvang and local companies to create an event that’s great for cyclists and beneficial for the whole community.”
The economic benefit of bringing the CTS Figueroa Mountain Gran Fondo to Solvang was a priority for Solvang City Council member Chris Djernaes. He said, “Cycling is good for business. The event helps establish Solvang as a destination for cycling tourism, and our city will continue to reap the economic benefits throughout the year as cyclists return to visit our beautiful valley.”
About the CTS Figueroa Mountain Gran Fondo
On Friday afternoon and evening, riders will arrive in Solvang for packet pickup and the public is encouraged to participate in a cycling festival with activities for kids and families. Amateur cyclists participating in the event will all start together on Saturday morning and choose from four marked routes (100, 64, 44, and 31 miles) through the Santa Ynez Valley. The longer three routes feature an ascent of Figueroa Mountain, and all routes feature Ballard Canyon Road made famous to cyclists by the Amgen Tour of California. With the exception of the Start/Finish area, the course will be open to car traffic throughout the event. Riders will be supported on course with feed stations and mobile mechanics, and will return to Solvang for a finish line party with live music and locally sourced food and beer.
LANCE ARMSTRONG TO RIDE GRAN FONDO HINCAPIE GREENVILLE
Hincapie Sportswear received confirmation on Monday that cyclist Lance Armstrong will ride in Gran Fondo Hincapie-Greenville. Armstrong, a former teammate of George Hincapie’s, partner at NEXT VENTŪRES, founder of WEDŪ, and host of “THEMOVE” and “The Forward” podcasts, will join George Hincapie for the ride.He also plans to air “THEMOVE” podcast while there.
“I’m excited to come to the ride,” says Armstrong. “We aired ‘THEMOVE’ at Gran Fondo Hincapie-Fort Worth, and it was a lot of fun to interact with the crowd there.”
“We’re thrilled to have Lance with us for another fondo,” says George Hincapie. “His presence in Fort Worth really helped to take the event up a notch. And everyone had a blast watching the podcast.”
The original Gran Fondo Hincapie, located in Greenville, SC, and now in its seventh year, has topped charts and received stellar reviews, acclaimed for the cycling celebrities in attendance, as well as the careful attention to safety, on-site viewing screens, course and segment timing, live tracking and streaming, live bands at the rest stops, and free family festival.
Also attending is three-time world champion Michael Rogers! He joins the list of cycling greats in attendance, including George Hincapie, Christian Vande Velde, Bobby Julich, , Justin Williams, Santiago Botero, and Victor Hugo Pena.
2020 DIRTY KANZA REGISTRATION DETAILS
2020, here we come! Mark you calendars for the 15th annual Garmin Dirty Kanza on May 30, 2020. Thank you for making this year’s race one of the best ever.
The random selection process for the 2020 race will open on January 6 through January 19. Selections will then be made on or before January 27.
THE RIFT ICELAND JULY 25 2020
The Rift is a gravel race through the dark lava fields in the highlands of Iceland – taking place on the tectonic split between North America and Eurasia. An ever-growing battlefield that grows an inch every year.
The battlefield sculpted by volcanic eruptions is vast, rugged and unpredictable – making the Rift a challenge of endurance, mental fortitude and most likely the bare elements. And in the end – a gravel battle between the continents!
The course starts out of a small town along the southern coast called Hvolsvöllur. This incredible shoreline stretches from the greater Reykjavík area in the west to the magnificent Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon in the east. It is lined with countless natural wonders such as cascading waterfalls, black sand beaches, glaciers and volcanos – circumnavigating one of the most active volcanos on the island, Hekla.