Friday, September 30, 2011

2011 Furnace Creek 508 Pacing and Odds

Joe Friel responded that 55-60 was a decent strategy for something like the 508, but he was clear he did not know the ins and outs of the race. I contacted another 24 hour Mtn. Biking coach online who advised 60% of so is a good pace. Just read the 2009 blog entry of American Krestel who handled the crazy winds well that year. He talks of doing the "Treatment" which for him was holding 280 watts or so all day. I like that approach, but for me my target will be quite a bit lower, especially on the flats. Based on what I read there, I would have to guess this guy is one of the favorites for the win. He was not that far behind Emde and Ragsdale in 09 and since they are not riding, he rises up. Betting a battle between him and Rock Rabbit is in the cards as that guy is smoking this year based on the the Terrible Two first place I witnessed and some sick power output I see on Strava.  Its an open race this year with only one top 10 from last year in the race.   Could be a dark horse out there, but I will give a shot with admittedly poor predicting skills:

508 Predictions for Podium

  •  Rock Rabbit: 3 to 1: 1st in Terrible Two, stomach issues finally solved 
  •  American Kestrel: 3.5 to 1: 3rd in 2009. Enuff Said 
  •  Holstein: 4 to 1: Won Hoodoo Voyager. Previous low 30's finish. 
  •  Escape Goat: 20 to 1: 12 hour and change Mulholland Double. Could be breakthrough race 
  •  Honey Badger: 25 to 1:  Sub 13 Hour Devil Mountain Double is Nice...
  •  Tapir: 200 to 1: Been drinking bee pollen. Feel psychic breakthrough coming any day.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Ultracycling Pacing

Been trying to get advice on how to pace for the Furnace Creek 508. Not surprisingly, there is not a ton of information about how to properly pace a 500 mile bike race. Joe Friel's Advice for Ironman Pacing Joe Friel mentions in this article
The sub-five-hour racer will usually ride at 70 to 80 percent of FTP. The eight-hour rider will do something like 50 to 60 percent of FTP. In between finish times will probably be 60 to 70 percent of FTP. Why the difference even though the slower rider has a lower FTP? Simply because you can’t hold a high percentage of a high output for a long time. If the sub-five athlete was going eight hours in a longer distance event he too would have to ride at a lower power output in the neighborhood of 50 to 60 percent of FTP. That’s what I mean when I say that the fast rider and the slow rider are not doing the same race even though both are in an IM.
For me, 50-60% of my 330 FTP would be 165-198 watts. I am guessing that most people intending to race the 508 go out way too fast, end up over-heating, and start to slowdown and end up wondering why they are feeling so awful. My last 508 gives me little experience to go by as I wisely was advised to just finish and took it extremely easy and ended up finishing near the cut-off. This time, I want to be a competitor, and I want to avoid a lot of the mistakes I see people make and would prefer a smartly paced race at 190 watts to 200 watts vs one that starts at 280 and ends up with me crawling in. What do you think? Would you start out very slow right off the bat at 190 watts, or go out with the leaders and see what happens? Will do more research.