This Saturday is the 6th running of Bike Iowa's Renegade Gents Race. 315 riders will be doing it this year, up from the 225 that did it the last time I rode it in 2014 (which I wrote about here). I was unable to ride it last year as I was teaching in Germany.
Renegade Gents Race History by the numbers...
2016 - 63 teams signed up. ?? finished
2015 - 64 teams signed up. 45 finished
2014 - 45 teams signed up. 33 finished
2013 - 37 teams signed up. 24 finished
2012 - 30 teams signed up. 22 finished
2011 - 15 teams signed up. 13 finished
This year, the Gran Fondo race is a charity benefit:
This year we decided to make our race a charity event. As many of you already know the cycling community lost a wonderful member when Julie Hugo Sumpter passed away last December. Julie loved all animals and especially dogs so we decided to dedicate this race to her memory. We ask that each racer bring $15 worth of product to donate to the Animal Rescue League of Iowa.
CLICK HERE for a list of needed items for the ARL.
Also on this page is a link to their Amazon.com wish list. If you prefer to shop online you can order directly from Amazon and have it shipped to the ARL. If you decide to go this route please bring a printed receipt of your purchase. Thank you and keep those registrations coming in!
I'm bringing a bag of adult dog food from the ARL wish list on Saturday!!! If you are doing the race and don't have your item(s) yet, make sure you pick something up today or tomorrow.
Ma Nature has agreed to make it challenging for us with winds gusting up to 45mph on Saturday which will make one direction really fast, but the opposite direction really tough. I may have to mount the drop bars that go all the way down to the fork skewer!!!
Or I may have to pull out Piero's aero bike for the ride...
Seriously, it will be either the Roubaix with some skinny tires on it or the Dos Niner on Saturday. Both bikes are ready to go. I can get more aero on the Roubaix road bike and hold it longer thanks to the drop bars, but I'm comfy on either - so I'll remain agnostic and clip into whatever I bring to ride. If I take the road bike, I might throw on the Cobble Gobbler post or Thudbuster ST to absorb some of the gravel for the duration.
I'm riding with fellow Bike Iowa Team members Scott Sumpter, Matt den Hartog, Andy Zeiner, and Jim Coady. Same group as last time, except Jim replaces Jared Morford who will be riding with one of our other Bike Iowa 5 man teams.
Like two years ago, no doubt we will take off in Zone 4/5 again and push the pace until fatigue, reality, and Ma Nature force us to back down to Zone 3 and 2. Scott's on another Trans Iowa training year, so my bet is for the upper Zones a lot longer this time around. The ride fits my training schedule perfectly as what is on order for Saturday's scheduled ride in my structured training is a 3 1/2 hour mix of Zone 3 & 2 ride. We'll probably be on the bike between 4 1/4 and 4 1/2 hours (depending on what Ma Nature dictates) - so that fits the bill, plus gives me an opportunity to dig a bit deeper for some extra bonus. The forecast looks to be around the same temperatures as 2 years ago when I last rode it, but double the wind speed this time around if the forecast holds true. That will drop the windchill to a lower chill - so layers needed for sure, with anything I might need in the drop bag.
This video that Ken Sherman shot and edited back in 2013 pretty much sums up what this race is all about...
Each team of 5 starts and ends together. It's a nice time to visit with each other, suffer with each other, and enjoy some food and drink after the ride. This year - all for a great cause in memory of Julie.