|sent from: London, UK. destination: Earlsfield, London, UK|
After last week’s St Crispin’s Day 100-mile Night Ride, (see #3.63 #3.64 #3.65 #3.66) I was thinking what would I do if I wanted to attract a larger audience to take part in the fun of a night ride, bring in more casual riders.
– CHANGE THE DATE. ok, so it wouldn’t be the St Crispin’s Day ride anymore, but to ride 10-13 hours in late October weather requires gear to deal with the rain and/or the cold, a significant investment for someone if they don’t ride a lot.
– NO ROUTES THROUGH LONDON. London at the early hours of Saturday Night/Sunday morning is a tough place. If you can stay off main hours, close down parts of the roads, then perhaps it’s ok.
-STOP EVERY 20 MILES. Casual riders will often need technical help and advice. There should be the opportunity to get that help at regular intervals. Plus something to eat+drink, make sure people don’t go hungry.
-DECENT FOOD+DRINK. You can cook up a vat of decent hot chocolate cheaply, without resorting to rubbish low calorie powder mixed with water. That feels like a Victorian punishment, not welcoming after hours of riding.
-A WELCOMING BREAK AT 60 MILES. If outdoors, a bunch of picnic tables. If indoors, a long table + lots of chairs. Music. Medical support. Massages. Tech support. I know for many hard-core riders, this probably voids the ride of the challenge they seek, something rough and ready. But for the rest of us, we want to feel like we have a fighting chance of making it and are supported in that effort.