Author Topic: Audax in the media  (Read 3334 times)

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #25 on: March 06, 2019, 11:57:35 am »
a stone wall of painted ladies starts singing to me at the [quality] end of a 1000km in the early hours...
FTFY
MP1K's Sedburgh Millenium Hall wasn't that bad (or good) third time round, surely.

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #26 on: March 06, 2019, 05:54:18 pm »


Regarding hallucinations and severe sleep deprivation, just how prevalent is it amongst audax riders (and why would you subject yourself to such a thing when finishing with 11 hours in hand?)

Sleep deprivation and hallucinations are fairly common. PBP is a case in point. Some fast riders will aim to finish in 60 hours to avoid the third night, which means riding through two nights. Others find themselves in a good group during a ride, and don't stop to sleep in order to stay with that group.

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #27 on: March 06, 2019, 06:12:07 pm »
I'd say it is a small percentage of riders having hallucinations on a particular ride. Just those at the extreme ends of the curve, the ones who do not sleep to get a good time, and those who do not sleep because they are slow or faff a lot.

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #28 on: March 06, 2019, 06:36:54 pm »
I'd say it is a small percentage of riders having hallucinations on a particular ride. Just those at the extreme ends of the curve, the ones who do not sleep to get a good time, and those who do not sleep because they are slow or faff a lot.
I'm the latter, which is handy coz I don't need a lot of sleep (yawn).
Bikes are for riding, not cleaning!

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #29 on: March 06, 2019, 06:54:52 pm »
I'd say it is a small percentage of riders having hallucinations on a particular ride. Just those at the extreme ends of the curve, the ones who do not sleep to get a good time, and those who do not sleep because they are slow or faff a lot.
Probably true, but they tend to relate their hallucinations rather enthusiastically, and rather often!

(I think just getting very tired is something that rarely makes it into ride reports.)
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #30 on: March 06, 2019, 07:11:07 pm »
I'd say it is a small percentage of riders having hallucinations on a particular ride. Just those at the extreme ends of the curve, the ones who do not sleep to get a good time, and those who do not sleep because they are slow or faff a lot.
Probably true, but they tend to relate their hallucinations rather enthusiastically, and rather often!

(I think just getting very tired is something that rarely makes it into ride reports.)

'Hallucinations' are often just an attempt to interpret something unusual. Car headlights illuminating tree-lined ridgetop roads at right angles to the PBP course throw up a rich crop, as do wind-turbines.

It seems to relate to the amount of imagination that the viewer is able to deploy to fill in the gaps in what they can't readily interpret. Fortunately many Audaxers are very literal-minded. Unfortunately, they're not the ones who can write readable articles.

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #31 on: March 06, 2019, 08:47:22 pm »
Although understandable, I find articles that bang on about the rough and ready nature, the physical and psychological hardship, and what to consume increasingly tedious.  These are simply the mechanics of doing an event, not its experience.  An exercise in doing something extreme rather than a day of being profoundly human.

I wish more people would write about how cycling long-distances can transcend the sense of having to be the fastest, how it gives time to reflect and develop perspective by the time the ride is done, how it connects you to time passing and leaves you with impressions.  Some of my favourite life moments have been on audax events, usually in a moment of quiet as I ghosted through the countryside, absorbing what is around me.  Audax is unique because it offers these compensations for the undoubted challenge of turning the pedals for a long time.

well you ever read this on last years LWL

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/bike-blog/2018/may/31/rise-ultra-cyclists-london-wales-london-audax

and you even get to see a pic of me !! very good read and not described as you did and all positive

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #32 on: March 06, 2019, 09:14:16 pm »
I'd say it is a small percentage of riders having hallucinations on a particular ride. Just those at the extreme ends of the curve, the ones who do not sleep to get a good time, and those who do not sleep because they are slow or faff a lot.
Probably true, but they tend to relate their hallucinations rather enthusiastically, and rather often!

(I think just getting very tired is something that rarely makes it into ride reports.)

'Hallucinations' are often just an attempt to interpret something unusual. Car headlights illuminating tree-lined ridgetop roads at right angles to the PBP course throw up a rich crop, as do wind-turbines.

It seems to relate to the amount of imagination that the viewer is able to deploy to fill in the gaps in what they can't readily interpret. Fortunately many Audaxers are very literal-minded. Unfortunately, they're not the ones who can write readable articles.

Or relates somewhat more to the amount of stimulants they take to try and stay awake.

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #33 on: March 06, 2019, 10:23:36 pm »
I quite like the mentions of the Transcontinental as I see them very much on a continuum with Audax and I feel both disciplines can feed off each other to the betterment of both.
Events I am running: 6th Apr 2019 3Down London - New Forest 300K; 22nd Jun 2019 Willesden's Last Gasp 600K; 30th Jun 2019 2 Audaxes from Maidenhead;

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #34 on: March 06, 2019, 10:52:08 pm »
I've always taken "hallucinations" to be an overly dramatic way of describing seeing shapes in hedgerows in the dark, which is quite benign and boring and doesn't require any stimulants.

(although it usually means you're *pretty bloody tired* and should think about not riding a bike quite soon)

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #35 on: March 07, 2019, 12:13:29 am »
Hallucinations are part of the culture of long Audaxes. They go along with caffeine tablets, Ibuprofen and Shermer's Neck. It's all part of what makes Audax an 'extreme' sport. People seem to like the idea of suffering, it makes for a good read.

Redlight

  • Enjoying life in the slow lane
Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #36 on: March 07, 2019, 09:11:06 am »
well you ever read this on last years LWL

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/bike-blog/2018/may/31/rise-ultra-cyclists-london-wales-london-audax

and you even get to see a pic of me !! very good read and not described as you did and all positive

And indeed, I refer you to: https://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=108499.25
Between the Disney abattoir and the chemical refinery

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #37 on: March 07, 2019, 11:43:05 am »
The need to prequalify for PBP has cut down the opportunities for cycling writers to take it on. In 2015 we encountered Paul Robson, the deputy editor of Cycling Plus, who rode his first Audax in January 2015.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJwcKk6-lmQ
He got us to do some stills for his article, which is now online. https://www.cyclingplus.com/articles/i-rode-it-paul-robson-at-the-2015-paris-brest-paris-randonee/

That's a good guide to the sort of story to be written about PBP. In 2017 Cycling Plus responded to a press release about LEL being 'Britain's Toughest Audax' by commissioning us to provide words and images for a story, as we were already making a film. That press release had dangled some well-known names, and Cycling Plus had bitten.

The key to a good article is often good images. In 2007 I met a freelance adventure photographer, called Gregg Bleakney. http://parisbrestparisphoto.blogspot.com His images turned up in a few articles, one being in Cycling Plus. http://www.randonneurs.bc.ca/pbp/articles/2007_cycling-plus72-73.html

The best guide to PBP articles is the PBP hub of British Columbia Randonneurs. http://www.randonneurs.bc.ca/pbp/articles.html

I've got one on there from 2011. http://www.damonpeacock.com/paris-brest-paris.html

Quote
The typical PBP rider is a 52 year old man. I’m one of those, and I can tell you that life isn’t usually a lot of fun for us. I watched a BBC4 documentary about postcards, and the people who collect them recently. That’s the sort of thing that 52 year old men do, watch BBC4 and collect postcards. Pipes and slippers have gone out of fashion of late. But we are the people of the shed, tinkering in comfy obscurity, and meeting our chums for a weekly pint of foaming real ale in the local pub.

Some of us fight against the dying of the light, and usually get a pitying reaction to our mid mid-life crisis. The best we can hope for is to club together with other like-minded souls and indulge in a hobby which gets us a mild ribbing from those around us.

So it is with Audax, we assemble in our village halls. We debate the relative merits of Shimano and Campagnolo. Then we do our rides, during which we might be pelted with eggs, or we might not. On the way round we eat pasties while seated on service station floors or we eat teacakes in cafes in faded seaside towns, while drinking tea together, in the afternoon of our lives.

We’re not all 52 year old men, but that’s the background hum and the wallpaper. The further away from a middle aged bloke on a steel framed lightweight tourer you are, the more interest you will generate. My films are populated with those exceptions, largely because the last thing that a 52 year old bloke on a bike wants to see is another 52 year old bloke on a bike. He likes to see a distant view of himself, climbing convincingly enough to suggest someone much younger, but that’s difficult to do for all the 52 year old blokes, and they’re usually fairly happy with scenery and a much younger female subject.


I'd still like to be doing PBP, but my hands can't cope with cold, wet and vibration. I should be out today, doing some hedgelaying at an altitude of 750 feet, on the lower slopes of Pendle Hill. But it's cold and it's raining, so using a chainsaw is ill-advised. I have to restrict damaging misery to things that provide an income these days, and I have to pick my days for that. It's not PBP that's the main problem. Its the qualifiers, as you're locked in to ride a 300 and a 400 early in the season.

We'd be up for making a film, and providing stills for articles if anyone wants to give us a commission.

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #38 on: March 07, 2019, 11:50:37 am »
I've always taken "hallucinations" to be an overly dramatic way of describing seeing shapes in hedgerows in the dark, which is quite benign and boring and doesn't require any stimulants.

I've seen/experienced plenty of what you're describing on Audaxes over the years, a tired mind can play tricks, but I for these I was never tired enough to be a danger and I'd agree that they're not really hallucinations.

However, I've had one proper experience where the 'seeing shapes' was taken to a whole different level. Static items seemingly moving right in front of me whilst I'm looking straight at them, not something seeming to happen out of the corner of my eye. I'd count these as more proper 'hallucinations'. This was part of LEL'09 where I was far too tired (but felt absolutely fine when I left the previous control an hour and a bit before that), shortly after I was drifting off whilst riding and it was only solved by riding companion keeping me in conversation and then finding somewhere suitable (a church porch) to have a quick nap, followed by a few hours of proper sleep a few hours later in a proper bed.

As others have said, tales of hardship sell, especially when describing something that isn't actually as hard as it is being described. People think "Bah, that shouldn't be that hard, I could do that" and a potential new recruit is found. Personally I think the tales of hardship will put off more people than it entices this way. Like some have already said, I prefer Audax for the headscape and the time to myself more than anything else.
"Yes please" said Squirrel "biscuits are our favourite things."

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #39 on: March 07, 2019, 12:22:59 pm »
well you ever read this on last years LWL

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/bike-blog/2018/may/31/rise-ultra-cyclists-london-wales-london-audax

and you even get to see a pic of me !! very good read and not described as you did and all positive

And indeed, I refer you to: https://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=108499.25

Thank you and that’s lovely positive article !

Re: Audax in the media
« Reply #40 on: March 07, 2019, 12:48:16 pm »
I wonder if anyone has been in touch with Andy about covering his two events in July ?