Author Topic: Brevet Cymru 2019  (Read 6228 times)

S2L

Brevet Cymru 2019
« on: April 21, 2019, 06:12:51 pm »
Just got the email from Black Sheep. My thought was to plow on to Chepstow, but if the control is closed before 6 AM, maybe I am better off enjoying the full value experience and having an extended nap at the night control (km 340). Does anyone know if there are blankets and (I know, I am soft) mattresses of sort?

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2019, 06:15:22 pm »
I'm wondering if he meant 6pm, rather than 6am.

S2L

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2019, 06:18:02 pm »
I'm wondering if he meant 6pm, rather than 6am.

Who is going to finish before 6 PM?

12 hours on a 400 means 33.3 Km/h

mattc

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Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2019, 06:22:56 pm »
Does anyone know if there are blankets and (I know, I am soft) mattresses of sort?
Based on the ones I've done (3??), it's a complete lottery. One previous organiser just thinks everyone should ride through, sometimes there is thin mats + blankets (an absolute godsend on the freezing cold wet one I rode!].

I'm sure Mr Blacksheep will advise - he'll probably read this thread, but if not, he's very responsive on facebook.
Has never ridden RAAM
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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: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2019, 08:15:14 pm »
I don't recall seeing mats and blankets last year. I just pushed on, filled in my card, posted it through the door and went to bed in the hostel I had booked.
   Eddington  87 miles

Ultradiscostu

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Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2019, 09:21:53 pm »
I'm not going to make an decisions now on whether I sleep at a control or not, but very nice if there is the option. As this is a training ride for a 600 it's would also be good to practice the mental side of stopping, sleeping and then getting going again. Been there many times in that dazed stuper where you think it's the right decision just to ride on through but a sleep is probably the better option.
Push your limits and never be afraid to dream big. Ignore the naysayers and GO for it!

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Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2019, 12:04:26 pm »
Last year when we poled up to Llangattock village hall at about 11pm. I had planned to cycle through and finish in Bulwark around 1am, and kip there, till 6, say. However I learned (from Peter Simon) that the Bulwark Community Centre (Chepstow) would be unmanned till 2am at the earliest because Mark was running that final control (@353km - NB @S2L) and would be staying there to see a good percentage of the field through before driving the 30 miles to Chepstow to open up.
So after some food - thank you Mark and team - I found the quietest corner of Llangattock village hall (but lights full on) and had a lie down doze for 90 minutes before cracking on with a couple of others and had company the whole way to finish around 2:30am. (See 2018 discussion upthread about others arriving in the wee hours and kipping in another rider's van.)
Having received Mark's e-mail:
"The arrivee will not be manned until about 06.00, If you finish your ride before then, [get PoP in Chepstow and] post the brevet card" and PoPs in the sealable plastic bag "through the letter box at Bulwark community centre."
"For all other finishers your brevet card will be collected once the hall is open[ie after 6am]."
This year I want some sleep before driving home. I'll not get that by arriving at Chepstow before 6. So I'll be packing a mat and a sheet sleeping bag and will lay that out at Llangattock and take 4+ hours 'sleep' before finishing off with 50km through Usk to Chepstow at dawn.
There were some judoka mats there (Llangattock village hall) in 2016 which I tried to sleep on, with limited success. The upsides of leaving Llangattock at 0415 riding east were the dawn chorus and a lovely view of the sunrise.

S2L

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2019, 12:57:09 pm »
Thanks...

Don't think I have room for a mat, will just carry some extra clothes. Or maybe I could wrap myself in a bog roll...  ;D

It could be fun to see a Brevet from the full value end. I bet there's all sorts of treats for late finishers that grumpy pressed for time randonneurs don't get to enjoy.  :thumbsup:

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2019, 08:40:51 pm »
I have also just received the route from Mark

This will be my first crack at a 400km and, based upon my pace  for the two 300km rides I have completed this month I do not think that I will be too worried about sleeping arrangements at the night control!

In his email Mark mentions that the routesheet and GPS track vary slightly. Reviewing the routesheet it seems pretty scanty in details with no distances for turns or info controls.

Can anyone who has ridden this before reassure me that the route is easy to follow (will be using a Garmin 820 with mapping). Also if anyone is planning to break the route into stage based GPS routes and was willing to share that would be really useful. These stage based routes worked really well for me on Helfa Cymraeg Benjamin Allen ar and Heart of England as they made it seem like a series of bite size chunks.

Apologies for sounding like a nervous newbie but this ride will be further than I have ever attempted and will be pushing my limits so  any advice/encouragement would be welcome  :)

Ultradiscostu

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Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2019, 10:20:49 pm »
Hey there Rainbow Dash. I definitely intend in spliting the 400K GPX file into two tracks at least. I use an etrex so I have to split tracks anyway otherwise they contain too many points and won't display the full route on the Etrex. I'll take a look this week at what would be a sensible way to split it. I'm not going to go mad and break it down to every control. Probably more likely just two halves, possibly 3.

I will be riding full value and have a camp site booked for Sunday night just in case I don't fancy the drive home after. Depends what sleep I manage to get.
Push your limits and never be afraid to dream big. Ignore the naysayers and GO for it!

www.ultradiscostu.co.uk

S2L

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #10 on: April 23, 2019, 06:41:55 am »
Hey there Rainbow Dash. I definitely intend in spliting the 400K GPX file into two tracks at least. I use an etrex so I have to split tracks anyway otherwise they contain too many points and won't display the full route on the Etrex. I'll take a look this week at what would be a sensible way to split it. I'm not going to go mad and break it down to every control. Probably more likely just two halves, possibly 3.

I will be riding full value and have a camp site booked for Sunday night just in case I don't fancy the drive home after. Depends what sleep I manage to get.

You can reduce the number of track points... just load the GPX on Bike hike and use the options to reduce. You don't need more than 2,000.

S2L

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #11 on: April 23, 2019, 09:38:49 am »
I have also just received the route from Mark

This will be my first crack at a 400km and, based upon my pace  for the two 300km rides I have completed this month I do not think that I will be too worried about sleeping arrangements at the night control!

In his email Mark mentions that the routesheet and GPS track vary slightly. Reviewing the routesheet it seems pretty scanty in details with no distances for turns or info controls.

Can anyone who has ridden this before reassure me that the route is easy to follow (will be using a Garmin 820 with mapping). Also if anyone is planning to break the route into stage based GPS routes and was willing to share that would be really useful. These stage based routes worked really well for me on Helfa Cymraeg Benjamin Allen ar and Heart of England as they made it seem like a series of bite size chunks.

Apologies for sounding like a nervous newbie but this ride will be further than I have ever attempted and will be pushing my limits so  any advice/encouragement would be welcome  :)

Basic route sheet yes, but if you follow the GPS, I have worked out a few key points

If your GPS is a simple breadcrumb like mine (no maps), then every time there is a T junction in the trail, bear RIGHT... all of them

Controls are at 82, 151, 199, 237, 300, 356km
INFO should be at ca. 109 and 183 km, but refer to the brevet card.

The AAA section, the harder one is the loop on the west, so from Llandovery back to Llandovery (so 151 to 300 km, give or take), before and after is all gentle stuff, maybe with the exception of the last climb to Chepstow, which was a pig at the BCM and so I expect it to be just as bad after all those miles.

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #12 on: April 23, 2019, 01:48:01 pm »
In his email Mark mentions that the routesheet and GPS track vary slightly.
Can anyone who has ridden this before reassure me that the route is easy to follow (will be using a Garmin 820 with mapping).
. . . any advice/encouragement would be welcome  :)

Basic route sheet yes, but if you follow the GPS, I have worked out a few key points

If your GPS is a simple breadcrumb like mine (no maps), then every time there is a T junction in the trail, bear RIGHT... all of them

Controls are at 82, 151, 199, 237, 300, 356km
INFO should be at ca. 109 and 183 km, but refer to the brevet card.

The AAA section, the harder one is the loop on the west, so from Llandovery back to Llandovery (so 151 to 300 km, give or take), before and after is all gentle stuff, maybe with the exception of the last climb to Chepstow, which was a pig at the BCM and so I expect it to be just as bad after all those miles.
The route is mostly easy to follow - but one person's easy to follow is another's navigational nightmare. Load the gpx on RwGPS (say) and look through it. Get a road atlas and trace out the route on it from the route sheet: all towns/villages passed through Mark has shown in capital bold font. Will your "Garmin 820 with mapping" give you 20+ hours service?
Pretty certain the only main difference between the routesheet and the gpx is the first leg to Hay, The gpx takes the longer route via the Golden Valley whereas the routesheet offers the lovely road closer to the Black Mountains through Michaelchurch (I have ridden both in recent years). Riders will split at the 38km point "LEFT on RIGHT-hand bend, $ CROSS ASH 2 1/2" with some turning left and others carrying on right.
The routesheet and the gpx differ east of Brecon (336-343k) - imo the routesheet gives the optimum route, but we both rode the gpx route on Helfa Cymraeg Benjamin Allen ar 17 days ago. No control at the Talybont shop on this ride and it's dark so tips the balance towards staying on the A40 for another few minutes. Could stay on the A40 all the way to Crickhowell and then cut south across the Usk straight to the Llangattock control: the navigationally easiest and best road surface option, which one year I chose for the benefit of a very tired young riding companion I'd 'collected' on the Brecon by-pass.
Note that the first info control is at a different (earlier) junction than 'normal' - I think it's at 100km (not the 109km suggested above) at this turn "LEFT at T, $ Aberedw (B4567)"
As far as the climbing distribution is concerned, these figures will allow riders to judge where the hard bits are. (All climb measurements are from the gpx track loaded into RwGPS: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/29780341?beta=false )
Start to Hay (0-82) 82k + 905m
Hay to LL'y (82-151) 69k + 561m
Ll'y to Tregaron (151-200) 49k + 537m
Tregaron to NQ (200-238) 38k + 458m
NQ to Ll'y (238-299) 63k + 815m
Ll'y to Ll'gatt (299-356) 57k + 497m
Ll'gatt to Chepstow (356-408) 52k + 421m

I've always found the stretch from New Quay to above Llanbydder hardest (238-269) - New Quay's fish and chips can be a two edged fuel.
But just before New Quay, the 9.2km from Ystrad Aeron to above Mydroilyn (220-229) packs a 263m punch.
At night the 40k on the A40 after Llandovery is best ridden in company, imo.

Turnings to pay attention to:
Rockfield (31km)
The back door into the outside seating area of Llandovery's West End cafe (SW side of the building) - safer for bikes. Mark has said he'll be 'stamping' in the cafe from noon.
Cymann (183km, also info): going downhill fast (traffic allowing), houses both sides, when the road says 'ARAF' slow down for the right turn and know what the question is.
After Tregaron's shop, after one mile (201km), don't miss the turn right: "RIGHT, B4342, $ LLANGEITHO"
After the top after Synod Inn (247km), don't miss the turn left (eff SO) "LEFT, $? (as road bends right and drops)"
In Llansawel (277km) don't miss the left (eff SO) "LEFT by Angel Inn, $ Llandwrda"
In the dark, just before Llangattock, look out for the right: "RIGHT, $ DARDY 1/4" If you miss it, just carry on to the lights and take the next right. (NB look at a large scale street map of Llangattock and fix in your mind how to get to the village hall, and streetview it beforehand.)
http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=320995&y=217446&z=0&sv=320995,217446&st=4&mapp=map.srf&searchp=ids.srf



S2L

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #13 on: April 23, 2019, 02:22:03 pm »
Thanks, plenty of good info!

I think I'll stick to the golden valley, 2.5 km longer, but flatter and probably still on a fast wheel by then...
As for the A40, I think I'll again follow the GPS and abandon it at the earliest opportunity, the alternative B road looks on the OS map big enough to be fast flowing

simonp

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Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #14 on: April 23, 2019, 03:01:30 pm »
Dunno about avoiding the A40, I've found it to be quiet enough but depends on when you get there.

I don't have this email despite being on the start list - will have to contact Mark to get the updated info. Not that there's much different between now and when I first rode this event in 2007.

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #15 on: April 23, 2019, 03:28:23 pm »
Dunno about avoiding the A40, I've found it to be quiet enough but depends on when you get there.

I don't have this email despite being on the start list - will have to contact Mark to get the updated info. Not that there's much different between now and when I first rode this event in 2007.
Key points to note:
Park near start with respect for residents.
Bulwark CC will open at 5am but rooms will close promptly at 6am with cards left in the foyer for late comers.
First info control is at different (earlier) junction.
Stamping control at West End, Llandovery, both ways (BRM(PBP)).
Bulwark CC (arrivee) will not open till 6am (note thread topic) - before that get PoP in Chepstow (eg 24 hour BP garage 200m L off roundabout with a km to go) and post through Bulwark CC letterbox with brevet (NB signed) and other PoPs.

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #16 on: April 23, 2019, 03:42:50 pm »
Thanks, plenty of good info!

I think I'll stick to the golden valley, 2.5 km longer, but flatter and probably still on a fast wheel by then...
As for the A40, I think I'll again follow the GPS and abandon it at the earliest opportunity, the alternative B road looks on the OS map big enough to be fast flowing

I took the B road from Brecon to LLangattock last time. The A40 to Brecon was fine in the gloaming, but was getting fully dark by Brecon. I took the ring-road around Brecon, which i wouldn't recommend, that informed my decision to drop onto the B road at the earliest opportunity.  :o

S2L

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #17 on: April 23, 2019, 03:50:21 pm »
Thanks, plenty of good info!

I think I'll stick to the golden valley, 2.5 km longer, but flatter and probably still on a fast wheel by then...
As for the A40, I think I'll again follow the GPS and abandon it at the earliest opportunity, the alternative B road looks on the OS map big enough to be fast flowing

I took the B road from Brecon to LLangattock last time. The A40 to Brecon was fine in the gloaming, but was getting fully dark by Brecon. I took the ring-road around Brecon, which i wouldn't recommend, that informed my decision to drop onto the B road at the earliest opportunity.  :o

Good call, I might take the B road into Brecon then

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #18 on: April 23, 2019, 04:12:58 pm »
I think I'll stick to the golden valley, 2.5 km longer, but flatter and probably still on a fast wheel by then...
As for the A40, I think I'll again follow the GPS and abandon it at the earliest opportunity, the alternative B road looks on the OS map big enough to be fast flowing
I took the B road from Brecon to LLangattock last time. The A40 to Brecon was fine in the gloaming, but was getting fully dark by Brecon. I took the ring-road around Brecon, which i wouldn't recommend, that informed my decision to drop onto the B road at the earliest opportunity.  :o
Good call, I might take the B road into Brecon then
As Mark's routesheet says:
"LEFT from [Llandovery] control on A40 thro BRECON. ......
.... either thro town or around by-pass."
Comment: 100m less through town and half the climb.

simonp

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Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #19 on: April 23, 2019, 04:23:44 pm »
I think I'll stick to the golden valley, 2.5 km longer, but flatter and probably still on a fast wheel by then...
As for the A40, I think I'll again follow the GPS and abandon it at the earliest opportunity, the alternative B road looks on the OS map big enough to be fast flowing
I took the B road from Brecon to LLangattock last time. The A40 to Brecon was fine in the gloaming, but was getting fully dark by Brecon. I took the ring-road around Brecon, which i wouldn't recommend, that informed my decision to drop onto the B road at the earliest opportunity.  :o
Good call, I might take the B road into Brecon then
As Mark's routesheet says:
"LEFT from [Llandovery] control on A40 thro BRECON. ......
.... either thro town or around by-pass."
Comment: 100m less through town and half the climb.

A40 - motons.

Brecon - drunks.

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #20 on: April 23, 2019, 04:32:19 pm »
"Brecon - drunks."
Not when you're powering through at 9 o'clock, surely.

simonp

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Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #21 on: April 23, 2019, 04:47:05 pm »
"Brecon - drunks."
Not when you're powering through at 9 o'clock, surely.

You might be there at 9pm. I’ll be after midnight. My earliest finish is 3am and we had a tail wind both ways. Probably cancelled out the being on fixed that year.

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #22 on: April 24, 2019, 07:31:33 am »
As far as the climbing distribution is concerned, these figures will allow riders to judge where the hard bits are. (All climb measurements are from the gpx track loaded into RwGPS: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/29780341?beta=false )
Start to Hay (0-82) 82k + 905m
Hay to LL'y (82-151) 69k + 561m
Ll'y to Tregaron (151-200) 49k + 537m
Tregaron to NQ (200-238) 38k + 458m
NQ to Ll'y (238-299) 63k + 815m
Ll'y to Ll'gatt (299-356) 57k + 497m
Ll'gatt to Chepstow (356-408) 52k + 421m

I find the average climbing figures are a useful guide when planning out a ride, so thanks for the above. How do you get the amount of climbing for each section from RwGPS? Is it a pro feature?

EDIT: Just worked it out, by dragging on the route profile the section of interest. Learn something new every day :-)

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #23 on: April 24, 2019, 11:40:57 am »

Re: Brevet Cymru night control
« Reply #24 on: April 24, 2019, 02:56:33 pm »
Last year at the night control there were judo mats and if you ask which I did there was a dark room to take a mat to and get some sleep.
Also last year the distance of the night control on the brevet card was a bit short so I got a bit flustered thinking I had missed it.
And watch out for naked men walking down the middle of the road in Talybont

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