Author Topic: Unsupported?  (Read 2173 times)

morite

  • World's Slowest Audaxer
Unsupported?
« on: July 29, 2019, 11:11:03 am »
I have a question about being unsupported.

In order to ride most audaxes I need to travel, like most people. Sometimes those journeys are long (recently did 270 miles each way to ride one) but I enjoy riding in different parts of the country and the views you have.
With this in mind, my better half has agreed to come with me on a lot of them so that she can drive home if I am too tired.

What would be the rules around meeting her on the route for lunch or similar and if we did meet up am I allowed to get "stuff" from her like drinks, food etc?

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2019, 11:42:51 am »
AFAIK there is no problem. You're no more self supported in those circumstances than if you walked into a shop and bought those same things.
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Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2019, 11:53:54 am »
ITYM "no less self supported". And I agree with you. Nothing wrong with it at all, or even with calling on a friend who happens to live on route.
sideways bounding monkey lounging under fruit tree

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2019, 11:57:28 am »
The regulations say:

"Personal support is only allowed at controls and riders are responsible for the behaviour of their personal helpers"

I've never spotted or heard about anyone doing this, mind.

Quote
AFAIK there is no problem. You're no more self supported in those circumstances than if you walked into a shop and bought those same things.

The big difference is shops are available equally to everyone. Audax doesn't take a strict view on this but some other events do.

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2019, 12:08:52 pm »
I have a question about being unsupported.


What would be the rules around meeting her on the route for lunch or similar and if we did meet up am I allowed to get "stuff" from her like drinks, food etc?

Quote
9.9.4 Participants are expected to be self-sufficient. They are responsible for their own feeding and may stop for food and rest at any place.
9.9.5 Participants’ personal helpers are not encouraged but may be permitted, at the discretion of the AUK event secretary, provided the participant and their helpers agree:
(i) Not to drive a motor vehicle on a section of route in use by participants, except within 1km of a control or in the case of an accident or emergency.
(ii) The participant will be held responsible for the behaviour of their personal helpers.

Those are the rules, but I've never seen them enforced anywhere other than at Paris Brest Paris.


Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2019, 12:30:48 pm »
ESL wrote, "Those are the rules, but I've never seen them enforced anywhere except at Paris Brest Paris. "

A few years ago, I refused to validate a handful of riders on the Snow Roads, all from the same club, following complaints from other riders that they were being supported by a "team car" on the route, including lots of single track roads.

I did include in the notes to riders beforehand that support cars could be allowed if permission was sought beforehand and there was a good reason. Nobody asked.

The best rule for supporters should simply be "Don't be a dick".

LittleWheelsandBig

  • Whimsy Rider
Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2019, 01:01:12 pm »
As long as you meet at a control (not between controls), no problems at all.
Wheel meet again, don't know where, don't know when...

telstarbox

  • Loving the lanes
Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2019, 01:09:48 pm »
Would it be worth trying some DIYs locally to build up your confidence? Driving 270 miles sounds more knackering than the ride...
2017 - R500 ✅ | 2018 - R1000 ✅ | 2019 - ?

morite

  • World's Slowest Audaxer
Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #8 on: July 29, 2019, 01:40:53 pm »
Would it be worth trying some DIYs locally to build up your confidence? Driving 270 miles sounds more knackering than the ride...

I am confident doing the ride and have no problems being on my own. It is more company on the drives and with our daughter off to university this year my wife is "looking to for something to do". If there is shopping nearby or the hotel we use has a spa then I won't see her but it was just a thought before I suggested it to her. I didn't want to go ahead and do it only to find I had been disqualified  ;D

Thanks all for the answers and as I understand it I could meet her at a control that was in a cafe or similar and have lunch.
 

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2019, 02:12:14 pm »
What would be the rules around meeting her on the route for lunch or similar...

Absolutely fine.

I allowed to get "stuff" from her like drinks, food etc?

Absolutely not.

In reality there'd be a very slim chance of you getting caught and reported, so the decision lies entirely with your conscience.
You're only as successful as your last 1200...

bairn again

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #10 on: July 29, 2019, 11:05:34 pm »
The best rule for supporters should simply be "Don't be a dick".

thats a good rule.

LittleWheelsandBig

  • Whimsy Rider
Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2019, 11:29:10 pm »
What would be the rules around meeting her on the route for lunch or similar...

Absolutely fine.

I allowed to get "stuff" from her like drinks, food etc?

Absolutely not.

At controls, no problem at all. Between controls, not so much.
Wheel meet again, don't know where, don't know when...

S2L

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #12 on: July 30, 2019, 06:11:19 am »
Be sensible,

if you meet in the middle of nowhere where you get access to food and drinks and others don't, then it is unfair, but if you meet in a town and go for a picnic in the park where others need to use the local cafes and shops, I really don't see the problem.

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #13 on: July 30, 2019, 10:26:19 am »
On a 300 I did this year, there was group in matching jerseys who had a bloke in a support van I passed several times at the side of the road during the morning.

I gather they were doing it as some sort of charity challenge? Not in the spirit at all, but i'm not sure I cared all that much. If they needed full feeding and watering every 25km, then i'm sure it was quite a challenge indeed.

frankly frankie

  • I kid you not
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Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #14 on: July 30, 2019, 10:46:15 am »
Quote
9.9.4 Participants are expected to be self-sufficient. ...

You have to wonder why this is codified at all.

I mean, for many cyclists (including me) cycling and self-sufficiency are just two things that go together, like apple pie and ice cream, or socialists and red ties.  But clearly there are also many cyclists who don't make that connection at all - so are they somehow unethical? somehow suddenly not 'cyclists'?  A phrase like "not in the spirit" suggests to me that this is how they are being seen by some. 
Does AUK seek to exclude these people from its events?  I think the rules are more about the practicalities of helpers getting in the way of other riders, and not about ethics.
"This is a complex subject, with a need for more than one highlighter pen."

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #15 on: July 30, 2019, 10:48:55 am »
On Yorkshire via Essex I'd arranged to meet Mrs. JonJo in our motorhome at Woodhall Spa, which is around the 400k mark. I had intended to get a shower, sleep and a change of clothes. Didn't get there but that's another story.

From what I'm reading here that would have been against the rules but I've heard of other people doing it. Is it just a case of don't take the piss and you'll be ok?
Hear all, see all, say nowt

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #16 on: July 30, 2019, 11:04:12 am »
I intend to organise brevets at some point and I wouldn't have an issue with that. Within the letter of the rules a motorhome shower would be 'illegal', while a reserved room in the Ritz with a champagne supper and a spa treatment would be fine because it's 'self supported' (???).
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Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #17 on: July 30, 2019, 11:08:48 am »
I stop at my Mum's house on the Flatlands/Fenland Friends.   It's very conveniently located.

I do tell the organiser at the start as I think that's inkeeping with the rules.

bairn again

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #18 on: July 30, 2019, 11:10:34 am »
Ive seen a badly parked campervan being given a ticking off by a Moto before now.  Not sure if the rider received a time penalty or not.  This was on the route well outside controls and in fairness was clearly a danger to riders, aside from any "sporting advantage" that such support might represent.

Ive seen folk catching up with support crews off the route (but within sight of it) and nobody official appeared concerned.

 

S2L

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #19 on: July 30, 2019, 11:12:30 am »
I intend to organise brevets at some point and I wouldn't have an issue with that. Within the letter of the rules a motorhome shower would be 'illegal', while a reserved room in the Ritz with a champagne supper and a spa treatment would be fine because it's 'self supported' (???).

Establishments are available to all riders (maybe not the Ritz), whereas motorhomes are not. As I said above, if you want to park your motorhome in Dolgellau to avoid sleeping at Kings instead of spending money in a B&B, I think that's fair, but if you park it in the middle of Wales, where there is nothing around, that is not fair to other riders who do not have that opportunity...

Which basically is what the rule says about help at control points

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #20 on: July 30, 2019, 11:41:16 am »
I intend to organise brevets at some point and I wouldn't have an issue with that. Within the letter of the rules a motorhome shower would be 'illegal', while a reserved room in the Ritz with a champagne supper and a spa treatment would be fine because it's 'self supported' (???).

The Ritz doesn't squeeze along narrow country lanes squirting diesel fug in other riders' faces.

The nature of strictly self-supported events (which audax isn't - see below) is that you're meant to tackle the terrain as you find it - which includes whatever facilities may or may not exist. Parking a camper van on the route changes the terrain. Audax regulations are pretty liberal in this regard.

(compare this article about self-supported gravel racing, where a rider was disqualified for taking a bottle of water from a friend)

Quote
9.9.4 Participants are expected to be self-sufficient. ...

You have to wonder why this is codified at all.

It isn't! Mr Peacock has found an old version of the regs that always comes up first on Google. The clause about self-sufficiency doesn't appear in the current version.

(perhaps a friendly website admin could remove/rename the old one?)

Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #21 on: July 30, 2019, 05:58:58 pm »
Parking a camper van on the route changes the terrain..

Well yes, but if *you* park a motorhome in the middle of Wales so you can use it on the way round an Audax, that's fine (self-supported), but if *someone else* parks the motorhome there for you to use, that's assistance and against the rules.
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mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #22 on: July 30, 2019, 08:38:13 pm »
I intend to organise brevets at some point and I wouldn't have an issue with that. Within the letter of the rules a motorhome shower would be 'illegal', while a reserved room in the Ritz with a champagne supper and a spa treatment would be fine because it's 'self supported' (???).
What you've shown there is how difficult it is to codify such principles. The TCR* family of events (which I presume you're happy with supporting!) do pretty much support the interpretaion you've written above, despite it being a little ludicrous if you choose to look at it hard enough.


*not audaxes, just for clarity. But very much self-supported.
Has never ridden RAAM
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Cudzoziemiec

  • Solar powered, tea fuelled cycle-wol
Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #23 on: July 30, 2019, 09:05:54 pm »
A lot of people are "happy with supporting" football and cricket, or cyclocross and mountain biking. That doesn't mean they'll apply the rules of one to the other. So the question is what are the rules of being supported or unsupported on AUK events (cos PBP is a special case) and how are they interpreted in practice?
sideways bounding monkey lounging under fruit tree

vorsprung

  • Opposites Attract
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Re: Unsupported?
« Reply #24 on: July 30, 2019, 10:05:47 pm »
I intend to organise brevets at some point and ...a reserved room in the Ritz with a champagne supper ... would be fine because it's 'self supported' (???).

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