Author Topic: Audax vs Sportive for novices  (Read 15157 times)

Jaded

  • The Codfather
  • Formerly known as Jaded
Audax vs Sportive for novices
« on: March 14, 2011, 06:11:13 pm »
What is it that attract novices to Audaxes rather than Sportives?
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2011, 06:36:25 pm »
What is it that attract novices to Audaxes rather than Sportives?

That's a very good question ... I'll kick off:
- Affordable.
- In no way a pretend race, so no competitive aspect to discourage the slower rider
- Often run by locals (and local clubs)
- Less equipment snobbery - just run what ya brung (to steal a slogan from a different pasttime).
- Food usually more interesting than energy gels + bananas
- Huge variety; some have lots of support, some are cheap. Some short, some very not! Some are all cafe-based, some are more roadside-food based.
- No H****t rules
...
TBD
...
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

AndyH

Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2011, 07:08:13 pm »
^^^ all those plus

Friendly
Safer, as it's not a pretend race on open roads
An awards structure giving the choice of something to aim at (if you're that way inclined)

Of course it's not a like for like comparison.  AUK is the Long Distance Cycling association. Sportives are mainly about 100 miles or less. Have a look at the listings for sportives over 200k http://www.cyclosport.org/search.aspx?distance=Very%20Long&MultiDay=0&month=All&countryid=99&search=
There's something interesting in Clayhidon nr Taunton in June  ;D

urban_biker

  • " . . .we all ended up here and like lads in the back of a Nova we sort of egged each other on...."
  • Known in the real world as Dave
Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #3 on: March 14, 2011, 07:57:29 pm »
What is it that attract novices to Audaxes rather than Sportives?

That's a very good question ... I'll kick off:
- Affordable.
- In no way a pretend race, so no competitive aspect to discourage the slower rider
- Often run by locals (and local clubs)
- Less equipment snobbery - just run what ya brung (to steal a slogan from a different pasttime).
- Food usually more interesting than energy gels + bananas
- Huge variety; some have lots of support, some are cheap. Some short, some very not! Some are all cafe-based, some are more roadside-food based.
- No H****t rules
...
TBD
...


For me I never really saw myself as a sports person. I just don't have any connection with the cycling club network and don't really see myself as a racing/sporting cyclist. I'm just a guy who likes to go out and ride his bike. BUT, I also wanted something new to try that was a challenge. I "discovered" audax on the old C+ forum - probably after a few comments by Fixed Phil  ;) Then pointed LEE at the website and from there it was a downhill slope.  Next stop PBP.

Owner of a languishing Langster

LEE

Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2011, 08:08:24 pm »
What is it that attract novices to Audaxes rather than Sportives?


The Audax crowd are, generally speaking, older and uglier than the Sportive crowd. 
This makes me look younger and more attractive by comparison.
Why would I want to stand next to skinny young people?

The Sportive crowd tend to be overly concerned about Bicycles and cycling fast to achieve a good time, whereas I find the Audax crowd are more concerned about Cake and cycling fast only to ensure they arrive at a Cafe before it sells out of Cake.

You are unlikely to find things like this for sale on a Cyclo-Sportive Forum..



..but I bet a few Audaxers have thought "Corrr..that's bloody gorgeous and will improve the looks of my bike"

Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2011, 08:12:18 pm »
I'm a novice and have no interest in riding a sportive. I'm a slow rider and enjoy the relaxed pace of Audax. I enjoy riding in different areas and absorbing the scenery. You would miss a lot by just riding head down for a fast time. Riding round a shorter distance as fast as possible holds no appeal whatsoever for me and wouldn't do even if I were a speedy rider. I'm not interested in awards( just as well!) but the longer distances give me something to aim at. One of the most delightful aspects of Audax is the friendliness of the riders. People chat as they are riding round and at controls and will stop and help if you are in difficulty. I have first hand experience of this. I doubt that would happen on a sportive if people are focussing on times. I don't need a signed route - getting lost is part of the fun!  ;D

Billy Weir

Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2011, 09:16:36 pm »
What is it that attract novices to Audaxes rather than Sportives?


It gives me a more personal challenge that a sportive ever could.

Going faster feels like such a one-dimensional goal, compared to the multi-faceted demands of cycling ever further distances.  Epic memories.

Martin

Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2011, 09:24:02 pm »
may be it is worth debating and Audax organizers should try to reach out rather than being self-indulging...

All Audax organisers try to attract entries from as many other cyclists as possible. Shorter 100km events often attract a considerable local club interest especially if they are hilly. We don't really have the resources to publicise our event to the entire region's likely entrants unlike sportives (who get considerable free  publicity form the cycling press) We are mostly one-man bands borrowing helpers and other riders on the day without the means to cope with a sudden influx of riders one year.

So not self indulgent; just working within our limitations. As such signage; sag wagons and timing chips are all out of the question.

Re: Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #8 on: March 14, 2011, 09:33:15 pm »
You are unlikely to find things like this for sale on a Cyclo-Sportive Forum..



That looks as if it's only a few rides away from achieving self-awareness, unbuckling itself and skipping off over a dry stone wall to eat the local wildliufe.
And Darkness and Decay and the Coronavirus held illimitable dominion over all.

DanialW

Re: Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #9 on: March 14, 2011, 09:40:02 pm »
Epic memories.

Same for me. Great adventures. Ace conversations with MSeries at 2 in the morning. Having Chris Crossland look panicked at the state of you when you walk through the door. Being too wet to carry on but too cold to stop. Climbing out of Dolgellau at 6am with deep blue skies and a blazing sun. Ice cream at Fishguard. Being utterly befuddled at the concept of Spalding at 4am. The endlessnessnessness of Lincolnshire. Taking a crap in a field. Realising that it's pointless explaining to the man in garage exactly what it is you're up too and no, it's not for charity.

Proper adventures - not bronze medals for 150km 'epics'.

Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #10 on: March 14, 2011, 09:54:52 pm »
I was Audaxing before I'd even heard of sportives.
If I was starting again, I'd still probably pick Audax. It's all about the miles to me. I've always wanted to do the longest rides. A 100 mile sportive wouldn't cut the mustard!

Re: Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #11 on: March 14, 2011, 10:02:09 pm »
For me I never really saw myself as a sports person. I just don't have any connection with the cycling club network and don't really see myself as a racing/sporting cyclist. I'm just a guy who likes to go out and ride his bike. BUT, I also wanted something new to try that was a challenge. I "discovered" audax on the old C+ forum - probably after a few comments by Fixed Phil  ;) Then pointed LEE at the website and from there it was a downhill slope.  Next stop PBP.

The first half of your post could just as easily have been written by myself. However, I discovered audax because I stumbled across a web article/blog post about LEL and that brought me to this forum. I am now being sucked in, like a peanut into an elephant's trunk.
Next Rides: Poor Student, Willy Warmer?

"There are proven ways; play on the certain knowledge of their superiority, the mystique of secret covenant, the esprit of shared suffering"

Re: Audax vs Sportive
« Reply #12 on: March 14, 2011, 10:21:00 pm »

Quote
I discovered audax because I stumbled across a web article/blog post about LEL and that brought me to this forum. I am now being sucked in, like a peanut into an elephant's trunk.

I needed to find some sort of low impact exercise after a HIP Operation and being someone who needs a challenge I stumbled accross a local sportive and decided to challenge myself to get fit to ride the 100km event.

Once I had completed this I was scanning the Web and stumbled on a blog about the LEL and that was that four months later I joined Audax UK and this week I completed my first 100km ride - my first steping stone to the next LEL.

I have to say the Audax event was much more layed back, but I think what gets me is the awards ................. I always have loved collecting things  :)

 


Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #13 on: March 14, 2011, 10:23:38 pm »
I actually did a sportive before I did an audax. I didn't know anything about audax at the time. I was attracted to the sportive because of the closed roads, the crowds, the scenary and it was something quite novel at the time.

Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #14 on: March 14, 2011, 10:24:35 pm »
For me it was an accident.  I'd started commuting regularly to work and so I jpined CTC for the insurance.  One day I started to look at the rides listed at the back and saw an Audax (whatever that was) listed that started only 4 miles away.  It was one of Don Black's Saddleworth series, a 160k unflat via Slaidburn.  I was so pleased to find this type of cycling, one which appealed to so many of my interests; fitness, map-reading, nature, history and geography, as well as friendship and cake.  I could probably have gone down the TT route and might one day have a go at a 24 hour, but I'm easily disappointed by achievement below expectations, which is a bit of a b****r when you're not as good as you'd like to be.  There is always something to be got out of an audax, whether or not you were hoping to be qiuicker.  I'm sure sportives are great for some people.  Having said that, I've not seen many people smiling on the ones I've come across!

CrinklyLion

  • The one with devious, cake-pushing ways....
Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #15 on: March 14, 2011, 11:13:56 pm »
I couldn't possibly do something with 'sport' in the name.  That would just be silly.  Well, the idea of me doing an audax is fairly silly, tbh, but I appear to be doing one anyway.

Of course, I may have to choose between getting round in time, and stopping to eat cake.  I can't quite decide if this is a difficult or an obvious choice yet.

Jaded

  • The Codfather
  • Formerly known as Jaded
Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #16 on: March 15, 2011, 12:37:57 am »
For me it was some mentions of Audax and long distance rides on forums. I had returned to cycling about 6 years ago and had reached 40 miles or so on extended school runs - I did extra training to do the Tunnels Ride. Then I did a recce for a social ride with Ru88ell and made it to 98km. I also rode with Windy on Lewis at 95km total, and so realised 100km was possible.

So, in 2007 I entered the Jack & Grace Cotton Audax, a local 100km, and completed it with another Audax novice - we rode round, getting lost and eating cake together. I did another 2 x 100km that year, and also organised the  ACF Stroud ride.

A friend's boyfriend was also getting into cycling and went off to do Sportives. It seemed that I was doing rides I remembered for the company, the adventure, the views, to challenge the course and the cake and he was doing it for the finish place.

I've met lots of odd people and had a sore arse more times than I can remember, despite often coming last. What's not to like?!
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.

Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #17 on: March 15, 2011, 07:12:48 am »
A friend of mine who has just taken up cycling has now ridden one sportif, Exmoor Beast and one audax, Jack Cotton Memorial.
He commented on how much more socialable the audax ride was  :thumbsup: and much better food !

Hummers

  • It is all about the taste.
Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #18 on: March 15, 2011, 07:22:34 am »
If I could get around a 200k in 6-7 hours and confident in winning events I would ride both Sportives and Audax.

If  I was 3st lighter and rode my bike for any real  distance more than once every fortnight this level of performance might be achievable.

If I didn't love beer & pies, had a 9 to 5 job, didn't have a family, had the necessary self-discipline and didn't have a hectic social wife life, I'm sure I'd be riding my bike at every given opportunity and probably would be 3st lighter.

As it is, I ride Audax.

H

DanialW

Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #19 on: March 15, 2011, 07:47:11 am »
If I didn't love beer & pies, had a 9 to 5 job, didn't have a family, had the necessary self-discipline and didn't have a hectic social wife life, I'm sure I'd be riding my bike at every given opportunity and probably would be 3st lighter.

Sport for typical, middle-aged people, then?

Hummers

  • It is all about the taste.
Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #20 on: March 15, 2011, 08:03:35 am »
I don't think of Audax as sport or myself as 'typical' but a fair number people I know who ride Audax  do so under the same constraints as me and would struggle to take up cycling seriously.

H

Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #21 on: March 15, 2011, 08:07:48 am »
I don't think of Audax as sport or myself as 'typical' but a fair number people I know who ride Audax  do so under the same constraints as me and would struggle to take up cycling seriously.

H

I think you do yourself a disservice if you don't think a Paris-Brest-Paris ancien is a serious cyclist.

Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #22 on: March 15, 2011, 08:16:05 am »
One of the advantages of a Sportive is a marked out ride.ie no map reading required.So no getting lost down Cow gate lane,somewhere between Littlehampton and Grimsthorpe,or is it Manington?

DanialW

Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #23 on: March 15, 2011, 08:17:54 am »
I've always seen it as ordinary people doing extraordinary things. We like to see ourselves as characters, but you meet the same mix of characters in plenty of other places.

Oaky

  • ACME Fire Safety Officer
  • Audax Club Mid-Essex
    • MEMWNS Map
Re: Audax vs Sportive for novices
« Reply #24 on: March 15, 2011, 08:18:14 am »
For me it was a Sportive that attracted me as a novice.

The idea of doing Audax came later.  It felt more arcane (controls, info controls, route-finding etc.).  In fact although the idea came later, I did my first Audax (the Killhope Grimpeur 100km) before my first Sportive, as part of the build up to the 150km distance, but the Sportive entry came first.

The Sportives I've done have been every bit as friendly as the Audaxes.

You are in a maze of twisty flat droves, all alike.

85.4 miles from Marsh Gibbon

Audax Club Mid-Essex Fire Safety Officer
http://acme.bike