1888612 590461844380323 865249249 n 2By Jessica Douglas

Preparing for a 2 day race that is epic, will take you the good part of the day and will test your body and bike will take some thought and preparation.  It would be nice to just wing it, but things can and will go wrong if you don’t at least do these 5 must do tick boxes. 

1. Ensure your bike (and your partner’s bike for that matter) is ride worthy for the job at hand.

-Brake pads are new and actually work.
-Tyres have heaps of tread and no tears in side walls, and if tubeless you have heaps of fresh sealant in them the week before.
-Your suspension has been serviced and not leaking oil.
-A major bolt check and everything that needs regreasing or tightening has been done.
-Chain/chainrings gears etc...Do you have a dodgy chain or gears that need tuning, you might be able to tolerate it on a 50km ride, but go 300km and its going to wear thin on you and your partner and you may just break your chain!  Sometimes even just new inner and outers for your gears will give new life to your bike for not much at all.


2.Start collating all the “gear” you will need.  

Do not wait until the last week to get a spare tyre, a new multi tool, nutrition etc…
Collect a few things each week, make a checklist and decide what you have and what you do not have.
It does feel calming to know you have some stuff under control because on the weekend if you do happen to break a chain and you brought that multitool without a chain breaker or maybe forgot your spare link, it can ruin your day.  The right equipment for the job and you’re back riding within 5-10 mins. Why skimp or leave it until the last minute?


3. Continue training, or at least do something more than you have been.

I know I have been harping on about doing something, it’s better than nothing but it is the truth.  If you have already been doing some training then maybe you need to add one more hill before you finish, or push yourself 5% harder or stay out 10 mins longer.  This approach is doable, it doesn’t stretch you and make getting fitter seem impossible but it will set your mind up for extra and your legs and lungs will thank you for it.


4. Talk to your race partner - get on the same page!

You’ve hooked up with your best mate, there is both a bit of avoidance going on with discussion around goals? Or maybe there has been the underestimating sandbag approach, “mate I am so unfit, I won’t be able to keep up…”
Just set aside 30 mins post ride and have a chat about how you will manage the highs and lows and discuss your strengths and weaknesses and turn these into achievable goals that you both handshake over.  Win lose or otherwise, it’s got to be fun and open communication allows for you to achieve this.


5. Logistics...

Have you entered yet? Have you booked accommodation? Have you planned your logistics and even organised to have the Friday and Monday off work perhaps?
Sounds obvious, but I have seen it before, last minute nightmare planning.
Get your groundwork sorted then you can wing your race knowing you have a comfy bed to sleep in or good food to eat.  It’s the last item on the list, but one of the most important.


The Otway 300 will be all the more fun if you just spend a bit of time planning.

Get excited.

Buy some new stuff.

Set some goals.

Turn up knowing you are going to have a great time!