ROC D’AZUR 2014

13 Oct

This weekend we made the trip down to southern France to compete in the Roc d’Azur Mountain bike marathon my final preperation for the Cape to Cape 4 stage Mtb race in Perth Australia.

For those that have not heard of it the Roc d’Azure five day mountain bike festival is now in its 30th year and attracts over 20,000 competitors  from world champions such as Julian Absalon to weekend warriors like myself.

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I competed in the 83km marathon on the Friday with approximately 3000 other competitors. Due to my late entry I went out in the 3rd wave which proved rather frustrating as I soon  caught the back markers from the second wave and got stuck in a lot of the first 30 km of singletrack. Once through though  the singletrack was fantastic and challenging with some very steep sections with drops, rocks and routes. The climbs were either short and technical or long fire road grinds where I tended to overtake a lot of other people. With 2000 metres of vertical climbing and descending you were never on a flat section for long.

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The event itself was very well organised with feed stations every 10 km or so. With this in mind I did not bother with a backpack just a bottle a couple of bars and spare tube etc. The feed stations were well stocked with everything from energy bars to sandwiches and water to energy drink.

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Again I rode my P241 29er hard tail.  This time after running my front fork to soft in the Vercors challenge I decided to add more air. This was a great move allowing me to descend more confidently over the bigger stuff than before. I certainly felt I descended much  better and actually made up time on people in front.

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After six hours of riding I made it back to the start line still feeling I had more in the legs. Again a big improvement after the Vercors challenge.

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Next stop Perth Australia for the main event of the year.

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