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Loudoun 1725 Gravel Grinder - Cycle


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Middleburg, Virginia
United States
EX2 Adventures
Total Time = 4h 37m 8s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Bike
  • 4h 37m 8s
  • 60 miles
  • 12.99 mile/hr
Comments:

This was a fun well organized event.

Three routes were offered -- a 40 mile, 60 mile, and 80 mile version. Since I did not know for sure what I was getting into and this was a family vacation, I opted for the 60.

In all, about 600 riders participated but because of the wave start, it never felt crowded. The event organizers, EX2 Adventures, felt that the best way to minimize impact on the community was to have a wave start. This is the third edition of the event and they have used the model for all of them (yes, even in 2019!). Participants of each distance signed up for a start window and riders were sent off in groups of 10 or so every few minutes. I selected an 8:15 start which was early in the window for the 60.

Kevin and Zoe dropped me off and they went on a hike (Raven Rocks, https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/virginia/raven-rocks-via-appalach... while I rode. I just gave them an ETA and we did the divid and conquer thing.

The route was 80+% gravel. Many of the gravel roads were in great condition with excellent roll, however, some might as well have been forest roads. The views were good, the traffic was sparse, aid stations were plentiful. There was no single big climb but a lot of up and down with some sections that were quite steep. The total elevation gain was nearly 4000 feet and I used all of the gears on my bike.

There was one water crossing. I took off my shoes and socks and walked it because it was more than knee deep. A lot of other people did as well. If you want to see some epic photos, see page 18-19 of the event gallery (https://www.brucebuckleyphotography.com/Sports/Cycling/EX2-Loudoun-1725-Gravel-Grinder-2021-Free-Gallery/i-JktpH3V)

It was interesting to hear the tons of Brood X cicadas in the area. We do not have them in my area.

There was big thunder right after I crossed the finish line and it started to rain shortly thereafter. The organizers offered catering that participants could purchase either as part of their registration or on site. Since I knew that Kevin and Zoe would be doing their own thing, I ordered food for myself when I registered. That was super convenient and the caterer did a nice job. If it hadn't been raining, it would have been a nice, post-ride hangout spot.

I changed clothes in the car and we headed out to two wineries on the way back to the hotel. Both Cana and Stone Tower had good wine and were dog friendly :-). I wore my Manatee shirt for the time portion of the day.

The only negative thing that I have to say is that the parking area was a field that was not properly mowed. It was a bunch of knocked down growth. This was not optimal but I didn't care too much until I developed poison ivy :-(

Mid-Atlantic Gravel Travel Dirt did a nice race review on this week's podcast: https://pca.st/z3n2xevb

I used Panaracer GravelKing SK 700 x 38 tires. This was a good choice.

Weather info
Start: Broken clouds, 67°F, Feels like 66°F, Humidity 78%, Wind 8mph from S
End: Broken clouds, 79°F, Feels like 79°F, Humidity 65%, Wind 10mph from SW
Post race
Event comments:

This was a well organized event with plenty of volunteers.


Profile Album


Last updated: 2021-04-19 12:00 AM
Biking
04:37:08 | 60 miles | 12.99 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/
Performance:
Wind:
Course: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/35029791
Road:   Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall:
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Evaluation
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

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2021-06-18 1:16 PM

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Master
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Raleigh, NC area
Subject: Loudoun 1725 Gravel Grinder


2021-06-18 2:33 PM
in reply to: #5276667

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Pennsylvania
Subject: RE: Loudoun 1725 Gravel Grinder

So glad you had a good time at this event, it sounds great all but the poison ivy, grrrrr!!  And it seems like a very nice weekend for the whole family.  Bikes!  Wineries!  Hikes!  Manatee shirt! 

2021-06-18 2:45 PM
in reply to: melbo55

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Master
8945
50002000100050010010010010025
Raleigh, NC area
Subject: RE: Loudoun 1725 Gravel Grinder

Originally posted by melbo55

So glad you had a good time at this event, it sounds great all but the poison ivy, grrrrr!!  And it seems like a very nice weekend for the whole family.  Bikes!  Wineries!  Hikes!  Manatee shirt! 

Thanks! Kevin said he'd go back and that kind of surprised me because the drive there was rather unpleasant. Anyway, it was nice.

2021-06-18 2:46 PM
in reply to: #5276667

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Champion
10008
50005000
, Minnesota
Gold member
Subject: RE: Loudoun 1725 Gravel Grinder
2021-06-18 3:46 PM
in reply to: #5276667

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Master
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Englewood, Florida
Subject: RE: Loudoun 1725 Gravel Grinder

AWESOME!!!!! I love the type of event that mixes things up, but has things well in hand at the start and finish and stops in between. The water crossings looked like many a bike will be getting work done on the bottom bracket!

2021-06-18 6:26 PM
in reply to: #5276667

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Master
7249
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Orlando
Subject: RE: Loudoun 1725 Gravel Grinder

I wish they had these types of rides near me -sounds like a lot of fun! Sorry about the poison ivy and the post-ride, can't hang out and eat rain, but I imagine everything else made up for those things.



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