The Ins and Outs of an Ordinary Life

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Good Luck Katie

My friend Katie has become a randonnuese. What is a randonnuese, you ask? A randonnuese is a woman who goes on randonne`e. And what is a randonne`e? A randonne`e is a long distance cycling event. It is not a race, although there are time limits. It is about finding your competitive spirit and self-sufficiency to compete against the clock, the weather and a challenging route. Unlike endurance cycling races, randonne’e events (which are called brevet) have limited support. You may receive support at the checkpoints, but not in between. You can buy food, supplies, and even repairs along the route, but you may not have a crew helping you between checkpoints.

This weekend, Katie is attempting to become a super-randonnuese, which is the title given to women who complete a sequence of 200, 300, 400 and 600k brevets in a single season. She has completed the 200, 300, and 400 k brevets. This weekend is the eastern PA 600k. That’s 374 miles, with 26,000 ft of climbing. They start at about 4 am on Saturday, ride 400k, sleep a few hours, then ride 200k on Sunday. And what do you get upon becoming a super-randonneuse? Bling, a very pretty medal. But we all know it’s not about bringing home the bling.

Good luck Katie! And Victor! Who will become a super-randonnuer. And I promise, wimp that I am, that I will never complain about the rigors of completing a metric century, a mere 62 miles. I’m just going to do it.

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