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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last year's time of 11:52 was disappointing but at least I finished my first attempt. That time put me 857th out of 1002 finishers so I was in the bottom 15%.

My time this year was 11:32. Realistically I hoped for 10:30 and even did calculations for achieving 9:30 which was highly unlikely. It was much hotter this year than last year but probably not as hot as 2006, which I did not ride. I can get a better idea how 2008 compares to 2006 when they post the results this week and the 2008 dropout rate can be calculated and the dropout rates and relative times can be compared between the two years.

As the ride progressed I was discouraged as it became apparent my time would not significantly improve over last year. We did not have a SAG. A riding buddy that we picked up at the second rest stop was recognized by another buddy. They offered us ice water at the intersection east of Indianapolis where the route comes back on to US40. I got in some shade behind a building and found several riders seeking refuge there. They had a SAG also with ice water and refreshments. All the riders there had removed their shoes and were discussing how much hotter it was this year than last year and that the prevailing wind was a southerly crosswind instead of a tail wind like last year. One of them had thrown up and all were talking of quitting.

I had started noticing riders on the side of the road in distress the last few miles prior to reaching the return to US40, which was approximately the 115 mile mark if I remember correctly. Normally heat and humidity dramatically reduces my performance. But using Perpetuem and Hammer Gel for fuel, and Camelbak Elixir for electrolyte replacement served me well. Although I was slowing down from the heat, I seemed to be suffering less than normal and was looking forward to getting back on smoother pavement and cruising.
I was not happy that others were suffering but was encouraged by the fact that I was holding up very well in relation to other riders.

I inquired about 10 minutes after I finished and was astonished to learn that only 595 had finished at that point. That means that I finished in the top 50% or very near it, which was my goal. I set my goal based up percentiles rather than total time because of the significance of weather. Time was all I could track during the ride.

The final results will not be posted until next week so I will not know my exact rank until then I am glad that I had the courage to actually ask for information at the finish line and was able to find out right away that I had done much better than I thought.
 

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dekindy said:
Last year's time of 11:52 was disappointing but at least I finished my first attempt. That time put me 857th out of 1002 finishers so I was in the bottom 15%.

My time this year was 11:32. Realistically I hoped for 10:30 and even did calculations for achieving 9:30 which was highly unlikely. It was much hotter this year than last year but probably not as hot as 2006, which I did not ride. I can get a better idea how 2008 compares to 2006 when they post the results this week and the 2008 dropout rate can be calculated and the dropout rates and relative times can be compared between the two years.

As the ride progressed I was discouraged as it became apparent my time would not significantly improve over last year. We did not have a SAG. A riding buddy that we picked up at the second rest stop was recognized by another buddy. They offered us ice water at the intersection east of Indianapolis where the route comes back on to US40. I got in some shade behind a building and found several riders seeking refuge there. They had a SAG also with ice water and refreshments. All the riders there had removed their shoes and were discussing how much hotter it was this year than last year and that the prevailing wind was a southerly crosswind instead of a tail wind like last year. One of them had thrown up and all were talking of quitting.

I had started noticing riders on the side of the road in distress the last few miles prior to reaching the return to US40, which was approximately the 115 mile mark if I remember correctly. Normally heat and humidity dramatically reduces my performance. But using Perpetuem and Hammer Gel for fuel, and Camelbak Elixir for electrolyte replacement served me well. Although I was slowing down from the heat, I seemed to be suffering less than normal and was looking forward to getting back on smoother pavement and cruising.
I was not happy that others were suffering but was encouraged by the fact that I was holding up very well in relation to other riders.

I inquired about 10 minutes after I finished and was astonished to learn that only 595 had finished at that point. That means that I finished in the top 50% or very near it, which was my goal. I set my goal based up percentiles rather than total time because of the significance of weather. Time was all I could track during the ride.

The final results will not be posted until next week so I will not know my exact rank until then I am glad that I had the courage to actually ask for information at the finish line and was able to find out right away that I had done much better than I thought.

Congrats on a good ride !I haven't done RAIN for about 5 years - the weather sounded pretty lousy for this year's ride. Rain for the first have and hot and humid for the second half.

Fyi - preliminary results are up. http://www.bloomingtonbicycleclub.org/tours/rain/RAIN2008FIRSTDRAFT.pdf
 

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Good job on your second RAIN. This, too, was my second RAIN ride (last year being my first). I finished at 4:36 with a 19 mph average. This year, I finished at 6:00 on the nose and averaged 17.95. Beyond those figures, I'm having trouble comparing the two rides.

Last year's conditions were ideal, this year. Well, not so much. We were supposed to ride to the start at 6:15, but at that point, none of were quite ready to commit so we decided to wait it out. It started raining--at least at the hotel--at 6:55 and, after staring at the radar for another 20 minutes, we left our hotel at 7:25. We were probably on the course by 7:40 or so. That gave us about a 4-mile advantage over those who started at the official start but put us behind the front groups as well.

By that point, the roads were really wet and our pace slowed accordingly. By the time we hit 40, I decided to leave my group behind, along with another member of the group, in an effort to make up some lost time. We were cruising in the 19 to 21 mph range, which felt good despite a bit of a crosswind. We also had some rollers to contend with though.

I felt pretty good by the first two stops but knew that my pace was off from last year. The hot spot that has been plagueing me for the last few weeks started to bother me by then as well. After that stop, our pace slowed a bit as we made our way to and through Indianapolis. The stretch through Indy is tedious at best and, like last year, I started to lose a bit of momentum. It's, by far, the worst part of the ride.

We planned to eat lunch at another rider's house about 2 miles south of the official stop. While we made up a few of the miles that we "lost" at the start, it put us behind timewise from the rest of the riders. Still, it was nice to use a proper bathroom and eat lunch in the comfort of some AC.

By the time we were back on course, my foot started to bother me more and more and my fellow rider started to drop back a bit. After a brief discussion, she said that it was okay for me to go on without her, although we ran into each other at again at the unoffical stop in Greensburg, where the course rejoins US 40, and at the last official stop. My foot eventually became excruciating, however, so I stopped longer than I otherwise would have wanted at both stops. Frankly, I didn't really care. It was a bit muggier this year, so I just tried to eat and drink sensibly and cool down a bit. I ran into a friend at the last stop whose wife offered me a frozen washclothes. That may be the best idea I've run across. I blissfully iced my foot with it.

Back on the road, I was easily cruising at 20 to 22 mph from Greensburg on. I felt like the wind was getting stronger out the west. Otherwise, I'm not sure I could have maintained that pace. While it helped bring my average up, it wasn't enough to bring me on par with last year. Minus a brief stop--again because of my foot--with 5 miles to go, the last part of the ride was actually very enjoyable. There was a bit more cloud cover and I felt like it cooled down a bit.

Most, though certainly not all, of the people I've talked to seem a little disappointed with their results this year, especially compared to last year. I have mixed feelings about it. Clearly, conditions weren't ideal, but it could have been a lot worse. The fact that we made it through the ride without damaging winds, torrential rain and hail seems miraculous on some level, given the forecast. It also wasn't nearly as hot as it was in 2006, so I'll take that as well. Still, the storm at the beginning of the ride and the crosswinds slowed things down. The good news, however, is that my legs felt good throughout the ride and my energy never truly lagged. I just my foot hadn't been such a bother.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
dmar836 said:
Nice job. What was your total mileage? Did you have to ride alone at all?
The distance last year and this year was 160 miles. I think it has varied from 162 miles in recent years to 185 miles in earlier years. This was the 22nd event. I only know about the 185 mile distance from observing prior year RAIN jerseys during this year's ride.

I rode alone the last 50 miles. Even though my finish place was respectable, almost everyone that I ride with is a stronger rider than me. I just keep plodding alone at my face and not exceed my ability.
 

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Good to hear that you guys finished the ride. This was my first time at RAIN. The weather sure was threatening and, from what I heard from you guys and my riding partners, not nearly as good as last year. But, the light rain was not so bad and far cooler than the last half of the ride. The crosswinds and the mileage finally took its toll on my legs at about 130 miles as I backed off from the lead group of riders. Those last 30 miles seemed to last a long time. Maybe it was having fewer people around to keep my mind occupied. I finished in 7:17 so I am far from disappointed but wish I could have stayed in the group a little longer.
 

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My 4th RAIN (3rd finish)

Gave it another try after crashing out two years ago. I agree that the rain in the morning wasn't nearly as bad as the heat and humidity that came later. I stayed with the main group until stopping in Plainfield, then hooked up with some small groups after that. I ended up riding the last 60 miles by myself.

Had no expectations since my longest training ride this year was 60 miles. Very pleased to finish in 8 hours and not be too sore afterwards. Congratulations to all who participated and finished!
 

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Did my 1st RAIN this year, but really let time get away from me at SAGs. Rode the 10mi from hotel to start line, which was dark but a good warm up. Got into lunch stop (91m mark) @ 11:24 (20+mph ave). Miscommunication with wife (my PSV driver) cost me well over an hour worrying about her. Waited over 20min at Greenfield for PSV who turned out to be lost & never showed. Rode on with a few slower budies, stopped to help another rider with a flat, 40min stop at Dunreith waiting for friends, and another stop on the rode of a buddy to re-air his tire. Finally rode the last ~14m solo at speed (21+) just to break 10:30. Never felt too bad, with only a brief and fleeting cramp up one hill at ~120mi. Ave riding speed for event was 19-20mph, but that non-productive SAG time REALLY added up. Next time I would forgo the PSV & just rely on rest stops & convenience stores along the route. Doing that, though, makes the Dunreith rest stop critical as Greenfield-Richmond is otherwise pretty barren.
 

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I'm not aware of any one-day events (althoug I've admittedly not researched it) like RAIN in Iowa or its neighboring states. Iowa does have a brevet series, however, that you might want to check out.

http://www.rusa.org/

Otherwise, just come to Indiana for RAIN!
 

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dekindy said:
The distance last year and this year was 160 miles. I think it has varied from 162 miles in recent years to 185 miles in earlier years. This was the 22nd event. I only know about the 185 mile distance from observing prior year RAIN jerseys during this year's ride.
The 185 mile jerseys were typos from a few years back...the ride was 158 miles, and the printer mistakenly printed them with 158. Kind of a collector's item...
 
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