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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My GF and I had a summer ride planned out pretty well. We bought a tandem on ebay and had it shipped to my Mum's in London. We were going to ride it back home to Geneva, Switzerland, camping all the way.
I went over to my Mum's a couple of weeks ago, to change the tyres and add racks etc to get it ready
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We had been getting in as much riding as possible to "train" as we were hoping to average 100 kms or so a day.
We went round lake Leman with the children (I'll have to post those pics at some stage too)
and had been doing some of the local climbs as well.
I decided to an xc race (my first) that would count as training as well....
It didn't quite work out that way

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I went up with a friend who races regularly and we stayed in a another friends appt. up in Les Carrozs as the race started early on Sun. morning.

This is looking out from the balcony in the evening

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We went down to the town centre to register and there was a trial show going on

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The next morning was an early start.
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My friend Vincent was doing the "extreme" race (60 kms with 2500m of climbing and 3500 descent) that started at 8 am

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I found some singletrack to warm up and admire the view

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I signed up to do the "expert" race (50 kms with 1250m of climbing and 3500m of descending)
This was just before the start

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I started right at the back as I figured first racen'all.

First group I overtook were fellow Brits that called me a "tree surgeon" Not sure if that was because of my stylin bottle holder sticking out from behind my seat post, or maybe the huge backpack I was dragging along :D
I found the climbs ok for the most part but the descents were really pretty hairy. The gullies had been scooped out really deep from the heavy storms we've been having.

After the first loop up and over and skipping the first feeding and drinking stop (I probably had enough in my bag to do the whole race:rolleyes: ), I took the first "cheat" of the day. You may have noticed my buddies race had the same descending as mine with double the climbing. Thats cause we were climbing in style. :)

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(Those are the people doing the "extreme" climbing the track below)

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(Thats my heavy bike making the chair hang over like that:D )

Any way I met a guy on the chair who HAD stopped at the feeding place (I should of figured he must have been going faster than me) and tried to stick with him once we got off the chairlift.
That was when it all went pear-shaped. There were some really fast open sections and I had trouble following the guy's line and ended up in one of them storm gullies.
I heard my collar bone crack but didn't feel the pain till I was in the firemen's rangerover bouncing down the mountain.

I had only been in the amblance for two minutes before they started asking how I was going to pay for the ride :eek: (they ended up keeping my bike as collateral)

At the hospital the said I had come first in the race, and the guy in second was right behind with a broken ankle :(

Anyway, now I'm in a clavicular brace till the 26th of august and the vacation's on hold till next summer (camping in the north of France can't be fun out of season)


But it hasn't stopped my signing up for another xc race in september :D
 

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Ouch

What a way to ruin a vacation. I did the same sort of thing about five years ago. I was touring through the deserts of California (on a desolate, hot, empty road), by myself (naturally) going down a hill, when the front rack decided to self destruct, getting stuck in the front wheel, sending me head over heels onto the pavement - broken collarbone. Fortunately, a British couple came by within about 15 minutes and took me to the hospital, which was just as well, because there was no way I was going to be able to ride.
 

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I hope they were kidding about paying for the ride. Yikes. Great pics and scenery, but what a way to end it!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
No such luck!

They actually kept my bike as ransom!, but I got off lightly, when I went to get my bike back there was a motorbike that someone had had to leave cause they had no cash for the ambulance ride!
 

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Checking bolts

qwertzy said:
Maybe I should check the bolts on the racks of the tandem before we head out next year :D
I'm really glad I wasn't on my lonesome when I fell off![/QUOTE

Yes, check bolts. Every day, at least.

The irony was that I DID check the bolts - only that was the previous day when I was completely loaded (including litres and litres of water), carrying all my food and camping gear. I broke my collarbone on a day loop ride, lightly loaded. I figure that somehow the bolts loosened after I took all the weight off, or something. I won't use that type of rack again for sure (it was a low rider with a separate loop over the wheel which bolted into the main rack at the fork boss - not a great design in my view, too many places to fail).

Ohh, great pics by the way, but taking the chair up really is cheating!
 

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qwertzy said:
They actually kept my bike as ransom!, but I got off lightly, when I went to get my bike back there was a motorbike that someone had had to leave cause they had no cash for the ambulance ride!
Was this in France? Or Switzerland? How much was the ransom? Not that I ever want to have a real need to know this information, but I left a little skin and blood on a French road in Savoie a few weeks ago. Luckily, I had no broken bones and I was able to get back to where I was staying without an ambulance or any other assistance (the women who were driving the car that I almost crashed into as I was speeding down an Alpine descent stopped and offered to give me a ride, but they were so upset by the blood that was dripping from my elbow and knees that I thought that it would be safer for me to ride on my bike than to be driven by them).

Maybe you should go back to the South of France to recouperate. My recollection is that you had a good trip there last year.

I am sorry to hear about your accident.

Get well soon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
150 euros!

for a 20 minute ride! They had the prices on a sticker in the back like a taxi!!! Slightly steeper prices though!
They kept my bike till I could produce the cash.
Good suggestion for the south of France but I'm on accident leave so stuck at home.:(
Thanks for the sympathy:)
 

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qwertzy said:
I had only been in the amblance for two minutes before they started asking how I was going to pay for the ride :eek: (they ended up keeping my bike as collateral)
Assume this was in Europe somewhere?--out of curiousity how much did that ambulance ride cost? Just want to compare to the USA rates.

//edit...Oh I see $150 Euros...which is about $150-200 USD right? You got off cheap. It'd be at least $500 USD over here.
 
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