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"We've had a lot of rain this year because of El Nino. What's your strategy for racing in muddy conditions?"
I have raced in muddy races so many times and I have found that my best races
were when I just relaxed and did not fight the bike, I just try to go fast but
not power to much so the tires do not brake loose. We raced in Colorado last
summer in the rain and I found that everyone else was complaining about the
rain and I decided to just have fun and try to enjoy the situation. I raced
really good taking first place in A-Pro against kids 10 and 12 years younger
than myself, you just have to be real smooth and not muscle the bike.
Quick tips for muddy tracks.
I use the same gear ratio. Lower tire pressure a little.
Lean back when you pedal so the weight is on the back wheel.
Go high in the corners to stay away from the slush.
Try not to be behind someone as you will get really dirty.
Easy with the power out of the corners as the back end may slide.
Some it's times better to ride on the out side of the track as it has not been ridden.
Wash your bike after every lap and lube you chain and every other moving part.
When you get home rebuild the whole bike. New bearings, chains, gears, cable,
etc. Good luck.
Tracks with sticky mud are a real problem and when I was small and using 1 3/8 tires my dad would always change to 2.125 on the front and spray the heck out of both tires with Teflon Spray. The Teflon seemed to keep the mud from sticking to the tires and made them a lot lighter. I never changed gears, but my brother almost always did and he would always go down a tooth on the front sprocket. Both my brother and I were always taught to ride with most of our weight on the rear wheel and this really proved to be very effective on slippery tracks. The reality of making the front end as light as possible and the back tire dig in kept me in the front of the pack most of the time. Always remember that the track is wet and make your approach to any obstacle a little slower and more direct. You can make up the difference in speed on the straights and give yourself a little more room just in case you start to slide out. If someone in front of you goes charging into a turn over his head he'll go way high and most likely slide out. Back off and stay low, be smart and win.
Keep The Rubber Side Down,
Muddy tracks? Lower your tire pressure a bit and don't be afraid to get dirty. Clean your bike after the races and re-lube everything.
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