Bicycle Network: RACV Great Victorian Bike Ride
Riding and Bicycle Advice
Ensure both you and your bike are ready before and during the ride.
David is the Director of Cycling-Inform and is an Accredited Cycling Australia Cycling Coach under the Australian National Coach Accreditation Scheme (NCAS).
His company, cycling inform, provides cycle coaching services, runs training camps and has a website full of excellent advice to help you get the best out of your cycling.
For more information please visit their website.
Pre Ride Preparation
Remember that you have put a lot of time into your training. A forgotten item, mechanical mishap or a poorly executed pacing plan may mean the difference between a great RACV Great Victorian Bike Ride or a not so great time. I’ve known people to arrive at events only to find that they have forgotten their cycling shoes or helmet. To avoid forgetting those all-important items you can make up a check list of all the things that you need. Then while you are packing for the event a few nights before, go through the check list to ensure that you have everything.
It’s also important to ensure that your bike is recently serviced and that your tyres that are in excellent condition. If you have cuts or nicks in them you'll need to get them replaced. Ensure that you have a way of repairing a flat if you do get one or two during the event. Other things to check are your chain, cables and brake pads for wear.
Read through the latest news about the RACV Great Victorian Bike Ride on this web site and read the information pack that gets sent to you. Both sources contain helpful and important information that will ensure that you have the best riding experience possible during the event.
For more help check out the Bicycle Super Store page on for their advice and special deals for interested and registered riders of the Event.
During the ride
Remember that the RACV Great Victorian Bike Ride is ridden over many days so it’s important to take the first few days easy and build yourself into the event. That way you can continue to ride strongly throughout the event. If you go out too hard in the first few days you may find the fatigue will catch up with you in the last few days of the event, the same goes for each day. Better to start slow and build though the day and finish your ride feeling strong rather than starting out fast, fading quickly and suffering for the rest of the day.
Regular breaks are important so get off the bike every two hours and have a quick break. Try to keep the breaks short. The regular breaks are important to ensure that you rest your body neurologically. The short breaks are to ensure that you don't cool down!!! Take this time to adjust your clothing, chat, have some food and go to the toilet.
Dress for the weather. Wind chill is a big factor when riding especially when descending. It’s always better to be a little over dressed and strip off your clothing than to be vulnerable to the elements on the cold, windy or wet days. Cycling coats, vests, leg warmers and arm warmers can be easily packed down and stowed in your cycling jersey rear pockets or panniers when you don’t need them.
Take some chain lube and rag and lubricate your chain on the Rest Day or more frequently after riding in wet conditions
You’ll be riding in close proximity to other riders, while you have been training for the event you hopefully have been practicing riding in bunches. Now is the time to watch out for dangerous behaviour and avoid it. Remember to look after your fellow riders and point and call out road bunch movements and road obstacles and potholes. Call CAR UP when there is a car in front and CAR BACK when there’s one behind.
Always ride within your ability when descending. If it’s wet take extra care and slow down when cornering. When overtaking other riders always pass them on their right hand side and ensure that you allow them enough room when you pass them. This is especially relevant when overtaking slower riders when descending. Be patient and KEEP LEFT at all times. While county roads may be quieter than main roads they usually carry large and heavy vehicles. Share the road and be courteous to other road users. Go single file to let traffic pass you. Show your appreciation to drivers that have intentionally given you right of way by waving to them. When climbing select an easy gear and try to spin up the hills to help reduce the build-up of fatigue in your legs over the duration of the event.
We recommend that you inflate your racing bike tyres to no more than 110psi. For mountain bikes and hybrids this will be much lower. This reduces the chance of a massive blowout which can be catastrophic when descending at fast speeds. It also provides you with more traction for cornering and on rough road actually helps reduce rolling resistance. Some of the road will be unsealed, so take special care when riding on these surfaces. Remember to take your spare inner tube and pump with you so that if you do get a flat you are able to fix it on the side of the road.
If you are a teacher make sure your students have your teacher and riding parent’s phone numbers to contact. Having your riding buddy’s number will help you if you get separated.
I wish you all the best with your RACV Great Victorian Bike Ride and have a great time.