So a couple of weeks ago I was chatting with a fellow cyclist about the “old days”. Many things came up from racing to commuting but one thing really stuck with me. “Back in the day” there used to be an event as I recall named the “LeMond Challenge”. The basic idea behind the event was to challenge yourself against one of the greats (via the clock) by either riding the same route LeMond did or by creating/finding a similar route (elevation/distance/etc…) in your area. Then you sent in your ride info and you were ranked. I don’t remember if this info went back to a club in Nevada or Winning Magazine but I do remember it was done by snail mail and took forever to find out results of how you fared. What I do remember is that it was fun not only finding the route but getting local guys together to compete in a ride of pride in a sense. Well during that conversation I thought, why can’t we do that here and have some fun with it. My plan at this point is to post a route each week that we can all “race” one another on so we can see how we fair. For some it may be an awesome way to show off your time trialling skills and for others it may be a ride of pride. Either way I wanted to see if anyone would be interested in this and should we find enough people participating we could make this a summer long “event”. Depending on participation we may even be able to “win” something. It could be a pair of cool Raleigh socks or whatever we are able to find that would be cool to win. Also at this time it’s one category but should we find there is great participation perhaps we run with various categories or a time bonus/deficit for various riders. We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.

Rules, there’s always has to be some sort of rules so that everyone knows what they are up against. Even Mountain Bike Single Speed events have rules (usually the rule is there are no rules) so here they are…

  • this is to be done in a TT type fashion. your time should reflect your effort not a group/drafting effort
  • at this time we’ll do this in an old school Eddy Merckx TT position…standard drop bars, no aero bars
  • this is a non supported, non sanctioned event…ride of pride remember
  • FOLLOW ALL TRAFFIC LAWS…some days you run with the lights some days you get stopped by the lights. I recommend using the auto stop/start feature on your computer to assist with any stoppage you might encounter. You can also try the route again later and hope for the best. I’ll do my best to find routes (recommended valley routes are also encouraged) that have very limited traffic interruptions but sometimes it can be tough to find such a route.
  • You will need to be able to collect Time, Distance, Average Speed to the best of your ability. Per MAPMYRIDE the route looks to be 17.75 miles long. We’ll be working with the honor system here.
  • You can ride/race the route as much/often as you would like just post your best time at the end of the week.
  • Post your time either at the Raleigh (Area 376) Facebook page or via Twitter with that week’s tag. i.e #valleychallengeweek1
  • Have fun and keep safe
  • A week starts on Monday and goes through Sunday though until we get some riders posting results and/or good weather we will keep this route rolling for a week or two.

So here is the first route, pretty simple and familar to anyone who has ever ridden in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. It’s a pretty easy Valley loop. I have the “start/finish” area being Truxell Road since that is a little more out of traffic and generally allows for a more uninterrupted start/finish.


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