The Wend guy who I called out in my race selfie at Sagebrush Safari says "Hey, want to try a Wend chain for BWR?" and I say "why should I?" Well after some explaining about hot dipped wax and resistance and watts that I honestly don't 100% comprehend I say "ok, why not" WELL let me tell you that was the best why not decision I ever made! When I was passing Wafer riders at mile 110 and hearing their squeaky ass bikes I realized, hey! after bombing every water crossing with reckless abandon and charging through dirt and sand for 110 miles my chain is suspiciously SILENT! And it felt so smooth!
And to be completely honest I have yet to wash my bike post BWR... but MY drivetrain is still so smooth and quiet! Every time I jump on the bike for another commute to school it's like magic. I'm sold. I will wax my chain with Wend religiously from now on!
Forgot to put this in my BWR recap, but somehow that race pulls out the deepest performance from me every year. Not sure if it's the distance, or the combo of road and dirt or the amount of climbing, but somehow I am able to give 110% each year, and never feel more spent than at the BWR finish line. This year my legs were tingling within seconds of finishing, and I spent a good half hour on the ground, kinda like last year. It took an HOUR to feel normal again. Anyway, pretty cool to know you gave something 110%.
That poor guy I was an ass to on Tuesday, sorry. I shouldn't have told you that keeping up with you wasn't impressive, it's just like, kinda demeaning that you think since I'm a girl on a 'gravel' bike I would be struggling to keep up. Fact is, you weren't going fast, don't flatter yourself.
I am garbage without Brendan around. The boy went to Sea Otter on Tuesday and I haven't gone to bed on time all week, I've been eating nothing but salad (because I'm so stinking lazy) and the house is a mess. What have I been doing with my free time (not training this week, so just coaching and commuting means I'm not quite as busy), good freaking question!
And the bike!
Some highlights of this bike that made it a dream to race 135 miles on, and the ideal weapon for the challenging conditions include:
Wheels - DT Swiss ERC 1400 super light, aero wheels that were easy to set up tubeless with Orange Seal, and took a serious beating on the dirt sectors.
Bike- Felt VR, an endurance road bike that is 'adventure ready' with disc brakes, a little less aggressive geometry for comfort over the course of crazy long rides/races, super stiff/light frame and the prettiest color of any bike I've owned :)
Pedals - Crank Brothers Candy 11's I choose these pedals because they are easy to get into and out of (we had to dismount to hop fences a few times, and to run one rock section) and have a nice platform for support which my feet need on long rides. I LOVE these pedals, both because they are so good to me in mud and in dry conditions and because they are freaking pretty (hard to tell from this pic but they are gold)!
Chain - WEND Sram hot dipped wax goodness. This chain is blowing my mind, all through the race and every day since, its smooth and quiet and clean... it's heaven to not have to clean and lube my chain every day. I'm so so freaking stoked about this, guys, get yourself a wax dipped chain! Do it!
Saddle -Fizik Luce like I said above, this is the first truely comfortable saddle I've ever ridden. 135 miles with rough, rocky dirt, no problem, my lady-bits are happy as can be.
The drivetrain is a fun project Brendan worked to put together, SRAM RED with FSA SL-K crank with 48/32 chain rings. Brendan said this is 'gravel specific' gearing and I thought it worked great for the climbing and dirt we encountered. I personally wanted Di2 because the bike I raced last year had it, but this worked just fine and Brendan says anything electronic is cheating :)
The seatpost and cockpit are Zipp, and the power meter is a very not working Stages (which was frusty because I wanted numbers from this effort!) Hit me if you have any other questions about this speed weapon!