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18 Oct 2012

LEL 2012

After a long day that started at 6 in the morning, I left home to ride to Almere in about 4.5 hours. One week earlier I'd bought soft springs from Velomobiel.nl to improve the comfort of my K. And those are a leap forward! Yes, I loose some sideways stability, but having 1.5cm of 'soft' suspension (+1cm hard) really makes riding a lot more pleasant. The stock suspension was just way too hard for a rider like me. I'm talking about the front now. The rear was right from the start.

After 2 hours the combination of light rain, darkness and glasses starts to become a problem on roads or paths without white lines. It's a known problem to me, though I had almost forgotten about it since I didn't have to deal with it for a long time. The solution will be, as I see it now, to have a 80 lux Philips e-bike head light in the air in-take of the K for these situations. My current light (fine for most situations) sits where a right hand side mirror would be. But when the nose of my VM is wet, the light reflects in the water.

Luckily I knew exactly where I was going. Because at the most difficult moments, I didn't see more than 2 green blurs left and right with a large black patch in the middle.

Just after 10 I arrived at my place for the night. I was welcomed with a shower, a pasta meal and friendly cat. The bed was so good that I slept for 9 hours straight. Perhaps the 155km of Saturday also contributed to this...

It was just after 13h when we arrived at the start of the time trial of the dike between Lelystad and Enkhuizen. The distance is 51km and the fastest riders cover that distance in under 55 minutes. I was hoping to need 1:05 or so. But would the 180km I'd already ridden and not using a head fairing stop me form achieving that? Yes they did, and quite succesful too. I needed 1:14. And whilst being the only one with all that distance in his legs, I ranked 10th place. Another racer's excuse was that I was riding a stock VM without aero ad ons.

All in all my preparation just wasn that good. But it's fun to take part, and a 43 average isn't slow, it just isn't fast. In 2010, when I got their by car, the weather was nice, and raced with a hooded Mango, I was 6 minutes faster! So, doing everything by bike is nice, but has a horrible effect on my race result.

Luckily, the ride home was more Evo-K-esque. Effortless cruising at 40 through a desserted landscape. For the 1st 10km I rode with Dirk, untill he got a flat. With still 100km to go for me, and only 25 for him, I said goodbye and rode on.

Many riders had flat tires this year. The surface of the dike has seen better days, but also the choice for very fast tires, or tubes with a thread as I call them, doesn't help either. Interesting to see at LEL was the newest evolution of the Evo, the Ks. A bit smaller, and perhaps a bit faster. I'm not a fan of it's exposed suspension parts though. It would suite me very well, yes. But my K isn suddenly 'yesterdays VM'. It's still very good. And I keep improving it too.

2 comments:

  1. Waarom schrijf je eigenlijk je blog in het Engels ?

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  2. @Bram
    Omdat veel meer mensen Engels dan NL beheersen.
    Het een goede oefening voor me is.
    En omdat zo de rest van de wereld ook iets van het Nederlandse ligfietsen kan meekrijgen.

    ReplyDelete