Sunday, July 19, 2015

Short brevet

Short brevet

Yesterday I rode a short 200km brevet.  I’ve been busy and have not had as much time to ride brevets so I took the opportunity to ride a local 200km brevet.  Due to PBP, the brevets were run earlier than in other years so there is less choice to ride brevets in July and August this year. 

As I received my DF in late spring and had to make several adjustments, I was not as ready as I wanted for this season so I’m only planning to ride my 600km brevet in August.  The 200km is to keep me in shape for longer distances.

The brevet started in the west end of Ottawa.  As many club members are preparing for PBP we were only four at the 6AM start.  The route took us north west of Ottawa toward Pembroke then we crossed the Ottawa River in Portage du Fort and came back on the province of Quebec side.  There are not too many hills but road was not the best in places... will have to have a dental checkup to see if any fillings came loose! The weather was iffy; luckily we only had a bit of rain

By 6:30AM I had encountered a deer that was looking at me in the middle of the road and only moved when I used my horn to scare him, he was less than 15m in front!  By 6:45 I spooked 3 horses in an enclosure by the side of the road… the rest of the day did not offer close encounters with animals.  On route I had very nice views of farms and the Ottawa River and I did not have a chance to ride in this area previously so it made me discover. I rode by myself all day.  The route returns back to Ontario using the ferry in Quyon, Quebec.  I was lucky because I was the last vehicle on the ferry and we left about 2 minutes later. Since there is only one ferry I would have had to wait 20 minutes.

Shortly before I arrived at the last control, my Edge 1000 GPS started giving me a low battery warning, unfortunately the 1000 is a bit more power hungry than the 800.  I plugged the GPS on the built-in USB port of the DF.  The GPS kept beeping every few seconds telling me that it was charging as if I was plugging and unplugging the GPS.  I suspect the 5V current coming out of the USB port of the DF does not provide consistent power but the GPS was getting current.  I have a small auxiliary power battery that I use to power my USB electronics but I did not bring it with me so I endured the beeping until I reached destination.  Note to self: bring battery even on short brevets! The sun came out around lunchtime and the temperature increased. I finished at 12:30. Sorry no pictures!

Dekra report

IntercityBike is offering a pair of Schwalbe One tires for the front to all competitors Last week I reported on the Dekra event that took place last Saturday and Sunday at the testing facility.  Women outdid themselves with 6, 12 and 24hr records (provisional).  There were 7 provisional records set at Dekra.

The first as I reported earlier was set by Ellen van Vugh riding the custom made Velox-S2 streamliner, not a velomobile.  She not only improved her six-hour world record of 365km for the women category. In total, she completed 404.04 kilometers in six hours, or a 67.3 km/h average, which is also more than all currently homologated men records.

The 12-hour record was set by the diminutive rider Nici Walde, she rode the hand-made DF-S.  She covered 586km in 12hrs, a significant improvement over the old record.  The previous record was 472.80 km, it was set in 2012 by Kirsten Niederlein in a Milan SL. This is the first world record for an IntercityBike designed velomobile. Apparently Nici is also new to the world of long distance records but she impressed observers with very consistent laps of the track throughout her record run.

Finally Petra von Fintel riding her Milan SL broke the mark of 819.4km she had set last year at the same facility.  She rode 1 011km in 24hrs, breaking the 1 000km mark and the 1 000km record for women.  Her 12h record set at 02:47 was broken at 03:05 by Nici Walde.
·      Petra von Fintel (Milan SL):
12 h --> ~ 575 km (at ~02:47)
1000 km --> in 14:22 Saturday night (after ~ 23:42 )
24 h --> ~ 1011 km
·      Nici Walde (DF-S):
12 h --> ~ 585 km (at ~03:05)
·      Ellen van Vugt (Velox –S):
6 h --> ~ 403 km
·      Hartwig Müller (Milan SL):
12 h  --> ~ 680 km
·      Melchior Poppe (Velomo Highfly):
6 h --> ~ 228 km

All these records are provisional will have to be homologated by the respective associations.

There are a lot of discussions on the speed difference between Streamliners and velomobiles.  Ellen van Vugt rode 403km in 6 hours while the record established for 12 hours is 585km, which is not significantly more distance. If a streamliner rider were to take a rest then restart, the difference could easily be covered in the second 6 hours.  On the other hand, the DF-S was not fully completed among other things missing the long wheel pants or the tail extension and it was Nici Walde first attempt for the record.  Of course these are speculations because a streamliner rider has to be very vigilant to keep the bike upright so the rider has to be not overly tired and this would require an easier pace in the first 6 hours to save enough energy.

WHPVA World Championships

The WHPVA will be held on 21-23 August 2015 in Maasmechelen, Belgium.  The event website for the World Championships is finally operational.  For the past few months the official site provided no information on the event but I see that the link to the event from the WHPVA main page is wrong and maybe this is the issue.  I know this is run bu volunteers but as member of the HPV community we should be better aware of the importance of good communication. 

On the plus side, the course is well adapted for velomobiles so we should see good results at this event. 

You can check out the website here .


Ben Goodall, is considering the development of a Coroplast velomobile kit for road use.  For about 20 years, Trisled has been producing coroplast HPV kits for the Australian racing.  The features of these designs have been focused on racing rather than practicality. The kit would be produced by Trisled, it would include a chassis and parts kit + flat pack of pre cut coroplast parts and some instructions on how to assemble it. Likely cost would be $3-4.5k.  Trisled is looking for 10-20 orders in first batch to make it viable to develop. If people are interested in ordering, please contact Ben Goodall at Trisled.

Distance logging

Velomobiel and IntercityBike keep track of the distance that the velomobiles they built have traveled.  Many riders are not aware of this because they purchased their velomobile through a distributor, a dealer or have purchased their velomobile second hand.  As a result the velomobile is not registered in their name on the manufacturer’s site.  You can contact the manufacturer and using your serial number, you will be issued a user ID then you will be able to enter the number of km (not miles) you have ridden.  Logging distance is an interesting way to compare yourself with other riders using the tools on the site by clicking on the label at the top of columns you can sort the data.


IntercityBike is offering a pair of Schwalbe One tires for the front to all competitors riding a DF or DF-XL at the World Championships. 

IntercityBike will be closed for holidays from  july 20th until august 3rd.  Ligfietsshop Tempelman that shares the building with Intercitybike will be open during this period. DF's will be available for test rides at Ligfietsshop Tempelman during this period.


Bluevelo is now offering factory built hoods for the DF velomobile at a cost of C$995.  They can be purchased in the color to match your velomobile.  Delivery date is not yet specified.

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