The Tour Divide, the Trans-Am and the Transcontinental Race. These are three iconic races you’ve probably heard of, but they are just the tip of the iceberg. These days there are literally hundreds of events to take part in. But let’s say you want to get into bikepacking racing. Where do you start?
You start with the book, Touring With A Sense Of Urgency.
The Comprehensive Guide To Bikepacking Racing
Bikepacking racing is a new and unique skill set, thanks to its self-supported nature. You ideally need to understand a lot about bikes, equipment, nutrition, hydration, training, psychology, weather conditions and sleep management. It takes years to build a sound understanding of all of these topics.
After years of experience, ultra-athletes Jesse Carlsson and Sarah Hammond have put together the book they wish they had before their first bikepacking race.
Here’s why Sarah and Jesse’s book is the best information you’ll find on bikepacking racing:
1. They know more about bikepacking racing than almost anyone else on the planet.
2. They’ve run one of the only training courses specifically for bikepacking racing.
3. They’ve played a big role in preparing other Australian ultra-athletes to win events like the Tour Divide and Trans-Am.
4. They’ve designed and tested numerous bikepacking-specific race bikes under the brand Curve Cycling.
5. Jesse is the mastermind behind Australia’s two biggest bikepacking races – the Indy Pac and Race To The Rock.
6. Amongst their palmares are 4x Race To The Rock wins, a Trans-Am win, a 2nd place in the Tour Divide (behind the unstoppable Mike Hall) and a 3rd place in the Indian Pacific Wheel Race (at the time it was tragically cancelled with only a few hundred kilometres remaining).
With this kind of background, it is not surprising Jesse and Sarah spend half their life talking about bikepacking. I’ve personally seen them pour huge amounts of time into immediate responses to Instagram DMs in between sips of beer.
“We get asked countless questions by people interested in bikepacking racing, bike touring and flashpacking. At times the volume of questions has been incredibly overwhelming. Sometimes there just aren’t enough hours in the day to respond to everyone.”
The 290-page book they’ve just finished piecing together not only answers everything they’ve ever been asked, but it fills any possible information voids by laying out their complete approach to racing. I’ve just finished reading the book cover-to-cover and I’m certain there is no stone left unturned. This really is the comprehensive guide to bikepacking racing!
You can get a digital copy of their book for AU$35 (US$23/€21/£18 at the current exchange rate).
Book Chapters and Page Samples
Chapter 2: WHAT IS UNSUPPORTED BIKEPACKING RACING?
Why Is Bikepacking Racing Special?
Why Do We Love Bikepacking Racing
Chapter 3: DO YOU REALLY WANT TO RACE?
Why Do You Want To Race?
How to Choose a Race
Working Out a Budget for Racing
Chapter 4: TRAINING FOR BIKEPACKING RACES
Chapter 5: TRAINING PLANS FOR BIKEPACKING RACING
Strength on the Bike
Chapter 6: RACECRAFT
Daily Distance Target
Sticking to Your Plan
Getting the Fastest Time Possible
Chapter 7: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT SLEEP AND THE LACK THEREOF
How to Stay Awake
Discover the Beauty of Power Naps
Efficient Sleep Systems
Chapter 8: COURSE RESEARCH
Chapter 9: LET’S RACE!
Chapter 10: THE LONG HAUL – BEYOND DAY THREE
The Emotional Rollercoaster
The Seven Day Barrier – Resisting the Urge to “Just Finish”
Various Health Issues
Chapter 11: THE RECOVERY
Tips to Help with Recovery
Chapter 12: RACE NUTRITION
Vitamins, Minerals and Supplements
Chapter 13: WATER
Water Consumption for Experienced Racers
Chapter 14: THE PACK LIST
Tools and Maintenance
Spare Parts and Repairs
Chapter 15: HOW TO PACK YOUR BIKE
How to Pack a Bike
Chapter 16: SELF CARE AND AVOIDING OR MANAGING COMMON INJURIES
Self Care Routine
Chapter 17: BIKE SET-UP