Another Event and Bike Upgrades

Signed up for another event. Another gravel event as you might have guessed. This one is up in Fort Collins in July and called the FoCo Fondo. It starts and stops at a brewery so you know it is going to be pretty great. The course will be a mystery for a while yet which is a little scary… but I’m looking forward to a fun ride not too far from home.

In other news…

A few posts back I was debating (with myself) bike gear ratios and options. I wrapped it up with:

Right now I’m firmly in the “analysis paralysis” zone.

When I took the bike in for annual maintenance, I happened to run into a friend who just happens to manage the service department at that shop – and has also just happened to have raced the same model bike in the past. What a coincidence that everything fell together like that 🙄So of course I had to pick his brain a bit…

After some discussion about my gearing challenges, he helped me come to the conclusion that a longer cage rear derailleur upgrade combined with a new rear cassette with greater range would give me the best bang for the buck. I’ll still have my top end speed when needed but will gain a couple more gears for the hill climbing. The main downside of this change would be that the ratios, between gears, are all a bit further apart. But with an 11 speed, that seems acceptable to me. Time will tell.

I took his advice and bought some parts:

new rear der, chain, cassette.

I wanted to upgrade to the SRAM Force rear derailleur from the Rival line, but the pricing on that one kinda destroyed my self-imposed budget so I stuck with Rival. Been running the rival on this bike for 2 seasons and have had no issues with it so far so will hope for the best.

Looking forward to some hill climbing with that 11-42 cassette. 42! I should be able to climb a tree with this thing now.

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