We’ll be heading to the Quebec Singletrack Experience 5-day MTB stage race in a few weeks, and so will a lot of Consummate Athlete coaching clients and podcast friends! We hosted a Q&A last night with riders we know who are coming, with a few of our clients who’ve done the race in the past. Our goal was to get some good intel out of the racers who’ve been there already, and we got some great info! If you’re going to the race, check out their tips, listen to our podcast episodes with Raph Gagne and Lea Davison (who’ve both done the race), and read our stage race essentials post!
- Morning can end up feeling tight since you’ll be shuttling to different race starts: Pack each day’s kit in individual baggies, label them! (Have kits for every day if possible—laundry is hard to do at these events. Even if you plan to wash your favorite chamois/jersey in the sink, we suggest bringing extra shorts/jerseys for every day, even if they aren’t your favorites… You never know when you may rip a jersey, or simply be too tired to wash it.)
- Have adverse weather bag with essentials (gloves, rain gear, etc) that’s ready for anything
- Bring bike cleaning supplies / your own lube etc. Definitely have spare parts you may need for your bike
- BYO Snacks. The race will provide plenty of food, but you’ll still be glad you brought your personal favorites.
- Bring VERY COMFY CLOTHES for post-race, and bring a range of temperature options, since it may be super hot or super chilly. We also suggest lightweight, loose long sleeves and long pants and a bug netting hat if you’re camping. Hopefully the worst of mosquito season will be done by then, but it’s better to be prepared!
- Bring some snacks and extra water to start line on the shuttle with you, you’ll be waiting around for a while between eating breakfast and actually riding and you’ll want to eat + hydrate
- Have snacks, water, clean clothes, towel(!) in drop bag
- Bring favorite snacks from home—sweet and savory!
- Expect to be tired after stages! (But make time to prep your snacks/water bottles/bike/kit the night before bed—we suggest getting ready for the next day as you’re finishing up from the current stage, i.e before you shower, get your bike cleaned up, then after you shower and get changed, get your kit and snacks ready for tomorrow so you’re not trying to do all of that at 10PM when you’re completely exhausted!)
- Make friends! From what we’ve been told by everyone we know who’s raced this race, everyone is super friendly. Make conversation on the shuttle, chat post-race, talk to someone new over dinner. And come say hi to us, of course!
- Nothing is too scary on the course, but expect lots of rocks, roots and climbing!
- Course marking: In general, really well marked, but worth downloading the GPS files if possible (even just to be able to back up to get back on course) but don’t stress if the Garmin doesn’t perfectly match up (i.e if course is longer than it was listed, don’t panic)
- Pacing: Understand that you’re going to be very tired after day 1! Prioritize eating + drinking on and off the bike!
- Tire rec from Tyler Pratt for an ‘upduro bike’ with 120/130mm travel – Maxxis 2.4 Recon in front, Maxxis 2.4 Recon Race in the back
Tire rec from One Underwood on more XC style bike – 27.5″ x 2.5 wide style tires
Have fun! It’s a great vibe + really well organized