At last, the Rally Cat is finally only two days away and we couldn't be in better shape. As a reminder to folks, registration will open at 11.30am at the Mosswood Park Amphitheater. $10 signs you up for the ride, gets you a map of the route, food and refreshments at the end of the ride, and includes a donation to Spokeland. The ride will start promptly at 12.30pm. I expect the speediest among you to finish the ride in close to 2.5 hours, with the rest trickling in for the next couple hours. The after party will be held at the starting location in Mosswood Park.
This year's course is roughly 10 miles longer than the previous course and includes a similar amount of climbing. The course will include the usual mix of city riding, semi-rural roads, fire roads and "singletrack". Of course, all trails included on the map are bike legal. The East Bay is very hilly, and this ride is no exception. There will be steep hill climbs, bumpy downhill dirt descents, dirt climbs and whatever else I can throw at you. Choose a bike that you will have fun on and will get you through the course safely. A cross bike would do the trick, but so would a nice hardtail with skinny tires. Hell, even a road bike with fatty tires will suffice, although not my recommendation.
Things to look out for include crazy Berkeley/Oakland motorists and motorcyclists on the roads and hikers, dog walkers and park rangers on the trails. *Be safe and considerate when passing anyone on trails. Anyone caught acting like an asshole will be automatically DQ'd.*
What to bring?
Layers, water, and tools - including a spare tube, patch kit, mini-pump and multi-tool. If you want to bring a bag with a change of clothes, there will be a bag check at registration. Maybe a snack or two.
What are the prize categories?
While we hope people turn out for the ride with the intent to have fun and support Spokeland, there will be small prizes from our generous sponsors for the "top" finishers. Categories will include geared and singlespeed classes for both men and women. And as is tradition, we'll have a klunker class and of course, the lanterne rouge (DFL)*.
I've got a few tricks up my sleeve this year, so expect some changes from previous Rally Cats. I guess that's all you need to know. Ride safe and see you on Saturday!
* Categories subject to last minute additions according to the whims of the organizer and amount of drink consumed.