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Jul 9, 2019

A conversation with gravel guru, Yuri Hauswald of Gu Energy Lab looking at nutrition for big rides and gravel bike suspension.   This week's tech corner sponsored by Thesis covers the range of suspension options for gravel bikes.

Yuri Hauswald Instagram

Gu Energy Labs

Tech Corner sponsored by Thesis

Automated transcription (please excuse the typos!)

Welcome everyone to the gravel ride podcast. I'm your host Craig Dalton. This week on the podcast we've got Yuri Hauswald from Gu Energy Lab. If you followed the gravel scene at all, you've probably seen Uris name come up from time to time. Yuri is a past dirty Kanza champion and you'll find them all over the world racing his gravel bike and advocating for people to get outside in his capacity working for Gu Energy labs. Yuri's got some great tips and tricks around nutrition and hydration that really came to bear in this year's dirty Kanza as well as some great insight into suspension for gravel bikes and when we're going to see them start to have some impact in the market. But first we've got this week sponsored tech corner with Randall from thesis bike. Thanks Craig. So today we're going to talk about suspension on gravel bikes.

Tech Corner with Randall from Thesis:

Today, we’re going to talk about suspension on gravel bikes.

A gravel bike, for me, is a bicycle that performs at a high level on everything from road with a set of road slicks to borderline cross-country riding with a set of knobby 650Bs. For gravel bike suspension, what we want is comfort and control while still maintaining the performance of the bike in all the conditions it’s going to be ridden.

So, in order, the first thing I’d be looking at is my wheel tire package. What I want is a high volume tire with a supple casing, set up tubeless on a rim that’s wide enough to support that tire at low pressures without the tire squirming around.

The next thing I’d be looking at is seatpost. A traditional seatpost can give you some flex, but it’s pretty limited, so from there you might look at a suspension seatpost. But really, if you’re adding that weight, you might as well add a dropper post. A dropper, again, is going to take your weight off the front wheel - which means off your hands - and put it more over the rear wheel, while at the same time giving you more distance between your butt and your saddle so that you can use your legs as suspension. That is going to make a considerable difference in the amount of shock absorption of your overall system.

Next up: touch points. Cushy bar tape and a slightly cushier saddle than you might run on a pure road bike are going to take a lot of the edge off, they add a trivial amount of weight, and they’re relatively inexpensive to add.

Now, at this point is where I would stop, but some people might want even more cushion. For them, I’d recommend a suspension stem. What I like about a suspension stem is that it doesn’t compromise your steerer tube or the front end of your bike, and it’s entirely non-proprietary, so you can swap it in and out of any bike.

If all of these things aren’t enough, what you might be looking for is a drop bar mountain bike. This means a suspension fork up front or even a rear suspension. However, keep in mind that while that sort of bike is fantastic on the dirt, it’s going to be a bit compromised on the road because it’s going to have some slop and extra weight in the system that are going to take away that snappy feel that you’re used to a road bike with road slicks.

What’s great about a gravel bike is the ability to ride at a high level on any sort of terrain, whether it be road or dirt. So my take is: start with your wheel tire package, add a dropper post, add some cushy touch points, and go have a fantastic ride.


Yuri, Welcome to the show

Well thanks for having me, Craig. I'm stoked to stoke to be on

right on. I've always wanted to ask you this question every time I've, I've seen you, but can you describe your background as a cyclist? Like how did you get into the sport and then what ultimately drew you to the gravel part of the market?

Yeah, that's, that's a good question cause I didn't, I don't have like sort of the traditional cyclists, uh, introduction into the sport. So, uh, I was a stick and ball kid growing up, you know, soccer, baseball, football and Lacrosse. And then I just, um, Lacrosse is the sport that took me to college. I played collegiate lacrosse a cow, um, and was the captain of the team and MVP and this and that. So that was like, that was my sport all through high school and college. Um, and so I had a good, like endurance engine from all the running we had to do. Uh, but I wasn't riding a bike and I actually didn't discover the bike until I went and taught at a prep school back east in Pennsylvania. This was 93, 94, 95. Uh, and some of the folks I taught with were avid mountain bikers and, um, they started taking me out on rides and I was on a borrowed gt like NASCAR in cutoff jeans and Chuck Taylor's, no joke, total hack.

Uh, but I loved it. I loved the adventure of it. I love the camaraderie of it, um, that, you know, exploring new places. We're riding out in like French Creek, uh, park out there like Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania, places like that. Really, really technical stuff. So I was constantly wrecking and breaking parts. Uh, my first bike actually was a specialized stump jumper and I got it because one of my students worked in a bike shop and, uh, hooked me up with a little bit of a deal as his teacher, um, on a mountain bike. And then it just went from there. Um, I, I, I truly fell in love with the sport and the community around it. And, uh, when I moved back to California in 96, uh, is when I really started getting into the racing and, and starting to work my way up through the ranks.

And was that on the mountain bike primarily or did you drift into the road as well?

Uh, when I first got into riding, it was only mountain bike. I didn't touch a road bike. I think I got my first road bike. I know when I got my first road bike, it was a giant. Um, and it was in 96 and my first century was the Santa Fe century because I was working. Um, I had started my master's through St John's on in literature and, uh, I was living in Santa Fe. Uh, the friend had some dudes who just opened up a bike shop and then one thing led to another. And once I finished my summer of, towards my master's, I started working in the bike shop and became full mountain biker bag, uh, and gave up on my master's and started riding bikes and then started teaching elementary school actually. Um, so yeah, that's how I got into it.

And then on the mountain bike side, you started to get drawn to, to the, sort of the more endurance events. Is that right?

That's true. That took us, it took a number of years that probably took seven, eight, nine years before I realize that, uh, I wasn't, you know, that good of a cross country racer. I was decent, you know, I mean, I, I worked my way up all the way to Semipro, which is a category that doesn't exist anymore. Um, but that was sort of the stepping stone between expert and pro because that was such a huge gap back in the day to go from being an expert to pro. So they had a semipro category and I made it to that category, but I, there was no way in hell I was gonna ever get out of that category because I was just packed water. Uh, and um, it was actually in 2003 that I did my first 24 hour, um, event as part of a four man team.

Um, with mark, we're uh, another buddy of mine, Glen Fan, he's a shop owner up here in Santa Rosa and a gentleman named Kirk Desmond. We did the 24 hour four man national championships that were held at Laguna Seca and we did the geared category, but just as sort of our U to everybody, we did it on single speeds and we ended up winning. So we won the four man national championships in the geared category on single speeds that year. So that was my first introduction to like, you know, back to back hours of, of going hard for 24 hours. And then it wasn't until buddy dared me in 2006 to do my first, uh, 24 hours solo that I really sort of discovered that I have the ability to sort of be that diesel engine and just pedal at a relatively good pace for long periods of time. And, um, I did multiple years of Solo, uh, 24 hour racing and had some, some success with that. And that has actually what allowed me to turn pro. Uh, but you know, when I say that a lot of people think, you know, the, the endorsements and the big money checks started rolling in. Right. And I got to quit

my day job. Not True at all. I was

really, really nobody. Um, it was just three letters on my license that, um, meant a lot to me. Um, and I still was teaching and you know, traveling during the summers and living out of my car and following the normal circuit and racing as much as I can. But I think it was probably around 2007, 2008 that I started doing more of the eight hour, 12 hour, a hundred mile mountain bike kind of races and um, and kind of figuring out that that was more my jam than the short XC stuff.

Yeah, I imagine you see a lot of parallels between the type of community that was evolving around the 24 hour scene back in those years with what's going on in gravel today.

Oh, definitely. Yeah, definitely. The, the 24 hour scene was super familial and supportive and, uh, there was a tight knit group of us, uh, that we're, we're pretty close and that's one of the things that when I discovered dirty cans in 2013, that was the first year I went out there, uh, is what really attracted me to gravel was, you know, Midwestern hospitality, the grovel family. Um, the embrace of that family is warm, it's genuine, uh, and it makes you feel welcome. And, you know, it was, it was that and you know, had been obviously pushing your physical limits in, in new terrain and, and a new sort of discipline of racing that really, uh, attracted me to, to the gravel scene. And I've been, you know, an avid gravel fan ever since 2013.

Yeah. It seems like some of those early events, they really set the marker from sort of alter endurance perspective of gravel and subsequently many events have kind of rolled that back to make them a little more accessible. With your 24 hour background, obviously like going into a 200 mile event wasn't completely foreign, although I'm sure it was really hard that first year in 2013. Where do you, where do you think that mix in gravel events is gonna land? Do we have room for the ultra endurance side and the shorter events?

Uh, I do, you know, I mean, you see events, you know, offering up, you know, gravel events off, some offering up in, you know, multi distances to kind of appeal to a lot of different folks. Something like a Rebecca's private Idaho, which has, you know, three or four distances, the big one, which is, you know, a hundred miles. And then there's like a, I think a 25 mile, and then there's sort of a tweener distance of 60 miles. So, uh, you know, and then you saw that dirty Kanza two years ago, uh, offered, you know, the super me, uh, you know, the DKA Xcel, um, and, and also has multiple distances underneath the 200, the 100, the 50, and I think they now have a 25 a as well. So I think there's plenty of room. Um, so to offer a lot of different distances because gravel appeals to folks who are wanting to get off pavement, you know, and um, get onto this sort of the quiet back country where you don't see any cars for days kind of events. Um, so I, I think there's, there's definitely room for growth, for events to have multiple distances and that appeals to a lot of folks.

Yeah, it's been interesting to me as I personally got drawn into the sport. I was an observer from the side about events like the tour divide and these sort of long distance, multi-day bike packing style races. Um, and I never actually did one of those, but I got drawn into the sport just because it was aspirational to be out there having such an adventure. And in, in my life I tend towards more of the shorter events just because I don't have the time or the physique or the commitment to kind of train up to those 1214 hour events. I really prefer the six hour long events, but I totally get your point. I think there's room for it all. And in the lifetime of a gravel cyclists, hopefully we all get the opportunity to push ourselves to something like dk 200 because I think it's just this huge monumental life milestone that you can take away from having achieved something like that.

Oh, most definitely, man. I mean you, you talk about, you know, monumental like life achievements. I feel like my finish this year, while my slowest, possibly my worst finish ever, um, was the most rewarding. Um, because I got to earn the coveted gravel grail this year, which means I finished five, two hundreds of dirty cans. Uh, uh, I also struggled mightily with the heat this year and was showing signs of heat stroke at the last aid station at one 50. So, um, I was really pleased to get through this year and get that grail and, and not have to return again to do another 200 if I don't want to.

Well, you were certainly not alone from all accounts. I can hear that people were struggling with that heat and it's hard enough an event as it is. You probably had an experience that was similar to sort of many of the mid packers and the tail end experience every year.

Uh, possibly. Yeah. I mean, I, yeah, I passed so many people sitting under trees myself. I was under a tree at times fixing a couple of flats. Uh, so yeah, I mean the, it's funny Kansas, the weather always has a way of humbling folks and keeping you honest, whether it's, you know, the wind, whether it's the humidity, whether it's the heat, whether it's rain and mud. Um, mother nature always seems to have a, have a hand in how things shake out. Uh, out there in the Flint hills.

Yeah. I imagine you got to try to control the things you can and just accept the things you can't in an event like that.

Yeah. Yeah. Um, and I know how to sort of mitigate having had heat stroke a few times. I know how to, how to try to keep it at bay a little bit. So I had a, um, my pit was prepared for me when I came in at one 50 with ice and I was wearing sun sleeves, so we shoved ice bags onto my wrist cause that's one of the spots to bring your core temp down and know I saw my back and I had a frozen camelback, uh, waiting for me. And um, yeah. So they were able to sort of patch me up and push me along my way and I didn't lose too much time, you know, maybe three minutes or something like that. And that last pit, uh, but those last 50 miles were really, really difficult for me.

So did you roll out of that last pit with the ice bags kind of just strapped to your body wherever they can fit?

Yeah, so, uh, we put ice inside pantyhose and we tie them off so they make nice little porous ice bags that melt on you. And so we shoved two into the sleeves that I had on my arms right on my wrist. Uh, Maya camelback had a, a reservoir that had been frozen so the water would slowly melt and hopefully some of that cool heat would go through on my back then we had multiple cold towels and other ice bags shoved around my neck and down my jersey. And that was about it. A kick in the ass and get Outta here, let's, you know, knock out those last 50 miles. So that's, that's how I dealt with it. I over hydrated to be just because I knew that I needed to keep the fluids going in. Um, and I was using, um, our goos liquid rock cane drink mix because I have a hard time dealing with solids or gels in the heat. So I was going for liquid calories.

Yeah, yeah. I was going to ask you about, you know, in the things that you can control, nutrition is obviously one of them and it's an area where you have a lot of expertise from goo. Can you walk us through how you approach nutrition for a 200 miler on a hot day?

Yeah, totally. I'd be happy to do that. So I mean nutrition, your nutrition plan, I mean everyone's nutrition plan is going to be unique to their system. So I just want to put that disclaimer out there right now that what works for me, you know, may not work for everybody. And also, uh, since we're talking about disclaimers that, you know, I am a goo employee. I've worked for them for six years in the office and I've been at Goo athlete for 14 years. So, obviously I'm very biased, but, uh, I wouldn't be using their products if they didn't work for me. Um, so for me, uh, you know, obviously like the week leading up to an event and you want to be hydrating, sleeping well, mitigating your stress as much as possible, you know, having with meals just so you're topping up all of your glycogen stores and, uh, making sure you have those, those energy reserves ready to be tapped into you come race day, uh, with an event like 30 cans of that starts at six in the morning.

I don't typically eat breakfast cause that would mean I would have to get up at like three if I wanted to eat like a proper breakfast. So I think I got up at four 30 this year and had a half of a Bagel with a little bit of avocado on it and that was it. Um, my usual cup of coffee two just to, you know, get things rolling. Uh, and then as far as nutrition goes, I only had one, um, solid bit of food that would, could be considered, you know, normal food throughout the day. Um, and I relied on our rock cane gels, which have three times the branch chain amino acids are rock cane drink, uh, our electrolyte capsules to help with, um, the humidity and all the, you know, the potassium and sodium that I was losing. Um, and then our rock cane BCA capsules, which help with mental acuity and they buffer muscle fatigue.

So I sort of, um, shoot for, uh, 200 to 250 calories per hour. And that could be a combination of, you know, Gel and the rock cane drink in my bottles. Um, maybe some of our choose, which is a chewable form of Goo, but I think I only had one sleeve of those, um, throughout. So I basically for 13 hours was only using our rock tane drink, which is 250 calories per bottle. And our rock cane gels. Uh, and one bit of solid I had with that mile 68 station, I had a, um, a Hawaiian done PB and j little, you know, little square. Uh, but that was about all I could stomach solid, you know, solid food wise. Um, and then it was just tons of water trying to, you know, eat every 20 to 30 minutes. But it was hard for me to keep track of time because at mile 40, somebody wrecked me out and it snapped my Garmin off my bike and I had to put it in my pocket so I couldn't look at time, distance or the turn by turn directions.

So I was, I was riding blind actually for the whole day pretty much after mile 40, trying to stay in groups. And um, actually I tasked, uh, I don't know if you know Spencer Palisson who used to work for Velonews, but we're in a group for a long time and we've written a bunch together. So I asked him to tell me every 20 minutes, like 20 minutes has gone by and blessed Spencer's hard. He'd be like 20 minutes, dude. He would just shout that out when we were in the group. So I knew I could eat or drink. You see that 20 minutes theory. And so we did that for many miles out on the prairie. So I had a couple other little little curve balls thrown at me, um, during the day that sort of threw off my regular, uh, you know, fueling strategy. But I was all, all liquid calories and Gels, um, along with some castles. Um, and then like the old, I had low middle sip of flat coke at the one 58 station, but I was afraid that it was going to upset my stomach cause I was already dry even coming into that, coming in to that aid station. So I was worried about like too much sugar or anything like that, but it tasted really good. So I just a few sips of that to see if it could like, that'll may sound like a tad.

That's interesting. I don't usually think about the liquid calories, but it makes sense to kind of take a little bit in there and then supplement it or really supplement your, your, your good nutrition, um, the gels with the liquid as well each hour.

Yeah. I mean liquid calories are awesome, especially in the heat because they're super easy for your body to digest and process. Um, you're not getting, you know, like cotton mouth trying to chew on, you know, some form of solid food. Uh, I find it just works really, really well. I mean, case in point. So our raw cane drink was, I think I was one of the early testers of it, probably back in like 2009 or 10. Um, but our head of r and D who's a former Olympian, MAG DBU, she won western states, the big iconic a hundred mile run in 2015 she ran for 19 hours all on rock chain drinks. So 250 calories per hour. That was her plan. It was super hot that year and that got her through. So I know. And, and, and plus, like I said before, like I've, I've been using our products for, for, for over a decade.

And so my system is really used to that and, and I have a routine. Um, so for folks out there who are listening, you know, needs, they need to get, pick and choose, find what products work for them, train with it, race with it, and refine their nutrition plan for their, for what works for their system. Uh, but for me, like I said, it's a, it's our gels and our drink and some of our castles and maybe if it's not so hot bits and pieces of, of solid food, but when it was as hot as it was out in Kansas, like solid food just does not sound palatable to me. Um, and so I just stuck with in liquids and gels.

Yeah. I think one of the interesting things that writers need to sort of internalize is there is a hard cap as to the amount of calories your body can absorb in an hour.

Yeah.

So 350. Yeah. So you're going to sort of waiting an hour and a half to binge at an age station is really going to put you in the hurt locker pretty quickly.

Yeah. Because then all of your blood is going to go right to your stomach to try to process that. You've shocked your system because you've just overloaded it. So, um, I have a, have a phrase that I actually stole from my friend Rebecca Rush. I call it the sip, sip, nibble, nibble, plan, right. You're just constantly taking in little the drip drip of nutrition, right? Whether it's your fluids or your gels or whatever it is, but little bits of it, you know, every 20 minutes, um, is way better than like you said, just throwing a whole bunch down. Um, and hoping your body can process that.

Yeah.

Slow you down. You know what I mean? At the same time, because you know, when you throw all that, all those calories into your gut, your soul, your body's going to try to process that, which means blood's not going to your muscles, which you need to, you know, keep peddling your bike and things can spiral out of control. So I like to adhere to the sip, sip, nibble, nibble, nutrition explained.

Yeah. And to remind yourself, I think one of the tips that I employed when I was doing iron man was I just had an old Timex watch and I set an alarm for every 20 minutes to say just eat and drink. Remember that no matter what.

Yeah, totally. Uh, you could do that. Yeah, I do that on my Garmin sometimes, but I'm like, I've been doing this for so long, it's just like ingrained in me. I also typically shove a couple of gels right in the cuff of my shorts. So they're like, you know, right there on my quads. So I sort of see them when I'm peddling. Um, it also makes, makes the gels like more liquidy cause they get heated up on your leg and it's just that reminder that, oh yeah, I've got a gel sitting there. I better eat that now. And then you know, I reload it. So I just constantly have these gels sitting on my legs while I'm pedaling that remind me to eat. It sounds silly, but it is a good visual reminder that you need to eat.

Yeah, no, I think that's a great tip. And the other thing that I saw a lot of on bikes at dirty Kanza are the Bento style boxes.

For sure. Those are, those are, those are awesome. I haven't found a Bento box though. That doesn't rub my legs when I get out of the saddle sometimes, you know, I find that, um, when I get out of saddle, my legs will hit that. So I don't typically ride with the Bento box. But that's a great, that's a great tip too. You know, I wear a camel, that chase vest, which has stowage right on the front chest straps. So your food is right there on your chest too, which is a nice reminder to eat and you can segment it, you know? So like for me, I'm kind of Geeky or I have these little systems that just keep things square for me when I'm not thinking right. Like the right side of my chest is, is like all gels. The left side of my chest is like chews and maybe a bar, which I had bars in all of my chase vest, but I never touched a bar for 13 hours. Um, so there's just little things and like speaking of Geeky things, I do like aisle my rock cane bottle, which is it, which is my drink is always on the is is always on the cage. That's on my seat tube. So I don't even have to think. I know I reached down to the my seat tube cage that that is my calories waters on the down tube, you know, just little systems that I have in place that have worked for me that kind of keep things straight.

Yeah. I think they're so important. I mean, I failed to be able to do simple math eight hours into an event. So just sort of having everything where it needs to be, so I don't have to think getting, getting that reminder that it's time to eat and drink and knowing exactly where to grab. It's just one of those things that you can control, you can train for that's gonna make you more effective.

Yeah, exactly. And, and, and, and at the end of the day it's less thinking that you have to do because I kind of go into, I call it sort of robot mode where I turn off all my non essential functions with me and it's really like, I don't think about too much, I'm just paddling, focusing on my breathing, my eating and having, you know, my food where I know it exactly needs to be is one less thing I have to think about. I reach into this pocket, that Gel is going to come out, I reach into that pocket, you know, maybe something solids gonna come out. I grabbed that bottle. I know it has calories. Like just, yeah, it just makes it more, it's like, I dunno, simpler. Um, when like you say you're not thinking straight after eight, 10, 12, whatever hours.

Yeah, absolutely. Well, transitioning a little bit, I've, I've wanted to talk to you, I saw you down at seawater and I know you had the opportunity to ride the nine or full suspension bike down there and spend some time on it here in Marin county. I'm curious to, to sure. To just get your thoughts about suspension in general and where we're going to see it. Is it going to start having an effect in the racing? Will we start seeing pro's moved to suspension simply because it's faster. You spent a lot of time on a lot of different parts, different types of equipment. What are your thoughts about suspension in the gravel ravel game?

Um, well, so just a couple of disclaimers here. Just so you know, everybody's clear. I am sponsored by Laos, which is the Icelandic company that has pioneered, you know, the front suspension fork of sorts for gravel bikes. And they have, uh, they have, um, a bike also specifically designed for gravel. And yes, a niner, um, is about to release MCR, the magic carpet ride, which is a full suspension gravel bike, uh, with a fox front fork that has about 40 millimeters of Daphne and the rear is about 50. Um, so I've been a huge fan of, of the Laos front fork, um, since I got introduced to it probably about three years ago. It was a game changer, um, on many, many levels. I mean, probably the most beneficial one is that it dampens, you know, the impact that your hands, your shoulders, your upper body is taking.

Um, when you're rotting, you know, for 10, 12, 13 hours over the slinky hills in, in, in Kansas. So it keeps your upper body fresher, um, less fatigue. You're also able to corner descend better because you're not getting bounced around so much in the front end. You, you can track better with, with the front fork and not four cows, about 30 to 40 millimeters of dampening. Um, the biggest thing I noticed with riding the magic carpet ride is the descending, I mean, you can, you can rip the dissents on a, on a full set suspension, gravel bike for sure. Um, and then the dampening effects too, just as an aging endurance athlete, like anything that can take the edge off the terrain, that'll allow my body to be fresher over 200 miles or whatever the distance is, you know? Yes, please. I'll take that. Uh, you know, I don't need to get, you know, smashed by a really hard stiff light bike.

Um, at this point in my career. So I think you're gonna start seeing more, um, suspension bits, uh, enter into gravel. I think you're already starting to see it with some, you know, folks doing like envy doing specific gravel bars that maybe have a little bit of, I have those new g gravel bars that have a little bit of, you know, dampening in, in the way that they have done the carbon. We've, I think, uh, Louth has a similar bar, uh, the whole full suspension thing. I think nine are sort of on the front end of that. Um, we'll just have to see how well it goes. Um, I've been enjoying the magic carpet ride for sure. Uh, I noticed a huge difference like when you're trying to motor through really chunky stuff, it just, it just takes the edge off. You reminds me of when you see a Modo rider like ripping through like the woopty whoop sections and they're just like skimming across the top of all those bumps. I feel like, um, you hit a certain speed on the magic carpet ride and it does the same thing with chunky terrain. You can just really sort of blast through it at a nice high frequency and not get bounced around all over the place. And I had a few opportunities to sort of test that on some group rides and noticed a huge difference. Um, you know, for full disclosure, I've only probably put three to 400 miles on that bike. Uh, and so I'm looking forward to getting some more miles on it, um, later this summer.

Yeah. It'll be interesting choice for consumers to try to figure out like, am I really, is that the bike for me or am I looking for something that's more on road and off road that can do fairly capable off road but can also, you know, be my road touring bike or whatever.

True. Um, so then maybe, you know, a traditional bravo bike would just allow front fork is, is the option for them because that front fork will allow you to, you know, to get off road. Yeah. I think a lot of it will be dependent upon what people, you know, riding tendencies are on and what they're looking to do. But, uh, the magic carpet ride is awesome for just taken away a lot of the, the, the vibrations and the big hits that you take sometimes when riding on gravel roads for hundreds of miles.

Yeah. It was interesting when I interviewed Louth they were talking about riding it on the roads and I couldn't help but think about some of those roads in Sonoma county were having a little bit of front suspension might be helpful

for sure. Yeah, it makes a huge difference and you know, there's not a huge weight penalty. I think that what you gain in, you know, comfort and uh, speed and cornering and stuff like that outweighs any weight, this advantage that that fork might have.

Interesting. Well, I know you've got a busy calendar coming up and a bunch of great gravel events. One of the ones I want to highlight now, it was on a recent episode of the gravel ride podcast was the adventure ride revival ride and Marin, Tom boss mentioned your name and said, hey, if it wasn't for Uri, we really wouldn't have been thinking about this at this year. So I'm excited. What's going on with that ride.

Oh, that was so I'm blushing. That was so nice to Tom boss. Thank you, Tom. I've known Tom for a long time. That's awesome. Well, adventure arrival is a collaborative event between Moran County Bicycle Coalition and the nor cal high school league, which my wife is the EDF and both both programs have teen trail stewardship programs that they are, uh, promoting. And one of the best things about this ride is that the registration fees are going to go help support these, uh, team trail stewardship programs so that we're able to develop the next generation of stewards who are going to be maintaining, hopefully creating new trails. Particularly, you know, in a zone like Marin where, um, trail access trail creation is, um, kind of a contentious, you know, topic at times with folks. Um, and so we came together. A group of us, uh, is working closely with, uh, Matt Adams, one of the owners of Mike Spikes.

They're a huge supporter of this event. We put together really rad route that is, uh, incorporates a little bit of pavements and fire road, maybe a little bit of single track, um, that highlights some really cool zones in Marin. Uh, and it's going to be based out of Fairfax. It's September 7th. Uh, we'll have great food, beer, music, uh, but people can know that like their registration dollars are going to benefit, uh, you know, things that will help you know, our future as cyclists. Uh, as people who enjoy playing in the outdoors. And, you know, it's possibly, you know, creating, you know, like kids that might go work for, you know, the park system or you know, other groups that are all about trail advocacy. So I'm really excited to be a part of this event. So goo will be one of the nutrition sponsors, but it's super fun working with passionate folks like Tom and Mike and my wife and Dana and other folks, um, to, to, to bring an event like this to life. Cause it's the first of its kind in Mirena gravel, you know, ride kind of, I wouldn't call it a race per se. Um, but yeah, it's going to be a great day. September 7th, if you haven't signed up do it people.

Yeah, definitely. I'm excited about it being obviously here in mill valley and in Moran County. I'm really excited to get athletes from other parts of the bay area and hopefully other parts of the country to come in and sample what we have because I do think it's an amazing area and having covered the scene for, you know, as long as I have, I get jealous that other parts of the country have these marquee events and we've yet to kind of establish one in Marin county.

Yeah, it's true. You know, it's tough. I mean, we live in one of the most beautiful places in the world, but work that also sort of, um, you know, restricts what we can do too because there's so much private land and there's so many restrictions on who can use what trail and this and that. Whereas, you know, you look at somewhere like the Flint hills of Kansas and you have, you know, this grid network of thousands of miles, right, of, of empty gravel roads. You know, you look at Rebecca's private, Idaho's same sort of deal. Uh, so yeah, it is cool that we're finally able to pull something like this together, get all the right permits, the permission. That's where, you know, Tom's expertise comes in, you know, having worked for years with, with advocacy and other groups and stuff like that. So yeah. It's cool. Yeah. Hopefully we sell it out and it's an event that, um, continues to grow in, in years to come.

Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. Tom was describing how he, I think he had to work with three different land ownership organizations to get the root knocked out this year, which I mean, for the average race promoter would probably be prohibitive to even pull it off

for sure. And then, you know, and then there's certain groups that get their noses bent, you know, that were doing this or they weren't involved. And it, yeah, you know, it can be complicated, but, uh, hopefully at the end of the day people see that this is all about the kids really, um, and our future and creating stewards that we'll want to protect in and, you know, expand the growth of, of trail access here in Marin and maybe that will ripple out into other parts of, of the country too. Um, so yeah, stoke for adventure revival on September 7th.

Yeah. Well thanks for all the time today. Your, I appreciate it. I appreciate your years of advocacy and participation in the gravel community. You've really been a, just sort of a good steward for the gravel brand, if you will.

Oh, thanks. Yeah, I was an accidental, uh, grappled, devote t I mean really like I said, 2013 I had no idea what I was getting into when I went out until my first 30 cans have no clue whatsoever. I went out there because we were [inaudible] as a sponsor, um, to check it out and I fell in love with it. So, um, yeah, I'm proud to be part of the crew that's helping push it here in California and you know, also seeing northern California athletes like Amedee, Rockwell, like Alison Tetrick a do really well at, you know, these iconic events like dirty cans and stuff like that. Makes me really proud. Let's, let's keep, let's keep singing. It's thanks and praises.

Yeah, absolutely. Well good luck and everything you've got upcoming and if I don't see you before I'll definitely see you in September at a venture or revival.

Awesome. Thanks Craig. Been great chatting with you.

Big thanks again to Yuri for coming on the podcast this week. Yuri has been an amazing advocate for the sport of gravel cycling and he's always been super approachable. So when you find them out there in an event, go up and give him a high five. I don't know about you, but I took away some really helpful tips from Yuri this week in terms of how to handle the nutrition for long events. The value of having a system for where you put things. So you just don't have to think and the value of having a timer to remind you to eat and drink and to know what you're going to eat and drink. I think all of these things add up and they're in the category of things you can control when preparing for a big event. So that's it for this week. Big thanks to our sponsor thesis spike for the Tech Corner, and another reminder to just hit subscribe on your favorite podcast app as we're doing a bit of planning for the upcoming year, and we'd like to know how many of you are out there listening. As always, feel free to hit me up on Instagram or Facebook or shoot me an email. craig@thegravelride.bike. We look forward to hearing from you. Until next time, here's to finding some dirt under your wheels.