While the Telkom 947 Cycle Challenge very proudly includes professionals such as the women contending for UCI points in a 1.1 rated race, most of the cycling events in South Africa mainly depend on the entries of thousands and thousands of cyclists who just ride because they enjoy it.
While some of these participants have a finish time target they plan to smash, many more just hope to enjoy their day with colleagues who are corporate team mates, friends who are riding to support the same charity, or on their own.
For most of us, performance technologies like the lycra cycling kit with sensors that monitor hydration and indicate when to drink; or the thermometer pills swallowed by the FDJ team to display their body temperature and explain their performance don’t make sense (without medics, sponsors and domestiques to interpret).
What we might like is some technology that helps to motivate and keep us training for our Cycle Challenge Sunday, and fortunately, there is at least one piece of technology that could really work for this.
Let Strava tickle or pinch you!
Most of the cyclists who use Strava download their activities with a free phone app, or set themselves up on the website. It can also link to other devices including the GPS, heart rate monitor and power meter.
As soon as you click on the end of your ride, Strava can then do a quick upload with a detailed description of how far, and fast you rode, the altitude gain on your route, and how today’s efforts on segments in the area where you ride compares with previous attempts.
Strava also provides gender leaderboards on segments, and compares every effort to your segment history, with a Personal Best (PB) for your fastest ride.
Activities are automatically grouped together when they occur at the same time - for example, when you participate in an event or do a group ride and this might work particularly well for Corporate Team and Ride for a Purpose riders.
Strava allows you to create a club, which then allows you to set up group rides with routes and other details, and share with other members.
It will then become possible to encourage involvement from as many club mates as possible and providing members with a place to chat about what happened on their rides.
If you plan to ride the Telkom 947 Cycle Challenge this year, you might want to have a look at all the detail about the route that you can see on a Strava upload from #CC2016: