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24-hour race preparation: Ant White's top tips

12:14 4th May 2011 by Bikemagic
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Ant White

Anthony White is one of the fastest 24-hour racers in the country, finishing second in the inaugural 24 hours of Exposure last year and has proved he has good form this year already by taking the title in the 24 hours of Old Pueblo in the US back in February

As he makes last minute preparations for the 24 Hours of Exposure this weekend, we asked him for some prep tips for those facing a 24-hour race:

Bikemagic: What are you top preparation tips the night before the 24 hour race?

Ant White: Eat a lot and sleep well. Take a laxative (so you’re not carrying around 1kg of pasta in your stomach). Tape up toes (they’ll be hurting for long time, if you’re pushing hard enough).

BM: What are your nutrition tips for riding/racing a 24 hour solo race?

AW: Before the race: the two Ps; pasta (wholemeal) and porridge (big flakes), both are real slow burners. During the race, lots of energy powder (and a pinch of salt) in your drink plus one gel attached to each bottle and a banana. Repeat every lap.

Soul food, to supplement the above with your favourite snack foods; chocolate, jelly babies, flapjacks, raw jelly, and a few things that is easy on the stomach. For some Muller rice, for me full fat coke. I find some caffeine is good after midnight.

BM: I’m not sure how to pace myself in a 12 or 24 hour race? What’s the best approach?

AW: This is where the skill lies. Go hard, but don’t cramp or cause muscle damage that will haunt you later in the race. For me just under XC pace for as long as I can, then hang on and hope for the best. This doesn’t work for everyone. For newbies aim to finish the distance and time with minimal pit stoppage.

BM: To carbo-load or not to carbo-load?

AW: Oh yes, and enjoy it.

BM: Should I make any modifications to my bike for the event?

AW: A little softer, slower rebound on the suspension. A little softer, and fatter on the tyres … your undercarriage will thank your for it in the final third of the race. This might be the right time to get all those upgrades you’ve been eyeing up.

BM: Clothing: What’s the best kit to wear?

AW: Bring lots. It’s always cold in the wee hours … over compensate, you don’t want to lose morale and energy because you’re chilled to the bone … it’s better to be a little toasty, better for your spirits.

Wear your favourite pair of shorts. You might want to change if they get wet to avoid “nappy rash”. Two pairs of shorts might help towards the end

Compression wear really helps me, reducing muscle fatigue and cramping meaning I can push harder.

BM: Just a week to go. Is it too late to do any last minute training?

AW: Two weeks out you could still get a really big ride in at low intensity (c8hours) to see what’s going to hurt and try and remedy it. I wouldn’t push too hard for too long in the last 7- 10 days. Enjoy the taper and rest!

Want some more top 24-hour racing advice? Read what fellow enduro racers Rob Dean and Matt Page had to say.

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