Wednesday, December 26, 2007

New cut off

Ok... I'm still giddy about how many entries I keep receiving. Having said that, I'm going to have to cut it off here shortly. We want to keep it a smaller number to keep everything manageable and to make sure the experience is as fun as possible for racers.

I'd like to say that the new cut-off is 40 entries. That means that there are 4 spots left. If you get something postmarked by the 31st of January though I think you'll be alright. That still doesn't give you much time, but I'd like to move on from the registration process and onto more enjoyable things.

So... if you sent in a postcard before Christmas eve (if sending from the general MN area) and you haven't heard from me or don't see your name on the roster, send in another one. Please don't email or contact us in other ways. I need to receive a card. "Lost in the mail" while heart breaking doesn't get you in. The two entries I received tonight were both postmarked the 24th of Dec.

If I receive your card and it's postmarked after the 31st, you will go on a waiting list. If a bunch of people start dropping out then we can maybe let you in (though we might still use the original 30 number here).

Hope everyone is having a wonderful and safe holiday season (which ever, if any, you happen to enjoy celebrating) and that your training is starting to round into shape. We're just over three months away... and they just happen to be the three hardest ones to bike outdoors in.

Z out

I would like to let everyone in who wants to do it, but as the number grows the first time co-race director in me starts to get more concerned.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Two official spots left!

The entries are coming like a veritable snowstorm. 4 more brings the tally up to 28.

We (the Ragnarok organizing committee) and we decided on the following:

1) Our new SPH team kit look awesome.

2) We will NOT be giving out full maps before the race of the course. You'll be entering the race blind (but we will have great notes to get you from point A back to point A).

3) We will be opening up the race to more than 30 entrants. I'm honestly a bit surprised by the response (especially in the past week... thanks LCR-Ricoh) and part of how we chose 30 entrants was because we'd feel stupid cutting off the entrants at 100 if 8 people signed up. I'm not sure what we'll actually cut off at, but if you want to give the ride a go get those cards in before we decide to cut it off (I'm thinking it will be 40ish... maybe a bit more due to the no show quotient).


5) Oh... as of now this blog is more active (due to the race being so early in the spring) but if this type of racing interests you see the Almanzo 100 site for more gravel road goodness. This race, while pretty flat, will kick you in the fruitstand no foolin.

I will probably be away from the computer for a few days due to the holidays. I'll try and respond to any comments though as soon as I can. Thanks!

Z out

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Double YIKES!!!!

It's down to 6!

Somehow we received 6 more entries today to Ragnarok Central. If you want a guaranteed spot send in that card.

If you are signed up and something comes up and you can't make it. Please let me know as soon as you know you cannot make it so we can keep a spot open.

Thanks for the interest all! Hoping you all get a good winter of hibernating in so the course can really kick your butts.

Have a great night.


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

YIKES!!! 12 spots

Officially we have 12 spots left for the new Spring "Classic".

Some notes to those who may not be familiar with gravel roads and some rules re-iterated:

1) You are responsible for yourself!

2) You have to have a blinky red light for the rear and some sort of front light. There aren't a ton of people that bike on these roads so being seen is good! You are responsible for yourself.

3) For much of the race you'll be "in the middle of nowhere". We will provide accurate race tulips, but you're responsible for following them. No shortcuts. If you go off the course for some reason, you'll have to re-enter at the place you left. If something happens, please have someone you can call to come and get you. We don't want anyone stranded, but see #1.

4) Please obey the rules of the road. Stop signs technically mean stop. Yield - yield.

5) When going around blind corners it's usually a good idea to keep to the right a bit. Cars are not used to meeting anyone on the roads that we'll be going on.

6) You are responsible for yourself!

7) The weather in mid April can be anywhere from snow to 80 degrees. Please be prepared for whatever happens. The race will be held rain or shine.

8) I'll try and keep the gravel conditions up-to-date as the race approaches. There will be nice hard sections, and some super loose sections almost guaranteed. Tire choice is up to the individual.

Oh... and I hope this posts... the profile:

Monday, December 10, 2007

17 more spots open

Hi all

Just wanted to let ya'll know that we only have 17 more slots open for admittance into the best race this side of any other race like this um... race. So if you are planning on trying this beast out, get that postcard in.

We will be getting information out about what the route notes will look like soon so planning can go into how you want to carry them. I'll probably also snap a photo of what I've rigged up that works pretty well for me to hold them.

If anyone has any questions please feel free to post up a comment. I'll try and get back to you asap. Thanks

Z - out

Monday, November 26, 2007

The Race Roster

Here is the list of lucky folk so far. NOTE: RULE CHANGE RULE CHANGE RULE CHANGE!!!! We will not be having a lottery. First 30 cards get in. After that we can put you on the waiting list, but no guarantees then... We just wanted to make sure people could make plans since many riders will be from at least a little bit away.

Without further ado:

Male Open Class

Muraski, Mar.
Muraski, Mat.
Pramann, D.
Pitts, J.
Herringer, Z.
Polsun, S.
Mahoney, L.
Lawrence, M.
Larson, D.
Million, P.
Hanson, S.
Omdahl, R.
Sauber, L.
Stock, P.
Bean, C.
Karow, E.
Gustafson, C.
Hackensack, N.
Kinderman, S.
Lawrence, T.
Boecker, S.
Beck, B.
Abrams, D.
Bell, P.
Fahr, J.
Elson, B.
Haberman, P.
Sauber, L.
Bell, C.
Connell, B.
Zeigle, P.
Zadra, D.
Dittmer, D.
Braasch, G.

Female Open Class

Waxmonksy, N.
Brokaw, S.
Hackensack, B.
Sauber, R.

Male SS/Fixed Class

Skogen, C.
Quince, D.
Braun, C.
Clay, K.
Weisbrod, H.
Zipfel, J.
Petersen, A.
Robb, J.J.
Everson, T.
The Beard

Female SS/Fixed Class

Henry, K.
King, S.

That is all... thank you.

Ragnarok town #1

Hi all. Our wonderfully crafted route passes directly through 3 towns (and pass close by another) as it winds around Goodhue and Wabasha counties. After starting in Red Wing, you'll pass through Lake City, Millville, and Zumbro Falls. The route will pass within a short jaunt of Goodhue.

There will be a convenience store directly on the route in Lake City. There are also fast food options available (though they may require a short detour) in the City along Lake Pepin.

Millville does have a cafe or two, but nothing of much note for you to recharge with.

Our main checkpoint town, Zumbro Falls, has a couple of convenience stores. This will be the first point where outside assistance will be officially allowed. The exact location of the checkpoint will be posted here in the weeks leading up to the race.

Goodhue also has one convenience store. In the interest of staying off of a "busy" road (58) we don't quite pass through town. We will have a second checkpoint here where you can have food or other things ready for you.

The main concern will be water. Please plan on carrying enough for you to go 60 or so miles without refilling. There are no portions of the route that will require that, but if something goes wrong er on the side of caution.

Thanks for reading, and don't forget to get that postcard in! We're up to 8 entrants or so.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

The postcards are a comin'

If you've received a confirmation email from yours truly, that means that I've recieved your postcard! Thanks to the 5 that are in so far. Not much else to update at the moment.

I will take the opportunity to thank Guitar Ted of Trans-Iowa fame and Chris of the Almanzo 100 for inspiring this race. Training for TI last year, and competing in both TI and the Almanzo are probably the highlights of the year. If you haven't ridden on some remote gravel roads, you haven't ridden. So get those postcards in and commit yourself to a day of fun.

Another note: Since this is the inaugural year we are going to try and keep the size to about 30 people (if we get that many!). If you've already got your postcard in, you're in for sure. From this point on, if we get a pile of cards (way more than 30) we will be having a lottery/drawing from a hat. At least that's the plan for now.

Thanks for reading. For your trouble, here is a picture of one of the first climbs of the day from a few weeks ago:

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Ragnarök 105

Here it is, the inaugural 105mi gravel road race through Goodhue and Wabasha counties. You will travel the forests, gravel roads, and minimum maintenance roads starting in Red Wing, MN into the unknown. Race start will be around sun up (check weather station for official sun up) April 12, 2008 finishing will be around sundown the same day. There will be a midway check-point, a certain speed will have to be achieved to reach this on time. There will also be three points along the way to receive outside help, other than that you MUST be self sufficient! To register send a postcard with name, age, sex, note weather your a single-speed/fixed or open class phone # and email address to Ragnarök 105 c/o Isaac Giesen 134 Kingswood Drive #210 Red Wing, MN 55066. Registration ends March 12, 2008, we will only be letting 30 people in to this race, if we receive more that 30 postcards we will draw from a hat (literally) to see who gets in! This is a FREE race so there will be one less thing for you to contemplate... and if you're planning on racing Trans-Iowa this would be a good chance to see if your ready.



The Golden Rule. The sponsors, organizers, and anyone having anything to do with this race are NOT responsible for your safety. Think of this race as a 105 mile hard training ride with prizes. We can't say this enough.....YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOU! The Ragnarök Mountain Bike Race is a non-stop, self-supported, solo competition along the gravel roads of rural Goodhue and Wabasha counties. Competitors must carry with them ALL necessary equipment.Each rider is considered to be on a private excursion and remains solely responsible for any accidents in which he or she may be involved. No responsibility can be accepted for riders becoming lost or stranded. Prearranged outside support is not allowed. This includes, but is not limited to assistance with navigation, delivery of supplies, lighting, or lodging. Competitors will stock up on food and other items at stores and businesses along the route. Viva la gas station burritos and Oatmeal Cream Pies! Competitors may not advance on the route by any means other than bicycling or in the case of a mechanical, by foot. There will be no hitching of rides via Minnesota farm animals. Moooooooo. Competitors may, in the case of emergency, mechanical or other unforeseeable problems, be assisted by motorized transport. By accepting motorized transport you will automatically relinquish your standing in the race. The primary race route must be followed at all times. No short cuts or alternate routes are permitted. If you do this, you are a menace and will be forced to help local farmers scoop poop! Bike choice is up to you! We are allowing mnt bikes, cyclocross bikes, 29ers, and road bikes if you really want to be stupid. Just be aware that some research is going to have to go into your final bike choice. The gravel roads of this area can get pretty harsh. I suggest atleast a 1.95, but then again, it's up to you how much you want to hurt. We'll leave it at that. All singlespeed/fixie category racers must start and finish on the same gear. So, that means don't stick 10 assorted freewheels/track cogs in your drop bag. You CAN run a flip-flop hub, but both gears (freewheel & cog) must have the same number of teeth. You are completely on your own. Use your head. Look and yield for traffic. There will be no course marshalls to hold up traffic. Don't be a dumbass!Riders must wear an ANSI or Snell approved helmet, must obey city, county and state laws and Rules of the Road, and conduct themselves in a manner that will not bring discredit to the event. All racers must use and carry with them a flashing red taillight and front light, and a back-up light source, i.e. headlamp. A cell phone is also a good/great idea. Racers will be supplied a course map, a.k.a Cue Sheet. This event will happen regardless of rain, sleet, snow, drought, wind, rabbit infestation, etc. You get the idea.No GPS Systems allowed for navigation. GPS's are allowed for personal data and recording your ride. Have atleast a pit crew of 1 to help you if you have problems. The people and sponsors associated with this race will not come get you or be responsible for you! You get ran over by a tractor, that is your problem. You get attacked by a rabid raccoon, that also is your problem. You get recruited to scoop pig poop, yep you guessed it, that is your problem. A cell phone is highly recommended. Make sure you know how to use it. Racers can help other racers with mechanical support. We are not doing this event to leave someone out in the boonies of MN. If you exit the course for food, supplies, or any other reason, You must re-enter in the same spot in which you left. Got it!Drafting is allowed. But please do not show up with 8 of your buds and turn this into a road race. The intent of these rules is to establish an equal and fair opportunity for all racers.VIVA LA MINNESOTA GRAVEL!!!

Saftey and Supplies:

The following is information for you the racer, and some suggestions for gear to keep in mind for the event. Of course, what you decided to carry is up to you. The items listed in RED are the "must haves" by all racers!
When you’re out riding in MN in April, the weather can change rapidly at any time and being prepared for wind and rain or snowy conditions with the gear that you carry will make your ride much more enjoyable. Even on a 60 degree day, it’s possible to get cold very quickly if you have to stop to fix a mechanical problem or become injured so always carry a waterproof/windproof jacket or thermal top and dress in layers appropriate to the conditions.
Maintain your bike so that it doesn’t let you down when you’re at the furthest point from civilization.
As a minimum I suggest carry the tools listed below and more importantly, know how to use them.
If possible cycle in a group so that if someone does hurt himself or herself there are enough people to stay with the injured person while others go for help.
Carrying a basic first aid kit and survival blanket is a very good idea.
Unless you are VERY familiar with the area where you are cycling, carry a map and compass in clear plastic bag. Again – know how to use them!
Keep eating and drinking regularly to keep your energy levels up so that you can complete the race. Be able to recognise the symptoms of dehydration and “hitting the wall” and act accordingly.
In most cases the farmers of MN are your best bud. They will give you food, and treat you like a son or daughter. But there are a few out there that would rather mow you down with their 1969 Dodge pickup.
Farmers own dogs. These dogs chase anything that moves. Be prepared to throw-down with a mutt if needed.
Redwing Blackbirds......if you get too close to their nests, they will dive-bomb your head. Just keep riding, they can't hurt you.
Red tail light
Front light. Power output is up to you. Keep in mind you won't be able to recharge.
A way to contact the "outside" world should you need help.


Small rucksack / hydration pack
Lightweight waterproof / windproof top
Extra thermal top or warm layer to wear if stopped
2 litres of water either in a bladder or water bottles
Food – for example energy bars, gels or chocolate
A good pump
Tyre levers
2 spare inner tubes
Puncture repair kit
Chain splitter
Allen key set
Spoke wrench
First aid kit and survival blanket
Mobile phone / money for pay-phone
Butt butter....ahhhhh smooooth!
Good chain lube. Don't under-estimate MN's harsh conditions in the Spring.
Cash, debit card, credit card. Use these items to get items on the road to complete the route.
Handle bar map case
a cycling computer
This may sound like a lot of gear to be lugging around during a race and on many cases you won’t need all of it. However, if something does happen to you or your bike in a remote spot, you’ll be equipped to deal with most situations or at least stay safe and warm until help arrives.