Under ideal weather conditions Ramses Bekkenk made an exquisite debut in the world of 24hour racing this weekend. Bekkenk managed to cover an astonishing 870 kilometres in his first 24hour race on the circuit of Zandvoort. This accounts for an average of almost 37 kilometres an hour, all required stops included.
After a ‘Le Mans-style’ start, which means the cyclists had to run towards their parked bicycles at the crash barrier, Bekkenk immediately was able to join a fast group of non-soloists. These men or women ride a relay race with four to eight other group members. Therefore they, unlike the soloists, can give everything they have for a short amount of time, after which they can recover adequately before their next turn.
“I repeatedly joined fast groups to reduce the amount of time working at the front. Every two hours I stopped briefly to eat, drink and change clothing. When the night fell in, I had to install my lights. Obviously I had several lows and at dawn and early in the morning I slept for half an hour. Still, I had prepared for an even tougher race. Although of course there were moments during the race when I questioned my sense of reason for entering this competition. Next time will be on a mountainbike, because I will definitely compete in a 24hour race again”, Bekkenk says.