We’re introducing mandatory rest periods into our 72-hour event.
The new rule is being applied to ensure that riders take some rest after 24 hours of racing and beyond.
In shorter events of 1000 km or less there’s an increasing trend for the faster riders to push through and try to complete the course without sleep. Managing sleep and levels of fatigue in ultracycling events is a skill that all riders have to acquire and this only comes with practise and experience. But taken to extremes, aside from the added risks associated with riding tired, there becomes a point where the first few riders home are not necessarily faster cyclists than those who arrive after them, they’re just better at functioning without sleep.
When we analyse the results of our top ten rider’s ‘ride times’ there’s often very little difference in average speed. The gains are made by the amount of stoppage time a rider has. While we’re all in favour of rider efficiency, riding 1000km without sleep is not a tactic we want to encourage.
We know that this decision won’t be popular with everyone but All points North was designed as an ultra-cycling challenge, not an exercise in sleep deprivation. We’re trying to level the playing field a little, bring it back to riding bikes and, in turn, make the event safer by introducing the new rule.
How will it work?
After the first 24 hours of riding, riders must rest for a continuous period of three hours at some point within the next 28 hours. We will monitor your rest via your GPS tracker which will need to remain stationary for a continuous period of at least three hours (of course you can stop for longer if you want to).
As the race starts at 8pm on Friday, your first three-hour rest period should take place at any time between 8pm on Saturday, 27th and midnight on Sunday, 28th May. Your second three-hour rest period should take place before midnight on Monday, 29th May and should be at least 12 hours after your first rest period.
The 3-hour rest periods must be separate – riders cannot take one 6-hour continuous break and count it as two.
If you do make it back to the finish before midnight on Sunday, 28th May, then you will not need to take a second three-hour rest break. However, if you arrive back at the finish after midnight and you’ve not stopped for a second rest period, we will automatically add three hours on to your finish time.
Therefore all riders taking longer than 52 hours to complete the event will need to factor two separate three-hour sleep periods into their schedule.
Based upon previous years’ results we know that a handful of riders have completed the event in less than 52 hours but with three hours added on for the first rest stop we think that this is less likely to happen during the 2023 edition and that the majority of riders will need to plan two rest periods into their overall ride.
So, in short if you finish:
- Within 52 hours: plan for one ‘3-hour’ rest period
- 52 – 76 hours: plan for two ‘3-hour’ rest periods
- 76 – 100 hours: plan for three ‘3-hour’ rest periods
So, I hear you ask,
“What if I’ve been riding for 55 hours and I’m only 20 miles away from the finish? I don’t want to stop so close when I’m nearly there.”
We get that you want to push on, but the only way to make it fair on all of the other riders who planned their rest is for us to add those three hours to your finish time.
Once the clock ticks past midnight on Monday, 29th May you will need to factor in another three hour break. Again, the time will be added on to your finish time if you don’t take your rest.
One missed rest period over the allotted time window will result in the 3-hours being added to your overall time. Two missed rest periods will result in a DQ, so please make sure you stop and take some rest.