Sunday, June 04, 2017

Journee Lausannoise du Velo 2017

It is another bitter sweet report today as Marcus chronicles for the last time in who knows when,  our participation in JLV or Journee Lausannoise du Velo, 2017 edition.

We delayed
Traditionally from May to August inclusive our lives in Lausanne Switzerland are a blur of local sporting Activities.  Not only is the wonderful 50m local Pully plage pool open, but almost every weekend there is a race to try out.

And so we thought to fit to participate in our  2 significant and favourite Cycle races before we leave for the UK.  We actually delayed our exit accordingly.  We did the Cyclotour just 2 weeks ago, this Saturday June 3, 2017 is time for JLV.

Most of the preparation for a Cycling Race, given that our bicycles are always maintained to a high level concerns the weather.  In the worst case it would be wet, in which case Marcus and Agata have to consider whether to chicken out, or depending on the race, plod through what could be multiple hours of misery. And choose the clothing accordingly.

All the forecasts for this Saturday indicated rain starting at about 16.00

Now the race is 150Km, and assuming 3 long stops of 30 mins each (more on this later), and a 25Km/hour average speed, that is 7.5 hours.

So in order to dodge the rain we had to leave the staggered start by latest 08.00 and it takes 30 mins to cycle there and 30 mins to meet up with Sandra, get race numbers etc.

We got up at 5am :-(

The things we do for our sports!

Besides the 2 obvious self evident preparation steps for any long distance sporting event which are of course: a good nights sleep and a porridge breakfast, what else might you do?

One tip is to Vaseline.  With the above solid Vaseline  (I don't recommend the Spray stuff), consider any area of your body that will get sore via rubbing over time.   Intimate areas included :-)  Coat yourself well.

Race Plan
We are going to do the 150Km course and our lovely friend Sandra will do the 100Km course only, so at the split point we will separate.

We plan to take it easy, meaning less than 25Km/h average.  This is quite difficult as our competitive spirit has to be curtailed when newbies or wannabies cycle past us.

Also since this is our last ever JLV for who knows when, maybe even our last ever, well we'll not even listen to Audio, just take in the sights and sounds, and at the Refreshment stops, well chill out, and eat, a lot :-)

What A Dossard

Perhaps the race organisers realised Marcus' angst and gave me this very special race number.  I was thrilled

Agata and Sandra's race number did not get this benefit though.  Hmm?

Just before JLV 2017


These days JLV has expanded not only with different distances but a whole range of different categories too.

For example: Retro bike category, Electrical Bike and Mountain Bike.

Marcus and Agata will do the 150Km course which by the way has about 1900 metres of elevation and that is a lot!

Okay it is time to start.   Place is already busy and it is only about 07.20 in the morning

Stop #1: Lucens

At about 40Km we arrived to Lucens

 Sandra was in good spirits

Marcus was concentrating on diminishing the Gruyere cheese mountain he encountered.

Oh, and a lot of Chocolate.

Sandra Bottled

Marcus' powers of persuasion failed and Sandra decided to opt for the 100Km course not the 150Km that I suggested.  To be fair she spent yesterday (Friday) on a 50Km cycle.

So with regret we split at the 50Km point, she had 50Km to get back to the start and we had another 100Km to go.

Stop #2: Mount Vully,  79Km

No Food stop!

The Mount Vully stop is at the end of a multi Kilometer climb.   So I had planned a long stop including the Marcus staples: Chocolate and Gruyere Cheese.

Imagine my total shock when we found that some previous racing 'locusts' had eaten all the food and there was no more to be found.  

No so many people choose the 150Km course, I estimate less than 10% and we set off at the first official start time, cycling at 25Km/h average, so we must have been one of the first to arrive.

Great Expectations

No food left , I just can't believe it.   I drank soup instead.

 Still having a wonderful time

Rising Temperatures

Not many people except us and the locals realise that Vaud in Switzerland is an exceptionally dry and warm place.  It's sort of the Swiss Riviera.   The temps from hour 2 of the race were 30 degrees plus.  Now that is really warm.  At about Km 120 Marcus and Agata ran out of fluids so we simply made a stop at a village running water fountain.

Canton Vaud is littered with drinkable Water fountains.  It makes long distance cycling so easy.  You never really need to carry more than 1 litre of fluid, in fact for high speed races you can conptemplate carrying 500ml water (less weight) and stopping more frequently to fill up from a fountain.

Stop #3 Villars Mendraz,  141Km

I promise you there used to be another stop, at 120Kmm or so, but today it was gone.   A problem?  Yes, because we had nothing since 80Km.  Aaargh.   Marcus did not have any food at all so although this was only 9Km before the finished.  We stopped.  Marcus filled up with a huge amount of Dark Chocolate.  I was starving.  (NB: All the Milk chocolate had been eaten by previous hoards of short distance gannets.   Because this stop is common to even the shortest distance riders.)

More chocolate please


Races in Switzerland are expensive.  A long distance race say a Marathon or Cycling Sportive would normally cost about 100 CHF each.  So that is 200 CHF or about 160GBP.  Quite a lot really.   So JLV is a big exception.   It was 70 CHF for Marcus and Agata and we got a small but perfectly good Rucksack concession at the end of the ride.  JLV, you are the best food and best value Race we enter all year, period!,

And Finally
We took Marcus's hair clippers to England over 4 weeks ago as part of the House move.  He is looking like a long haired layabout now and is in urgent need of a Number #2 cut.


Marcus ate a lot of Gruyere Cheese and Swiss Chocolate.  I drank about 1.5 litres of water.

As you can see Marcus really took it at a relaxed pace today :-)

Thanks are Due

For the great weather

For the Organisation

For the superb company and the friendly people we met at the rest stops

For the Rucksack presents at the end

For Vaud motorists, as kind and careful as ever

A brilliant day.   What more can I say.   Lausanne we are going to miss you terribly.

Downloadable PDF brochure
JLV main website