You’ll finish the second segment with another refueling stop, and then you’ll carry on down the hill with some pretty great descending. Some of it gets a little steeper and rougher than the timed segment…potential for flats is high…but since it’s not timed you can just chill. The scenery is incredible at a few points here. Stop and take some pics. I did.
Things turn to paved roads at the bottom and you’re in this beautiful valley. It’s a good time to shed some layers if you haven’t already, find some friends. The third segment is a flat-to-rolling road time trial. No surprises. Just effort.
Personally I am all for the honor system and it seems to me that this should be a self-regulated individual effort, but in Grinduro there are no rules against drafting. Given that this is a 15-minute average segment, you stand to gain or lose a lot of time.
Giant Alpecin rider and Tour de France top-10 finisher Laurens ten Dam was among the high-caliber riders at this year’s Grinduro and I heard that some 40 riders hung around to ride in a big angry paceline with LTD and co. So it’s a factor.
THE LUNCH STOP
As soon as the road time trial concludes, you’re at lunch. The food is great and everyone chills out and has a good old time, but be aware---after stuffing yourself and letting your legs get stiff, you’ll head 10 minutes down the road and make a left turn, heading up one of the longest, most menacing climbs I’ve done in a good long time. It will hurt. You will be thankful that it isn’t timed.
The first year I did Grinduro, the climb was even steeper, but this year some rain and ruts forced organizers to shift things around but it didn’t feel any easier.