The North Star Bicycle Race is an exhibition of endurance and sportsmanship. Riders must act in the spirit of self- sufficiency, equal opportunity for all racers and, to be done, with integrity and gratitude. The NSBR is intended to be an old fashion road race with no cause nor commercial angle. It is a battle! And whether riders wage that battle against the clock, mother nature, friend, foe, innocent stranger or themselves... it's all good here. Let's keep it clean and come out pedaling.
Understandings 1. Race to protect yourself and the future of all unsupported races. 2. Riders alone are responsible for their safety. 3. Riders alone are responsible for communicating with their loved ones. 4. Online GPS tracking is not intended to ensure rider safety. It is for info-only, and validation of course compliance. Trackers should always be on and tracking...this is how we race. 5. Riders are responsible to assess* and report time penalties for violations to the rules or the unsupported bicycle racing ethos. (* Except Drafting it's a 1 for 1 penalty...1 min drafting= 1 min penalty. Drafting only allowed for momentary safety measure when cars are passing. The penalty for drafting for comfort is disqualification.) 6. Riders are disqualified and removed from records when Rider Requirements are willfully disregarded. 7. In the event of an emergency abandon all Rules. Later self report.
Rules 1. Complete the full route, out and back, under your own power. 2. No support crews, no pacers. 3. No drafting. 4. No caches. This includes no dropping off of anything while traveling North with the intent to be picked up again on the return South. No unloading of anything onto Dot watchers with the intent to be picked after the race. 5. No mailing anything ahead. 6. No making of reservations until after race start.
The following are allowed, but not encouraged. Do not beg in private conversations or social media because this puts others in a bad situation and compromises the integrity of unsupported. 7. Unplanned support from other racers is OK because we are looking out for each other. 8. Trail magic OK because of gratitude. This is as much an eating contest as pedaling contest...both unsupported. Consider assessing yourself a time penalty if you think the magic was a time gain. 9. Motorized hitchhiking. Just get yourself back to where you abandoned unsupported before you move forward again as a legit racer. Keep your tracker on, spend your time sitting in the car figuring on how to not let it happen again. Consider assessing yourself an additional time penalty. 10. Drafting for safety. See Understanding #5.
Rider Requirements (Riders will not be included if these items are not present at start. These are the minimum requirements. Riders are encouraged to go above and beyond...like bringing back up lithium ion batteries for your tracker, wearing glasses or reflective ankle bands.) 1. Activated and connected Spot tracker required. See Register. 2. Helmet 3. 2 Front white lights. At least one on from sundown to sunrise. See below * 4. 2 Rear red lights. At least one on from sundown to sunrise. * Separate power sources...Both front lights must have separate power, both rear separate, one front and one rear may share a power source. 5. Upper body reflective vest or "vest" ("Vest" example: Amphipod Xinglet. Vest is it's own item, it can not be a reflective jersey/ t-shirt or jacket. Battery aided reflective vests must remain reflective absent batteries.) 6. Reflective tape on back of both sides seat stay, front of both sides fork, 3 pieces tape each side of rim on both tires. (In the case that rim brakes make the adhesion of reflective tape impossible on the rims...tape up the cranks. The idea is that when the bike is viewed from the side reflective motion is seen.) 7. Sticker or marker writing on bike stating your name and name and phone # of your emergency contact. Emergency contact must read and understand entire NSBR website.
Etiquette 1. Do not react with aggression or hostility towards drivers or anyone. Remember another cyclist is bound to follow and your behavior will affect how they are treated. 2. Tip well. 3. Take a moment to enjoy the unique out and back experience by cheering for your fellow savages and taunting your friends. Whether an across the road rolling high five or a road side regroup it's cool to be out there both solo, unsupported and all in it together.
Pairs There is no pairs category. Everyone rides their own bike. I see no great advantage to committing to riding with someone or choosing to sleep alongside someone as long as the Rules are minded. If pairs get more people riding then pairs are good here. There are many miles along the route good for riding side by side. However riding in pairs can be difficult and dangerous too. The difficulty of riding in pairs revolves around not drafting and cars seeing and maneuvering around the front rider. When riding single file riders must keep a minimum of 3 bike lengths between them to avoid a drafting penalty. The danger of riding in pairs is cars not seeing the front rider. The issue with going out much further than 3 or 4 bike lengths is passing cars can’t see the front rider and tend to move back over without ever seeing them. Or it's that drivers just can't maneuver passing one bike, moving back into the lane, and quickly passing another bike with oncoming traffic. Point is...sometimes in a particular situation such as a highway turn with no shoulder it might be the best choice to go ahead and draft, making 2 bikes one object for the car to pass and assess yourselves a simple time penalty.
Other Categories There are no other categories. Tandems, velomoblies and other human powered machines are right on time. But this remains a solo bicycle race. If you're interested in those other machines and this type of race I recommend starting a race beginning at the Mississippi River on United States Bicycle Route #41...say Sep 16, 2020 7AM?
All may be amended as needed and without notice...but I don't want to. Lets keep it simple and with honor. QUESTIONS? Join the Facebook Group, North Star Bicycle Race or if you must, email Brian at NorthStarBicycleRace@gmail.com