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Louisville Bike Course
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Tell me about this bike course? Open to traffic?
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Re: Louisville Bike Course [GoJohnnyGo] [ In reply to ]
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GoJohnnyGo wrote:
Open to traffic?


At least in 2017, the loop was open to traffic. It was a mess and potentially dangerous with lots of cars and overcrowding with people still on their first loop. Not enjoyable. Overall, the bike course is great outside of that complaint.
Last edited by: USCoregonian: Mar 11, 19 10:48
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Re: Louisville Bike Course [GoJohnnyGo] [ In reply to ]
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I've done it twice. I liked it. I didn't have any problems with vehiclur traffic during the race. I would not want to try and ride the course before race day. Driving it should be good enough. Not enough room for me to be comfortable out there alone. There aren't any surprises that will get you into trouble come race day even with your head down "racing" the course.
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Re: Louisville Bike Course [Ktri] [ In reply to ]
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I have done Louisville 5 times and live in the area.

I have never had any problems on race day as the locals are very familiar with Ironman race day and stay out off the course for the most part. In the more populated city areas, local law enforcement has the traffic coned off to separate bikes and cars.

However, I would agree not to ride the course outside of race day. This is horse country and there are many big trucks and trailers with little to no shoulder made even smaller by rumble strips which don't play will with road bikes. If you have to ride the course, start at day break on Sunday morning. Ride one loop(80 miles) and be off the course by the time locals start going to church.
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Re: Louisville Bike Course [GoJohnnyGo] [ In reply to ]
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Raced is last year. It is open to traffic but the only time it got annoying was in the last 10 miles on River Rd. However, I couldn't really blame the cars. They got stuck behind a group of cyclists and there were cars coming the other way so they couldn't pass. Otherwise it was pretty quiet.

I really liked the bike course. I raced Wisconsin 3 times and decided to race Louisville last year. The roads in Wisconsin are pretty crappy so it was nice to ride on smoother roads. Despite the awful weather last year I managed to finish 15 minutes faster than when I raced Wisconsin the year before on a near perfect day.

Course is hilly but I train on hills in Wisconsin so I didn't think they were too bad. The hills are more rolling and not very technical. I was basically able to use momentum to carry me from one hill to the next and I never had to get out of aero.

I'm racing Louisville again this year so hopefully the weather will be a little nicer :-)!!
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Re: Louisville Bike Course [GoJohnnyGo] [ In reply to ]
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I did the race in 2016 and had no issues at all with motor vehicles. At no time was I concerned about motor vehicles. Pretty flat for the most part, my Garmin had 4,534 feet of climbing. Nothing really steep, big ring the whole way.
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Re: Louisville Bike Course [GoJohnnyGo] [ In reply to ]
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Did race twice. In my experience second loop gets congested with cars being stuck behind slower riders (nothing crazy, but I had to slow down 2-3 times). I also had a car overtake me, and slam on the breaks when he wanted to make a left turn (given how wet it was last year I had tires lose traction for a brief period of time).

I would say it’s not worse than most other courses, but you definitely need to pay attention.

Started triathlons to get girls, and continued to be better than people.
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Re: Louisville Bike Course [GoJohnnyGo] [ In reply to ]
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I did it last year and would say that the second loop in La Grange is more problematic with athlete congestion than it is with vehicle traffic.

So many groups riding 2,3 and 4 abreast made it more dangerous than a vehicle passing every now and then.

Don't get me wrong it's a great bike course, it just gets a little heavy on that second loop.

https://www.strava.com/athletes/4391866

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Re: Louisville Bike Course [GoJohnnyGo] [ In reply to ]
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I did it in 2015 and largely enjoyed the course, I'd go back. No real issues with car traffic except for the far side of the 2nd loop at the turn back onto US-42, when we got caught behind a line of cars stopping at a light or where the cop was directing traffic. You couldn't pass safely on the right or left. It probably cost me about 45s or so.
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Re: Louisville Bike Course [GoJohnnyGo] [ In reply to ]
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Did Louisville last October, in filthy weather. Which may colour my observations about the course. About 500 bikes didn't finish if I read the results right. A lot of pickups went by with a lot of bikes in them.

I have to admit it's the first time I have raced an IM brand race in the US.

Around these parts few races have traffic, so I was a little unnerved when I found myself behind, beside and in front of impatient traffic including a bus at one point on a single lane and for a few miles a truck with a muffler he was extremely proud of, that required constant and strenuous use None of the roads had a bike lane and the lane had no runoff or verge. There was also some road works (not a lot). The two loops were quite uneventful, although both loops had sections with busy traffic.

But as I mentioned, around my way there's usually little traffic, so I might be a wuss.

As for the course itself, there were only one or two hills of any real consequence, strong bikers will have no problem with a 11-26 less strong 11-28 (what I had) or even 11-32, depending on your chainring size. (53-39 on mine). I would recommend you have an 11, there are some sensibly long downhills. I don't remember using the brakes after T1 and before T2

As the weather was wet and cold, if the forecast is that way, believe them. I would recommend you go prepared with some waterproof gear and it gets a little cooler the higher you go (the loops are in the hills).There were people with garbage bags on, so aero wasn't a concern.

best of luck.
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Re: Louisville Bike Course [GoJohnnyGo] [ In reply to ]
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Raced IMLOU in 2016. I had no issues outside of going through LaGrange. The police were forcing people off the main road (the road through LaGrange which was being used for the course). Some lady stopped to complain to the police, traffic piled up, including us cyclists. Some people were weaving between the cars. I saw one guy hit the "shoulder" to try to go around the cars, which was really just the white line. Lasted probably about 3 minutes of annoying slow traffic. Outside of that, no issues.

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Re: Louisville Bike Course [GoJohnnyGo] [ In reply to ]
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I did it last year. I was briefly stuck behind a few cars and one time a school bus. It was frustrating because it broke up my rhythm, but probably didn't affect my performance that much. For some of us it was just bad luck. There were probably 3-4 ahead of me who had bad luck because they couldn't get around the bus due to narrow lane and on coming traffic. When I caught up to the bus, I was able to find a window to briefly burn a match to pass it.

My training partner who probably wasn't too far behind me, wasn't affected by the traffic at all.
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