Riders must have a roadworthy bicycle, and comply with all road rules.
Common types of bicycles used for Audax riding
Compliance, which is the frame’s ability to smooth out the road and absorb the bumps and imperfections is important as a compliant bike will be easier on the body to ride, and is a hallmark of a good endurance bike.
The geometry of an endurance road bike is characterised by the more upright riding position when compared to more traditional race-orientated bikes. The upright position reduces to stress on the back and neck by ensuring more of the rider’s weight is on the saddle instead of the handlebars.
Longer wheelbases are another key geometrical feature of endurance road bikes as this makes the bike handle with stability on rougher terrain and feel responsive and accurate when at speed on the road.
Skinny seat posts are also starting to be seen more regular, again in an attempt to increase the overall flexibility of the frame.
Disc brakes are becoming increasingly common as they are not affected by dirt or water, furthermore, they offer more consistent braking in all conditions and better modulation, ensuring you won’t have to pull on your brakes as aggressively as you would have to with rim brakes.
Wheels and Tyres
Endurance road bikes typically have tyre clearance that can fit tyres up to 28mm or 32mm. Wider tyres are smoother to ride on and can run at lower pressures, increasing grip on loose ground and reducing the vibrations reaching the rider through the road.
The wider rims allow for a higher volume of air in the tyre, again increasing comfort for the rider.
Wheels typically have 28 or 32 spokes, these are needed both to allow for the stresses associated with disc brakes as well as reliability in the event of a broken spoke. Spokes and nipples are best standard to allow easy replacement at most local bike shops.
Endurance road bikes are normally fitted with a wide gear range and lower ratios than a racing road bike. This allows the rider to get up hills with less effort and keep the legs fresher for longer days in the saddle. It’s likely that a compact chain-set will feature with 50/34 chainset and 28T or 32T largest sprocket.
Other bicycle equipment
- bidons (water bottles)
- cycling computer (refer to: Ride Navigation)