Cycling Freeride: official game rules briefly
Freeride is a certain style of cycling, which is represented by the same discipline in the cycling program. The name is borrowed from the English phrase “free ride”, which translates as “free ride”. Modern freeriding involves cycling along difficult natural and artificial tracks with many different obstacles.
For successful movement, the rider needs special technical training and a special bike. Nevertheless, this sport is suitable for both professionals and amateurs.
Freeride tournaments are held without the intervention of the International Cycling Union. Today, the largest competitions in this discipline are financed by well-known companies that produce sports equipment, gear, bicycles and traditionally are sponsors of major international tournaments in various sports. The more impressive the prize pool of the championship, the higher its prestige. However, there is no need to talk about any systematic nature. The holding of freeride championships is entirely dependent on the priorities and desire of the sponsors.
According to the results of the “regular season”, consisting of a number of major tournaments, world and individual continent championships are revealed, but according to different versions there can be several. In Russia, the national “free ride” tournament is held annually and is recognized by thousands of spectators.
Varieties of Freeride
In its modern form, discipline originated in the United States in the 1980s. At that time, mountain bikes and off-road riding began to come into fashion. The discipline took its name from the same type of skiing. Experienced riders argue that it was freeride that contributed to the development of other extreme types of cycling, like street, cross-country, urban, etc.
Today freeride can be divided into two directions:
- classic (professionals);
- lite (lovers).
The classic variety involves extreme skiing on unprepared mountain slopes with the implementation of all kinds of variations of jumps and tricks. Riders have to go down paths, stones, dirt, tree roots and other obstacles, sometimes artificial.
Many cyclists like this sport due to the fact that training and competitions are held in nature, not burdened by human intervention. However, with such a descent, it is not recommended to contemplate the surrounding picturesque landscapes, as this is fraught with serious injuries. Professional freeriding requires maximum concentration on the track and movement technique.
Lite discipline can additionally be divided into such variations as enduro, light and so on, but the essence remains the same – riding along the track with a minimum of obstacles. Wide forest paths, mountain paths, abandoned tracts are ideal for competitions. In addition, the descent angle is much smaller than in classic freeride. This discipline is suitable for novice cyclists who take their first steps in extreme cycling, or are engaged irregularly, just for the fun of it.
Classic freeride tournaments are allowed only riders with high qualifications, that is, professionals in their field. Such competitions are often held in 2-3 stages, which will be crowned with the finale. Amateur tournaments are distinguished by a large number of participants and the minimum requirements for them and their equipment. Such competitions always begin with the qualification stage, and anyone can take part in it. According to the results of the qualifying stage, the best racers get into the main tournament.
The bike freeride track consists of a large number of different slopes 5 to 30 m high. Athletes must be prepared to meet ski jumps, natural barriers, convolutions, unexpected bends and sharp narrowings of the road.
For large competitions, slopes with many bridges and trees, descents on steep cliffs are often chosen. The rider must be bold and cold-blooded, because on his way there will certainly be crevices and abysses that need to be flown over from acceleration.
If to take for the sake of an example the routes for urban freeriding, then they significantly differ from the classic ones. Competitions are held on the urban landscape, and not in the mountains and forests. Many experts consider this type of extreme cycling even more dangerous than all other types of freeriding. The reason is that city obstacles are always more difficult to identify at high speed, and any fall on the asphalt leads to injuries.
The track for hardtail involves driving around the city, on the road and numerous jumps. It should be designed so that athletes can show all the baggage of their tricks (jumping, jumping, degrees, etc.).
Any kind of freeride is very tram hazardous, therefore, at competitions, the organizers and technical staff pay maximum attention to the safety of participants. However, the athletes themselves bear no less responsibility for their health. It is important for them to observe safety precautions when passing the route and to carefully equip themselves. Otherwise, there is an increased risk of spinal injury, severe head injury or a neck fracture.
Judges must carefully check the participants ’outfit for safety requirements. First of all, this applies to the bicycle helmet, which should be stronger than the standard. Professionals recommend using Full-Face helmets. They protect the head entirely from below and above.
On the neck you need to wear special protective devices that can withstand a serious load on impact. Body protection is attached to the case with special Velcro and snaps. A bicycle suit should be worn over it.
Also, knee pads, elbow pads, plastic bicycle glasses and fingerless leather gloves are considered to be mandatory elements of protection in freeriding. Some riders use mesh masks to prevent dust and dirt from entering the airways.
Only specialized professional bicycles, which are a kind of mountain bike, are suitable for freeride. They are something adjacent between the bikes for the downhill and the classic mountain bike. The main characteristics and requirements for freeride bikes are:
- robust construction;
- powerful brake system;
- high-quality depreciation system;
- wide tires.
The frame and most components of the freeride bike are traditionally made of aluminum alloys. Weight may vary, but it is not recommended to choose too light or heavy bikes. A classic bike for this discipline weighs about 15 kg.
The depreciation system should be two-suspension, with rear and front shock absorbers. An integrated damping and damping system allows you to soften shock loads. The recommended shock absorber stroke is about 7 inches. Suspensions can be spring-oil or spring-elastomeric.