Team Guaranty Rider Hints, Tips and Info


Rider List:

Helmet (mandatory)

Photo ID

Cycling attire (jerseys, shorts, shoes, gloves, rain gear if desired)

camera/film (yeah right, who uses film anymore?)

tube and inflator, although if you look helpless enough there will be plenty of people who will help

rider number attached to your bike – must be on before drop off with Craig

rider number attached to your helmet

money/CC (although not much needed, or opportunity to spend during ride)

water bottles – highly recommend two cages and bottles

sunscreen (HIGHLY recommended)/lipbalm

cycling/sun glasses

MS150 inspection sticker (again, HIGHLY recommended)

sleeping bag, pup tent, tarp, inflatable mattress, cot, pillow, etc

Hotel confirmation number


Houston overnight bag:

Walkman and book for bus ride to Houston

prescription medication if needed


Saturday cycling clothes, helmet, gloves, shoes, sock, cycling glasses, sunscreen, GU/Powerbars


LaGrange overnight bag:

Sunday cycling clothes

shower shoes/sandals

clean clothes for after shower

Team Guaranty after-ride t-shirt

flashlight (we will have a few extras)


towel, soap, toiletries for shower

camera (although I’ll have several digital cams going


Transportation to Houston:

-                  There is virtually NO parking alloted downtown, so….

-                  Bring your bike to work on Friday

-                  No earlier than noon and no later than 2:30pm, meet Craig at “smoker’s corner” garage entrance for bike drop-off.  Craig will transport bikes downtown beginning at noon.  Last bike transport to downtown leaves at 2:30.

-                  Bring your sleeping bag, tent, etc that you want in LaGrange down with your bike and we will put in the Ryder truck for direct transport to LaGrange.  DO NOT put in anything you will want before Saturday night in LaGrange – you won’t see the truck again until then.

-                  Leave your car in the TI garage over the weekend

-                  Put your Houston overnight stuff (toiletries), your Saturday cycling clothes, helmet, gloves, shoes, sock, cycling glasses, sunscreen, GU/Powerbars in a Houston overnight bag and BRING IT WITH YOU.

-                  Hop on the Temple-Inland passenger van at the REAR of the building for drop-off downtown.  Van will run about every 30 minutes, beginning at 1:00 (if I have a driver, otherwise, beginning at 3:00 or so after I finish with the bikes.) LAST RUN to downtown leaves at 4:00.

-                  Pick up a bus ticket at the red NMSS tents at the Hilton and board the bus

-                  Make sure you have your Houston overnight bag – you will be leaving your overnight bag with our volunteer at the hotel Saturday morning for transport to LaGrange, but we have to transport 30 bags and a few volunteers, so keep it limited!

-                  Wear whatever you will want on Friday evening.

-                  The NMSS bus ONLY goes to the OMNI Westside.  If you are staying elsewhere, you will have to get your own transportation (see me for info on how/where to show up Saturday).  If you don’t have OMNI reservations, let me know asap.


Saturday morning:

-                  NMSS provides bus transportation from the hotel to Tully stadium.  I would like to have everyone meet downstairs by 5:45 am so I can make sure we are all there and make sure we get over and get our bikes before the start.  There will be a mad rush for buses starting at 6:00.  Ride starts at 7:00.

-                  Wear your Team Guaranty jersey!

-                  If we have time, I’ll snap a quick pic.


During the ride:

-                  Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!  You’re not in this to lose weight!  Anytime you see water or Gatorade, drink as much as you think you can.  Do NOT wait until you feel thirsty – by then it’s too late.

-                  Re-apply sunscreen at lunch…trust me, just do it.

-                  Fuel yourself – same as with fluid, do it before you think you need it.  Stop at a rest stop – eat a banana or cookie.  Gu or Powerbar at least once in the morning and once after lunch.

-                  Don’t stop at the first rest stop if you can help it…lines are too long

-                  Remember, this is not a race.  There are no trophies or “credit” for getting there first.  Have FUN.  Talk to others during the ride – make new friends.  Help others that have mechanical problems or just look like they’re struggling.

-                  Look for Team Guaranty jerseys with the T-wheel cyclist and buddy up!

-         If you're ready to fly, hop on the Team Guaranty bullet train to Bellville

-                  Day 1 is 100 miles.  Day 2 is 85 miles.

-                  Two routes out of LaGrange Sunday morning.  Only one goes through the Bastrop Park (hills and fun).

-                  Tour Photography – Marathon Foto will be taking pictures along the route – if you see ‘em, smile!  Make sure you rider number is on your helmet so they can get you proofs.

-                  BIKE ETIQUETTE/SAFETY:

o      Remember, this is a tour, not a race.  Be nice.  If someone cuts you off, just let ‘em go (Tom, no tackling riders!)

o      Unclip early at stops and don’t be in a big hurry to clip back in once you get going.  The first 10 miles is a lot of stop and go.

o      At the start, give folks a little room in front of you.  Many are not experienced pack riders and many will be a little unsteady at the beginning.

o      If you get in a drafting line, stay up on your hands not down in aerobars

o      Pass on the left only.

o      Make sure other riders don’t mind you drafting off them – some folks get pretty uptight.

o      You’ll get tired of hearing “slowing”, “stopping”, but bear with it.

o      Some, but not all roads will be closed, and there will be SAG wagon traffic throughout so be aware of vehicles.  No walkmans.


In LaGrange:

-                  Our tent is near the right rear of the fairgrounds.  Stay on the dirt road after you finish and head to the back and you’ll find it.  There’ll be a big Guaranty banner.  Maps of the fairgrounds will be distributed once NMSS sends to me. Call me on cell if you can't find the tent.

-                  Dinner is barbeque chicken by NMSS – it’s pretty good

-                  Breakfast is pancakes by NMSS – very good, but get up and in line early!

-                  We will have plenty of water, Gatorade, soft drinks, beer, chips, cookies, etc.  If you have a particular favorite, pack it in your LaGrange bag for transport to LaGrange.

-                  We will have two “private” portapottys at our tent.  Shower trucks are provided by NMSS about 200 yds from the tent.

-                  If you would like volunteers to try to pitch your tent, please let me know…but no promises.

-                  We will have limited medical supplies at the tent – aloe vera, sunscreen, bandages, advil, ben-gay.  NMSS will have a big medical tent for anything more serious.

-                  We will have a few tubes, CO2 canisters and bike pumps.  Don’t count on tubes though, put a couple in your LaGrange bag to be safe.

-                  We will meet as soon as everyone is in LaGrange for a group photo at the “photo bleacher” – everyone must have on their Team Guaranty jersey for the pic!

-                  Wear your Team Guaranty after-ride t-shirt after you shower.  Make sure everyone knows we are the best team out there!


In Austin:

-                  We will not have a tent in Austin – only a few teams get them.  We will have a place staked out in the team parking area for the team truck – that will be our gathering point.  We will try to have volunteers at the finish line to meet you and direct you to our location – look for Team Guaranty t-shirts or jerseys.

-                  We will transport people and bikes back to Temple Inland on a flexible schedule

-                  Beverages and snacks will be at the Ryder truck.

-                  Invite relatives and friends to come be a spectator, but warn them that the whole darn area around the capital back to the State History Museum and up to MLK will be closed off.



BE FLEXIBLE.  Things will go wrong, we may have transportation or other logistics problems, etc.  Help us work through them.  Remember the volunteers are just that – make sure to thank them early and often.

back to Team Guaranty page