Doyle Rides RAGBRAI
We love supporting our community and our state, what better way to do that than to mention that our own Doyle Wegner is participating in his 11th RAGBRAI ride coming up in August. We sat down with Doyle to see how he prepares for the ride and learn more about this awesome event!
How long have you been riding bikes competitively?
“This is my 11 year participating in RAGBRAI, which began in 1973 as a race across the state of Iowa and is now the oldest, largest, and longest amateur bike ride in the world with around 20,000 participants. The best part is it’s just about the ride, it’s not a race, which allows me to just enjoy the ride and ride for pleasure. I spend those 7 days averaging 67 miles per day focusing on myself and my personal development.”
What made you want to get involved in RAGBRAI?
“I love the challenge and excitement of the event. Plus it gets my whole state involved. My wife drives the car between the towns while I’m on my bike and we stay in host homes which are great. After a long day of bike riding there is nothing better than a shower, a bed, and air conditioning.”
How long does it take to train?
“I try to get between 750 to 1,000 training miles in before the event on the last week of July.”
What is the hardest part about riding for that long of a time?
“Disciplining yourself to ride in the months before the end of July. When the weather isn’t great it makes riding a lot harder. 99% of my training miles are me alone so getting myself to get on a bike and ride takes a lot of discipline. Also, keeping your body conditioned- conditioning is key. Then there are the things people don’t think about, like the right clothing (biking shorts are a must).”
Do you have a team to help if your bike breaks down?
“I don’t ride with a team, so I try to keep my bike in the best condition possible. I’m always checking it for a potential problem. However, if something does happen, there are repair vendors along the route.”
Do you have any tricks to help keep you motivated to ride?
“No tricks, I’m just competitive so that helps drive me.”
Favorite memory from RAGBRAI?
“Early morning sunrises are my favorite part. The “crack of dawn” is always so beautiful and it makes for a nice ride.”
Any tips for someone wanting to get into bike riding?
“My tip is to buy top-notch bikes and equipment. You get what you pay for.”
What safety measures do you take before/while/after riding?
“For the ride: helmet, biking gloves, shoes and shorts. Also, making sure you AWAYS have plenty of water. It also helps to be a defensive rider and always know what’s going on around you. Another thing that people don’t think about is that no matter what, if there is anything that rubs together it will get a hole in it. This includes shorts, so going to a bike store and getting a product that remedies that is important. Also make sure that the clothes you are riding in are bright, so other people on the road can see you.”