Team Nebo Ridge, Inc. presents:
Zionsville Harvest 50 Race and 25 Gravel Challenge Ride
Benefiting Maplelawn Farmstead, Inc.
October 28, 2017
Frequently Asked Questions:
What is the Harvest 50 Race and the Harvest 25 Challenge Ride?
The Zionsville Harvest 50 is a gravel and country road race taking place on Saturday, October 28, starting at Historic Maplelawn Farmstead in Zionsville, Indiana.
The Zionsville Harvest 25 Challenge Ride is a non-competitive ride on gravel and country roads which will start and take place at the same time. The Harvest 25 is an ideal introduction to gravel road rides and racing but is non-competitive.
Both courses will take racers and riders – during harvest time – on a series of long, flat, beautiful roads by and through farms of Boone County, Indiana. Even those of us who live in the area only infrequently see or experience this countryside. There will be times where you cannot see any houses or homes – only farm fields.
Will the race or ride be controlled for motor vehicular traffic?
Except for the first and last couple of miles – NO! Both events will use a police escorted “neutral” roll-out of approximately 2 miles from Maplelawn Farmstead in the middle of Zionsville on paved roads to the footbridge at Turkey Foot Park in Zionsville, after which the race will officially start. From this point, there is a ¾ mile unimproved dirt road, followed by 1.5 mile of gravel road, before racers and riders enter back on Zionsville paved roads with moderate vehicular traffic. There will be controls and assistance for the next 3 miles through intersections after which you will turn onto and subsequently ride on mostly gravel roads. From this point on, there are no controls until that last two miles when intersections will be controlled. You will largely be on your own and required to follow the rules of the road subject to disqualification.
Note well that you will have stops as you cross busy highways and roads, and you WILL HAVE TO STOP AND PROCEEED WITH CAUTION. These and other intersections with stop signs may totally screw up your racing strategy and your time.
Furthermore, since harvest will be going on, depending on weather, the roads may have large farm vehicles and implements in them or traveling along them – and such vehicles WILL HAVE THE RIGHT OF WAY. This may also totally screw up your racing strategy and time! (But it is an experience to see an ongoing harvest.)
At any other time during the race or ride, despite these roads being generally very low traffic, you will likely encounter motor vehicles which may slow or impede you. Follow the rules of the road or you will be disqualified. This may also totally screw up your racing strategy and time!
As you must understand, for our race and ride, as with most gravel road races – winning and time are secondary to safely enjoying the trip and the experience. You are at grave risk of injury, and even death, if you fail to follow the rules of the road, or fail to ride defensively of other vehicles. Do not enter or participate if you cannot abide by these rules or follow this safety ethos. Finally, please be understand that these are our Boone County neighbors and respect them. They certainly will have every right to be on these roads, and they may furthermore be in the process of earning their livelihood.
What kind of roads are we racing or riding on?
Be prepared for very narrow, rural roads including about 10 miles of pavement including rougher and narrower chip and seal paved road, 1 mile of unimproved dirt road near the start and the remainder gravel road. The gravel roads may be wet and sloppy, or dry and very dusty, or may have long sections of recently laid fresh and loose gravel.
Do you have a map of the course route? Can I upload the route?
The 2017 Harvest 50 route can be found at www.RideWithGPS.com/routes/26399556. From the RideWithGPS map page, you may print the map and cue sheets and export to your PC, smartphone, or Garmin or other GPS device. For use of a smartphone, you will need to download the RideWithGPS app and set up an account (free accounts are available).
The course for 2017 is actually 55 miles long and uses a variety of a roads different from 2016 including a different last 4 miles to finish at Maplelawn Farmstead. Maps and cue sheets for both the Harvest 50 and 25 routes will be copied and available during registration. The courses this year will be marked with small 12"x18" yard signs, but we cannot guarantee that signs will remain or not be defaced. You are responsible for knowing the course!
What kind of bike or tires should I use?
We recommend mountain bikes or cyclocross bikes with a minimum tire width of 33 mm. Our gravel in Boone County can be very "plush"!
What kind of sag will there be? What do I bring with me?
There will be at least two water-only and food sags for the 50 mile course and at least one for the 25 mile riders. Bring and carry your own flavored or replenishment drinks or special gels or foods if these are important to you.
Mechanical sag help will not be available. The ethic of gravel road racing is to be prepared to get yourself out of the boonies. Flats are common on gravel roads. Your tires should be in good shape. You will need a couple of extra tubes, a multi-tool, a flat repair kit, a means of air (pump or multiple CO2 cartridges), a tire boot, a chain link remover, extra chain links/pins/quick links, water bottles or hydration pack. Finally, bring a cellphone, dear.
Where do I park?
If the weather is fair, most will be able to park at Maplelawn Farmstead in the parking field which also will be our finish line chute this year. In inclement weather, or as overflow, you may park "next door" at the Zionsville Mulberry Fields Park parking lot at the corner of Whitestown Road and Ford Road in Zionsville. Maplelawn Farmstead is connected to the park and its parking lot by a 200 yard walking path.
Where is the start/finish?
The race start will be at Maplelawn Farmstead at 10 am for all categories. You will be paraded (neutral) 2.1 miles through town and stopped and staged for the official start just north of the pedestrian footbridge in Zionsville’s Turkey Foot Park. Because of the footbridge and busy roads between this point and Maplelawn Farmstead, we want any “racing” to be north of this point.
You will finish at Maplelawn Farmstead -- unlike in 2015 and 2016.
Lunch and beverages, will be served between noon-3:30 p.m. at Maplelawn Farmstead and tours of Maplelawn Farmstead will be conducted hourly. Top finishers by category in the Harvest 50 will be honored at an awards ceremony at 3:30 p.m.
Will showers be available?
What is Maplelawn Farmstead?
Maplelawn Farmstead is an historical Zionsville farmhouse and outbuildings in the middle of (now) suburban Zionsville. Located on Town park property, the farmstead lies adjacent to Mulberry Fields Park. It is owned and operated by a 501-c-3 organization, Maplelawn Farmstead, Inc., which is dedicated to preserving, educating and inspiring us about the rich farm heritage of this area of Indiana.