2012 Audax Alpine Classic

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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby feral grasshopper » Wed Feb 01, 2012 6:01 am

psike wrote:Had the pleasure of sharing dinner on Sunday evening with the oldest female rider to complete the ACE250 to date. I can't remember so much infectious enthusiasm at having completed a ride - so a (deserved) sense of accomplishment. This lady has done the raid in the past so knew what was in store with the back o'falls. I was amused by her story about having to get off and walk on the Falls climb, only to realise it would probably be easier to change off the big chain ring.

I also had the fortune of riding Hotham earlier in the week with Tony, in his 70s, a long time Audaxer and now volunteer. He was coaching a young guy up the hill who'd never ridden a decent hill before, and in the week of the Semaine Federale conquered both Buffalo and Hotham. The discussion over a beer back in Bright with another gentleman in his 70s who was attempting the ACE and feeling much more confident after his day on Hotham.

When the strong riders fly past I look with envy, but it's Audax. Time doesn't matter as long as it's within the brevet time. Ride time is irrelevant, it's elapsed time that matters because it's Audax. The Lantern Rouge reminds us that the inspiring riders are at the back of the bunch, not the front.


Nice! Very much 'like'. :D
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby cavebear2 » Wed Feb 01, 2012 8:08 am

Times aside, (In the true spirit of Audax :) ) well done to all who rode and fought their personal battles or who found company/encouragement in others. These rides are character building aren't they?

It was much hotter for me on the ACE when compared to last year. Omeo had a max. of 31 (last year 25 I think) Being 2.5 hrs later than last year made the heat that much worse on the Back o' Falls.
My preparation was poor for this years event when compared to last year. The last straw was when I visited a GP in Bright on Friday morning and he told me not to ride on the w/e because of the severe dermatitis inflammation that I had on my butt and 1 or 2 other places which had never really cleared up since PBP in August last year. 2 days later with no riding and steroidal ointment applied liberally and a course of antibiotics on board (which upset my stomach a bit) I woke at 6:08AM to find out that my alarm had failed. I made it to the start in record time and started a bit late at 6:30AM. A very peaceful and beautiful ride up Mt Hotham where I picked up the stragglers just after the park entrance.

To be continued when I get back to Perth......... :D
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby Daccordi Rider » Wed Feb 01, 2012 9:03 am

Well done to all. You guys who spend 12+ hrs doing this amaze me. I did the 200km in 8.05 and pretty much everything was hurting by then, except my butt (thanks new fisik saddle). I can't imagine another 4 hrs in the saddle. I had a great ride and enjoyed it much more than last year which was a bit of a sufferfest on Buffalo. A good eating plan which I stuck to helped my energy levels. Mrs D finished the 200km in 7.23 and was told she was first female across the line, pretty proud of that!

Most of all thank to the people who organise and run the event. Brilliant as always, see you next year.
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby number21 » Wed Feb 01, 2012 10:36 pm

feral grasshopper wrote:
psike wrote:Had the pleasure of sharing dinner on Sunday evening with the oldest female rider to complete the ACE250 to date. I can't remember so much infectious enthusiasm at having completed a ride - so a (deserved) sense of accomplishment. This lady has done the raid in the past so knew what was in store with the back o'falls. I was amused by her story about having to get off and walk on the Falls climb, only to realise it would probably be easier to change off the big chain ring.

I also had the fortune of riding Hotham earlier in the week with Tony, in his 70s, a long time Audaxer and now volunteer. He was coaching a young guy up the hill who'd never ridden a decent hill before, and in the week of the Semaine Federale conquered both Buffalo and Hotham. The discussion over a beer back in Bright with another gentleman in his 70s who was attempting the ACE and feeling much more confident after his day on Hotham.

When the strong riders fly past I look with envy, but it's Audax. Time doesn't matter as long as it's within the brevet time. Ride time is irrelevant, it's elapsed time that matters because it's Audax. The Lantern Rouge reminds us that the inspiring riders are at the back of the bunch, not the front.


Nice! Very much 'like'. :D


Yeah, well said Psike. +1
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby pupztt » Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:23 am

Finished the 200 in close to 12 hrs (9hrs riding time). Been cycling for almost a year now and had no idea how difficult a 20km climb would be - longest climb I've done before is the shorter ones in Sydney (can't prepare you for Mt Buffalo or Falls Creek either). Most painful thing I've ever experienced. Respect too all the riders who rode on the weekend. Big thumbs up to the organisers and volunteers for a such a great event. May stick to commuting for the foreseeable future...until the pain subsides
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby hitch » Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:33 am

hannos wrote:Garmin says 46016 pedals strokes...


Out of curiosity, is this on the speedo, or on connect? If connect, where can you view this figure?

Great ride too, btw.
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby oldnewby » Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:46 am

jules21 wrote:i kept thinking of stuart o'grady's saying: "pain is temporary, memories are forever". it's a real adventure grinding out there with fellow cyclists, it puts a big smile on my face remembering bits of the ride.

same here jules21
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby hannos » Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:55 am

hitch wrote:
hannos wrote:Garmin says 46016 pedals strokes...


Out of curiosity, is this on the speedo, or on connect? If connect, where can you view this figure?

Great ride too, btw.



Connect.garmin.com on the 'Activities' page. Strokes = 46016. I'm assuming that's pedal strokes.
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby Eleri » Thu Feb 02, 2012 9:01 am

MarkD_83 wrote:Well I have a massive sense of achievement. I started riding about 5 months ago. Never really ridden a hill. I don't know why I even decided to do it. But I registered for the 130km. Did the ride in 5hr 17mins. I'm now going to get fitter and do the 200km next year.


Great work though MarkD! 5 months riding is a great effort. You can't imagine a hill that long until you have to ride one. But it does get less daunting, doesn't necessarily get easier. :)

Because, of the above, 5 months riding and you managed so much, very impressive. I wish I had the stamina of a 28 year old, but I can't turn back time. Well done, I am sure you will achieve great things with your riding



Ah, Apple we are the same age and you are definitely stronger than me and with more training in your legs, you can do it.
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby Eleri » Thu Feb 02, 2012 9:07 am

__PG__ wrote:
Eleri wrote:Well done to everyone who rode on the day. It was hot and windy but at least the storm held off and I didn't have to worry about being electrocuted on a steel bike.

Kudos for doing all that climbing on a steel bike. What sort of rig is it?


I'm quite small and it was built for me by David Bowan of Bobo frames in Newtown, Sydney about 2 years ago. I'm just a bit too small to fit anything off the rack - my top tube length is only 475mm! It's my everything road bike from racing to touring and has 650c wheels (like Apple said). Handbuilt carbon fibre just that little bit expensive and the weight savings aren't that much anyway on a really small frame. I lost 4 kgs - that was probably a better investment :) I didn't have anything special on it, just a larger under-seat bag than I would normally ride with. And I put an 11-28 cluster on for the ride, I had been riding with a 12-27 and I've got compacts.
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby Apple » Thu Feb 02, 2012 9:56 am

Eleri wrote:I lost 4 kgs - that was probably a better investment :) I didn't have anything special on it, just a larger under-seat bag than I would normally ride with. And I put an 11-28 cluster on for the ride, I had been riding with a 12-27 and I've got compacts.


I lost 4.5kg since I saw you last Eleri, my 650c bike is also made the same as your bike, if I ever do that ride, that is IF but only 130km, I will get the 28 cluster as well



Eleri wrote:Ah, Apple we are the same age and you are definitely stronger than me and with more training in your legs, you can do it.


:shock: I think you have hypoxia from the mountains
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby snark » Thu Feb 02, 2012 1:02 pm

hannos wrote:Connect.garmin.com on the 'Activities' page. Strokes = 46016. I'm assuming that's pedal strokes.


Which Garmin do you have?

I've got an Edge 500 with the GSC10 cadence sensor, and my "Total Strokes" column in the activities page is totally blank. It almost sounds like a swimming measurement rather than a cycling measurement.

Cheers,
Simon.
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby hannos » Thu Feb 02, 2012 2:41 pm

snark wrote:
hannos wrote:Connect.garmin.com on the 'Activities' page. Strokes = 46016. I'm assuming that's pedal strokes.


Which Garmin do you have?

I've got an Edge 500 with the GSC10 cadence sensor, and my "Total Strokes" column in the activities page is totally blank. It almost sounds like a swimming measurement rather than a cycling measurement.

Cheers,
Simon.



Edge 800 here.
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby snark » Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:00 pm

hannos wrote:
snark wrote:
hannos wrote:Connect.garmin.com on the 'Activities' page. Strokes = 46016. I'm assuming that's pedal strokes.


Which Garmin do you have?

I've got an Edge 500 with the GSC10 cadence sensor, and my "Total Strokes" column in the activities page is totally blank. It almost sounds like a swimming measurement rather than a cycling measurement.


Edge 800 here.


So I now have two questions:
  1. Does anyone with an Edge 500 have the stroke count?
  2. Does anyone with an Edge 800 not have the stroke count?

Cheers,
Simon.
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby feral grasshopper » Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:05 pm

Apple wrote:
Eleri wrote:I lost 4 kgs - that was probably a better investment :) I didn't have anything special on it, just a larger under-seat bag than I would normally ride with. And I put an 11-28 cluster on for the ride, I had been riding with a 12-27 and I've got compacts.


I lost 4.5kg since I saw you last Eleri, my 650c bike is also made the same as your bike, if I ever do that ride, that is IF but only 130km, I will get the 28 cluster as well



Eleri wrote:Ah, Apple we are the same age and you are definitely stronger than me and with more training in your legs, you can do it.


:shock: I think you have hypoxia from the mountains



Now come on Apple, we shall do the 130 together, we are well matched, and u will greatly enjoy yourself, i am determined on it! that Eleri dudette is far too fast, we can be sensible together! :lol: :lol: :lol:

PS: get an 11/32 lime moi! :mrgreen:
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby Apple » Thu Feb 02, 2012 8:21 pm

feral grasshopper wrote:[Now come on Apple, we shall do the 130 together, we are well matched, and u will greatly enjoy yourself, i am determined on it! that Eleri dudette is far too fast, we can be sensible together! :lol: :lol: :lol:

PS: get an 11/32 lime moi! :mrgreen:

WHAT 11/32, No way. :P I will go as high as 28. but I will still ride with you. :P
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby toppity » Fri Feb 03, 2012 8:32 am

This thread has given me a goal. I'm going to do the 130km next year. :D
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby Gassy » Fri Feb 03, 2012 8:51 am

I've just completed my 17th Audax Alpine classic.(Best time too!) Still get a great grin on my face and magnificent sence of achievement every time I start the final downhill into Bright, although nothing compares to the elation I felt the first time I reached the summit of Buffalo. Great memories, although thankfully I've forgotten all the painfull ones :D .

It's great seeing and hearing people having a go at their first attempt and achieving what most people would think impossible. As said, it's not the fast guys that deserve all the accolades but those who endure the longest , suffering in the heat and on the hills that get my kudos. Well done everyone.
It is a magnificent event and if you're thinking about having a go - Do it. ( and book accomodation early!! :wink: )
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby oldnewby » Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:39 am

Gassy wrote:It is a magnificent event and if you're thinking about having a go - Do it. ( and book accomodation early!! )

+100
toppity wrote:This thread has given me a goal. I'm going to do the 130km next year.

Keep in touch toppity, I'm def goin again next year after my first attempt this year. Where abouts in West Gippsland are you from?
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby toppity » Fri Feb 03, 2012 2:30 pm

^^Longwarry mate. We will have to get together for a ride soon. Having said that you can always come and join the masses in Warragul on a Sunday morning for a group ride. I found out last Sunday that there are now 4 groups that leave before 8:15 in the morning now. 7:40, 7:50, 8:00 and 8:15. I pretty much always go in the 8:15 group. We average around 30km/h and it's fun. There are usually 20-30 people. 7:40 and 7:50 are a steady pace, 8:00 is quite fast (at least B grade race pace) and the 8:15 as described above. I ride to and from the ride to get some extra km's in.
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby cavebear2 » Fri Feb 03, 2012 5:26 pm

It was much hotter for me on the ACE when compared to last year. This was mainly due to my 4:00AM start time last year which I would recommend to anyone wishing to ride the ACE, fast or slow.

This year Omeo had a max. of 31.3 (last year 29.2) Starting 2.5 hrs later than last year made the ride much warmer, especially on the Back o' Falls & Tawonga Gap climbs.

My preparation was poor for this years event when compared to last year. The last straw was when I visited a GP in Bright on Friday morning and he told me not to ride on the w/e because of the severe dermatitis inflammation that I had on my behind (and 1 or 2 other places :oops: ) which had never really cleared up since my PBP ride in August last year. 2 days later with no riding and steroidal ointment applied liberally and a course of antibiotics on board (which upset my stomach a bit) I woke at 6:08AM to find out that my alarm had failed. I made it to the start in record time and started a bit late at 6:30AM.

My ride started with a very peaceful and beautiful ride up Mt Hotham where I picked a couple of stragglers just after the park entrance. At this stage I was just focused on beating the cut off times at controls, having started a bit late and having had so many obstacles in the way of my preparation since I fractured my hip in late October last year. This year I was really wondering about my ability to make it to Falls Creek (190km) in 10hr 23m, the cut off time being 16:53. However, I guess my legs just have so many km in them that they adapted to the grind and made it to Falls Creek by 15:30 :D On the way I witnessed the courage and carnage of a fair few riders grinding up the Back O' Falls, some walking and many grinding along slowly on the RH side of the ride in an effort to make maximum use of what shade was available. Thanks to Audax for the frequent water stops on this stretch. I reached 1 just as my water ran out. (the unmanned drum before the Raspberry Hill stop) I was using a 3L hydration kit & drank 14 litres of fluid during the ride. I think it was a combination of the heat and the antibiotics that I was on, (which were giving me the runs) that caused me to finally succumb to the heat on the climb up Tawonga gap. My climbing speed dropped to a woeful 8.5kmh and I just didn't have the energy to stand up as I normally do. All I could do was look wistfully at the poles at the side of the road wondering whether to stop for a short rest in a shady spot. The last 2 kms seemed to take forever but at last I reached the summit and headed for the railing in the shade where I had a 15min stop and something to eat and drink. The nausea subsided enough to enable me to descend cautiously with a nice cool breeze rushing over my sweat soaked body. Then followed the traditional hard push to Bright to beat whatever goal had come into my fuzzy mind. It was fantastic to be cheered across the finish line and be greeted by my wife and then meet up with Ausrandoman in the car park.

My new bike did the job well and the gearing of 34/28 suited my spinning technique well so that standing up was not too essential on all but the steepest gradients. My recent build did point to 1 fitting issue though and I'm going from a 90mm stem to a 110 or 120mm. I was far too cramped and a little unstable on the longer descents, especially the long Falls Creek descent. Also the Hi 5 endurance powder that I used in my 3L bladder worked extremely well and I didn't feel hungry during the ride, although I did eat a couple of bananas at Falls Creek.

Later that night I woke with uncontrollable shivering and nausea which sorted itself after a couple of visits to the loo. The next day after 9hrs sleep, I did feel pretty average and wasn't feeling myself until Tuesday when I managed an ascent of the 6km climb (6.7% avg.) up the Bright side of Tawonga Gap in 20 minutes (late afternoon, lovely and cool :D ) as a farewell to Victoria for another year.

Thanks again to all the Audax volunteers but especially Phil Bellette for his significant ongoing efforts (12 years now) in making the AAC such an incredible success and a truly great amateur event. The French dancers were great. Maybe the circus component of the act will accompany next year? I've submitted my vote to Phil. :)

Well done to all who rode and fought their personal battles or who found company/encouragement in others. These rides are character building and unforgettable aren't they? :D
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby MREJ » Fri Feb 03, 2012 7:05 pm

Well, I’m back home now after the Audax ACE 250. It was an amazing event. I loved it! Here are some observations for those who might be contemplating similar rides (or are just curious).

Firstly, this would be the most demanding ride and satisfying ride I’ve done. My Garmin recorded about 5,800m climbing (adjusted) in close to 250ks. I’ve ridden big mountains before but not two in a day with all that distance between them.

In the end, my riding partner (brother-in-law) and I were pretty happy with our riding time of 10.45 and total time of 13 hours, and stoked with the overall experience. We had to slow down a lot for about 3 hours when Michael was ill, and take extended stops at the rest breaks. It was good then that we were riding together. I don’t like to think how miserable it would have been to have no mates nearby in a remote area in that situation. And then when I had a bit of a turn later, he had revved up and was able to encourage me along for a while.

Here are some observations from our experience:
· It's worth doing a lot of prep riding including both big climbs and distance. For those in Sydney, there are just no climbs around here that compare, so you’d need to travel or do repeats. For example, the back of Falls Ck is like Otford Wall (hardest climb on the southside) times 4.
· It was great to start at 4am and ride with the bunch to the bottom of Mt Hotham. After Hotham, the riders naturally spread out a lot, but you could still pick up company at most points along the way.
· Obvious point – leave some gas in the tank for the last parts of the ride. We got a big surge of adrenalin in the last 20ks and hammered them at about 40kmh. It was nice to be able to do that.
· I ate 3 Cadel Evans bars, some scroggin, 4 salt tablets, a packet of energy jubes, about 4 bananas, a muffin, a ham, cheese and salad roll, several bits of cake, two apple turnovers, and various other fruit servings. I drank numerous bidons of water, tipped a fair bit on my head, and also drank about 3 or 4 bottles of powdered energy drink, various cups of coffee and cordial, and a 600ml bottle of Coke. Some of this was stuff I took with me but it was mostly from the brilliant rest stops. If you’re going unsupported, there’d be obvious logistical issues.
· Ride with at least one friend and stay with them. It helps a lot when you’re feeling low, which has to be a possibility on a big ride. Would also help in event of a mechanical. For example, we came by a guy who’d come from Adelaide just for the event, and snapped his derailleur hanger in the “middle of nowhere” between Omeo and Falls Creek. We helped turn his bike into a single speed (hint – take a chain breaker and quick link), but I’m not very confident he made it – I’d expect he ended up in a support vehicle. A very miserable outcome and a situation where it’d be nice to have company.
· Use easy gears. I rode a small gear of 34/28 which I put on for the ride. So nice to have that when you’ve already done 150k and the steepest 9k hill you’ve ever ridden suddenly pops up in front of you! Michael disdained an offer of a 27 and kept his normal 39/25 – he ended up walking parts of the back of Falls. I don’t think he’ll do that again!
· The Audax team and volunteers did a marvellous job. I’ve done mass participation rides in 4 states of Australia and overseas, and this definitely ranks with the best in terms of organisation and support.
· I was a bit surprised not to feel too bad afterwards. I bathed in the Ovens River with everyone else, did my stretches and put on compression tights. Next day I was just pleasantly tired and I’m now itching to get back on the bike.
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby oldnewby » Sat Feb 04, 2012 4:47 pm

toppity wrote:^^Longwarry mate. We will have to get together for a ride soon. Having said that you can always come and join the masses in Warragul on a Sunday morning for a group ride. I found out last Sunday that there are now 4 groups that leave before 8:15 in the morning now. 7:40, 7:50, 8:00 and 8:15. I pretty much always go in the 8:15 group. We average around 30km/h and it's fun. There are usually 20-30 people. 7:40 and 7:50 are a steady pace, 8:00 is quite fast (at least B grade race pace) and the 8:15 as described above. I ride to and from the ride to get some extra km's in.

sounds good, I'd be interested in one of those group rides sometime for sure. What distance are they?
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby number21 » Mon Feb 06, 2012 11:05 am

MREJ wrote:
Here are some observations from our experience:
· It's worth doing a lot of prep riding including both big climbs and distance. For those in Sydney, there are just no climbs around here that compare, so you’d need to travel or do repeats. For example, the back of Falls Ck is like Otford Wall (hardest climb on the southside) times 4.


Nice write up MREJ.

I actually found the Otford wall kind of harder than the start of Falls, I used it many times in the lead up to the ACE and was always my turn-around point so already had some climbing in the legs. I would guess that its because its steeper for longer maybe. Although I was having nightmares after hearing comments about the Back-O-Falls it was nice to be pleasantly suprised (in sick sort of way). But as you mentioned the long grind out of there was a killer, especially with all the walking wounded around, and baking hot sun reflecting straight into your face. Not knowning when it would end was tough for me also, but got there eventually.

Regarding training in Sydney, I mostly hit the RNP and always used a gear one or two cogs harder than I'd prefer and try to stay seated as long as possible. My smallest combo of 34/25 was also off limits until Falls, nice to have that up my sleeve!
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Re: 2012 Audax Alpine Classic

Postby hannos » Mon Feb 06, 2012 2:31 pm

number21 wrote:. But as you mentioned the long grind out of there was a killer, especially with all the walking wounded around, and baking hot sun reflecting straight into your face. Not knowning when it would end was tough for me also, but got there eventually.

Regarding training in Sydney, I mostly hit the RNP and always used a gear one or two cogs harder than I'd prefer and try to stay seated as long as possible. My smallest combo of 34/25 was also off limits until Falls, nice to have that up my sleeve!



Indeed it was a killer but those walking were the carrot for me. I couldn't let them, or anyone else, see me walking so I had to just keep on climbing.

Next time I think I'll actually ride some hills before doing the 250...
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