Two’sDay Tandems, Races and life on a boat…
Just sit right back and hear a tail, a tail of a fateful trip, a tail of tiny wheels, which really know how to rip. The Stoker was a mighty pedaler, the Captain brave and sure. The Tandem with tiny wheels charted its course for the race and here is their tale:
We purchased our Bike Friday Tandem Two’sDay last year after test riding one at the Bike Friday headquarters. We bought it knowing we had several overseas trips planned for the next few years, and this was the first. Bike Friday was the first to make a folding tandem bike so this was a big deal for us to be buying a bike from the people who first took on this challenge.
This wasn’t our first trip to the islands but we were inspired by a chance to ride a tandem and participate in a race on a return trip, we couldn’t say no. Of the 75 tandems on our cruise ship, ours was the only BF(Bike Friday). So, after a week of riding each of the Tahitian islands, we returned to the island of Tahiti where we met up with 150 more tandem riders, who were waiting to embark on the same cruise we had just completed. Of the 75 couples on the second cruise, there were two more BF tandems.
The Le Ronde Tahitienne is the largest sporting event in French Polynesia and as part of our cruise, we were all entered as contestants in the race.
The race was very well organized and all distances were an out and back format that hugged the shoreline of the island There were a couple of 10% grade hills to climb and as usual what goes up must come down. Our BF did not disappoint on the descents, even in the rain. As a side-note, we must say that after this ride we had to pull the whole bike apart to clean all the salt-water off of the bike as it got into everything. Make sure to plan for this after your trip and don’t wait a month/year to do it as you will pay the price down the road.
We had several people asking us the usual questions about the smaller wheels and whether we had to peddle more. All of their questions were answered when our BF held its own on the flats, which was evident by the many people drafting us when they could keep up. People were also surprised when we passed them or just hung with them on the climbs.
After the halfway, turn around point, of the race we were able to see the faces of the riders behind us. What I noticed was a lot of heads were turning to look at the couple on the funny looking bike with the little wheels that cost one half to one-quarter of what they may have spent on their 700 wheeled bikes.
The benefits of having the BF even got better when we returned to the cruise ship to box our bikes for the flight home. While others had to wait a couple of hours to gain access to their bike boxes and tools, we retrieved our Samsonite cases from under our stateroom bed and had our BF all boxed up while others were just getting their boxes. A side-note on folding bikes vs. coupler bikes…Bike Friday makes the most amazing folding bike and it’s just too easy to fold for travel.
We look forward to touring Ireland and Germany later this year on our BF.
Readers can follow our BF adventures at lets_bike_together on Instagram and @biketogether.norco on Facebook. Our mobile bike repair and Bike Friday sales business is at letsbiketogether.com
Thanks for reading our story…hope to see you on the road with two wheels under you and a smile on your face.
Brings back memories of circumnavigating Moorea, the island pictured in the post by bicycle. Unfortunately it was done on borrowed folding bikes not on a BF. Would have been a much better ride on a my NWT but still was a memorable ride. This more than a couple of decades ago and much of the road was unpaved but there was virtually no traffic. Would be interesting to go back to do the ride again to see the changes.