I've had this nagging feeling about cycling this year, and I seem to be caught in between the racer wannabes and the "just-ride-for-fun" crowd. All this mileage chasing and racing the rabbits has had me a bit disturbed. So, I decided to look into this randonneuring thing that I've heard so much about lately. Well, I think this just may be the ticket.
The emphasis on this type of cycling is primarily on the individual and not geared towards any kind of racing per se. Although the events have to be completed before a certain time limit, the time limits seem to be doable at a reasonable pace. Not only are these rides doable, they seem to be quite pleasurable in nature and focus on the camaraderie of cycling instead of the competition of cycling.
Rather than go into all the particulars of randonneuring, I thought I'd post a couple of links that outline this type of cycling quite well. Basically, the rides are organized into what is called a Brevet (Bre'veh) and can be 200, 300, 400, 600, 1000, and 1200 kilometers in length, with the grand daddy of them all being the Paris-Brest-Paris 1200. All these are sort of a right-of-passage and come complete with bragging rights! So, off I go into another really cool segment of cycling!
Here is the "official" USA Randonneuring site: RUSA