The Hoosier Flipside Guide to Quals Weekend
(1)Prepare your liver for the Little 500 in April by seeing if you can ‘qual’: the race week will challenge you both physically and mentally, and this weekend provides you with an opportunity to see how far you can push yourself. Are we implying that you should engage in unhealthy binge drinking, underage consumption of alcohol, and other forms of irresponsible drinking this weekend? No, everyone else is doing that, we don’t need to do that, so we’re just reporting factually. As the riders work to reduce their handoff times, you could (hypothetically) work on your hole-punch to pull-tab times to get that shotgun PR.
(3)As you party this weekend, remember to pour one out for your fellow Hoosiers who won’t be spending the weekend on Qual’s time because they got stuck spending it on Kuali’s time at work because Gregg wouldn’t take their shift even though when you ordered pizza last week and Gregg said he wasn’t hungry but then ate two slices, you didn’t make Gregg Venmo you because he said he would just ‘owe’ you. I will never forget about this, Gregg, TWO SLICES AND A MAN’S WORD USED TO MEAN SOMETHING IN THIS COUNTRY.
– (4)Wondering why Little 5 bikes don’t have brakes? Legend has it this is because Ken Nuun was paying off race organizers to bring more injured clients his way, but like most legends, it’s mostly false: Little 5 bikes actually do have brakes. The classic aluminum single-speed bikes use a rear coaster brake hub that locks up the rear wheel when you peddle backwards. They are just like normal brakes on a bike, if your normal brakes only worked on one wheel and sounded like a roll of quarters in a dryer on the ‘towels’ setting. Anyways, you could honor the ‘brakeless’ traditions of the event by not taking a break from drinking, or you could not do that and drink responsibly. We report, you decide.
(2) Get inspired. Tell yourself you’ll race in Little 5 next year. Buy a Peloton (without your roommates’ permission), but then your RA says you can’t keep it in your room because your roommate “needs a place to sleep too”. You have to move it. Again. To the communal bathroom. You hide it in the big handicap accessible shower stall,but now it’s wet and hairs are getting caught on the bottom. You are forced to wear your shower flip flops when you train, all because your roommate is a snitch.
(5)Get answers to your Little 500 questions before the actual race: Quals is also a great opportunity to save yourself from potential embarrassment during race week by clearing up misconceptions now like, “is it called that because they do 500 laps” or “why don’t they just shift into a better gear”. If those were your actual questions, then we’ll quickly address them: it’s 200 and 100 laps for the men’s and women’s races, respectively. The ‘500’ is a direct reference to the Indy 500 because of race founder Howdy Wilcox’s ties to the Indycar race. The riders don’t just “shift into a better gear” because track cycling is not about needing gears or who has the best groupset, it’s about the riders with the
most heart biggest quads winning it all.