Category Archives: Flèche NW

Flèche NW 2016 — 4/15 to 4/17

It’s time to plan for this year’s Flèche NW! Design your route, sign up your team, and get all that information turned in by April 1st.

The Fleche-eating Zombies

The Flèche is a 24 hour team event of at least 360 KM in distance and run similar to a brevet. Each team plans its own route with a common destination in mind. The Flèche is a fun event fostering friendships, teamwork and camaraderie during the planning, riding and finishing celebration of the accomplishment. This year we are returning to Olympia, WA for our finish location. You again have a myriad of route possibilities.

Destination: Olympia

Finish: Governor Hotel in Downtown Olympia; 621 Capitol Way S; Olympia, WA 98501

Questions? email: randotheo AT gmail DOT com

Start time range: Noon Thursday, April 14th through 08:00 Saturday, April 16th

Finish by: 8:00 AM Sunday, April 17, 2016 – All Control Cards due at this time!

Fleche Brunch: 09:00 Sunday April 17th, Governor Hotel

Entry Fees: $25 per person

Banquet Brunch: We will hold our banquet celebrating this year’s Flèche Northwest on Sunday morning April 17th at 9:00 a.m. The banquet will cost $20 per person (includes tax and gratuity). Payment for the brunch must be made at the time of team registration.

Registration form and full details available on the SIR event page.

Designing your route:

Ed and Asta Navigate

Each team is to design its own route that is at least 360 KM in length. The traditional format for a Flèche is point-to-point, like an archer’s arrow (flèche in French) flying toward its target. In France, the destination is usually a resort community providing a festive surrounding for waiting family and friends. We try to replicate some of this by ending our Flèche at a nice locale and having an awards brunch with our friends and families.

Though not a classic Flèche route, a large circuit or loop may also be used, such as to make a scenic tour of a region. However, an out-and-back route is not consistent with the traditions of the Flèche. A short out-and-back route segment is permitted, such as to obtain food and supplies in remote regions, but no control may be used more than once and no road segment may be used more than once in the same direction. If an out-and-back route segment is utilized in the overall route design, a control point must be located at its turnaround.

Distance traveled is calculated on the basis of the shortest route between checkpoints that can be legally traveled by bicycle. Maps or mapping software with accurate mileages will be used to determine distances.

No rest stop may exceed two hours in any one location.

If more than one team uses the same starting point, then starting times for individual teams shall be spaced at least one hour apart.

Each team may start its ride between noon Thursday April 14th and 8:00 AM on Saturday April 16th. Cards are due at 8:00 AM on Sunday April 17th.

The start time and starting place approved with the team’s registration must be used.

22 Hour Control: At least 25 KM must be ridden between the end of the 22nd hour and the end of the 24th hour of the ride. Under no circumstances may these two checkpoints be the same place, even if the planned distance has already been completed. The exact time and the location of the team at the 22 hour point must be noted on each control card and verified by the signature or business receipt imprinted with the time, date and location. (In the event that the 22 hour point is reached where no verification is available, the time, distance, and location of the team shall be noted by the team members on their route card and verification must be obtained at the next available location along the route.)

Final 24 Hour Control: Teams may stop their Flèche at any point after reaching a total distance of 360 KM and a minimum of 25KM past the 22 Hour Control. This means that the Governor Hotel in Olympia does not have to the final end point.

One last break

Team Composition and Riding Rules:

Each team is limited to a maximum of five members (machines) and a minimum of three members. Tandems or other multi-rider vehicles count as a single member.

Members of the same team may assist one another. However, teams are expressly forbidden to aid each other, even teams from the same club. The one exception to this is in the event of a medical emergency.

During the event, riders may not draft anyone except their own Flèche teammates.

At least three team members (read machines) must have ridden the same distance and arrive at the finish together.

No following cars are allowed under any circumstances. Teams using a support car can receive support from their car only at the control points listed on their route cards.

Assistance from other motorized non-participants is also not permitted, except in the case of a medical emergency. There may be secret and roving checkpoints.

All riders are reminded that any failure to conduct the ride in accordance with SIR Brevet Rider Expectations, RUSA Flèche Rules, applicable laws, or any special instructions or equipment requirements for this ride may result in a time penalty or disqualification.

All riders are reminded to please conduct themselves per SIR standards. Be courteous to control workers and staff.

All the team’s Brevet Control Cards are due to the organizers no later than 8:00 AM Sunday, April 17th, 2016.


We would like everyone to stay at the Governor Hotel. We have negotiated a very reasonable rate of $89.00 per double occupancy (a little more for 3-4 in a room). Please make sure to make your reservations early and to mention Seattle Randonneurs to get the discounted rate.

The Governor Hotel has indicated they accept packages for guests. You can send clothes and other items to the hotel within a couple of days of our Flèche. Please contact the hotel in advance.

Additional logistics information, including suggested routes into Olympia, permanent routes home to Seattle or Portland, and a nice way to get from the hotel to Amtrak on the SIR event page, here.

Team F.R. after Brunch in Olympia

Awards will be presented at the brunch banquet on Sunday. We are considering the following:

Over Achievers (Longest distance)

Lowball (Shortest distance – closest to 360KM)

Newbie (Highest average RUSA number)

Grey Hair (Lowest average RUSA number)

Highest Flyers (Most elevation gain on planned route)

Pancake Award (Least elevation gain on planned route)

Drunkard (Most circuitous route)

William Tell (Most direct route)

Herding Cats (Most team members)

Xena Award (Team with most female members registered)

Mark Twain (Best tale from ride) to be voted on at brunch

Best Handle (Best Team Nickname) to be voted on at brunch

Completing a Flèche is required for attaining a Randonneur 5000 or 10000 standing with Audax Club Parisien, and counts as a Team Event for the RUSA Cup

Flèche NW SPOT Tracks

Satellite (SPOT) Tracking:

Michal Young will be setting up optional satellite tracking (SPOT) for any teams that have a tracker. If your team has one or more SPOT trackers and would like to be included, your team captain should email michal.young AT gmail DOT com Please include the device identification and preferred label for each SPOT tracker.


Filed under Flèche NW, SIR Rides

Flèche NW Roundup

Teams and AwardsRide reports and photos from the Flèche NW:

Skip, Jump” width=”240″ height=”180″ />Hop, Skip, Jump (Photos)

Type 2 Fun

Type 2 Fun

Ride Report by Jason K: Addicted to Flèche

Ride Report by Lynne F: Flèche Flop

Photos by Keith M (some visibility restrictions): on Facebook

Take the Longview

Photos by Norm C:

Susan at Cape Horn

Taking the Longview


Plus photos from several teams are on Instagram: #flechenw2015


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Filed under Flèche NW, SIR Rides