We know the feeling – we’ve been there too. Doing something you’ve never done before is exciting and a bit scary at the same time. Riding 360 km on gravel is no joke and if it’s the first time, you’ve got hundreds of questions. We tried to sum up 10 tips to give you some  peace of mind. No rocket science, just what we’ve learnt in the past years racing one of our favorite events of the whole gravel calendar!


Yes, ok. Maybe it’s longer than your usual Sunday ride but keep in mind it’s a bike ride. So don’t stress too much – there’s no need for that. Being a bit scared is pretty normal but try to relax and remember that if you enjoy riding your bike, you are gonna enjoy this A LOT. Because in the end, you are just gonna ride A LOT!


We guess that if you’re riding The Traka 360 you had a good look at the elevation profile of the route already. In case you haven’t yet, here’s the route on our komoot profile. You can download it from here and upload it on your Garmin. It’s provisional: just make sure nothing changes before the start.

Remember: you will find indications on the course but you are responsible for your own navigation with your personal device.One thing that you can’t see from the profile is the quality of the surface. The Traka unfolds mostly on unpaved surfaces and most of it is super fine gravel you can easily ride fast on.

Just a couple of highlights here. The start is a fun up and down heading North-East. There will be a lot of people around: be extra careful! Following the first checkpoint there are a few technical sections between km 125 and km 175, all included in the Cap de Creus area from Llanca to Roses. You will find a couple km of single track climbing before Cadaques. Nothing super difficult, but it becomes steep and narrow: if you need to hike your bike for 5 minutes, totally fine. After Cadaques, the gravel gets really fast and rolling again but it’s quite steep at times: make sure to save energy for this section.

The last climb tops at km 280. It’s not very long and not super steep, but remember everything gets tougher after 10 hours on the bike ;). After the downhill, most of us will be riding in the dark: make sure to zoom your map and pay attention to every turn. Between the exhaustion and the dark, it’s easy to miss a turn and end up riding more km than needed.


That’s one of the questions we get asked the most and in gravel racing choosing the right tyre is usually pretty important and can make a huge difference. In the case of The Traka, we don’t have many doubts: something between 40mm and 45mm will work just fine.

Most of the course is on very very nice gravel and there’s no need to use something bigger. Still, we wouldn’t recommend going less than 40mm to handle the few technical sections and be on the safe side. Our choice is Pirelli Cinturato Gravel RC. Tubeless setup of course.


Another big topic here. Choosing the right gears is a matter of personal preference but keep in mind The Traka 360 is very long and there are a few very steep sections. You will be a bit tired at some point and having lower gears is always useful. If you’re coming from road racing, you definitely need to think about going lower. We suggest a ratio of 1:1 at least. If you’ve got a 40T in front, make sure to have a cassette that goes up to 40 too.

In our case, we will choose different gears depending on the riders. The guys aiming at a strong performance are going for a 42T/9-42, the ones taking it a bit easier will ride a 38T/10-44 setup. Of course we’re talking about our trusted Campagnolo Ekar 1×13 as the groupset of choice.


We are not the most expert people around when it comes to nutrition, but in this case we have a couple of tips to share.

It’s pretty clear now that when it comes to one day races the golden rule is always to eat as much as 90-100 grams of carbs per hour to make sure you have enough energy to push.

How do you do it? Well, drinking carb mixes and eating gels is a great idea: just read the nutrition facts of the products that you use and do the math. We use Maurten Drink Mixes and gels 100 (with and without caffeine) for many reasons, one of the most important is that we find them very easy on the stomach. As a matter of fact, when it comes to racing long hours (in this case we’re talking 13+), one of the most difficult things is processing food without any stomach issues – and that’s exactly what Maurten helps out with the most.

Another good lesson that we learned over time is to also eat “normal” food, especially salty snacks. We like sandwiches with cream cheese or ham or any other thing like that. Why? Because in 13+ you will get tired of the same taste, especially if everything you eat and drink is sweet. We suggest eating some proper food every now and then just to keep your appetite and avoid finding yourself in need of calories but with no appetite at all.

Lastly, make good use of the feed zones. You won’t be able to carry all the food you need, so stop at the feed zones to eat on the spot and take some extra food with you.


  • This one is really difficult to answer and as for many questions in life the real answer is: it depends! On what? Attitude, experience, weather just to name a few.

But let’s start from what you can’t leave home. Here a simple list of what we think is essential:

  • 2x inner tubes
  • Tyre levers
  • Tyre plugs
  • Multitool
  • Chain Links
  • Pump / Co2
  • Duct tape and cable ties
  • Derailleur hanger

Of course it’s also mandatory to have a back and front light and your navigation system. Make sure your front light is good, which means is bright enough and lasts for at least 8 hours. Supernova Airstream 2 is one of the best choices you can make, but there are also other cheaper options out there for an event like The Traka.


You know your bike computer, you know how long its battery lasts. If you have a Garmin 1030 plus or 1040 you are safe: it will last for the time you need. In other cases you will need to use a power bank at some point. Small ones (10400 mAh for example) are enough. Just place it at the bottom of your frame bag with a long cable already attached. You strap the other end to the stem and connect it when needed.

We talked about food already, so let’s get to the other big part: clothing. This very much depends on the weather of course, but there are two things to consider. First, don’t over dress in the morning: at the start it’s gonna be a bit cold, but you will warm up quite fast as soon as we start. Second, don’t underestimate the night: you are gonna be a bit exhausted and it will be a bit more difficult to warm up, so bring an extra layer just in case.


For a sunny day we would start with a summer kit and bring arm warmers and a rain jacket even if there’s no chance of rain at all. Talking bags, we would recommend a frame bag and a top tube. Nothing more: if you’ve got more, it’s too much 😉 Hydration bag? That really depends on you. It’s extra space, yes, but some don’t like having things on their backs.


Well, in this case we can’t give any general tips beside a couple of common sense suggestions for those who are riding for so long for the first time.


Don’t start too slow, but don’t go all out. Remember it’s gonna be a long day on the bike and you don’t want to find yourself completely dead after six hours. Six hours is not even half of the race, not even for the guy who wins the race! Make sure to find a good group for the flats after Cadaques at km 170. It’s gonna be around 70 km completely flat, which means more than 2 hours. If you’re riding alone you are spending way too much energy. Save it for the last climb – that’s where you can make a difference!

8 - BE FAIR!

That’s really, really important and involves many different aspects. Don’t litter – you will be riding in an amazing place and you must respect it. Then, respect the rules and your opponents. It’s an unsupported race, which means that you can’t have people on the road handing bottles or any other form of assistance. We’ve seen people doing that last year and we don’t like it. If you want to do that, stick to Granfondos or UCI gravel races where it’s allowed.


Make sure you do your best, but remember you are riding in a stunning place and with great people. Make sure you look around and realize how lucky you are and how beautiful it is to ride here. Also make sure you have time to get to know new people and to talk. We’re pretty sure you will find new friends on the road because that’s exactly what happened to us.

10 - HAVE FUN!

Last but most important! Have fun riding, have fun experiencing Girona the whole week long, have fun with your friends and the people you are gonna meet. It’s the place to be next weekend. If you are lucky enough to be there just make the most of it. Also, make sure you stay until Sunday night because we are throwing one hell of a party and you should definitely join us!