Hairshirt 2017 is on Sunday, June 25. Why not make 2017 your Hairshirt year? To pre-register click here. (If you are having trouble signing up, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org)
The TNT Hairshirt is a personal cycling challenge whose name comes from a medieval form of penance, in which monks wore shirts woven of coarse horse hair designed to cause suffering. Our Hairshirt ride pits the lonely rider and their bicycle against the road and the elements, and for this reason the organizers provide no support other than a map and encouragement. Thus, you are responsible for yourself.
Scroll down to Preparation and Training for a program to help you do more than you think you can - cyclists age 16 to 73 have completed the Hairshirt.
2016 Quotes: "It was my first time and I had a blast!", "A tough one this year", "Good ride, glad I did it!", "I had three tubes blow up on me", "A great experience! - amazing map and directions", "Thanks for a wonderful weekend of suffering", "The last stretch was really slow, I was tired (understatement)!!", "Thanks for a memorable day! Your ride motivated me to push further than I have ridden in the past. See you next year!", "Thoroughly enjoyed it beyond words and had the best sleep ever that evening. Thanks so much.", "Thanks for organizing the event. It was my first time and I really enjoyed the experience"
The Hairshirt cyclists leave Mississauga Celebration Square at the corner of Duke of York Blvd and Burnhamthorpe Rd in Mississauga at 6:00 AM on the first Sunday on or after June 21. The Hairshirt is run rain or shine, i.e. the coordinator does not cancel or postpone the event in case of bad weather. It is up to each participant to decide for themselves whether or not to go on the ride. Lights are mandatory after dark, including a white light on the front. A spoke light on the front wheel is also advised. Participants must wear CSA-, Snell-, or CPSC-approved helmets. There is a $5 participation fee for riders who are not TBN members.
The Hairshirt was founded in 1978; and TBN assumed sponsorship in 1988. The records below go back to 1992. Some material from the 1980's (Hairshirt crests, letter, map) has been supplied by Gregory King, who came back from a 28 year hiatus to ride the 2015 Hairshirt.
Questions, comments, feedback? Send an email to Dave at email@example.com.
Hairshirt handout - print a copy for your friends: HAIRSHIRT handout.pdf
Map and cuesheets: Map on four pages Cuesheet for daylight finish Cuesheet for night-time finish Print your own copies! (When printing the map from the PDF file, I set the "Page Scaling" to None Printing map on 4 pages.jpg)
Here is a list of bicycle shops (compiled a few years ago).
Unless you enjoy suffering you should be prepared. Your biggest assets will be training, self-sufficiency, and self-confidence. Self-sufficiency comes from the ability to effect simple repairs on your bike and having the right clothing and equipment. Self-confidence will flow out of self-sufficiency and the knowledge that you've trained enough to complete the distance.
Sub-11 hour double centuries require actual training regimes! Train at the pace you plan to do the ride at, or faster. Eat and drink as you plan to do on the ride. Complete weekly cumulative distances of 300 km or more by the end of May. (Remember that the Hairshirt is relatively flat so if you do most of your mileage in hilly terrain you can reduce the mileage figures). Two weeks before the ride do back-to-back centuries on Saturday and Sunday. The following Saturday do about 220 kms. The next day you should do an easy spin (active rest) of 50 km or less. You can ride through the week but avoid any hard efforts. Starting Thursday make sure you eat well for the next three days. Get plenty of sleep Friday night.
Not a good day to experiment with new equipment, clothes or food!
Ideally you will be riding a mechanically-sound, drop-handlebar road bike. Bring a pump, patch kit, spare tube(s), tire levers, multi-tool appropriate for your bike. A spare fold-up tire is good insurance.
Whatever. Don't use the ride to break in a new pair of shoes or shorts, however.
Gourmands and omnivores can buy stuff along the way randonneur-style, but a handlebar bag/seatpack/fanny pack filled with high-carbo energy foods is a popular idea and great for picky eaters. There's no guarantee you'll be able to find your favourite foods when you need them.
On a hot day you'll need lots of liquid and water is the least complicated to absorb, but pay attention to replacing electrolytes, as well. You should have at least two 750 ml water bottles on your bike. Throw in a 2 liter camelback-style reservoir and proper hydration will be the last thing on your mind as long as you remember to drink before you're thirsty!
You'll need a plan to get back home if your bike gets trashed, your tire gets chewed up, your freewheel explodes, or you just get exhausted. There are bus stations along the route, or you could arrange to have someone to come pick you up. Just remember to bring your Visa, cellphone and/or calling cards!
Reporting your time
Time reporting is on the honour system. Your Hairshirt time is your total time (elapsed time) from when you left the start point to when you got back to the start point. Please send an e-mail with your time to firstname.lastname@example.org within a day or two. If the lift bridge was raised at the Welland Canal or at Hamilton, you may deduct your waiting time from your total time. If a group that stayed together finishes together they should agree on the same time.
While the Hairshirt is a non-competitive event and the TBN is a non-competitive club some participants do compete against their own personal bests. We see nothing wrong with this as long as they don't blow any stop lights along the way!
Special mention. Youngest finisher: Jim Nicholson 16. Oldest finisher: Dave Mader 73. Finishers 17 and younger: Brian Yee (2009), Mitchell Kaiser (2009), Jake Williams (2009), Jim Nicholson (2009). Finishers 70 and older: Ken Caven (1996), Dave Mader (2011, 2013, 2014). Most Hairshirts: Ron Clark (14) - 2016.
The 2016 starters Photo courtesy of Bruce Zinger
2016 finishers' results
|Adam Bird||9:45||5||Neworld Cycle|
|Lionel Brulet||9:45||2||Dark Horse Flyers|
|Paul McKeever||9:45||2||To Wheels Epic Sports BCC|
|Peter Chae||9:45||6||B1 Evo|
|Russell Slater||9:45||2||Dark Horse Flyers|
|Stephen Gangbar||9:45||1||Collingwood CC|
|Ron Clark||10:24||14||Erace Cancer|
|Chris Herten||10:40||1||Cobourg CC|
|Jim Nicholson||11:05||7||London Centennial Wheelers|
|Bobby Mrvelj||11:06||2||Wheels of Bloor|
|Tom Hipsz||11:10||2||Racer Sportif|
|George Vandikas||11:50||2||Newmarket Eagles|
|Drew Cheung||12:06||3||Cookie CC|
|Richard Hall||12:20||3||Newmarket Eagles CC|
|Neil Mowbray||12:30||1||Tainted Butter|
|Robert Koblinsky||12:30||1||Erace Cancer|
|Eric van Wesenbeeck||12:35||1||Barrie CC|
|Ian Smith||12:35||1||Chain Reaction CC|
|Ralph Schatzmair||12:35||1||Racer Sportif|
|Andrew Pierre||12:38||2||Racer Sportif|
|Scott Chisholm||12:38||2||Racer Sportif|
|Brett Bowe||12:40||1||Chain Reaction CC, Midweek|
|Dean Wright||12:40||2||Etobicoke CC, Chain Reaction CC|
|Elieser Cruz Lopez||12:40||1||MGCC|
|Jeff Meade||12:40||1||Chain Reaction CC|
|John Morrell||12:40||1||Chain Reaction CC|
|Kirk Hengst||12:40||1||Erace Cancer Cycling Team|
|Michael Richardson||12:40||1||Chain Reaction CC|
|Michael Stinson||12:40||1||Chain Reaction CC|
|Peter DiClemente||12:40||3||Chain Reaction & Brampton CC|
|Sebastien Piller-Tahy||12:40||2||Chain Reaction CC|
|Harris Silver||13:30||2||Beaches CC, TBN, GGG|
|Billy Law||13:40||2||Billy's Pro Bike|
|Sunny Chiu||13:40||2||Billy's Pro Bike|
|Virgil Cheung||13:40||2||Durham Region Triathlon Club|
|Catherine Kwiecien||13:50||3||Waterloo County Wanderers, GCBT|
|Don Coats||13:50||2||Caledon CC|
|Jamie Mitchell||13:50||2||Caledon CC|
|Jeff Wright||13:50||4||Caledon Hills Cycling|
|Mike Morten||13:50||2||Caledon CC|
|Stephen Brown||13:50||1||Caledon Hills|
|Yi Wang||14:40||2||Chinada, CRIT|
|Noel Tan||16:33||5||MGCC, TBN|
In the table above, Time is the elapsed time in hours and minutes from leaving the start point to getting back to it, N = the number of Hairshirts finished, MGCC = Morning Glory Cycling Club, TBN = Toronto Bicycling Network, GCBT = Great Canadian Bicycle Tours, GGG = Gravel Grinders Group, CC = Cycling Club
2016 Special Mention Congrats to Ron Clark who has finished 14 Hairshirts, the most ever.
June 21, 2015 - 53 finishers
The group picture was taken at Mississauga Celebration Square. The turnout was excellent considering that the forecast varied from 24 C to 29 C, and from clear to 70% POP with lightning. The actual weather was high of 26, mix of sun and cloud, wind 20 gusting to 40 from the west in the morning and north-west in the afternoon.
Photos: TBN photo gallery
Quotes: "That was warm and windy", "I've been thinking of doing the Hairshirt for 18 years", "Great suffer-fest", "Epic", "Thanks for organizing", "Bad cold this year - see you next year"
|Adam Bird|| 10:52||4||Real Deal/Gears|
|George Vadikas||10:52||1||Newmarket Eagles|
|Peter Chae||10:52||5||B1 Evo Cycling Club|
|Tovi Heilbronn||10:52||1||La Bicicletta|
|Gregoire Balandras||12:09||2||Dark Horse Flyers|
|Andrew Pierre||12:35||1||Racer Sportif|
|Daniel More||12:35||1||Racer Sportif - Acquila Racing|
|Dean Wright||12:35||1||Etobicoke CC, Racer Sportif|
|Greg Paupst||12:35||1||Mattamy - Racer Sportif|
|Mark Hopper||12:35||1||Newmarket Eagles Cycling Club, Racer Sportif|
|Scott Chisholm||12:35||1||Racer Sportif|
|Tom Hipsz||12:35||1||Racer Sportif|
|Karim Marrouch||13:13||1||Wheels of Bloor|
|Gregory King||13:35||4||did Hairshirts in 1882, '83, '87|
|Andy Zarzycki||14:25||1||Toronto Bike Meetup|
|Don Coats||14:25||1||Caledon CC|
|Jamie Mitchell||14:25||1||Caledon Hills Cycling|
|Mike Morten||14:25||1||Caledon CC|
|Virgil Cheung||14:25||1||D'Onellas CC|
|Sunny Chiu||14:29||1||TCRBC, B1 EVO, OCC, CCC, CMBA|
|Navil Alejandro Abuhadba||18:28||2|
There were 3 DNFs. We don't name those who didn't finish, but they win a virtual hairshirt for the most suffering.
N = Number of Hairshirts completed
CC = Cycling Club
BCC - Beaches Cycling Club
MGCC - Morning Glory Cycling Club
TBN - Toronto Bicycling Network
TCRBC - Toronto Chinese Road Bike Club______________________________________________________________________________________________
June 22, 2014 - 49 finishers
|Adam Bird||9:47||3||Real Deal|
|Glen McCrone||9:47||2||Newmarket Eagles|
|Rod Nicholle||9:47||R||Brampton CC|
|Peter Di Clemente||10:55||4||Brampton, Chain Reaction|
| Ciprian Scriuba||10:56||R||-|
|Russell Slater||10:56||R||Darkhorse Flyers|
|Steve Hart||10:56||R||Lap Dogs|
|Tobias Kucht||10:56||2||Lap Dogs|
|Harris Silver||11:04||R||TBN, Beaches CC|
|Chris McQuinn||11:57||R||Midweek Cycling|
|Mark Buckaway||11:57||3||Midweek Cycling|
|Michael Longfield||11:57||2||Midweek Cycling|
|Peter Cook||11:57||R||Morning Glory CC|
|Richard Hall||11:57||2||Newmarket Eagles|
|Bill Sims||12:57||R||TBN, Bicicletta|
|Wallace Pei||13:00||2||Lap Dogs|
|Dave Mader||16:26||3||TBN Age 73|
|Geon Yee (Patrick)||16:26||R||-|
|Bruce Zinger||16:30||R||Morning Glory CC|
June 23, 2013
Individual experiences may vary, but overall this appeared to have been the toughest day since 2002. Very hot, humid, sunny AND windy. The thermometer got up to 32 degrees with a humidex of 40 degrees celsius. There were 32 cyclists at the starting line. Here are complete results. Six DNFs. Special congratulations to TBN'er Dave Mader, a last minute entry, who completed his second Hairshirt at the age of 72. Some event photos courtesy of Noel Tan, Jlen Dlsay, Pierre McAlpine and Dave Mader. And a few more from Adrian Andrei and Alina Ropota. Reported by Owen Rogers.
June 24, 2012
51 cyclists set out on the 35th Annual Hairshirt Classic on another beautiful day. Rain threatened in the latter stages of the ride and light winds swirled all day. The official start time was 6:17 a.m. Partial results below -- still waiting for about 3 to report in. Five DNFs.
June 26, 2011
A new record turnout of 51 cyclists set out on the 34th Annual Hairshirt Classic on an absolutely gorgeous day. The official start time was 6:15 a.m. This year's ride featured a steady northerly wind, and partly sunny conditions. Partial results below. Four DNFs. Also, some photos courtesy of Noel Tan, Pierre McAlpine, Eugene Yatsenko, Jeremy Hatt (all first time finishers) and Rick Upton. We also have some video of the start from Jeremy's brother Jon. Will post anon.
|Navil Alejandro Abuhadba||14:07||R|
June 27, 2010
A new record turnout of 44 cyclists set out on the 33rd Annual Hairshirt Classic in near perfect conditions. The official start time was 6:07 a.m. Impressive new course records were set for the overall and what we'll call the 'open recumbent' category. This year's ride featured light, mostly favourable winds, overcast conditions and the heat was tolerable, although the humidex rose in the early afternoon. This year's finishers fall into two camps: those who finished before 6:30 and those who finished in a wild thunderstorm. Sixteen rookies. Six DNFs. Ride report from Philip Koop.Geotagged photo gallery courtesy of Stephen Jones and another from Peter Murk. Special thanks to Mark Nieweglowski for checking the route.
|Hugo Van Ingen||9:33||2|
June 28, 2009
26 cyclists started what has euphemistically been labeled an epic ride. Out of the twelve Hairshirts I've done it was certainly the wettest. Partial results below. Three DNFs. If you require a correction, let me know. Photo gallery with contributions from Dave Pearson, William Russell, Alex Titov and Hugo Van Ingen here.
June 22, 2008
30 cyclists took part -- not bad considering the forecast. It was only sixteen degrees at the start with a steady southwest wind. Things stayed generally cool and overcast until shortly before noon, when fluffy clouds broke out as we passed through Niagara Falls. Late in the afternoon, in Stoney Creek a wicked hailstorm broke out forcing the first groups to take cover. Otherwise a great day to be riding an event like this. Thanks and congrats to everyone who participated, even our non-finishers who I'm sure will be back to try again. Special thanks also to the friends and family who sacrificed a day to drive support. Some great photos courtesy of three-time finisher Greg Williams and a ride reportby Rick Upton (PDF).
June 24, 2007
Another record turn out of 43 cyclists participated in this year's event including 22 rookies. All but four managed to finish. The ride actually started on time (thanks, everyone), the weather was excellent, and winds reasonably favourable. Peter Murk has posted his photos of the event start and scenes from the ride here and Ron Clark has written a story about his eighth and most successful Hairshirt experience. If anyone else took pictures and wants to post them let us know at email@example.com.
|J. Paul Grayson||13:00||R|
|Tim Van Dusen||16:54||2|
June 25, 2006
A record number of 42 participants (including 22 rookies) turned out for this year's event and with the most unfavourable wind conditions since I've been running this thing, it was good to have so many people out there helping each other around the route. 39 cyclists completed the ride including 19 rookies. Special congratulations to Thien Tran for his 13 hour ride on a fixie, Mike Maloney for navigating the entire course on a recumbent and 17-year-old Mitchell Kaiser for completing the ride at such a young age and in such impressive form. (For you first-timers, it's worth noting that because we did not have an orderly start to this event due to the volume of participants and the late arrival/departure of a few of you (and me), the order of finish may be a bit confusing.) Pics from Greg Williams.
|Tony Di Silvestro||11:24||3|
June 26, 2005
Thirty cyclists including sixteen rookies started this year's ride. The forecast conditions of clear skies, a high of 33 Celsius and *smog* were less than ideal, but the winds were favourable and in spite of a lengthened course (I'll explain later), records fell. The group of five who finished at 10:06 are now co-holders of the overall record and Katharine Sodek managed to reduce her own women's (and TBN member's) record by 36 minutes to 10:09. Congratulations to everyone who participated.
It's important to note that this year the route had significant, permanent changes. Over the years a number of ride veterans from the old days have commented the actual length of the "classic" route. Upon further and detailed investigation it was confirmed the route ridden from 1990-2004 (R.I.P.) was only 315 km. The new, improved route squeaks in at just over 322 km. It has a bit more climbing than the old route, but makes up for that by avoiding the traffic lights of Beamsville, Vinemount and Grimsby until Winona on the outskirts of Stoney Creek. 2006 will see further "refinements" to make this a safe, fun, yet challenging ride for the long distance cyclist. Some pictures courtesy of Peter Murk. And more in the TBN Photo Gallery from Frank Pilih and Jeremy Whitehorn and yet more from Greg Williams. Finally, a great ride report from Greg Wellman.
|Tony Di Silvestro||10:07||2|
June 27, 2004
Twenty-two cyclists including eight rookies started this year's ride. Twenty finished. The forecast conditions of partly cloudy skies, a high of 23 Celsius and low humidity seemed ideal, but the wind, it blew... A couple of pictures and a vast collection courtesy of Peter Murk, et al.
June 22, 2003
Twenty-four cyclists including fifteen rookies started on a beautiful day and records were broken (crushed, really). Larry Optis set a new overall record of 10:08 and Katharine Sodek at 10:45 is the new holder of the women's record. A few photos
June 23, 2002
'Twas the kind of Hairshirt we were glad to finish at all. Sixteen started, including two women. Three DNF's, due to the extreme heat.
June 24, 2001
27 people showed up to do the Hairshirt this year! 27, including 18 rookies! Only one rider was forced to abandon due to mechanical difficulties early in the day. The other 26 were able to complete the ride, 10 of whom did it in twelve hours or less. Winds were favourable all day. It was cool at the start and stayed that way all morning and the partly cloudy skies gave us some respite from the sun. Hardly a Hairshirt at all, in fact. Thank goodness someone decided to tear up a 2 kilometre section of road in Beamsville, so we would have something to talk about. Our thanks to all the participants for giving this year's ride the best turnout in at least a decade. We even have pictures!
|George Munikevic (sp?)||11:37||R|
|Glen C. Siegel||14:13||R|
June 25, 2000
Owen's unofficial report: Man, that was ugly! 25 registered, 17 showed up at the start and twelve of us, including two recumbents and one tandem, actually set out into the pouring rain. What were we thinking? It actually stopped raining at about 6:45 a.m., we were enveloped by warm breezes (okay, a howling gale) for a while, we had dry roads, partly cloudy skies and moderate temperatures. By afternoon the clouds had gotten scarce and temperatures (and the humidex) rose steadily. The Millennium Hairshirt was true to its name and delivered the worst of everything. Among the participants it was notable that all who started finished and four of those were rookies. It was a particularity significant ride for Tim Schoahs who rode this year's Hairshirt in memory of his mother, Evelyn.
June 27, 1999
The 19 cyclists who started the 22nd Edition of the Hairshirt were undetered by the gloomy forecast and dark clouds hanging overhead. Yes it rained for about an hour or so in the morning but no one seemed to complain too much and it certainly didn't slow anyone down! Congratulations to our sixteen finishers (11 rookies).
June 21, 1998
The 21st Edition of the Hairshirt took place on a hot, sunny day. Traffic was even lighter than usual, perhaps due to Father's Day--who knows? Of the ten who started only three were first time participants, and two of them managed to finish. Thanks to all who participated for keeping the Hairshirt tradition alive!
June 22, 1997
The 20th Anniversary Edition of the Hairshirt saw the highest preregistration total (24) in recent years but merely an average turnout on the day. Our thanks to the fourteen who did try their luck and a hearty congrats to the twelve who finishedundefined9 for the first time.
|Mike Van Den Tillaart||12:20||R|
June 23, 1996
The 19th edition of the venerable Hairshirt saw favourable winds and sunny
skies throughout most of the day. Things didn't get underway until 6:20.
Veteran riders commented on the near perfect conditions.
June 25, 1995
The 18th edition of the Toronto-Niagara-Toronto Hairshirt was a standout in that it saw the lowest time in recent memory recorded by the three front finishers. Read Pat Brill-Edwards' account of this PR ride in Of Hairshirts, Hemorrhoids and Happenstance.
June 26, 1994
The 17th edition of the Hairshirt will be remembered for the strong winds and long lunches!
June 20, 1993
The 16th edition of the Toronto-Niagara-Toronto Hairshirt was a cool rainy one, hence the low turnout. Still, with a 90% chance of thunderstorms, any turnout is a good one!
June 21, 1992