COP has a Hilly Half Hundred but with a 7:15 start, that's pretty early for those who have to drive some distance. Anyone have the gps file for the route? I believe the route is marked but some of us are thinking of starting at 8:00, buzzing the route and be done in time for the Buckeye game.
Are we not lucky? Not only does our ride leader create routes, park his large truck so as to provide a vast swath of shade, lay out tables for easy sign-up but he toils up until the ride start, performing various fixes to our bikes. My front skewer is squeaking but I did not want to add to Rick's burden and decided I'd try some WD-40 first.
Farmer Mike's new machine. Dura-Ace all the way, disc brakes and 28mm tires so he can use it on gravel roads too. Mike didn't just get a deal, he got a "Deal" deal but he is tightlipped about the specifics. The bike even has a built in light in the front stem. Very nice.
Dirty Dan. So many want to know how he got the nickname but I can not say in polite company. However, no one holds more Strava KOM titles than does Dan. An elite climber, why just on the bike path between Alexandria and Johnstown he holds 5 KOM titles and east of Alex, where the bike path risers get really challenging, too many to mention.
The sun seemed unusually intense this evening so everyone sought relief wherever they could find it. Jeremy in the white/green shirt and a police officer. I was told prior to Tuesday's ride he was in hot pursuit of a gang of bank robbers but checking his watch, noted he barely had enough time to make the ride and broke off the chase, allowing the miscreants to go free. That is dedication to the sport of cycling.
New guy on the left, Mark V and Dirty. Rick thanked me for filling in for him last week and I received a rousing cheer except from Mark, he booed me. Some talk prior to the ride about an intriguing bike ride in VA, called the Alpine Loop Gran Fondo. Here is the link for the event: http://alpineloopgranfondo.com/ Only 6+ hours away and may be an option for some of you looking to fill in the schedule. Like Philippe, who is always looking to explore, this would be a good option.
So, Rick called us out of the comfort of our shaded areas, only around 50 of us but there was a traffic jam around Gahanna that probably kept some away. I headed out with Hendra, Marty, Jon, Muscle Dude, Ron B, Benton, Nick, a late arriving Luke, Ken B, Jeff, Lori N, Brandon.....maybe 20 in all. We started as usual, out old 161, left on Mink and then a right on to a freshly chip-n-sealed Beaver. Someone kept the pace steady so we could stay in a narrow tire track all the way to a right on Burnside, eventually back to 161. Heading east again, as we approached the right on Wadkins, I being the crafty veteran possessing little endurance or strength, sped to the front while the leaders hit the turn and subsequent ramp. Well positioned for the surge, it never came so I drifted back to the pack and noted Benton was 5th in line. He had been 5th since the start and I wondered how one can go 12 miles and never leave the 5th spot while also never taking a pull. I have much to learn.
We ascended Watkins, crossing Morse and Weslyn Chruch and just as the group turned left on Hollow, that dang Marty began asking questions about the "Chicken Ranch" logo on my jersey, if it was for the Nevada brothel, how many times I had attended and generally distracting me from my focus. As has happened on past routes, here the group sprinted out of the turn and I lost Lori N's wheel, who I should never be behind in the first place, because she is too skinny for drafting. Marty of course swooped around me, paused briefly to see if I was going to jump on, which I did not, and motored away.
Thus I was gator bait again. Groan, our average was 22.1 at the time but no one else dropped because why would they and later I saw the group finished with a 22.5 avg so down quite a bit from what I would expect for that route. I pedaled on, entering Alexandria and soloing back with a 20.8 avg. Oh well, there is always next week but not too many next weeks.
At last, here is this evening's New Albany route. Great weather so come out and enjoy. All routes available here:
In case you have wondered if any progress has been made, no, the giant culvert that was torn loose under York Road is still out with hardly any evidence anything has been done other than a pile of dirt has been added. Above, John and Anthony Sada follow the only way around the obstacle. More to come on the Tuesday Cycling Club ride.
A very foggy start to our ride, Saturday morning, headed to Hargus Lake. Meantime, well north of us, many of the elite climbers were shoving off on "The Frank". From what I am able to gather, Marty finished first with a time of 6:18, followed by Luke Russell at 6:24. John Day came in at 7:19. Ours was a somewhat flatter route for the 11 of us who headed out in to the gathering gloom. So humid and thick was the fog, it was like riding in the rain.
Eventually though, the fog lifted, the hungry became hungrier and so upon reaching the market, we had to assist Mark C with managing his snacks out the door. Not shown but it was definitely there hidden from view was a large Hershey bar to go with the Mountain Dew, chips and Gatorade. As others walked to the lake for a look, Mark chomped and eventually, we were able to leave, along with Mark, slightly heavier than when he arrived.
It was curious that Dustin and Steve O were not at the Frank but we were glad they came with us. Dustin, shows off his bad haircut that had a severe slope from one side to the other, due no doubt to his habit of poor tipping and use of the $1.95 coupons at Great Clips. Below we take a last look at the lake before heading back. I bugged out to add a few miles and finished with 80 while the others finished with around 65. Got out Sunday for a ride with a couple of guys to add 35 to the weekend tally.
So anxious was "HFP Racing Man", to kick our ass that he arrived really early. Radar sure looked ominous but the green blobs dissipated as they approached or shifted south.
John Day signs in, smiling because after hearing he rode 400 miles last week, we urged him to become a productive member of society, become a volunteer, get a job, something to cut into that riding that carries him farther and farther from our level. Actually, John enters the workforce next week in the Columbus City School System. Janitor I heard...ok, John enters the teaching profession.
Really light turnout as a few people tour the parking lot, warming up. I talked to one A who said he wanted to save his strength for "The Frank". I had talked myself in to riding the Frank but then tonight someone told me after they rode it last year, they spent the next two days sitting in a chair, not having the energy to do anything. Benton told me about a ride Saturday that is just like Thursday's pace. So far I have the choice of a hot poker in the right eye or a sharp stick in the left one. Mark C has a ride out of his church on Coonpath Road for around 60 miles, still no notice about a Cycling Club route and then there is the COP Steve Barbour Memorial ride.
So small was the group that.....
.......I sent the A and B groups out together, about 19 of us while Steve H took out a C group soon after we departed. Among the A's there was Nick P, Shannon and a ringer (guy in back above). The pace was mellow except when Shannon took a pull then the peloton thinned, stretched but snapped back once Shannon slipped out of the front. We got on to Jug, took that all the way to Alexandria, arriving with an average of 24.2mph, exited on Raccoon V Road. The pace was moderate, I suppose because the Hardscrabble Road climb was on the horizon. Just before making the turn, Nick and Ringer sped by to take a position at the front.
I was in the back as we hit the ramp, hung on for a little while and popped, with Mick, Ron Budzig, Benton and a few others. Andrew C hung on a little longer but he too fell off with Paul, the guy in the yellow and black kit. Our group of about 6 clung together up the long incline, watching Shannon, Nick and Ringer pull away. Reaching Corner Road, Andrew took a couple of guys on the B route while Mick, Ron, Benton, Paul, Tri guy (maybe Jeremy is his name) and me headed toward Northridge and then onto the Stone Quarry rollers. Somewhere we lost Mick and I yelled to regroup but was ignored so I did what most do, forgot about those behind and raced after what was left. As we approached Granville, I pleaded with Ron that we forego the Dennison U hill and just go through the village, check out the pretty women, the grand buildings, see who was walking the streets and get back on the route as we exit the village. I think incredulous is the right word to describe the look on Ron's face. I was immediately ashamed for having suggested a softening of the route and so, we turned on to the campus. Meantime, Shannon's group had stayed straight on New Burg, rather than bearing left on to Burg as the route required, hitting the hills up to Thornwood and then down to the west of the village.
We exited Granville on Moots, took that in to Alexandria then out old 161. Ours was a good group, each sharing the workload evenly (use the broad interpretation of that word) although Ron had the misfortune of finding himself at the base of both the Moots climb and the climb out of the valley on 161. Too bad but someone had to do it and tonight he appeared to be the strongest among us. Reaching the rise at Kitzmiller, both Ron and I had a 21.9 avg so we hit it hard and reached the parking lot with exactly 22mph avg and 45 miles.
Nick, the Ringer and Shannon finished with a 22.8 avg and slightly less in distance. As Shannon left the parking lot, I yelled for him to come back next year, one time but he said he'd be back next week. Geesh, maybe it was the clouds but it is getting dark so much earlier then just a few weeks ago. Just signed up for a hike on October 11th called, "East Throat of Grand Canyon Ultra Day Hike." A 16 mile hike, using a raft to cross the Little Colorado River and then on to the confluence where the LCR meets the big kahuna, the Colorado River. That looks like fun.
This my friends, will all move through and yield a glorious late afternoon for a bike ride out of the usual place in New Albany, at 6:00pm. Perhaps you have heard that Rick Miller will not be there but fear not, someone eminently more qualified to be the leader of fit people, articulate in his speech, inspiring by his mere presence shall be there instead. The A, B & C routes can be found here and download your route or print your map because I'm pretty sure tonight's ride leader isn't going to print a bunch of maps in case my forecast is wrong and he is stuck with worthless maps: http://www.thecyclingclub.org/route-resources/c-o-p-thursday-night-cycling-club-ride/
Nearing the end of the event, Shannon Kurek is passed either by guy in green, old woman in blue/orange or both but Shannon did well, finishing.....
....3rd in the 45-49 age group (bettering last year's 5th place finish) and 50th overall in a field of over 2000. No surprise to those of us who ride with Shannon (briefly), he was 1st after the time trial portion and finished a mere 45 seconds behind the winner. Now the bad news. He'll be back out this Thursday to dish out punishment.
I rode from home to the start of the New Albany ride, about 16 miles and I arrived early. I leaned my bike against a shaded spot, took a seat on a nice bench and waited. Soon, Farmer Mike arrived and was none too pleased that I had apparently taken his spot. Since possession is 9/10 of the law and being a fan of squatter's rights, I stayed where I was. More to come, later.
John Sada's rear derailleur broke from the frame during transit from CA and so after filing a claim, he is getting a new R5 frame as a replacement.
Tym Tyler rode from his house, south of Granville, waiting for the ride start with Doug M, Jeff and Jay P. Kind of humid but radar indicated we would be clear for the duration of the ride.
Jeremy, in red, a Newark police officer and a good guy to have on the ride for a lot of reasons.
Our C/D group returned after last week's absence so not all of them have given up after Pelotonia. With a few on the other row of cars I think there were 8 in that group, 24 in ours counting the usual suspects who join in soon after we depart.
Craig Rice rolled in, Gus & Poeggy, Crazy George, Benton, Rick and others so we.....
.....rolled out toward the open roads east of New Albany. Uneventful ride and once we reached Alexandria, I rode home, cooked a steak, read the WSJ (well, not all of it, no one can read all of it) had a glass of wine (honest just 2), slapped at mosquitoes on the back porch, watched the squirrels play and looked at all the feakin ash trees yet to be cut down.
Bike-Ohio is putting on "The Frank" a 100 mile route with over 11,000' of climbing. Slightly hillier than multiple loops around Buckeye Lake, this however is for everyone, who enjoys this sort of thing. To register or find out more, click here: https://bike-ohio.wildapricot.org/event-811622
SuperDave on the right? I saw him riding on old 161 a few weeks ago but not on an organized ride for a couple of years. Style Queen on the left, Dennis C, has ridden a couple of Westerville Wednesday rides and mostly on a tandem with his girlfriend. Both of these guys were very regular riders of most of the Tuesday and Thursday COP rides.
Craig Butler aka Da Boss? A super endurance athlete who now concentrates on trail running. Each spring he teases me with something about coming back to cycling but yet to materialize.
Donna Bush? Better known as Sarge for her authoritarian rule of the parking lot as a ride leader. She still rides while following NASCR.
Kenda Dave? Actually, he still comes out once in a great while and rode Pelotonia.
Claude? Probably school is preventing him from attending any rides. Famous for having a crushed banana in back jersey pocket during most rides.
Margarita Rick? I hear he still rides with his new wife.
Recumbent Dude? Moved to San Fran where he is probably miserable as after all, there is no group like our group.
Jeremy? Gave up cycling and I think has started his own business.
Kevin H, aka Pepe LaPew? Still rides but one of those guys who won't allow themselves to come out and be humiliated by falling behind Flyin Tuna so he rides alone when not traveling to exotic places like Iowa City.
Donn, aka Tall Dude? I think family obligations have kept him off the bike.
Ryan Roe? Actually, that's not Ryan but he bears an uncanny resemblance to many Civil War veterans having a long beard. Ryan just bought a new house and family obligations is keeping him busy.
Denver Dan? I hear he has been at a couple of rides this year. Above, he won a prize for finishing in the middle of the pack at the Granville Climbing Challenge.
Logan Leland, aka Young Phenom? School keeps him very busy.
Ty Jordan, the biggest, fastest human on a bike. Have not heard anything about him in quite awhile but believe he still lives in Canal Winchester. You know what? Without exception each of the above were a lot of fun to have in the group, just good people and we wish they would start riding with us again. There are others who have drifted away but I could not find images or just missed putting them in here such as Jamie Roberts, Billy Campbell, etc...
The Man, the Myth, the Mapmaker, Dave Miller, aka Silent Dave, showing off a thing of beauty, his latest creation, a map for his Hillacious Hills ride. Easy to read, cue sheet on the back, too many bits of information to list here, it is a document that rivals the Federalist Papers. Good turnout of around 45 for clearly what is not for everyone, a heck of a hilly ride.
A sparkling, clear, sunny morning for a bike ride with unusually low humidity and start temp of 49 degrees. Some of central Ohio's elite climbers showed up lead by Dustin Reed (Old Chubbs), Steve Oxley, John Day, Scott Young and then some of the boys up north (the Yankees) rolled in led by Marty, Tym Tyler, Pete C and Cornell.
Silent Dave gave the usual cautionary statements about not doing stupid stuff and then called out those who intended to ride the full century and off went the majority. I had things to do so I had to opt for a shorter option and watched....
.....as first the century and then everyone else rolled out. I bunched in with Mark C, Flyin Tuna, Mitch O, Mark V, the Kendas, Jeff S and a couple of others. Mark C led a splinter group of weaklings who wanted no part of the Hillacious route and instead, broke off at mile 3 for the flat lands of the southwest...sissies! The few, the brave, the elite kept going but now I found myself with only the Kendas and we rolled in to Lancaster where I saw something you don't see every day. A man and woman were, I thought, walking a dog but as we drew closer, it was a raccoon walking up behind the two. The woman began screaming at first, then shrieking while doing a little dance. We kept going, hitting that evil little climb on Stump Hollow before stopping at the bottom of the hill. We decided to do more than our planned 60 miles and headed south to Sugar Grove and after a too long stop there, headed up Savage and eventually pulled back in to Lancaster.
Along the way, Kenda Janet had a cable issue that limited her to a two speed bike and so they headed toward a flatter return via Pleasantville Road. Meantime, as we were stopped, Marty, Pete C, Tym, Cornell Scott Young and Dustin rode by. All the others had dropped off their hard charging pace and later I saw Marty had set a number of new KOM times along the route. As I arrived in Canal Winchester I was, yet again, overtaken by the lead group but now they were down to Marty, Pete, Tym, Cornell and Scott, finishing the 99 miles in a total time of 5:43, ride time of 5:15.
Until it was not, it was a very light turnout. So desperate was I for images I took one of a guy pumping his tire. Actually, it's Jeff S, former ride leader and sporting a new jersey from his recent vaca out west.
Hendra is also back from a vaca out west, slotting in with the A group as usual. Doesn't need to spend time in the minors (B group) on a rehabilitation assignment. Nope, off the bike for a couple of weeks and right back in to the starting line-up.
This was a curious moment. Marty rode up carrying a small bag, something about some swag from the gran fondo in which they each (Luke, Marty & Lori) had participated in CO. Nosy as always, I demanded that we all be allowed to see. Luke glanced inside the bag, gave a wry smile and put the bag away. Hmmmmmm........
And then, they arrived in waves and the parking lot grew more crowded and by the time Rick Miller made his brief announcements, there were 70 of us, including.....
......Kristie who also just came back from vaca out west. She was part of a group that followed the Tour of Utah. On the final day of the Tour, Saturday, Kristie's group had a 4 hour head start on the pro peloton, riding the race route and were caught on the final ascent. Later, she saw Cadel Evans pulled over by the police as he was riding in and out of traffic to escape the scene. Probably he was not charged.
More people approach for the pre-ride comments. Having ridden yesterday to Utica to fetch my new wheels, and ridden earlier today, I hung back with a very large B group. Rick sent the B's out in two groups, 14 in the first, 18 in the second (Rick was never very good at math). It was an uneventful ride other than new guy "Steve" made an almost fatal mistake, riding left of a double yellow line just before a rise in the pavement. At that moment, a pick-up came over the crest and only by swerving partially off the road did the driver avoid impact. Steve is fortunate to be alive and that is no exaggeration. I got the impression he has had limited group riding experience and hope someone knows him and can let him know some of the basics, which I observed while riding around him: 1. Don't go left of center, especially not when you can not see oncoming traffic. 2. Point out potholes and road debris for the benefit of those behind you. 3. When the wind is coming out of the northwest, don't ride in the freakin gutter. 4. Quit looking back so often because your bike swerves in the direction your head is turning. 5. Learn how to exit the front of the group after taking a pull and then don't ride left of center at about the same pace as the group, slow down and drop back quickly. There, that's about it.
I left the group at Concord Road to ride back to Granville, finishing with 54 miles. The front of the A group was coming the opposite direction and still quite a few cyclists holding in, probably about 12. They finished with a 24.2 avg which is very good, considering the strong winds out of the NW.
A little late but here it is, the New Albany route for this evening with links to all the routes found here::http://www.thecyclingclub.org/route-resources/c-o-p-thursday-night-cycling-club-ride/
This Saturday is the infamous Hellacious Hills ride, beginning at 8:00am from Cyclist Connection. Check out these routes and note too, the finest map you shall ever see will be given at the start, free with marked roads too....WOW, Silent Dave, the ride leader is someone special.
Lastly, approaching rapidly is Bike-Ohio's "The Frank" on Aug. 23rd. The Frank - Aug. 23, Malabar Farm State Park, Bellville Oh
This ride is all about climbing. The 100 mile route has 10,600 feet of climbing. The 74 mile route has over 8,400. This ride does not have the biggest or steepest hills in Ohio but the hills are relentless. Not only is it the hardest fully supported one day tour in Ohio, it will be the hardest paved road century ride in Ohio you have ever done.https://bike-ohio.wildapricot.org/ironsaddle/
Pelotonia has come and gone and with it, only one cyclist showed up for the C/D group. Probably the rain moving in from the west had something to do with it or maybe not, we'll find out next week. Meantime, Benton arrived (left), Tym Tyler, Farmer Mike, Jeremy......
.....Meredith, rather displeased that no other women showed up, Ron B, Jon Morgan, Crazy George and others. And then there was me, with bike but drove all the way to New Albany without noticing my shoes, helmet and stuff was not with me. I had borrowed a truck and trailer to haul a couple of "Chokecherry" trees from a local garden center to my front yard and had....well, it's a long story but anyway the cycling stuff was in the garage rather than with me.
The group, about 21, departed and shortly thereafter, Marty came cruising through and no doubt would catch the group. Hmmmm, another missed ride. They are starting to add up.
As much as I wanted to do the COP Logan ride, I had done basically the same route a few weeks ago with a group and that long drive, 2 hours total so instead I hooked up with the Cooks, Farmer Mike, Jay P and Norm, a visitor from Charleston, WV for a ride out of New Albany. We reached Granville at mile 30 and there I was ready for a break so bugged out of the group. The Pelotonia cyclists were coming through Granville and saw the cheerleaders greeting the arrivals accompanied by the clang of a church bell. Pretty cool scene and during the day I saw John Day, the Rossis, Jon Morgan, Ron Budzig and Rich Lewis. I finished with 71 miles and planned to ride Sunday out of Granville but summer burnout has set in as usual so cut down another ash tree instead.
Garth Prosser came in 80th at the Leadville 100 mountain bike race. Probably he is disappointed in that result because I think he previously has finished top 25. Meantime, just a few miles away, Marty, Luke Russell and Lori Nedescu participated in the Gran Fondo Italia Aspen-Snowmass. Confusion regarding a neutral start kept Marty and Luke from being part of a 10 man break, most of whom stayed away as the twosome chased for 90 miles, eventually finishing 6th and 7th with times of 4:39 and 4:40. Lori finished a very respectable 5:35 which included a number of QOM titles along the way. All are back in Ohio and probably be at the Thursday New Albany ride.
While attending a post Pelotonia party on Saturday evening, I ran into cyclists familiar with the breakup of Team Roll. From what I understand, the team was first put together with the intent that members would be ambassadors of the sport while promoting cycling. In theory a good idea but in practice, the group became a clique (what I heard not necessarily what I think). Probably just as, if not more so, damaging to the longevity of the team, was few of the team members were riding bikes purchased from Roll shops. Perhaps the first bike was a Giant or Felt (I believe are Roll's primary bike brands) but follow-up bike purchases were of other brands not supplied by the shops. Anyway, now there are several cyclists wandering the central Ohio bike scene perhaps looking for a new team or to become free agents in perpetuity, like me. We, the members of the non aligned league of cyclists welcome you.
Chris Grisvard wins tonight's award for most fastidious cyclist as he filled the early arrival with a very thorough cleaning of his bike. His technique differs from mine and I think I like his better. I always spray a cloth and wipe the bike. Chris sprays the bike and wipes the bike.
The French climbing machine, Philippe on the right, explained his decision to shortcut Mountain Mama because he had no century rides for quite awhile and the Mama ride is not one where you want to have your first 100 miler in awhile. Rick Miller on the left broke the news that he is probably coming back to be ride leader next year. I told him the thrill seekers, hearing this, would redouble their efforts to discourage him but I think he is committed.
Mick signs in with Ricky G in the background in red, checking his front tire. It's a tubeless tire and when it came off the rim he thought he was done for the night but Rick sprang into action and saved him. Ricky runs the pressure at 120 so that may have contributed.
It seemed like a lighter turnout but I still counted 65+, just a lot of the usual suspects were missing. Marty, Luke and Lori are in CO, others like.....
....Rich Lewis in the grey T-shirt arrived on a motorcycle, saving himself for Saturday's Pelotonia ride. In front of Rich were tonight's star cyclists, some of whom seemed new to me. When Rick asked for someone from the A group to volunteer to lead us out he was greeted with an extended period of cricket chirping but finally, I think it was Todd Mullins, riding a cross bike, who volunteered. We rolled out old 161, making a right on Mink and initially were greeted by crummy pavement but soon hit an extended newly paved section. The speed was curiously modest but picked up a little after turning left on Columbia and then someone hit it very hard on Courter, leaving me gasping when we turned right on Cable, slowed to the bottom of the hill before making a left on Headleys Mill and the quick right on the Alward climb.
Have you ever seen an anchor released from an aircraft carrier or battleship? No? I have and the rate at which I dropped out of the back reminded me very much of that. Riding up Alward I noted that no one else was dropping out of the pack that at that point numbered around 15 (sure, there were a few who hard dropped earlier). That was really discouraging, everyone else hung in there so at mile 13, alone and no prospect for forming up with a small group as usually happens. After a right on 310 and the quick left on Hollow, I looked back and here came Crazy George. He's a good companion on the flats, mostly because he likes to pull for mile after mile and so I settled in behind him, eventually arriving in Granville with a 22mph avg. Heading west on Raccoon Valley Road, I lost interest and bade George farewell as he stayed on the route and I headed back to NA, arriving with 40 miles and a 20.7mph avg. I need to ride more. Anyway, out in the serious cycling group, Ken, Luke, etc... finished with a 22.5mpg avg.
Now here's a good route for us to follow and you can see all the route files by clicking here: http://www.thecyclingclub.org/route-resources/c-o-p-thursday-night-cycling-club-ride/
I rode to New Albany but got there a little early, just sitting and lingering while waiting for others to arrive. The sky to the east, from which I had come, was darkening. Radar showed some pop-up showers developing.
Pete H and Stan soon joined, while we waited for......
....Gus Cook to arrive. The new guy in orange jersey, who rode with the A group on Thursday on the cross bike, was tonight ride testing a new Specialized road bike
George in the background, talking, Benton in white on the right and Jeremy facing toward our parking lot exit. There was some talk of altering the route but there were 4 people already waiting for us at various points out 161 so....
....we headed out with 20 in the B group, including Tym Tyler, Doug McConaha, Gus, Jon Morgan, Benton, Peggy, etc... Not much to tell beyond that as once we reached Alexandria, I headed toward the barn, with 34 miles and got in before it began to.....rain, again.
I did not make it this year to Mountain Mama, the premiere cycling event in and around Monterey, VA. However, several others went and the stories I hear.....shocking what some of us do when we get away from home. Usually quiet types cross the Ohio border and become party animals, cavorting late into the night at the Montvallee Inn but better known among the cycling fraternity as "The Pink Palace". More than this I can not say. I hear Muscle Dude Jr, aka John Day, was the big winner among the Ohio contingent finishing around 19th at just over 6 hours. The organizers do not keep track of times or places so impossible to know exactly how others did but curiously, Philippe, the French climbing machine, opted for the 70 mile route rather than the 100. No doubt, not keeping times and posting on the web site deters many from participating which is too bad because it is different from most of the 100 mile/10,000' climbing events. Good job everyone and reserve rooms now for next year's ride!
Very light turnout for the Sunday, John Martin ride. Asking around, it turns out the route was part of the problem. Lon Hermann above in white discovered he had a flat just as we shoved off so we went from 14 to 13.
Although the quantity was down, the stars still came out including Marty, Dave C, Luke R and Lori N. Luke is joining Marty for a gran fondo in CO next weekend and then on to the Hincapie Gran Fondo. I'm forecasting that Luke will be low Ohioian at the Hincapie event. At 5:06 at the Blood, Sweat & Gears, only 7 minutes off Marty's time, he has, I hear, only gotten stronger. Plus, he has youth on his side.
We departed Granville via the bike path, ugh. Upon reaching Alexandria, we stayed on the bike path, double ugh. Above, Isaac on the left, Kathleen on the right. Then on to Centerburg and out Croton Road for way too long, then on to Sycamore for mile after mile and eventually we arrived in Bladensburg for our first stop at mile 48. Marty was up and rounding us up with the usual concern about lingering for too long although it is still not clear to me why lingering a little is such a bad thing. Our average to this point was around 19.6 but the route was about to get much harder. We left John & Anthony Sada behind as they had ordered a meal at the restaurant and because, as you know, lingering is not a good thing.
The route had has taking the state route to Martinsburg but with better options available, we went south on Henpeck and west on Bell Church. Maybe I had not lingered long enough because I was out the back of the pack by the time we got between the Bladensburg market and Bladensburg's only stop sign. It got worse on Henpeck and worse yet on Bell Church. My legs were powerless, weak, unresponsive, etc... I chalked it up to lack of linger and an evening prior where I played wffleball and badminton at a party in which my wife's work friends came over. You know, among 300 pound office workers, I am a dominant force. So unlike the malnourished skinnies at our rides.
Arriving in Utica, I urged everyone to keep going so I could, well, add to my linger time. Then, I took a more direct route to Granville and upon reaching the village, discovered Lori, Marty, Dave, Luke and Isaac eating ice cream. Lori, the nutrition specialist, claimed there was broccoli in her ice cream. Finished with 79 miles while the above good people had 88.
A lighter than normal turnout for the fun times at New Albany. David Smith cruising the parking lot while others gather to discuss the route.
The restroom at the church is a popular place and so......
.....remember to shove a few dollars into the milk jug, just as Marty is doing once again.
There were so few people that opportunities for pic taking were somewhat limited. While there were 21 out for the A group, I bet the B group only had maybe 30 and not a lot of C's. So, Rick gathered us for the usual preride announcements and warnings.....
.....and most of us gathered to listen, including Frank on the left and Patrick, resplendent in white on the right. Patrick was warming up before 5:00pm so he was good to go and go we did.....
.....where I took one final image as a gap opened in front of me and not for the last time as you can well imagine. The pace, I think because Shannon was missing, was pretty civil for most of the ride to Alexandria, where we entered with a 23.1 average. The ride through town offered no respite as someone pushed the pace and we quickly made the left on Mounts and scooted up the hill to a right on Lobdell. I was in good shape but drifted back on the downhill, being overly cautious in that sketchy gravel. At the bottom, now at the back of the group, Luke and Marty broke around to my left but I stayed glued to Rich Lewis' wheel. Unfortunately, that Tuesday ride may have taken something out of Rich's usual dominant fitness or he has not had the opportunity to ride as often because he was unable to hang on as we rode out of the valley to Hardscrabble.
Several were dropped along Lobdell/Harscrabble and the ensuing section on Battee because as I emerged on to Louden, Gus Cook was 50 yards to my front, alone and no one was within eyesight behind. Descending the hill on Louden, what luck/relief/satisfaction/giddiness and just plain welcome was the sight of Muscle Dude waiting on Dry Creek and so he, Gus and I bonded together for the ride east to 661. A couple of times when mashing the pedals, well, what I do can't rightly be described as pedal mashing but anyway, my left foot felt as if it was breaking over the edge of the pedal. Oh-oh, another loose pedal? I stopped to check and then urged Gus and Craig to proceed without me. I did not have the Allan wrench to tighten so turned around and headed back, finishing with 40 miles. Mean while, Patrick, Marty, Luke and a couple others completed the full route with an average speed of 22.5.
There is a good ride out of the parking lot behind Veloscience at 8:00am with Gus leading out various luminaries and plain people like me. Supposed to be a B pace, 70 miles and all are welcome.
Wow, still in the 50+ mile distance for the A route and you can see it and the others here, including links to the GPS files: http://www.thecyclingclub.org/route-resources/c-o-p-thursday-night-cycling-club-ride/ Rick has two distinct B groups so don't let the madness of previous Thursdays deter you from participating in the "Mother of All Evening Group Rides."
Famer Mike on the left just bought a new van and awaiting a new bike, wished he had the good luck of Jeff, finding a $20 on the road while riding to the start.
So, the New Albany/central Ohio A's have been roaming the earth, looking for a place to call their own on Tuesdays. Their odyssey began at the Canal ride but they came, they saw, they conquered and it's a long drive so then they began visiting the Dublin ride but as I was told, their kind was not welcome. Now they have begun to gather in our shaded parking lot. Initially, Marty would slot in and ride middle of the pack, then Jon Morgan, then Doug McConaha and tonight others arrived such as Tym Tyler, Rich Lewis, Muscle Dude and Ron Budzig, along with a couple other guys sporting team kits..
I hope the Cycling Club embraces this misunderstood, mistreated minority and welcomes them to our Tuesday ride. Probably the club will but then the question is, how can the ride remain a "B" paced ride.....it can't, it's not realistic to expect all that pent up power to pedal so slowly. Just last night, our average speed went from a previous high of 19.3 to 20.3 so there was restraint but the addition of the fastest made our ride faster.
George doing what he does best, talking. Last week he doubted he could hang because he had ridden three consecutive days. This week, he doubted he could hang because he had taken a couple days off. What's the answer? "Hincapie" got his Trek back with the metal sleeve for the bottom bracket and must now go through what is usually the pointless exercise of having that part fail before he can apply for a replacement frame.
Marty, on the left, rode a gravel ride earlier in the day so just came out to socialize, above with Craig Rice, Rich Lewis, Farmer Mike and Gus.
Gus let us know that a local cyclist, while riding in Montana this week, descending a hill, died when a car pulled out in front of him. I did not recognize the name so can not type it here but saddened to know that another husband and father has died while participating in cycling. Gus used this as an opportunity to warn us about running stop signs and safety and with that we took off. Jay P immediately fell off his bike, above straightening back to the upright position. Odd timing.
And so, a group of 40 B's with another 10+ having already departed in the C/D group, left the parking lot in a long line. The group was split at the New Albany light and I don't think we ever regrouped but that was ok as we hurtled out old 161 and arrived in Alexandria with a 21.9 average. We rolled through the village, hit the Mounts hill, right on Lobdell with some very dicey loose gravel, emerged at Hardscrabble but did not regroup, soft pedaled out Battee to Louden where we regrouped a little and then hit Stone Quarry with a regroup there. Then back to the parking lot with 38 miles and as said before, a 20.3 average. With the influx of strong A's what is the best course forward, split off a real A group at the start or continue as is with some restraint shown and a couple of regrouping points?
Many from Central Ohio are headed to the little village of Monterey, WV, this Saturday, to participate in the Mountain Mama ride, one of those 100 mile, 10,000' climbing events. This one is a little different from most, rather than have a giant climb at the end, the route features 9 climbs, evenly dispersed across the 100 miles although one of those is at the end. So remote is the location, few make it to the event, usually no more than 250-300. However, Central Ohio usually has a strong contingent and this year is no different with Steve Oxley, John Day (Muscle Dude Jr.), Dustin (Old Chubbs), Brent, Rick Miller, Amanda (Corvair), Mark V, Mitch O, Cindy B (Flyin Tuna), Mark C (Wolf in Pastor's Clothing), Philippe, Greg Dubois, Ted M and a couple others I'm sure.
One on this list has given up his room at one of the more desirable hotels from a list of very undesirable options, citing the weather forecast. Monterey is on top of a plateau and above it rise mountains so cool weather is the rule rather than the exception. Precip is forecast at 60% and at that elevation, way up in those mountains, will it be rain or snow? Dress carefully my cycling buddies.
A smallish turnout of around 30 for the COP roving ride out of Sugar Grove on a very excellent route of 76 or 96 miles. Above, the too cool to listen group of Dirty Dan, Flyin Tuna, Mark C, Beth Hale & friend ignore Andrews request to gather for ride comments. I wish I could be in the "too cool" group but I instinctively did as instructed and listened to Andrew. Then off we went with a few of us, Muscle Dude Jr,. Steve O, Brent, Philippe, Dirty Dan, Larry P and Andrew getting a little ahead at the first big climb of the route and then at mile 25.....
....cruised into New Straitsville and paused at Ed's Market. Usually, the 3 chairs in front are occupied by locals and so tired was I, I had already planned to open a can of "whup ass" if they did not make room for us but they had already gone. Larry P, Lisa, Mark C, Philippe and me went on the 76 mile route and had a good time other than that 17 mile stretch on Marietta Road is brutal. Of much greater significance, the next day, Sunday, several of the women who populate our New Albany Thursday ride participated in.....
....the Challenge New Albany event, including Lori Nedusco, Peggy Cook, Katherine Graham and Allison Nuevo. With thanks to Meredith Whitney Gabriel for use of the images, above is Lori. A bad day in the water put Lori too far behind but she passed hundreds once on the bike, like that is unexpected.
Above, Peggy Cook Allison finished 3rd in the Elite Female Open Division Half Tri at 4:56, Lori finished 3rd in the 30-34 Half Tri at 5:49, Katherine finished 8th in the 35-39 Olympic distance at 2:54 and Peggy finished 1st in the Aquabike division at 3:31. Congrats ladies!
The day began unlike most, fortunately, as I cut down yet another ash tree. This one I planted when our house was built and I had some sentimental attachment to it. But, dead is dead so down it had to come. Cutting and persuading it to go where you want is the easy part, it's the cleaning, burning, cutting, stacking that is a pain in the ass so when I arrived for the New Albany ride, my back ached and I wasn't sure I was going to ride.
Before arriving, I swung by the New Albany pool to see if I could get an image of Dave Chesrown and sure enough, there he was, wearing dark glasses and staring at the "hotties". I fear we have lost Dave until the pool closes.
The parking lot energized me so I went in to my normal routine of taking unflattering images of people. Above, Ricky G on the left made a rare Thursday appearance, standing with Farmer Mike who is waiting on a new road bike having Dura Ace Di2 as part of the package.
Todd Lee asked if I could photoshop the image to give him large muscles but the computing power to pull off that feat would be to great so we'll just have to go with the unedited image.
Some of the ordinary cyclists who make up the vast majority of our rides.
Yet more ordinary cyclists. So many names for me to learn. I try to add one a week but never catch up with everyone. Or maybe I have but have forgotten so many.
Kristian stretches while more gather.
Rick called us together and read some prepared remarks about cycling safety. He also mentioned that he has the right to ban the craziest among us. I wondered if some had already been banned because the turnout was light. A round of applause signaled the end of the statement and 28 of us shoved off in the A group, including John and his son, Anthony. Seeing this made me nervous mainly because Anthony is not big enough for me to draft behind, always a concern of mine but his bike handling is at times erratic and too unpredictable. This will change in time of course but for now, he should stick with the B group for another season, although riding with that group ain't no day at the beach if you know what I mean.
We headed out 161, managed to get across 62, made several turns and at mile 12 or 13, we made a right on Vans Valley Road. Here there was a modest climb and I was in good shape but arriving at a sharp turn to the right, I saw a gap opened in front of Anthony. Fortunately, Rich Lewis and another pulled me over but then looking ahead, a large gap had opened in front of Katherine Graham. Three of us began to close but I could not hold Rich's wheel and soon found myself with Ron Budzig, John Sada, guy decked out in all red and one other. Our average at the breaking point was close to 23 so the frequent stops had skewed the average down a bit but our group of 5 kept the pace high as we took turns pulling.
Reaching Clover Valley Road, my back barking at me, I lost interest and cut out of this good group, heading south all the way to Jug and in with 42 miles and a 21.5 avg. Now for Saturday, Tri-Andrew is once again hosting the COP Roving Ride out of Sugar Grove at 8:00am. This route is one of the best on the schedule and all are welcome. You can find the routes here but paper maps will be available and the ride is free:http://ridewithgps.com/users/57043
Check this out. We head in to uncharted waters, at least for the Thursday ride, going way north and even west. Get the details, gps files and everything else here: http://www.thecyclingclub.org/route-resources/c-o-p-thursday-night-cycling-club-ride/ While there, take less than a minute and join the Cycling Club. It costs nothing and gets you on an email list for ride notices. With the heat and humidity at bay, temporarily, should be a great evening for a bike ride.