The first part of the ride proceeded with a nice neutral pace out to Amanda where there was the briefest of stops to top off water bottles. This part of the ride is quite flat and the group stayed together except for the occasional light attacks on a couple of the larger rollers. The Amanda stop was the demarcation of those going long and those cutting off. I won't mention who cut off at this point, but from his long history of doing so you might be able to guess. There were a few words exchanged about football and kickoff and bits and pieces of this and that but they were largely covered up by jeers and cat calls and chicken sounds from the larger group headed out the long route.
After our recovery from the exertions of making fun of “Cut-Off” (Hey! Maybe he will get a moniker after all?!! - You should comment if you think that this is a good nickname for he-who-has-not-been-named) The group headed east into the hills where there was a small select and the group spread out a bit... it was at this point that the ride become a bit fuzzy for me. I recall that there was quite a lot of whimpering and thinking bad thoughts at Rick N. for not allowing me to purchase a compact for my time-trial bike. I spent quite a lot of time switching back and forth on Savage and Revenge hills and finally rolled into Sugar Grove for the lunch stop with about 44 miles in at this point.
Lunch was shredded chicken and pulled port sandwiches on top of the normal selections of power bars, Cokes, Oatmeal Cream Pies and the usual fodder at a small country store. The weather had also heated up to about 68 degrees and there was a vast amount of undressing going on while we ate. It was also noted that Amanda was riding in tennis shoes because she had forgotten her cycling shoes. After about 30 mins we wandered back to our bikes and headed out with the knowledge of many hills to come.
At this point I fell back into that half-awake state that protects you from massively traumatic events when they occur and awoke again in the parking lot with legs that I wasn't certain would be able to support my weight after I clipped out. I also made a firm decision never to ride that bike again... EVER. I'm going back to my recumbent. It loves me, and I love it.
The normal wrap-up ensued in the parking lot, where discussions of key parts of the ride were relived and I couldn't participate due to lack of memory of the actual riding part past Sugar Grove. I forgot to set my altimeter before we started but I know we climbed at least 5000 ft.