The official start time was 8:00am but people had been departing at least as early as 7:00am, hoping to make it through their routes prior to the arrival of storms. 2600 people had registered for the event but approximately 1000 of those did not participate due to a forecast that just a day earlier had indicated a 90% chance of rain. Our group made it through the 100 mile route rain free although the humidity made it seem like we received a good soaking.
And so we are off, Corvair, Mike Wrey, Cindy B, Mark & Karen Rossi, Mitch, Larry & Lisa and Norm. At mile 2, cyclists were streaming through a red light so I followed but the balance of my group stopped. I had hoped to get in with a large group but it was always just singles or doubles that came by but THEN......
.....two women came by pulling a group of guys and so I jumped in. For 6 miles the women stayed at the front hammering and said they planned to do the route in 5 hours. I was tempted to stay but the Ohio group had agreed to pause at a refueling point at mile 26 and so I stopped there but not for long as they soon coasted in and we....
...refueled. Soon thereafter, as I urged them not to linger, we got back onto the....
....road. The scenery in the first half of the route is ok but much improved in the second half. I kept expecting to hit a monster climb but never did. There are a couple of Cat 4 climbs on the route but they are long and not too steep. However, the hundreds of small hills do take their toll as you gain 5500' during the 100 miles.
OK, I could have done without the lengthy detour into Frankfort with way too much time spent on a bike path. This diversion cut 2mph from my average. The grounds of the State House are beautiful but still, I'd prefer to bypass and stay on country roads. Soon thereafter we stopped for lunch at mile 50. There are 7 refueling stops but we agreed prior to the ride we would visit only 3. The stops were well stocked and would satisfy even the most picky eaters.
Can't beat giant fans that spread a cooling mist to those standing in front.
Pickle juice? Yes, to help prevent cramping and there was also chicken broth for I suppose the sodium content.
At mile 75, we stopped to pick up our official badge, proving that we had ridden the century route. The stop was within sight of this magnificent castle structure and so the volunteers were dressed in medieval clothing including....
...this woman with whom you could have your picture taken. We got back onto the route and while we had hit our 3 intended stops....
...at mile 90 they serve root beer and orange floats so.... Above, Eva parks her bike prior to attacking the stand where the floats are prepared. I'm not a fan of floats but at that point, in that humidity and heat, I enjoyed it. We completed the final 10 miles and....
...came across the finish line where reactions ranged from joy to pained relief. Lisa A on the right, Cindy B, Corvair and Eva. Good time and I'll be back next year, weather permitting. My average speed was 16.9 but that Frankfort detour as I said, really hit the average. Moving time was 5:54 but we spent 90 minutes at the refueling stops, some of that refueling but a lot of it just trying to herd everyone together, which is ok, it's that type of event, not a race.
I am unaware of any Sunday plans probably due to the forecast but there will be rides for Monday so stay tuned. Mean time, I rode the hot, humid "Horsey Hundred" in Georgetown, KY and had a great time. Above, at mile 70, our group paused and enjoyed the food, drink and giant fans.
You have until 8:00pm this evening to sign up for this very worthy event. There is also day of registration. More information by following the below link.
Aaron C seems incredulous that not more cyclists wanted to ride this evening......there, there in the sky, just beyond the crane and above the tree line, in the distance....that's why.
Wow, more arrived. They all seemed surprised that I too had come out. We speculated where some other regulars were and responses ranged from "On a flight to Escondido" to sitting on a trainer.
Paul D made a last minute decision to ride and was the last to arrive. He referred to is as "Going Belgium." I was thinking of far more negative terms to describe the forth coming experience.
Radar check....not good but the red and yellow cells were gone, just a sea of green. A total of 12 of us shoved off.
It was promoted as a recovery paced ride but already, I was unable to hold the wheels and was now dropping off. The group went to Granville and back, finishing with 32 miles and a 22mph average. Now some clarity.....
...I regret that I misled you into thinking I actually rode. I was in my car when I took the image of the cyclists. No one was surprised to see me on the bike cause I was not on one. Everything else above is factual or close enough to be considered so. I got home, noted the inside temperature was high 60's and started a fire.
Good turnout on a cool and cloudy evening with the H&H gang there in force, Doug M and Glen G too.
Chris I in the middle with 4 water bottles although I think one is a radio and one a battery on the bike frame. That's some serious extra weight but when you are young and strong, such thoughts never enter the mind. When you are old and weak, I leave my cell phone, strip out brakes from the front, take one water bottle, etc...
More and more arrive, including Kristie with baked goods! Rick, Larry P, Kirby, Milt, Nick, Jon M, ack, too many to name.
Thirty-three of us roll out of the parking lot and....
....endure a couple of waits before we exit New Albany, pick up a couple more cyclists on the road and soon reach 310 and then the.....
....descent down Jersey Mill into Alexandria. Most of us remained in the group so it was quite the spectacle when....
....we coasted through the village prior to climbing Mounts, right at Lobdell, descending into and out of the valley where I bugged out. I had Blue Jay Road legs so wanted to do a half Monty rather than the Full Monte. Circling back to Alexandria, I picked up Tim and Pete and we ham and egged it back to NA where I finished with 30 miles. The balance of the group finished with just under a 20mph average.
Cindy B organized a hilly route from Heath to Somerset. Odd that only 6 came out for it but the weather was probably a factor with rain threatening in the early to late afternoon depending on which service was checked. Matt, Kristian, Katherine and Steve came out. If we were not climbing, we were descending and eventually arrived at a point where a layer or two had to come off. Above, Steve, riding his cross bike, spotted something in....
....the weeds. How bout that, a bike. Walking in there to check it out likely would mean walking out with 100 ticks so I declined the urgings of my fellow cyclists.
A misty, cloudy day as we head east from Fling Ridge Park on Poplar Forks/Mt Perry roads south.
Steve's rear derailleur cable broke, fixing his chain on the smallest sprocket in back. On this route, that would be a problem. Just then, a tour bus emerged from the gloom, probably lost.
We were unable to fix it and when Steve got onto #668, he was forced to get off and push the bike. I regret not having that image.
Entering Glenford, what luck! Jeff's Automotive but alas, the shop was closed. Next, Steve....
....saw a man and asked if he had a wire or something so he could fix the rear derailleur in a position so at least the chain would be in one of the larger sprockets but the man was unable to help. Then, what luck!!!
....other cyclists arrived, including Tim F, Eve, Beth, etc... I was providing encouragement while....
....most of the others socialized across the street. Nothing solved the "mechanical" so Steve called a friend for pick up and we continued on although now without Kristian and Katherine who had to return. Now it was down to Matt, Cindy and me as we....
....cruised into and out of Somerset, finishing with 78 miles and 4400' of climbing.
The first option has rolled in for Saturday. From Cindy B:
We will be starting at 8:00, parking at the end of Dorsey Mill Road (bike path parking area). Drive the same way as you would to get to Hoback park, pass Hoback park entrance and continue on road until it dead ends. This route is 77 miles, with hills, pace will be a B pace. Rain looks to move in around 1:00, so if we need to shorten, we can. Rest rooms are at Hoback park, so stop there if you need one.
From Marty S:
Saturday Ride May 20th 8am
It looks like we should be able to get a morning ride in before any rain. Plan on leaving the New Albany Starbux at 8am. We should be able to do this route before the rain and can make changes in the morning based on the forecast.
We will want to keep things moving so figure a steady and solid B pace.
New Albany is having an afternoon parade so it might make sense to park on Ogden Woods and ride a block to the start.
And then of course there is COP's TOSRV or Tour of the Scioto River Valley. See the COP web site for information.
Tuesday morning and I think a turkey emerged from the woods. I rode 80 miles on Monday so went to the....
....Canal Winchester ride to hop in with the B group. The Super B group was going faster than I wanted to eventually I found a comfort zone with 4-5 others. Great tail wind for the return and of course, a stop at Brewdog after the ride where I bought a beer for Pepe Lapew.
I checked out the Cycling Expo at the Heit Center in New Albany. Good group of vendors outside and inside....
.....free beer and wine! This was my first stop and they dispensed a generous pour of beer, choosing from one of three different types. I asked them to fill two cups so I'd have one for each hand but they declined.
Inside, the "Cadence Kitchen" and "Melt Hot Fitness" were giving demonstrations, along with other vendors on the other side of the room. The Kendas and Flyin Tuna arrived so I used this as an excuse to visit the beer station again. Luke R was there too so he offered to show us....
.....Lori's travel van. Kenda Janet checks out the psi of the air mattress. This morning, Lori heads off for 12 days of racing in Canada, NY, VT and elsewhere. What an adventure. The van was efficiently packed and should be a good home for a couple of weeks. Her most recent post is very entertaining: http://www.thecadencekitchen.com/vanlife/van-life-begins
Luke hopped on a trainer and I noted, while casually pedaling, was hitting my max wattage output. Nice.
We were all casually dressed for the event except one of us, a former high powered, corporate executive that wore plenty of bling, including a Movado watch. Good time at the Expo.
A route was put out there for an 8:00am start, shoving off from behind the New Albany Starbucks. Certain people began talking (ok, in the interest of full disclosure, I was one of the people) about a later start, following a hillier route (full disclosure moment again; my contribution was only for a later start, not hillier). Moments later, a 9:00am route was put out there. As I drove for the 9:00am start I passed the 8:00am group and they too had a good turnout.
Among our group was Jay P, Larry & Lisa, Gus & Peggy, Sam (fresh off running in the Boston and NY marathons) Mike W, Isaac, Lori N, Cindy B, Kristian & Katherine, Brent J, Corvair, Aaron C, Tim F, new guy Alan (used to weigh 295 pounds but has lost over 100 pounds while being trained by Jon Hastings), Jeff S, Dirty Dan, Tym & Lisa, etc...
What a great route that included a few brief regroups. Isaac on the right, always one of the first to arrive at a regroup point. Dude must have a permanent crink in his neck from having to look back so often. His head can swivel 180 in either direction like an owl.
Great day to be on the bike. Our ride was not without incident as I may have been a bit to keen to catch an emerging break. There was an opening between Tym and Dan and then it closed as I was going through. Tym's handlebars touched mine, I swerved a bit right into Dan who fortunately was up to the task of maintaining control and stayed upright. It's bike riding, stuff like that happens but that I put my buddies' safety at risk bothered me for a second or two. Still, for what mischief he has created.....
Arriving in Utica, we ran into Travis & two others. I got Travis to describe his Cat 3 state road race win. good story.
Throughout the ride, we had been losing people to time mandated shortcuts so by the time we left Utica for the return, I think we were down to 9 people. As we neared New Albany, Gus' route kept us off the boring 161 in an interesting way. I suggest you check that out. We finished with 70 miles, 18.1 avg and 3200' of climbing.
At 8:00am, departing from the parking lot behind the New Albany Starbucks (usual Thursday shove off point) is a B paced ride following this route: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/21082734
Considering who is attending, you can likely count on a home made snack prior to or after the ride.
Then, at 8:30am, Joe Twelmeyer is starting a group ride, for you west siders, from the Whetstone Park of Roses. This is for road bikes although it will have about 2 miles of hard packed dirt/fine gravel. Meet at the bottom parking lot. I don't currently have a gps file for the route.
And then at 9:00am, from in front of Starbucks, is this route. The peloton frowns on competing routes that rip apart the peloton but no amount of persuasion from me could deter Gus from setting this up. I think partly he was motivated to provide a later, thus warmer and hillier route. The pace is a spirited B pace with some regroups and a stop in Utica at roughly mile 31. There the group may linger a bit, or not, depending on if Marty shows up. If you are wondering who will attend this event, I tend to attract the great unwashed (Dirty Dan among many others) so there is that but I understand some of the great washed will be there too like Isaac, Lori and their devotees.
Last but not least...is the COP option described above. I hear the Kendaites are attending this event so obviously only the really cool people will be in Delaware.
I guess around 60 cyclists came out for a good evening to ride a bike. I managed to get most of them to gather for route warnings but also to give a shout out to the cyclists that won or finished high up in Sunday's State Road Race Championship and who also are regulars at the Thursday ride. I asked the group to hold their applause until the end because the list was long. Travis won Cat 3 with Terry G at 12th. Kyle Z won the Cat 4 with help from Danny A who finished 3rd followed by, beginning in 8th place, Ryan H, Nick K, Brandon W and Isaac M. Adam O won the Cat 5 with Mike C finishing 6th. Philippe, aka French Climbing Machine, won the Masters 45+, Pete C won the Masters 55+ with Scott B and Doug M high in the standings too. Lori N won the Women Cat 1/2/3 while Deneise and Kim finished 2nd and 3rd in Women 4/5. Hope I did not miss anyone.
Geoff and Rick are both riding strong this season.
And so, off the Rivet Group went followed by the A group with Steve Fields on the left.
About 25 were in the A group, Brad, Jay P, Scott B, Kim, Gus, Peggy, Deneise, Mike M, Kristian, Katherine, Jared, Erik, Steve F, Andrew, Christian S, Dan R who had an early mechanical, Rick and others, pausing at the light. A fun and uneventful route until it wasn't.
In the middle of Mink Road, where Miller crosses, a woman was sitting in a car. We thought there had been an accident but apparently, she had run out of gas while preparing to make a turn. A motorist had stopped to help and several of us pitched in to push the car into a nearby drive way.....
Deneise offered to stay with the woman but upon exiting the car, the woman was screaming at someone via her phone. Ack, maybe we should leave her alone so we regathered and headed east. Entering Johnstown at the top of Caswell, one of us thought he heard the word "Go" and entered the southbound lane of #37 just as a car was passing. The passing car shielded the view to the south and a car traveling north was not seen by the cyclist. Fortunately, one of us saw what was happening from a better vantage point and screamed, "Car right!" The cyclist was able to turn left and avoid the oncoming car. As everyone knows, cycling is an inherently risky activity so it's good we are out there looking out for each other.
Whew, way too much excitement for me. Well, I had a 70 mile ride in my legs from yesterday so at Concord and Northridge, stepped out of the A group, waited for the B group and the shorter route. I finished with a 20.1 average and 39 miles. The A group finished with a 20.9 average and 48 miles. Meanwhile, Pete C, Kyle, Danny, etc.. were blazing the route, finishing with a 24mph average. That number seems to be the standard for that group. I'll have Saturday ride options up soon.
Good Morning Probable Attendees to the Ride of Rides; the Thursday New Albany Group Ride. I had a longish ride yesterday and since I am closer to the age of 90 then 20, if I even sense I will get wet, I'm not exiting the parking lot. Since we have attracted new members, I'll go over the group guidelines. If you don't wish to read this drivel, go below for the routes. First, there is the "Rivet" group. They go fast, really fast. How fast you are wondering? If you have to wonder this is probably not the group for you. Expect a 24mph average with no mercy shown (meaning they ain't waiting on you). Then the "A" group r...olls out. They too are fast but will roll in with a 21-22 average. They will pause briefly at the top of any major climbs on the route. Depending on the quantity of cyclists, there will be one or two "B" groups. Previously, we have named these two groups, "Super B" and "Reg B". However, everyone thinks they are a super B so everyone rolls out with the first group. As our numbers swell with the swelling of the temps (more next week then this week) we'll try two "B" groups and leave it at that. The B average speed is around 19-20mph. Then the "C" group bursts into the country side. I don't want to sound like a snob but I have no idea what is their average speed. I hear they do finish, prior to sunset. Each group will have a ride leader. The ladder of responsibility is higher as you drop down the groups. The Rivet leader just rides out of the parking lot, ensures an orderly exit from New Albany and then the Hounds of Hell are released. Same with the A group but the leader makes a small attempt at a couple of regroups. The B leader is more caring, may stop at some intersections to make sure every one gets through, will ensure regroups are legit, etc... The C leader is a true escort, reader of all the great works, intellectual, wine snob and will provide entertainment throughout. Below the routes. Hope the rain holds off.
Let's get this out of the way first; it was cold. I don't care what the gauge indicated, it was cold. Look at the above, do they look like a warm bunch? Looking at the extended forecast, relief is at hand. Still, there were about 20 who came out.
There was some talk about yet another motorist who infringed on a cyclist's safety in the Westerville area. The usual close call, middle finger, name calling. Does it not occur to these idiots that this can all, or a portion of the encounter, be recorded? At least a license number, which is what happened.
Rick in red riding very strong this season and headed to Boone, NC for additional training. The group departed but a 1/2 mile into the ride I turned around. I was improperly dressed. More than that I do not know.
Eleven of us, on May 7th, a day where the average high is 70 degrees, gathered on a chilly morning of 48 degrees with winds howling from the northwest. Frequently during the ensuing ride, we talked about how, riding in this wind, builds character. If so, what you see above are people of humongous character. Cindy, Gus, Jay and Buzz.
And then the woman of the hour, fresh off receiving her Master's degree from The Ohio State University, having the Best Gawd Damn Band in the Land with the greatest football coach in the history of the NCAA, with the...ok, I digress, strolled into our midst. What an achievement and yet so humble is Peggy Cook.
Rick joined us too along with Jeff S and new guy Todd Fry. What a revelation was Todd, a guy who enjoys grinding at the front into the wind so we can draft behind him! What a guy!!!! We exited New Albany and took a southerly approach into Granville. The pace of these group rides still has me mostly reeling. I have the miles but not the intensity so as always, it is a shock. We arrived in....
...sunny Granville. A very embarrassing moment occurred here. Gus walked up to me and asked if I was doing the entire route!?!?!? Not a question asked in private but loudly in front of the entire group. OK, I was thinking about cutting the route short but now? I had to finish it!!! What a struggle though. Gus and Todd were the stars of the event and riding like it is July rather than early May. We finished with 67 miles and a 17mph average. Fall can not get here soon enough for me.
The Gus Cook has produced, at the final minute of the final hour of the day before Sunday another option. A 10:00am start from the New Albany Starbucks following this route: https://ridewithgps.com/routes/16917424. Described as a conversational B pace with some regroups and of course, look at that route, plenty of short cutting options.
Granville, 11:00am kick stands up, drive to River Road Coffee but do not park there. Instead, go one property to the east and park in the back lot. You'll likely see plenty of cars with bikes so won't require intuition to figure out where to go.
Then, at 8:00am from Cyclist Connection in Canal Winchester, there is the COP Sunday ride. Will be way too cold for me but if you like to finish a route dead into a screaming head wind, this is the one for you!
Do yourself a favor. Click on the below link and read Lori's very enjoyable report of her experience at "Tour of the Gila." If you do enjoy the read, and you will, leave a comment expressing your thoughts. She deserves that.
Also, Lori has a "Gofundme" account in an effort to raise funds to help finance her cycling season. You can visit it here to donate: https://www.gofundme.com/elite-cyclist-season
My expectation that we would ride this evening was 0% but here is the image of the routes and maybe we can get in a few miles.
The weather being what it has been and the forecast being what it is, Don Novel organized a ride out of New Albany that was to stand for The Tuesday or Thursday ride, take your pick. More to come.