Pretty good turnout for the New Albany Tuesday group ride with 22 of us waiting for Gus & Peggy to arrive. Logan P on the right with the green socks. He must be from Ireland. Logan is a budding Riveter and likely to depart with "those people" on Thursday.
A smaller group awaits too as the seconds tick by, 6:00pm and still our ride leaders are absent. Suddenly, an audible "Oh no." arises from the group and I turn to see....
....Muscle Dude coasting in. I've missed the last two Tuesdays but apparently Craig is putting it to the group who have been conditioned to more of a congenial B pace. At 6:05, our leaders roll in and....
...we head out with climbing champ Peggy on the left. The late arrival prevented me from getting an official quote. As usual, we head out 161 where we also pick up John and Anthony, roll through Alexandria, up Mounts, right on Lobdell, past the Frisbee golf and the first real climb. Because my resource of powder is very low, I keep it dry on this climb and am....
....one of the last to hit the regroup on Louden. Then we make a left and another left brings us to the foot of a newly paved Stone Quarry. I pick up the effort and hang with the front group. We descend and then after passing Raccoon Run on the left, hit the next ramp. Muscle Dude was in front pedaling some pretty weak sauce so I emerge from the back, pass him with an extra long stare for good measure and take off...a mini attack. Reaching the top I glance back to examine the carnage but they are all still there and encouraging me to keep pulling. We reach the 2nd ramp and I attempt to pull out but Craig calls me a sissy and pulls in behind me! WTF. Others have picked up the scent and are also yelling at me to continue the pull. I am in uncharted waters for sure....
....I reach the final of the ramp triad and am too spent to catch the peloton tail. Descending and then reaching the final rise, I coast to my band of brothers, who are having entirely too much fun at my expense.
Craig never rests. After pummeling us he rides back a ways to ride shotgun with the remaining pieces of our group. Now we head to the infamous Caswell Steps. Reaching the base, a small gap opens between Scott Billman and me and a front group of Craig, Logan and Nick. I ride Scott like a pony until he is spent but having brought us to the back of Craig's group, I am now poised for a personal record....a 2nd attack in one ride! This time, I have caught them flat footed and pass to their left, claiming tonight's KOM. At the right turn on Miller, a typical regrouping point, Craig yells to me, "Nice job John". This left me sputtering in confusion. I thought my tactic perfectly in line with the norm but then Craig attacks the regroup zone. It's like what Dirty Dan would do. Now I am too beat to respond and mostly ride in a sub group for the remainder of the route, finishing with a 20.2 avg. Another fun evening on a bike.