On my way to New Albany, I thought I passed Billy C out on a solo ride. Hmmm, had the effort of dragging Dennis, Mike and I around Wednesday's route strained the system so much that he dare not try to repeat the effort one night later? Better question, would the legs of the elderly who followed him be recovered? Check out these sunglasses, worn by Becky. I was mystified over what the acronym "DG" meant and tried to figure it out....David & Goliath, something & Gold... no, it was explained to me it stood for Dolce & Gabbana. I was ashamed by my ignorance of modern fashion and added it to the lengthy topics about which I am largely ignorant. I am expert at glancing at a map and immediately visualizing shortcuts but I don't think that impresses many people.
Another good turnout but I forgot to count. At 5:30 there are 5-10 people and then they arrive from all corners. I noted that those who ride in are the strongest so I made a mental note to start parking about a mile away and then riding in too.
Mark V and John discussing tonight's route. Rumors continue to swirl the parking lot of a summer solstice type ride of 60+ miles that tops the Reynoldsburg hill. Shannon is doing a fantastic job with the routes. Not at all a knock at ride leaders of past years. He's also doing a better job then all the Tuesday ride leaders (me included) but he has motivated me to develop new Canal routes.
Rick & friend. By the way, the annual "Women of the Thursday Night Ride" feature will probably be next week so come out and have a creeper take your image without you being aware of it and then find out it is here.
Of course, most of the stars were out. I suspected there was group motivation to set an impressive average on a relatively flat route, which meant the pulverizes would be doing what they do best while the rest of us in the "pack fodder" league would see what we could do to hang on. David C told me the expectation was the group would stay together but being one who is keenly aware of the wind, I figured the cross wind would take it's toll, strong out of the northwest. Off we went and I settled in next to Mick, chatting about where he stayed in Orlando recently. Soon though, the chattering part of the ride was replaced with the panting stage as we turned north off Walton's Parkway on Bevelhymer, approached Peter Hoover, passed PH and arrived at #62 and a dead end. Turned around and went north on PH and I was struggling with the cross wind and dropped back a bit before the stop sign, signaling a turn right on to Fancher and regrouping but I swear the image.....
....of a Wildebeest getting cut out of the heard by a lion flashed in front of me. We sped east and I continued to struggle more and dropped back. That sucked. Ron came up and joined me and we added Gus to our group and I could see as the group turned left on County Line Road, there were other Wildebeests dropping out that would have created a nice secondary group. However, my legs were toast and I left them and headed farther east for a short solo ride at a much reduced effort. Now, with a big thanks to Marty, he fills me in on the rest but still unknown is the final average. Can someone fill me in?
Before the ride there was some strategy talk about where the group will break up. I said something like this ride is not going to break up, it is too flat. When heading North we were fighting the cross wind. I often just sit in the back for the first 10 miles and enjoy a warm up. For some reason I was near the front and took a few pulls but did not think at all about the group breaking up.
Next thing I know some of the guys are giving me heck about my idea that the group was not going to break up. Grisvard in particular was having some fun at my expense. I think we were down to about 10 guys, maybe less. Pete, Grisvard, Shannon, Dave, Hans, Doug McConaha, Paul Stock, Morgan, the guy with the Ohio tattoo and maybe a couple more. Dave might remember.
Then Doug just rolls off and said he had enough. Just before we were going to turn out of the wind. I was surprised at who was not with us. Then Shannon makes a wrong turn on Michell rd instead of Crouse Willison. We hit lots of gravel but we got back to Appleton and back on the route. Shannon is doing a great job as ride leader so we cut him some slack. And he made up for it by working super hard, amazing pulls into the wind.