Under yet another fabulous late afternoon sky, a few sign in, followed by a few more but the distance of the rides just doesn't make it a worthwhile drive for many. Around 40 showed up for the grand finale Thursday ride....
...including Luke Russell. I may have misinterpreted his comment but I thought he said he forgot his cycling socks and this was what he put on this morning. Luke was part of a smallish A group that included Travis, Ken B, Jon Morgan, Porter, Scott B, maybe 12 in all.
Rick asked me a question about the cause of a squeak that seemed to originate in the skewer area. I reminded him that as Rick's substitute, all I was qualified to do is apply sun screen, chamois butter or fix a flat so his question was well beyond my pay grade.
I had to make a hard decision, the A group has left the route too many times so I demoted Marty and promoted a very eager Jon Morgan as Rivet group ride leader. Fortunately, Marty was not at tonight's ride so he avoided the public humiliation, dang it. When called upon to lead out the A group, Jon was not paying attention so Luke offered to lead out the group but I doubted his youth and inexperience could handle it and told him he was not yet qualified but maybe next year. Jon finally got the alert and off they went on a fast ride of 23.1 mpg avg that included Jon getting the coveted KOM on the return sprint into New Albany, 52 seconds breaking the previous mark of 53 seconds.
I had prepared a short speech and so proud of it was I that I looked through history and only when I came upon the bearded dude's address on the battlefield of Gettysburg did I find something equivalent. So, Rick made a surprise last minute arrival and I pocketed my inspirational address for next year, giving Rick the space to make his own season ending comments. A good....
...B group rolled out, numbering 20, including a Fairfield County boy, Matt A, Kim, A Clayton, David Smith, Corvair, Rick, Michael, etc... Nothing too exciting on our ride other than coming out of the York rollers I asked the lead guys to regroup at the 310 stop sign as Rick and I eased up to see that everyone was within sight. Then I began to have doubts the group would stop and so Rick and I teamed up to catch and were about 100 yards back when the front group steamed through the stop sign, made a right on 310 and a quick left on Hollow and we gave up our pursuit. We waited about 2 minutes at Morse and collected what we thought were all the stragglers before completing the route with a 20.5 avg. By the way, George was out but on his old bike so don't know what is up with that. While this was the last Thursday ride, the blog goes on with local ride start options during the offseason, ride/hike/backpacking reports from AZ beginning in about 10 days, reports from anyone who wishes to get their story out about their own adventures and before you know it, the start of a new season. Well, it will seem like forever.
The finale. Our 26th Thursday to be followed by 26 Thursdays of cooling temps then colder temps then milder temps, rain, then snow, then rain, clouds then clouds then clouds and out of that cauldron will emerge the first of 26 Thursday riding nights. That is a long way off so let's enjoy tonight's final Thursday New Albany ride. Please note the above is the correct A/B route. If you click on the below, it will take you to "thecyclingclub" route page but the map is from last week's ride. The gps files are correct.
27 Mile A-Pace http://ridewithgps.com/routes/10531220
27 Mile B-Pace http://ridewithgps.com/routes/10531220
18 Mile C-Pace http://ridewithgps.com/routes/10409792