The winner of the Granville Climbing Challenge, posing with the prize, a stuffed tiger. Dirty Dan on the right, finally showing he is putting the crushing defeat behind him and forcing a smile as the presenter.
Some early enrollees, Allison on the right, David Smith signing in, Kayla Starr rolling up in the background, John, Franz, etc...
Don't know them but maybe they read the blog and would like to see themselves.
A youngish looking couple sign in.
And still more came, including lots of the "Backroom Coffee Roaster" guys, Surge, Pete C, Rich Lewis and there's Hendra and Kevin Henshall. Last time he showed up we were at 30mph exiting the parking lot.
Large turnout of about 60, surprising given the heat, humidity and those nasty winds out of the south. There was some talk among the peloton's elite that since the route was flatish, there wouldn't be a lot of drops so they began to conspire and hatched a plan. Since I am outside this "Circle of Trust" and rightfully so, I and many others were oblivious to what was to come. Twenty-three of us shoved off in the A group, getting on to Walton's Parkway, with the wind on Bevelhymer, right on Walnut with the cutting cross wind, north on Green Cook, east on Fancher and then a long stretch north on County Line. Mostly the pace had been moderate with a couple of spirited sessions thrown in there as we approached the right on Wesley Chapel. Here, the parking lot plan hatched. As I turned the corner, looking ahead, there was already a 25-30 yard gap between a front group of maybe 6 and everyone else. Immediately, it became every man for himself as people dove to the left of whoever was in front of them. Multiple groups of 3-4 were strung out chasing that front group. Jon Morgan came sprinting by, then Marty and it appeared they caught on but many of us did not. Someone noted later that the same thing happened last year but I can't remember what happened last week, let alone 365 days ago.
I got in with Doug McConaha, Gus, Mick and Dirty Dan. We went north on Clover Valley and the last of the tail wind section before turning east on Foundation and rolled into the village of Croton. For some reason, we went north, off the route for about 1/2 a mile before catching our mistake, turning around and returning for a tour through Croton and then out east although we lost Doug who rode home. Too bad because for what we were about to enter, the wind tunnel, the more the better. We got on to Appleton and a remorseless grind into the wind, continuing on to Louden and then a right turn on Stone Quarry. Here, we caught up with Jay, Surge and one other guy and also noted the winds had died a bit. Almost all of us took turns with a pull and worked together pretty well, west on Concord into Johnstown, south on Caswell, a quick dip on Duncan Plains before getting back on Caswell, then Miller, Burnside and finally to Jug for the return. Here, Surge went to the front and just killed it for awhile and I struggled to stay on but survived, thankful that Gus took a moderately paced pull thereafter. We finished with 48 miles and a 21.3 avg. Meantime....
The plotters and survivors of the plot, gather around Rich, having finished with a 23.1 avg. Impressive considering the wind.