As usual, the shade was popular and around 45 cyclists gathered to hear the pre ride announcements, to which few actually pay attention. Tonight's route, kind of flat, going east beyond Baltimore before a somewhat hillier return. I failed to put the route up earlier but will have the next couple of Tuesday routes. Planning something epic for next week. I continue to slouch toward mediocrity, further evidence being, did I go up to Euro Patrick and ask "How we going to attack this gang?", no. Did I ask Muscle Dude, "Can I lead you out for the Baltimore sprint sign?", no, did I tell Nick I'd sacrifice myself by riding in the wind so he could conserve energy and draft out of that cross wind?" Nope, I asked a notorious short cutter, gutter rider, drafter extraordinaire what he was going to do. I asked Poobah and he said, "I'm riding behind the Rossi tandem" and so, I decided to join in too with the B+ group.
Nick described his success at this past weekend's race, taking 3rd. In the background, Wendy Smith makes her first appearance at the Canal ride.
Nice evening for a bike ride, sun, light winds out of the north, low humidity, kinda hot but not too much so, etc... So, no surprise that quite a few people came out, including a couple of New Albanyites, Jon Morgan and Muscle Dude. Here, Paul Stock crams a bananna into his mouth but it was not enough, or maybe it was too much. More on that below.
Out the A group went. Forgot to count but maybe 15ish? Then our group went, maybe 18ish? I'll keep this brief because, no one cares what the Bers do so we headed out Basil Western, arriving in Baltimore with a slimmed down crew that included Poobah, Kevin H, Mark V, Mike Murphy, Wendy, Amanda and a few others. Arriving in Baltimore, Poobah suddenly hit the gas and we flew through town, kind of a curious move that separated the group but soon to reform. A few times, Kevin or Poobah would push the pace and there would be just the three of us but then I'd take a pull and the group would reform. Nothing reforms a group like me taking a pull. Somewhere out there, Todd gave the Rossi's a push to help get them over a hill. I warned Mark Rossi this is one of Todd's infamous pick-up moves toward our wives. He starts with a push on the rear and then moves up from there. I asked Mark to practice delivering a 4 knuckle sandwich and to give me the head's up so I could catch the image.
Arriving in Carroll and then heading west on Winchester Road, we were scheduled to make a left and tackle that hill off Pickerington Road but Poobah went straight while most of us made the turn. Kevin and Mike must have talked between themselves because they gifted me the KOM points on the climb but then we regrouped. Close to Canal, we came across Paul S, off the bike and looking kind of sickly. Someone said he had been throwing up from the exertion. I always throttle back way, way before that stage of effort. We soon arrived back in Canal with 44 miles and a 20.1 avg. Not sure what the front A group did or who was in it other than Patrick again won the Canal sign sprint and Steve O gave him a water bottle and towel.
Oh, this rear derailleur virus is catching. Steve O's bike had a similar problem as mine. Note the derailleur is supposed to be at the bottom, not pointed skyward. Looks like he'll be on the cross bike for awhile.