So coveted are the Granville Climbing Challenge awards and title that they inspired some in our midst to stoop to an unanticipated level of behavior. I regret that there have been several disqualifications, fines and suspensions. More, much more to come later after my body rids itself of the affects of drinking two of Nathan's free beers. I must be clear headed when I offer the sad details of what was an otherwise great ride supported by 65-70 of central Ohio's "Who's Who" of climbing and quite a few "Who's Not" too. Below is Part 1, Part 2 will come later. Just too many images and copy to plug in at one time.
Steamy day for a hilly bike ride yet lots of emaciated cyclists showed up for an opportunity to win the famous stuffed Bengal tiger or to avoid winning the stuffed fat penguin. Also some interest in having the "Middle of the Pack" prize awarded. I thought Nathan was a good candidate for this but he revealed that his intention was to "go aero", blitz the course without stopping and shock the world. Didn't quite work out that way. The freshly baked doughnuts were a big hit.
Whoa, a tandem came out for the ride. Too bad the Rossi's did not make it as that would have been a battle royale between them.
What did work out though was Nathan's idea of bringing two coolers with a variety of drinks. Here they are in the back of his van, waiting for us.
Hey, there's Retro George. His heart procedure did not quite "take" so he'll have to go back for another. He was a late arrival and did not get to roll out with the group. Terry too was late and while we were in the parking lot after the ride, heard Terry was out on Reform or Wilken's Run Road trying to get directions. For the most part, the road markings lived up to the promotion, except for a few places. I explained this in two ways: 1. The markings were meant for a group traveling at around 15mph, not 24mph. 2. Considering the cost of the ride was $0, you got more then your monies worth.
Steve O on the left, back from his Thursday ride to PA and not feeling too bad. Lined up beside him are Marty, Dave C & Farmer Mike in the background and then Mitch O.
There she is, Miss GCC Pageant Queen Kenda Janet prancing toward the sign-up. I asked for and received a round of deafening applause for her but standing to the side was Cindy B, grim faced, hands stuffed in pockets, obviously jealous. Cindy sent me an email and demanded a recount but I suggested she lose a few pounds and maybe next year the results would be different. So, we rolled out at about 8:10, after I made the pre-ride announcements, mostly warning that all traffic laws must be obeyed, this is not a race so no stupid stuff that puts my life in jeopardy, no public drunkenness or urinating in flower beds, watch the gravel on Smith Chapel and that we would observe a neutral zone during the ride through Granville.
Off we went, here the main body prepares to make the left onto New Burg. After 2 miles, we were already strung out with Marty and Dave C far in front and as cyclists went by I could hear some grumbling about the two guys way off the front, but I did not think much of it. Bringing up the rear were a bunch that I suspected would be candidates for the fat penguin but I won't name names as that would be unkind.
We rolled out New Burg, hitting the rollers before plunging down the back side and turning right onto Dry Creek. Those who you would think would be in front were there, Tym Tyler, Kevin Swabb, Bob Stoll, Oxley, John Sada, Lisa Tyler, Larry P, Blair B, Rob Rhodes, Nick V, couple of Italian looking types I did not recognize & others. Slightly back forming up a strong B group were Dennis, friend of Dennis, David M, Jeff S, Nathan, Kenda Dave & Paul (who later was observed sleeping at the Wilkens Corner market), Farmer Mike, Mitch, Tri Andrew and lots more people I did or did not know.
We took the usual route up Chatham, crazy dude yelled at some of us, down the other side and making a left onto Marion, up that hill then a right on Reynoldsburg Road and on in to Utica where we massed, sweating profusely. Well, ok, some of us did not turn left at Marion, instead turning right and a quick left onto Preston and Weaver, passing a head turning sight at the corner farm before turning on to Reynolds and the big hill. At the Utica gas station, we paused longer than normal except for Nathan, who did a stop and go, David Miller who kept going with two water bottles and a camelback and of course Marty and David, way ahead of everyone. That's the end of Part One, cause too many images and too much else to describe. Part II to come later.