OK, it was a shock to the system to arrive at the New Albany parking lot and step out of the car into sub-60 degree temp but the winds were light and the sky was a brilliant blue so what's not to like? Well, it appeared there was a lot not to like judging by the quantity of cyclists who pulled in but as is the norm, the numbers grew and probably by 6:00pm there were around 40 of us.
Going out with a smallish A group was Billy C, Tym and Lisa T, Chris G, Rich Lewis, Jon Sada, Randy Brown, Mick and a few others. Some in the group were up to their same tired tricks, this time breaking from the group at the stop light in New Albany and leaving the rest behind at the light. Apparently this torqued off a few but I was not there to witness it as I had hung back with a fairly strong group of 15, B riders comprised of Dennis, SuperDave, Axel, Jeff S, Katherine & Christian, Mark R, Mark V, David, Denver Dan, etc...
BREAKING NEWS: Jon Sada threw the gauntlet down and demanded that I make public that he has challenged Rick Miller to a race at CFC. While those two have their own side bet, Jon told me he is giving 3:1 odds. If you put $100 on Rick to win, and Rick wins, Jon will pay you $300. If Jon wins, you lose your $100. I'm not making this up. However, you must call Jon to make your wager and leave me out of it. Unlike a horse race where you never really know how the horse is feeling, I put a call into Rick to alert him that he may be carrying the hopes of many and to find out what kind of shape he is in. You have to do your own due diligence should you wish to place a wager but I liked what I heard from Rick and have heard he has been training quietly in the mountains north of Utica to prepare.
Each week, sunset gallops closer and closer and so tonight we had only 33 miles to cover. Not much to say other than after arriving in Alexandria, a left on Mounts and then a left on Hardscrabble had reduced our group to 6 people, Dennis, Axel, Jeff S, David, Mick (who had fallen back from the A group) and me. But wait, we gobbled up Lisa to bring into the group the relentless one and soon she was dishing out punishment. We turned south on Castel, crossed over to Duncan Plains where we picked up Jon, then a left on Caswell and a right on Miller. We lost Lisa and Jon who turned to ride back to Granville and our pace slackened significantly. We arrived in the parking lot with 33 miles, a 21mph average and 950 feet of climbing.
While I will miss the Hocking Hills Tour, I have heard the market at the bottom of Tar Hollow has closed but Nathan is organizing a free food stop somewhere and perhaps he will post details here.