Yes, all is right with the world again, the Thursday New Albany ride is back and it brought out people not seen since last fall. Including Dennis, aka Style Queen, aka Muscle Dude Junior....Dave K, aka SuperDave, aka Alphabet or just SupeDave and many others. Here, Dave attempts to explain the route to Poobah. It was a good route, even though most of us had to ride the route to find out what was the route. Note to ride leader: Hit the enlarge button on the printer a couple of times for us old people.
Rick Miller pulls up in his newly painted repair van. Wrap around graphics will be added soon, should be sharp looking when finished. Poobah attempting to get a free tune-up on the left.
Dave Chesrown signs in, more squinting at the map on the right.
The sun reflecting off the asphalt made it seem warm but the movement of the air suggested otherwise. Maybe 58 degrees at the start which produced a range of wear, some guys with ear wraps, tights & jackets, some with just shorts and jerseys. Regardless, we headed out at 6:00pm and out of the 45 cyclists at the start, 25 were in the A group and a strong group it was, led by Rich Lewis, Dave Chesrown, Shannon, Jon Morgan, Craig, the real Muscle Dude, Grand Poobah, Mike Rea, John Sada, Rick Miller, Danny Alcorn, Mitch Tallen, John Gorrilla, Mick, Terry and just a bunch of other guys too strong, too young and too fit. Note John G wearing the backpack and riding a cross bike with real cross tires on the left.
We rode out old 161, hung a left on Kitzmiller and then on Walton Parkway, the speed ramped up and here we go. Not being used to the intensity, early on I figured I would not be long for this world. We made a left on Beech and with a right on Jug, Shannon, Rich and Dave took turns turning the screws to the pack fodder and we began shelling a few people. I was behind John G but eyeing his bike suspiciously, not sure he could hang with the group on that anvil. Upon seeing a couple of bike lengths open in front of him, I pounced! Yes, my only moment of glory, passing a guy riding a 100 lb bike with knobby tires but I have to take my moments when I find them.
We rolled into Alexandria with an average over 23mph and approached the left on Mounts. A surge hit the first ramp and we were up and over with the group largely intact but then the group hit the rollers at good intensity and riders were shelled, including Mick, Poobah and others and then.....yes....100 yards short of Hardscrabble and at mile 16, I was done. I think there were still 12-14 in the front group but I was no longer part of it, bummer. My average was 22.5 at that point, turning right on Hardscrabble and then a left at Battee. A right on Louden brought me into the head wind and I rode the remaining miles never seeing anyone else and my average plummeted, finished the ride at 20.1, 36 miles and 1050' of climbing. Ahead, there were 10-12 who finished together in the lead group with a 23.1 average and a call to make the route hillier for next week so be prepared. Rich won the monster pull of the ride award for a sustained effort at 32+mph.