After the morning rain, I assumed we would be good for the rest of the day so did not check radar before departing for Canal. Upon arriving a little after 5:00, I learned the prospects of riding had been dealt a severe body blow when none other than Grand Poobah had already been there and was gone. Jeff and Mark were both looking at weather radar on their phones and their faces looked grim. Franz too checked in and his radar, for some reason, showed the green blob punctuated by yellow and red splotches to be as close as west Columbus. I began mentally checking out of the ride but was obligated to at least stay until 6:00 to complete the sign up.
Hey, big news for Young Phenom Logan and Younger Phenom Nic. Nic scorched the "10-16" field at the state championship over the weekend, winning the road race by more than 2 minutes. Someone opined it was like a man among boys. Logan, at 17 competing in the 17/18 age group, lost out at the ending sprint, finishing 6th. I bet next year the result will be different. Logan said there was a Cat 1 ranked racer in the 17/18 group.
The 5:30 start time is normally reserved for the "C" and some "B" cyclists but with the fast approaching storm, most of those in the parking lot departed including Dennis, Jeff S, Steve O, Mark C, Tri Andrew, Kenda Paul, Kevin H, Mitch, Nic, Logan...maybe a couple of others. Still arriving were Da Boss and Ryan and a few others. Ryan bounded out of his car to announce he was going to put the screws to Craig Butler and make him hurt. This was too good to keep to myself so as soon as Craig walked into earshot, I repeated Ryan's wild assertion and followed it by saying, "I call that bold talk from a one-eyed fat man" (that's not entirely fair because he has two eyes). We all got a good laugh out of that except Ryan who may be the only male to have not watched either the original or remake of "True Grit".
So a 5:50 group of Craig, Ryan, John S, Franz and a couple others left and then the 6:00 group consisting of three left. Not leaving the lot was the highly intelligent Paul Stock and one to two others who always follow what the smart people do.
Hoping to get some images of cyclists being soaked by rain, I headed south (in the car) and caught up with the lead group as they entered Amanda. There, they all decided to turn around and head back except for Steve and Andrew who were, despite all the visual evidence suggesting they were nuts, determined to do the entire route. As it turns out, the short cutters arrived back in Canal just after one storm had left the pavement wet but just before the next cell hit. Steve and Andrew, waited out the rain at a Church on Clearcreek Road but finished by 9:01 with a 20.5 average and I think the full 51 miles. My biggest regret is missing the opportunity to complete the ride and then take everyone in to Shades for a round of free drinks. Oh well, maybe next year.
HEY, this is important. We decided next Tuesday will be the official Summer Solstice ride since this evening was such a dud so be there or be square. Also, the famous Blue Jay ride originating from the Newark YMCA on Saturday at 8:00am is a ride not to be missed.