The night started like many before it, our beloved ride leader, Rick, fixing someone's bike. If you enjoy this perk, I have good news for you below. It appears Poobah is arguing about who is next in line for a free bike overhaul.
Prior to tonight's ride, the octogenarians or is it the segeterarians, I get the terms and spelling mixed up but those in the parking lot over 60 gathered for a group image, Crazy George, Farmer Mike & Grand Poobah. Todd was making his first appearance of the season and I think he had a good time so if the route is agreeable, I bet he returns.
Jon Hastings. Last Saturday he was in Leadville, CO competing in a 100 mile trail run. Different route from what the mountain bikers follow. The trail runners go up climbs that are 20-30%, accumulating well over 10,000' of climbing. While the uphill sections were hard, it was the downhill sections that caused the most pain. Approximately 700 started, about 300 finished. Jon finished 59th, besting the 25 hour mark and is now the proud owner of the prize of a giant belt buckle.
Everyone mostly pays attention as Rick begins his announcements.
Attendance is slipping as only around 60 came out for tonight's ride, which was sure to be a fast one as we followed a very flat route. Earlier, I sent my super domestique, George, out early so he was already up the road as the A group....
....was led out by Chris G and Marty and 18 followers. From the start, the pace was fast, despite the interruptions of intersections and stop signs. At mile 6ish, we stopped at the #605 crossing and between chest heaves, I spotted a 24.7 avg on my Garmin, yikes. At mile 9, we absorbed George into the group. All along, sensing, knowing, I was not long for this group, I had hung at the back getting worked over by the accordion effect so at mile 11ish, I popped off along with my domestique. I slipped behind him, preparing for 20+ miles of "I can't believe you are still with me" jabs when he reveals that he rode hard on Tuesday and Wednesday and his legs were dead!!!!! Any other freakin Thursday he's be riding tonight's flat route like a pro. So, I took a ceremonial pull with the instructions to rest and get ready to take over in a few yards.
During another pull, George tells me he has not eaten all day and is weak. Oh for the love of..... Fearing the Super B's were closing, I began taking more and longer pulls. How unfair, I probably pulled half of the distance, maybe more. My average plummeted of course but we pulled into the parking lot with a 21.3 average. Meantime, up ahead, the lead group, including Lori N, finished with a 24.6 avg. After the ride, while George talked and John listened, some of us headed to.....
....the Rusty Bucket to celebrate Rick's sacrifice of creating interesting routes, keeping our bikes running, no one was killed this year due to his safety instructions, spending time away from family, etc.... Once we got him liquored up, we signed him to a contract extension and he will be back next year! How about that? I even bought him a glass of water, how about that! Thirteen hung around for the event, including Ken Budzig, Peggy and Gus, Marty, Luke, the H&H guys, Pete C, Dave C, etc... Much talk about "The Frank" as Marty has rounded up a group to roll out at 7:30am. I hear Engineer Mitch and Rex are starting at 7:00am. Comments about the ride range from, "I like it" to "I think it is too contrived, has no flow, too many stop signs at hill bottoms, too much emphasis on elevation gain and not enough about creating an enjoyable route." I've been contacted by a few people who want an alternative so will do some digging and post what I can, soon.
The Grand Poobah of Ohio cycling, Todd Lee, will make his first and only appearance of the season at tonight's New Albany ride. A pro's pro, a man's man, a ladies' man why he even dresses in a full cycling kit to ride around the block and pick up a dozen doughnuts.
A route for the sprinters or the Group Killer or the Jon Hastings or anyone who can ride fast on flats. Remember to print a map or down load the file to your gps devise. More here: http://www.thecyclingclub.org/club-rides/thursday-evening-ride/ The big news is Rick, our beloved ride leader, will stick around briefly after the ride to make an appearance at Rusty Bucket (like one minute walking distance from the parking lot where we start and finish). There, we will raise a glass to toast his selfless contribution to our season. There too, I may dip into my pocketbook, sweep away the moths and buy the first round. That alone should attract multitudes.