Karen Rossi awaits the arrival of her tandem partner, Mark while talking to Andrew C. Weather radar, up until 4:00pm, looked bad and then the northern part of the front dissipated and wow, we would be good to go. Pretty strong winds out of the southwest and thick clouds were a constant but no precip.
Philippe in the center with Danny A and Kurt listening to Philippe describe how he won Sunday's45+ Masters race. In the background, Kyle also won the Cat 4 event with a solo breakaway, 11 miles from the finish. Really good story. As our ride leader Rick was absent, I made the decision to honor Philippe as the leader of the Rivet group. When doing so, I mentioned Philippe's accomplishment and he received a round of applause, actually, since we were standing, it was a standing ovation. After the fact, I wished I had brought up Kyle's win so he too could have had the applause.
Jackie signs in with Mick waiting his turn. I completely bungled the leader responsibilities, failing to name a B group leader (I tried but no one had knowledge of the route), people were mixed up about the A and B group, I did not print any map copies, etc... In the interest of group happiness, I hereby resign as temporary ride leader.
Someone who did not fail was Kristie, reaching into her trunk and bringing forth a container of super good cookies. A delight for those who saw and conquered the container.
New guy whose name I forgot, raced Sunday in Cat 5 and wants to become more involved with the racing scene. I pointed out several who would be happy to provide some guidance.
Jim Richardson on the right, has lost around 50 pounds so a heck of an accomplishment. Mark V on the left, who I hope got everything out of his system on Tuesday. No need to take tonight's ride leader to the wood shed.
More people rolled in, enjoying the happy parking lot scene prior to getting down to serious business.
And the crowd grew larger, around 60. Out went the Riveters with Ken B, Marty, Muscle Dude, Dave C, Jon Morgan, Joe I,Philippe, Danny A, Kyle, Luke, Travis, Dirty Dan...dang a really, really strong group. Those that finished at the front, a very select group, did so with a 24.2 avg and that group included Philippe.
Then the A group departed, 31 in all including Paul Djupe, Logan P, Gus Cook, Corey, Seaku, Peggy, Katherine, Kristian, Kurt S, Scott Billman, Ryan S, Mike M, Kristie, Jared, new guy from Macedonia, Mick, David Smith, dang, that under normal circumstances would also be considered a very strong group. The first part of the ride was uneventful, dropping a couple on the Watkins climb, dodging tractors on Blacks Road, crossing 37 and then we arrived at the Canyon climb. Interesting to see the transformation of the front of the group as an entirely new cast of characters came forward. Corey led us out and after riding with him Tuesday, I figured I could just suck his wheel to the top but he pealed off and then I pulled up a ramp, Gus took over, then Paul until at the top there were around 6-7 of us left. My legs were ok but not great but hey I was there and happy.
I had promised prior to the start there would be a couple of regroups along the route but all the cooperation I could get was a short lived soft pedaling between mountain bottom and #13 on Hayes. After that it was full bore to Granview and then the force of that southwest wind began to have an impact as some dropage occurred until we arrived at Gale Road. A tractor pulling a large disc attachment was going south on Gale while we were stopped. Our front two thought we were to turn left rather than right so were waiting for the tractor to pass. The tractor then began a left turn. There is nothing like a disc implement approaching oneself that focuses the mind and I kind of shrieked "GO!!!!!" as the farmer rained F-bombs on us. Like Gus said, the guy is probably working 20 hour days and lacking patience.
We were down to about 15 people and the ensuing York climbs and wind fighting shrank our number to 12 by the time we pulled into New Albany with 45 miles and a 21.2 average.
A good route from Rick. Wadkins Rise, Canyon Mountain, that long, painful slog out of the valley on Hayes Road, the ceremonial regroup 1 mile from my house so my impressionable young children can watch their dad ride through with the Riveters, the long slog on 161...what's not to like (just kidding about the regroup). The old legs are still quivering from Tuesday and I'll be riding several groups back.
Route A/B 47 mile ride file https://ridewithgps.com/routes/13807687
Route C 33 mile ride file https://ridewithgps.com/routes/13985859