Mark V, volunteering to manage the sign-in process. I noted a wad of bills clutched in his hands and did not think anything of it but someone, maybe Cathy Miller who was standing there but not certain it was her who said, "COP ought to do an audit with this guy handling the money." Immediately, I leapt to Mark's defense and said, "No, Mark is a man of honor. He will take only that to which he thinks himself entitled." Later, Mark told me he and his wife are headed to San Francisco and Napa Valley so I wondered if I had said too much to defend him. All in good fun.
I talked to Marty in the parking lot and he described the Harrison's Tomb Road Race scene of yesterday, during which he got in a 4 man break that included Terry Griffith. Reaching a hill, Marty turned it up a notch, looked back and saw he had a gap. He thought about waiting, thinking the 3-some would work together to catch but feeling good, Marty put his head down and stayed away, taking forst in the Cat 4 field. He also knew that if Terry was in the group sprinting for the line, he would win and if that were the outcome, Marty would have been just as happy. You should know that Marty shows up for these races as a lone wolf. Most of the other guys are on 5-7 man teams who are working together to put their strongest in developing breakaways, making Marty's win all the more impressive. Well, on to the Cat 3 races I guess.
We met at 9:00 and as I pulled in to the parking lot, leaving were Mark and Karen Rossi on the tandem. Oh how I wished I was behind that monster. drafting comfortably for the first 50 as they battled the head wind. However, we were to have a large group and I could find drafting space in there. However, had a few no-shows so it was just Marty, Tym and Lisa Tyler, Jon and Anthony Sada and Dick, who happens to live around the corner from me. Meantime, unbeknownst to us, Gus and Peggy Cook were driving to Milford Center where they would backtrack to find us.
Our problems started immediately from the parking lot. Rather than follow the "circle with line" road markings, we began ignoring those and following the "chevron" markings. I noticed this but I lacked standing within the group to question the group's decision making. Lisa commented that we seemed to be riding with the wind a lot but that too was ignored. We followed the chevrons into a park where there was a finish line for an event. As the event clock was ticking only to 4 minutes, we won. After checking the map, we discovered we had ended up under the corner of the map where the emergency numbers are placed. Still, we were within the confines of the 8.5" x 11" map, albeit barely, so being an optimist, I was encouraged. I was however, discouraged to realize to get back to the route, we would be directly in the path of the near tornadic winds.
Chiefly Marty and Tym took the majority of the pulls to Milford Center. arriving with 32 miles. Gus and Peggy, well, they too had gotten off route and we never saw them or at least I never saw them because while sitting in the market, panting, beaten mentally, I exposed my soft side once again and decided I liked a tail wind and wanted no part of the next 25 headwind miles to Bellfountain. I returned to Gahanna with 52 miles and then went home to mulch.