another stay of execution. the governor called in on the red phone and held the rain back for few hours. the temp was lower than yesterday and the road was still wet enough to keep us on our toes. despite it all, the turn out was decent for this time of the year.
unlike the yesterday’s ride, the split was very even today with otto, regular and the long ride group each taking 15-20 riders each. the regular ride started out at a respectable winter miles pace. ‘erik the red’ (sorry guy, didn’t catch your name) set the tempo early and did most of the pace-making work. junior, brian, byron and ‘big ring’ peter also pitched in to keep the train moving fast enough to keep our fingers and toes from freezing.
there were no real moves to speak of which was a welcome change on the regular ride. junior put in a little leg-loosener on the picket fence climb. i think few people got shelled on top of the climb but the rest of us were all together for the most part, sharing honest pulls and closing the any gaps that appeared.
i ended up leading out will for the first sprint. junior gave him a good run for his money all the way to the line. speaking of line… what is that line? i’ve always been told that it’s where the pavement changes from asphalt to concrete, but some people still seem to insist it’s the sign at the end of the road.
by the time we reached poggio, i knew i had very little left. i wanted to lead out will again for a double but i found myself sliding back. a brief respite on rt. 1 allowed me to finally move up and i took the third wheel by lodging myself in front of will.
i jumped a little earlier than i would’ve liked. about 30 yards before we reached the top of the first hump. i couldn’t even get out of the saddle but kept grinding it out. i knew will, brian and clarence were there and i was sure one of them will come around me when we reached the final hump.
i only turned around in the last 50 yards to find no one on my tail. turns out they are all smarter and more disciplined than me to risk tendonitis on gimbel’s ride sprint in the winter.
of course my version of this story will be very different few years from now. i have a hunch my story will sound just like this.
had a sort of day that makes you want to hate all things glass, rubber and air. billy was the first to puncture right out of the gate. i stopped for him as well as vincent, joeyjoey, jp, and pedro (no, the other pedro).
on the long ride, it was joeyjoey’s turn to pop his tubular. since i didn’t want to see joey break his frame in half and ride home alone unicycle-style, i stopped to help him.
we took the 128 shortcut to catch up with the group but we were never sure whether we were ahead or behind them. so instead we just rode at our own pace and enjoyed the scenery.
we saw giant hawks drying their wings, a wild turkey crossing the road, and caught two gay horses kissing each other. it was like being on the set of an animal channel show hosted by brokeback mountain cowboys.
Robin Morton. Morton, who lives near Philadelphia, was the first woman in the history of the sport to manage a men’s professional team. She was also director of the first American professional team to compete in the Giro d’Italia.
“As per the manufacturer’s recommendations, we performed our own testing on the local climb (Dyers Pass, Christchurch, New Zealand if you’re interested) which, while not quite on the scale of Val d’Isere, would be long enough to reveal any noticeable increases in efficiency. Alas, several ascents later, and with the climb’s record still many minutes out of reach, we couldn’t determine any appreciable difference in our times for round or O.Symetric’s rings.”—O.Symetric Harmonic chainrings - too good to be true?
“Tinker Juarez: Well, Cannondale has asked me what my plans are when this deal ends. They are being nice about it, but I’m starting to get hint. They want me to have future plans. I just want to make it to 50.”—This Just In