answer me this… how is it possible to return to the gimbel’s ride less than 24 hours after competing at battenkill-roubaix and still whoop ass? eugene, the “teach”, pedro… those guys all made the ride today. pretty amazing. maybe it’s the comfort of knowing that nothing on the g-ride (or pretty much anywhere else) will ever hurt as much as the pain they experienced the day before. i mean how do you compare the picket fence with 18% rock garden climb 8 miles into the race?
rob and jordan kicked things off for us early today. they were already stringing out the pack before we even reached 433. they proceeded to drop few hanger-on’s and went off into the mist covered bedford road.
we did try to organize for a little while but the story unfolded pretty much the same way. few guys will earn their pay with solid pulls followed by few others who won’t give up the spot at the front without ever pulling through. that always leads to few guys jumping off to try to bridge across alone without quite making it and getting brought back. and then the cycle repeats itself until everyone collectively decide we can’t chase them down and that’s okay because those guys are stronger than us. as comforting as that might be the simple truth is that we just quit chasing and the attackers never stopped working.
once things settled down, we actually looked more organized than when we were chasing. again, a big shout out to studs who kept working to keep the pace respectable.
eugene animated the ride with strong extended pulls and a really nice jump on the first sprint while ramone and the “teach” made a nicely timed attack near the finish that looked, for a while, like it might actually stick.
my plan was to wait until they’re caught and put in a lead out for brian or pedro. the plan didn’t pan out all that smoothly. i was a little too far back and the sprinters were boxed in somewhat. i did what i could over the humps and peeled off to watch brian make his jump on his fancy new pinarello.
all in all a decent outing. i can feel my legs slowly coming back online as the weather warms up. i still got a long way to go before reaching anything that resembles the “form” i once enjoyed but the signs of life is there if i look for them and i find that encouraging.
just got a letter back from will. he’s doing okay. lots of scrapes and bruises obviously and his shoulder and eye still hurts but he’s says he’s doing fine.
”If you would please put a little post on the site and thank everyone for stopping. It really meant a lot to me to see that everyone on the ride stopped to make sure I was okay. It is great to know that I have such incredible friends that care about me." – Will
argh. i don’t think i can take this any more. first otto, then joey, now will today. he crashed at rye train station (the first right turn under the overpass). if i were to guess i would say it’s the exact spot that claimed mike stier and bunch of other folks over the years.
i think he will be alright. he had scrapes and cuts but didn’t appear to have hurt his shoulder or neck. the ems showed up quickly and he was going to the greenwich hospital to get checked out.
this is a deceptive hazard because the area is often shaded and we’re paying attention to the cars coming from the left (amazingly because they have the green light!). there’s a little lip there in the middle of the 2 lanes - uneven pieces of concrete that, if you don’t pay attention, you will catch it and slide out.
thanks to the boys who stayed back until help arrived but it was another sour day.
the only consolation was seeing otto on the ride again. he rode with us up to white plains and turned off. he’s still recovering but it was amazing to see him this quickly after the accident.
Just wanted to let you guys know that joey joey went down at the end of the ride today. i was too far back to see what happened but he was by himself when he fell.
he suffered some cuts on his face and the back of his head/neck. we think he damaged his collar bone as well and may have suffered a mild concussion although he was conscious throughout the whole time.
the rye police and the medics showed up pretty quickly. joey joey is taken to the westchester medical center and his bike is taken to the rye police station.
thank you guys for staying with him until the help arrived.
a beautiful day for a ride, but not nearly as beautiful as my clean shaven limbs. it took me forever to rid of my sasquatch legs of all follicles accumulated over the winter. not too shabby for an asian man.
the pace heated up right after the split thanks to the die hard boys returning from their early morning long ride. jesse strung us out and jordan, jp, ryan, etc. followed through and set a hard tempo to break the pack on the ibm hill.
we chased for a little while and at one point actually bridged up to them on 433 but soon a gap mysteriously opened up again. with only few guys willing to do the work, it was hard to organize a chase. few miles later some of the boys were brought back to us leaving only jp and ryan in the escape group.
they must’ve been hauling ass too. we lost sight of them pretty quickly. by the top of the d-whammy, no one showed interest in bringing them back.
the rest of the ride was pretty mild. garry, still not quite back to his form after a long absence, put in a lot of work to keep the pace respectable and vincent and will tried to keep the ride animated with strong a strong first sprint.
my legs felt pretty decent actually. warm weather does wonders for me. that nagging pain on my left knee felt muted and my back was also holding up on its own without screaming as it usually does half way into the ride.
i had thought about jumping on the con ed hill but chickened out at the last minute. with nothing left to do, i decided to string out the field on the 1st hump after chasing down few suicide jumpers.
no cramps, no debilitating pains… enough to call it a good day. again, it’s all about small victories at this point.
total demonstration of tour de force by rob and tommy. they just rode everyone off their wheels from the picket fence to airport road. now rob is well… he’s just a space alien freak and we’ve all seen him solo’ing off the front before. tommy was truly impressive today. he lost rob’s wheel at the top of the double whammy. instead of calling it a day and getting reabsorbed by the chasing pack like a good boy should, he decided to dangle in the no man’s land. our paceline was less than perfectly organized but it’s not like we were taking it easy either. we were moving and tom matched our pace stroke per stroke, staying away all the way to the finish. that’s a long stretch of lonely and windy road from whammy to the finish but he stuck it out. amazing.
i ended up leading out vince for the final sprint. he was in a bit of trouble on the con ed hill and he man’d up to stay in touch and come out for the sprint. well done.
btw, here’s a little info about rob to hate him even more. he’s actually more of a climber. i don’t mean the little hills we go over around here. i mean like the mountain passes. he’s from the left coast and that’s where he feels at home and rides the best. so these little demonstrations of solo attack off the front on flats he does on our ride? that’s like his weakness he’s working on to improve. pretty depressing, no?
“The new STI Dual Control levers themselves will finally ditch the old-school hood shape in favour of a flatter and more hand-friendly top surface. Carbon brake lever blades and titanium hardware will drop some weight while adjustable lever reach will better accommodate smaller hands and a wider assortment of bar bends. As we reported earlier, derailleur housing will finally be concealed beneath the bar tape for a cleaner appearance.”—www.cyclingnews.com - the world centre of cycling
hey guess who didn’t get dropped 2 weeks in a row? that would be me. sox, the super stud. i’ve come to measure my performance in small victories over the last couple of months. not getting dropped (like i did 3 weeks ago) is a solid win in my book. so is not getting cramped up in the last miles of the ride. staying on robert’s wheel without opening up a gap the size of texas? that felt like winning the life time achievement award.
that’s mostly what i concentrated on today. stay at the front of the pack and contribute. with most of the boys off to the races this morning, that resolution seemed within my grasp.
the pace was definitely in my favor as well. steady enough to pull through without paying too much for it afterwards. it was mostly 2-man show. robert, obviously, and that guy on seven ti kept the pack moving with some purpose.
despite the lack of any real attacks, gaps inevitably appeared on few spots but the pack was more than willing to close them down before letting them get out of control.
it’s pretty obvious that several of the ‘worker bees’ have been piling on the miles. and it shows. tommy, wayne, that guy on cervelo… they are all becoming key contributors in making the regular ride fast and steady enough to feel safe(r) than it ever did in recent years. and that’s a beautiful thing.
wayne told me he did the billygoat ride twice on monday, and tommy’s been consistently averaging 1,000 miles a month this year. as i disappear further into the region of oblivious has-been, it’s good to see more riders taking charge and forcing the pack to ride the way we should, the way we are all capable of.