Everyone was on time just about for 8 AM wheels away. Irregular members: Harvey, BobH, Tito, JohnD, Norris, IvaHawk. Guests: for Harvey – Lou and Ken triathlete buddies. For Iva – Shane from Australia O2 fitness and spinning buddy. 35 degrees or so at the start gave way to warm temps the last half of the ride. Many wanted to finish by 11:30 AM to watch the Heels play UK at noon.
Plan was modified Range Road Rover with the modification being to turn right on Robert’s Chapel. It was a mostly uneventful ride until we got to Stem and Creedmore. Outbound the buddies kept up with the Irregular climbers up the Range Road Wall. IvaHawk brought up the rear. Norris kept me company part of the time because he was executing a training plan that required him to stay aerobic.
Shane is an experienced mountain biker but needs some road training because he is going to France during next year’s tour for three or four weeks! I told him he should talk to The Mallet who was there last summer during Le Tour. Shane had no trouble hanging with the faster guys as I suspected he wouldn’t.
Lou and Ken rode well which one would have figured if they ride much with Harvey. I disapproved of their all black Ninja cycling clothes as I know Martin would have. The rest of us had on the de rigueur bright yellow jackets.
Up Little Mountain Road to the highest point on the course (510 feet), through Stem, and out onto BobH Road known locally as Brogden Rd/Stem Road. I saw Harvey the Steam Engine go to the front and said uh oh, here we go. Later, I found that Harvey, Tito, and BobH swapped leads on the team time trial as we sped towards Creedmore. I don’t know where, but somewhere, I dimly recollect seeing 26 mph just before I was ejected off the back like a watermelon seed at a picnic. The leaving speed reminded me of those times when motorcycles speed by us then goose the throttle.
By the time, I got to Creedmore, I was warm if not hot. I stopped at the top of Stem Rd and took off my gloves and jacket. Norris was there and went on ahead. By the time, I got up to Hwy 50, via the back way, I noticed I only had one glove. I had dropped it between Stem Rd and there. Crap. I hollered to Norris but he had on ear muffs. I saw the guys who had been waiting coming towards me on Hwy 50. I hollered at them that I was going back and not to wait. My return trip to Stem Rd was not successful. However, by the time I got into the Christmas Parade traffic on my return trip, there it was lying in the dirt having been run over a few times by cars. It was fine.
I continued on my own down Dove Rd when I saw Tito (of Amazing Race fame) coming back towards me. He and I rode on to PUE. Thanks for the comeback, Tito. We got back at 11:55 with 53.5 miles for me. 2,194 climbing feet and 3,877 calories. From there to my house for tea and scones and UNC b-ball on the tube.
An excellent day of riding. Thanks to all.