By Dave C. aka Safety Orange Dave
“Bridge to Engineering! Scotty we need more power!”
in heavy Scottish brough “Captain, she can’t give any more!”
Somewhere between Logan & Preston the Unmanageable 80 (45+ peleton) bridges to the 35+ thus making the Hardly Safe +100. But wait there’s more, lets throw in the relay group that started behind and the fun riders that started first making up the Ludicrously Dangerous +200. “Oh cool, that guy just flew over the handle bars and landed in the ditch just like the TdF advert. I wonder if that’s a part of the ‘Fun Ride’?” Thereafter my hands are glued to the brakes and eyes to all wheels in front of me so I can’t eat or drink until sometime after Preston.
Get dropped on the first big Strawberry climb and promptly drop a baggie of food taking off my vest. I felt good enough to run back and get it but since I packed a veritable North’s Chuck Wagon for every stop didn’t really end up needing it.
Half way up Strawberry a cute, fit & friendly, heretofor known as Blonde, climbs past me in the big chain ring. What the….! Oh, she’s riding on a team thank God!
Cresting Strawberry I jump a tandem, “hey it’s the Co-motion Jimmy was lusting after at the start line. Wheee this is fun! Oh yeah, I’m passing a car!” 32 mph across the rollers at the base of Strawberry. “See ya Blonde!” I didn’t mooch the whole time and gave up some drafting love to the tandem on a few occasions on the way into Montpelier…
Dropped everybody and the feed zone like last year. “Hey did everybody stop at the drive-in or something?”
Somewhere long before the SR Canyon and shortly after Montpelier the legs start to feeling lactic. Huh!? “Bridge to Engineering!”
Fast forward to a few miles after Afton because I was flat for the last 50 miles like the coke that I’m about to chug and I’m sure you don’t wanna hear about it.
Somewhere before Alpine, “Bridge to Engineering! Scotty we have fresh dilithium crystals and our speed is remaining the same?” Humm…. I don’t even have to wait ’till Alpine to decide if I’m racing or not.
Blonde shows up again towing a few lads so I jump on. What y’all are just going to suck her wheel and not even pull? “Whoa there little lady don’t be hogging all the fun!” I jump three places and take a long chivalrous and gentlemanly pull. Somewhere before Alpine Blonde drops off. Sigh!
Drop the crew at Alpine again. “Whazzup with the feed zone picknics?”
A manageable group, dozen or so, rolls buy including the other 45+ who wanted to work together after the feed zone. “Were you planning on stopping, I didn’t get that memo?” I waffle about staying on let ’em get 30 yards on me and then on a down hill bridge back up.
Somewhere after Hoback the Manageable Dozen becomes the Slinky Two Dozen. This is ridiculous as was my decision to drop off.
Another Fitzy rider, thankfully riding on a team, catches up and drags me 1/2 way across the Southpark Loop. But I fall off right after the tunnel.
Cross the bridge and start feeling good again. Wha…!? Soon rolling across the finish line to the announcer saying “hey Dave C. great to see you!” A very mediocre #7 in the books.
There’s no way I’m going to be able to retire from LOTOJA if I don’t have a decent ride! I’m already ready to start training for next year.
Thanks for all the great comradere, help and training rides! See you in the Spring if not before hand.