I’m beginning to notice a trend, when I go to a organized ride and get in a fast group something breaks. Usually a spoke, though it could be a flat tire, or it could even be two flat tires.
For this year’s Kiwanis Fun Day Ride Drew kindly drove all five of us to the new visitor center at Rend Lake where new routes would start and finish. The Kiwanis Fun Day ride does a good job of accommodating serious roadies, new riders, and folks who probably ride a few times a year with 4 routes. Since there is no official start time many riders just take off whenever so even though it looked like they had a big turnout in the parking lot I only saw a handful of riders on the 60 mile route.
Despite being very early, as usual I missed the beginning of the ride, an emergency trip to the restroom was required about the same time most of the 60 mile riders were leaving. The Continental Club of Mount Vernon was in force and got things rolling with a 20-22 mile per hour pace line and I had to ride my brains out for 10 minutes to catch up, but once in the draft my heart rate went from the 160s to 130s.
Unfortunately I couldn’t stay in the draft long, a flat rear tire knocked me out of the peloton. Sometimes bad luck can actually be a blessing in disguise. While I was fixing my flat, Matt and Neal stopped to see if I needed help. Though I’d never seen these guys we were all acquainted through the wide world of the internet so we hooked up to ride. Catching the group ahead of me was out of the question, airing up the flat took 6 minutes and in that amount of time the peloton was about two miles ahead of me. I couldn’t hold a pace faster then theirs by myself, but thanks to Matt and Neal I wasn’t stuck riding alone.
At the second rest stop Luke came back to fetch me, so we average like 23 miles per hour for about 30 minutes then I had flat number 2. Luke didn’t notice I stopped but like clockwork Matt and Neal rode up to see if I could use help. While I was fixing this flat 2 groups of riders came by, the first stopped to ask if I needed help, I really appreciated it, but was good. The second group talked about me like I was on TV,
“There’s that guy again, wasn’t he on the side of the road earlier, Ha Ha,”
“Yeah, he probably has something in his tire and doesn’t realize it,”
“Yeah, he doesn’t know how to check his tire for glass and stuff,”
“Well lets keep on riding along at our pedestrian pace and look for someone else to talk about,”
So Neal, Matt and I got going again and I rode with them for awhile then decided to time trial the last 15 miles to prevent my ride from leaving me. I made it back and found that I had beat Luke, as usual he made a wrong turn. He did 77 miles in about ten more minutes then it took me to do 58.
The Kiwanis of Mount Vernon put on a good ride, the new route this year was much more interesting then last year’s route which spent more time in the suburbs around Mount Vernon. Despite a couple of mechanical problems I still had a great ride and got to ride with two new folks, so all in all, a great time.