Tuesday, May 30, 2006

May 29th 2006
The Great Pizza Ride and Recumbent Rally

Boy what a ride. Under 50 miles in 90+ degree heat some small hills, not big enough to speak of, and we even had a GIRL RIDING WITH US and she didn't even seem scared of us when we finished! Even tho Tom had his "Show-Me-State" license.

Anyway, as I was saying, the ride was in Millstadt where Tom and I have ridden at least three times this year. Its an OK ride but I'm going to avoid Millstadt and Columbia Illinois for at least another month. I just want to see more of the country side. We started off with a bang. Literally. Brian had a blow-out before we even started and normally that would have been a bad sign but even my 10 year old Continentals held out for the rest of the ride. While we were getting ready, the organizer of the ride (the Trailnet guy) kept announcing that we had to be very aware of what we were doing on the road because bicyclists are getting a bad name in Madison County Illinois and St Clair is beginning to not like cyclist as well. Well that was what I got from what he was saying.

We didn't see any problem with authorities the whole ride until the end. While we were partaking in our end of ride ritual (beer and jerkey) a Millstadt Police Officer pulled up. He sat in his car for a minute or two and made us a little nervous. When he finally got out he came up to us and asked if we were the organizers (I guess it was all the grey haired executive types standing around[see picture below]). It seems that the Mayor of Millstadt got a call that there were a bunch of bicyclists on the rode and no-one even bothered to call them and tell them that the ride was happening. The Officer said that they just wanted us to have fun and if Trailnet had notified someone they could have shut down some roads for us and gotten more Police on duty even had some extra Paramedics to stand by if needed.

Kathy (the girl with us that put some of the boys to shame) retrieved her ride sheet and gave him Trailnet's SAG number. We told him we thought he was going to tell us that we couldn't drink in a public place but he said they just wanted us to have fun. What a great guy.

The ride itself was pretty fast paced. We rode with Craig and some of his friends. They kept the pace at 20+ mph even in the 90 degree heat.

My stats for the day were:
Dst: 43.35, Avs: 18, Tm 2 hrs, 24 mins Mxs: 31.5

The beer and jerkey was consumed quickly...

Joey, didn't wait long after the ride was finished to get back to work...

Left to Right, Brian, Jeff, Joe, Dave, Kathy, Mike and Tom

Standing, Left to Right, Brian, Joe, Joe, Dave, Kathy
Kneeling, Left to Right, Joey, Tom

Thanks to the guy who took the pictures, who ever he was...
We need a name for our group.

It would be much more impressive to ride in a pace line at 22 mph if we all had matching jerseys. And if it had a name printed on it that let everyone know how really bad we were, we would be memorable, famous even!!!

Any suggestions will be considered (mainly because I can't think of anything right off hand). Tom suggested Road Warriors (or Rode Warriors I'm not sure which). Once we come up with something everyone can agree with I will create a great logo and get shirts designed and printed.

Lets keep it classy but bold, bike related and something to do with the animals we think we are.

You can post your ideas on this blog in the comment section. This way we can all add or dis the comments posted by others. Be nice...

Vote early and often...
May 29th 2006
Millstadt IL
The Great Pizza Ride and Recumbent Rally

I'm not sure what eveyone is laughing about.
I think Dave was saying something about the ride?

I'll add more pictures and a run down of the ride later today...

May 25th 2006

I recovered pretty quickly after the century Tom and I rode. We went on a "cool down" ride on the Thursday after. We went to Horse Shoe Lake State Park and rode the trail to Edwardsville and back. It is a great ride if you don't want to deal with traffic and if you ride during the week in the day time there isn't much traffic on the path.

Dst: 31.91 mls, Avs: 15.8, Mxs: 22, Tm: 2 hrs 1 min.

Fun ride and we weere riding with some wind but it wasn't too taxing of a ride. Like I said it was a "cool down" ride. That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

May 20th 2006
Indian Crossing Century
Portage Des Sioux MO

Our first century of the year and Tom and I did our best.

We started out at 7:00am at the check-in, we got our time cards (HI was timing the event) and lunch tickets. It was a little chilly but we both wore only jerseys and shorts. It was a little breezy and the wind stayed with us all day. The wind made it a little tough in the last thirty miles, but I'm getting ahead of myself.

The course was two loops a larger one for the morning, 65 miles and one that was smaller but covered much of the same territory for the afternoon for 36 miles. Tom and I started out very strong. We were riding at a 19 to 22 mile per hour pace most of the time. We drafted each other some of the time but for most of it we rode side by side and talked. We commented that it seemed a little too easy. I picked up some GU from Maplewood Cyclery and some of Jelly Bellys new sport jelly beans, Tom and I kept our energy levels "up" and after about 40 miles we were averaging almost 19 mph! We caught a pace line after a rest stop at about 45 miles and were cruising at 23mph for at least ten miles. A couple of these guys were really big. Probably six five and well over 200 lbs. They were wearing Discovery team shirts and some other yellow jerseys but they seemed to be very used to riding together. We stayed with them until a turn where I got behind and lost the line and Tom slowed so I wouldn't be by myself. We rode at a more reasonable pace for me until another pace line lead by a tandem passed us and we caught it but once again I couldn't keep up. Tom stayed with them this time, we were about three miles from the finish.

My 65 mile stats were; 18.4 avs and time; 3 hrs 34 mins. Pretty good for the first big ride.

We then had lunch which was sandwiches, potato salad, chips and cookies and after we set out to finish this bad boy and claim our patches.

Well, I knew I was in trouble right away. When we got out away from town we turned directly into the wind. It wasn't too strong but it was enough to hurt.

The afternoon loop was 36 miles and kinda inside the morning loop. So Tom and I started a pace and drafted each other for a little while but I felt better at a 18 mph pace and I know Tom was itching to go faster. I caught some other riders going closer to my pace and told Tom not to wait for me. We split up about ten miles into the second part of the ride. I think we ended up riding by ourselves for most of the last part of the ride. I ended up 15 minutes behind Tom which is a pretty big difference.

The roads were great, smooth, not too much traffic, flat. The weather was great, just enough sun and not too hot. The sights were great. All-in-all it was a great ride and I'd do it again, all except for the last half mile. At the end of the ride, at one hundred and one miles the ride organizer took us past a monument at the river front to see the river in all its splendor and then you were to take a u-turn and go back to the start. I couldn't believe we were riding down to the river! All I want to do after I hit the one hundred mile mark is finish, and get off my bike. If they had put the scenic part in the middle it would have been more appealing.

Oh well enough, the stats are as follows:

Tom, 102 miles, 18.5 avs, riding time 5 hours, 31 minutes

Joe, 102 miles, 17.6 avs, riding time 5 hours, 45 minutes.

The official times will be posted on Hostelling International's web site. I'll try to remember to post them.

And one last thought, I wonder what times the guy in the backround of the picture turned in...

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

May 17th 2006

OK. Tom and I rode today. We're getting ready for a century this Saturday. I'm not sure that I am totally ready. I need to get some energy gel, and at least one spare tire. Otherwise I feel better than I have in a long time.

Today's ride is one we did about a month ago. It starts out in Columbia Illinois and winds through the farmlands of the Illinois side of the St. Louis region. It winds around the river bottom and then up the bluffs to Millstadt and then back to Columbia. It is a really peaceful ride with some hills. The roads are good on most of the ride but there are some rough parts and a couple of roads you have to fight traffic. But it is a good training ride. The only negative about today's ride was the wind was pretty strong out of the West and we had a head wind most of the way back.

Ride stats; Dst: 45 mls, Tm: 2 hrs, 44 mins, Avs: 16.2, Mxs 35.5 (and this was down a steep hill that is very badly paved).

We hope to ride again tomorrow.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

This is what I've been riding since 1983, with a few modifications.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Tuesday May2nd.

Another great day for cycling. It was in the mid 60's when we started (9:00 am) and sunny. Tom and I joined the Hostelling International ride in Milstadt Il for a 44 mile ride on the countryside. There was a good group of people riding. Tom and I started out in a large group, about 15 people, and we soon broke out with 6 others and we were going at a good clip, around 22-23 miles per hour. Pretty soon I started to feel a cramp in my side and I was getting winded. I realized that this was too fast a pace for me and I slowed to my usual 18-20 mph pace. The grou[p got ahead of me but not too far. I kept catching them on intersections with stop signs. They also got a littl lost and added about three miles to the total trip. The thing that made me feel like a looser was that three of the guys were over 70 years old. Real animals and great riders. Paul and Jasper who we had ridden with before were the strongest of the three.

Anyway the stats are as follows;
Distance: 47.35, avs: 16.6, tm: 2hrs, 50 mins, mxs:30.5.