Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Bicycle Heaven Group Ride

So...I finally rode my first group ride with my team. I've known since I found out about the ride last year that this is a very high caliber ride. So I knew I was going to be in over my head.

I prepared with a map and made sure I had a blinkie (bike talk for little flashing red light used in low light levels to warn motor vehicles of your presence or to generally increase your visibility - used here to imply that I would be coming in after the main group - in the dark). It was nice to see MJH2 and RR both there for the ride. I pulled the newb move and didn't wear my team kit (still dirty from the race - P U). I wasnt sure what the protocol was and I didn't want to be the guy that wears the shirt of the band you are going to see. Turns out I should have been that guy.

So what is there to tell...um...these guys are indeed all business. There was more slabs of prime grade A racing beef there than at almost anything else I have ever done outside of a race. Oh...and chatty cathys too. Real lively talkative bunch. It was nice because they rollout pretty slow for quite a while and most of the talk had to do with the race that seemingly all of us were in last weekend.

Then they attack. Holy crap Batman. This isn't a quick flyer or hard sprint kind of attack, but rather a slow rolling into pace. The kind where it just keeps going....you hit "kinda fast" and it keeps increasing....you hit "fast" and it keeps going....you hit "this is hauling ass" and it keeps going.....you see stars and start to get tunnel vision.....and there is still a gap.

That kind of acceleration always makes me feel like I am in a slow mo replay of the special effects from Star Wars when they do a jump into hyper-space.

I knew it would happen eventually so I didn't freak out or anything. MJH2 and I ended up plodding ahead. It took me forever to really get my engine running. I have been noticing that lately. What I mean is that it takes like 15-20 minutes of HARD riding before I stop hyper-ventilating and start being able to pour on power, etc without totally popping.

MJH2 noticed that as well as I was wheel sucking him like I was a 2 month old and his wheel was a nipple. All said we ended up doing some decent work. Really cranked out some powerful sections. The effort was similar to the TTT I did with aham a few weeks back. Has to list up there as one of my all time hard efforts speed wise.

It was like being in a race. Actually being in a race. Pegged from the start with absolutely no breaks.

We finished respectfully and got some "meh....not too horrible for cat4/5's" looks from some of the guys. Even got a "good riding" from the shop/team owner as a side comment.

Different vibe. No drinking afterwards, etc. All Roadie. I liked it, but I can't see abandoning "my People" on the Penny Rd Ride. Then again I will get much faster riding the BH ride. So....thinking of doing the Penny Rd on Tuesdays and the BH ride on Thursdays.

....now.....how do I convince Mrs. P that this is something that needs to happen.......hmmmmm

6 comments:

CyLowe said...

Sounds scary.

I should show up and get dropped by everyone!

Alien said...

Too much of this training -- http://www.belgiumkneewarmers.com/2008/08/junk-miles.html

Hey it worked for me in the DD.

LOL!

Psimet said...

Awesome....junk miles...so that's what you call Tuesday night....HCIS.

aham23 said...

another trip to the city is likely in order.

later.

L*I*S*A said...

Outta my league.

I want a riding club where I can carry Boddington's in my cage. :)

Know of any clubs?

Eric Cox said...

I always likened that gradual ramping up of the pace to the old frog in a pot of water story. Put a frog in a pot of cool water and slowly ramp up the heat, and the frog doesn't realize he is in trouble until it's too late and he is now cooked (literally).

That's how I feel on rides like that you described.