Tuesday A-Ride ……. Why do I do this?

Tuesday A-Ride ……. Why do I do this?

Why do I do this? That’s a question i ask my self many times! Why do I subject my body to the torture of riding my bicycle on the Tuesday night club ride. This is the most difficult ride of the week and if you think you are pushing your body to it’s outer limits, someone else is there to push you even harder.

I just got back from Laconia and was thinking that it would have been a lot more fun to ride the Harley. But, these are the choices we have to make in life and to our health. Do you spend all your time doing what is fun and easy? Or do you do what is very painful, rips your leg muscles to shreds and makes your eye sockets bleed from heart rates that would put most 40 year olds in the hospital. The one plus, It puts you in a physical state that less than 1% of the population will ever see?

These are the types of questions I get and that I also have to contemplate at times. To go the easy road is a no brainer (it seems). I have 2 Harley’s and will be building a Custom Chopper (this is why I was taking chopper photos for the benefit of research). See how the above pic ties in. I was actually upset when the young lady blocked some of the critical chopper parts ………… NOT!

Back to business – The Tuesday Night Ride:

As Im driving to the ride, Im wondering if the week away from the bicycle is going to hurt me. The good news is that half the A riders have gone to Hartford to do the crit. So there will only be about 7 of us tonight. The group consists of Matt, Royce, Adeletti, George from Vernon, Chris from Comp Edge and Phil has decided to give the A ride another shot (he is having a hard time making the grade, because the groups have been so fast this year).

Off we go for a nice warmup to the base of Mountain Road. this is were the climbing starts and up we go. The climb started off with Chris (Comp Edge) had decided to light it up on the early part of the climb and now Im thinking Im in for a long night. He backed off about halfway up and we all settle in for the remainder of the hill. Now it’s off to Munson Road and Echo hill. Royce is pulling hard and the pace gets angry again. This is where Phil realized that he wasn’t going to be able to hang and let us know that the next time we crank it up, don’t wait for him (this is what we refer to as “leaving for dead”). The next section of climbs is a difficult one. We headed up wales Road, Munn Road (Mary and Dougs) and then continued climbing to the end which brought us out to Rt.19. Then it was off to Rt.190. This section is hilly and this is were Matt made his move on one of the fairly long climbs. He is doing it in his big ring and Im praying that he won’t be able to keep pace for the complete hill. Im in my small ring and don’t quite have the leg power that Quadzilla has (this is a nickname that Paulito has given Matt). Adeletti goes with him for as long as he can but Matt crushes the hill and now I have to resort to my flat land speed to bridge the gap. I catch Chris and we work together to pull him back. The next few rollers we are gaining on Matt, then Chris backs off and Im only able to get within 50 yards of Matt by the stop sign. This gives Matt the KOM. KOM points are very valuable on an A-Ride. These points give you immunity on the days that you are hurting.

Now it’s onto Rt.190. This section is fast and before you know it, we are in Stafford Springs. From Stafford we head to Sun Valley for the climb up the backside of Greystone. It’s not really a climb, but it has these constant chops that dig a knife into your gut until you have to throw up the white flag. on the final little climb of the Sun Valley section is a critical one and nobody got away. Then it was up the final climb up Greystone and everyone agreed that we would regroup at the top. During the 45mph descend down Greystone I see a huge dog about to run across the road ahead of Matt and I. Oh SHIT! It’s not a dog! It’s a Deer and this is gonna hurt like hell. the good news is that im not writing this from a hospital bed and the deer blew a 180 and saved itself from getting a brake lever in the ribs.

Now it’s the final flat run into the finish. This is where you attempt to go fast and make your fellow cyclonaut have no juice for the finish sprint. With a few miles to go a car almost runs us off the road and our group is split into 2. Adeletti, Matt and I are in the chase group and Chris decides to pull us upto the lead group of 3. We bridge the gap and now George is up front doing a monster pull. Then it starts to get even faster. Im not sure, but I thought I was seeing speeds of 31mph. During one of my pulls I though I had slowed after one of the small risers, but i was still doing 30mph! As I pulled off, Royce was next, then Matt and then…………were is everyone else? Looks like there was a break and it’s just the 3 of us. At this point we are less than a hundred meters from the final townline sprint. matt starts to accelerate and notices that nobody has decided to challenge and just coasts. The rule on the A-ride is that you cannot win a sprint that nobody goes for.

On the ride home I have my answer to: Why do I do this? …………. Because I can!