Borrowing a line from Will Smith in Men in Black 2, that is the story of the ride. From reports I have heard, Jeff Klein ripped everyone's legs (and lungs) off yesterday. Nursing a soccer injury (knee is sore from coaching Isabella's team last Tuesday and a 20 minute practice with Katarina's team on Friday. I did score two goals and assisted on another to Katarina, and then was immediately yanked for "aggressive" teaching techniques)
Kevin was waiting for us where everyone gathers at the flagpole (actually under a nearby tree.) Caryn and I had spotted Jeff just outside the Owen Art Center adjusting his front derailleur. The story is that he had been doing a ride with his dad two weekends ago and suffered a crash, the most gruesome part of it was that the following bike ran over his neck, just missing his larynx. Ouch. Bruised, but back on the bike and still riding.
As everyone was meeting, Noah rode up and we discussed the plans for a Boulevard crit next spring, so anyone who wants to start assisting in the logistics....
Off they go and I'm feeling a bit envious that I'm missing the festivities. Ask Noah and Kevin if I missed anything, though. Jeff "trained" specifically this past week to rip my legs off, so he had Caryn, Kevin and Noah as victims. I think Tony thought it was going to rain, as he was not at TP hill. The wind was at their faces going north on Lawther and the group was tucked behind Jeff. As the others peeked around and had the wind hit them in the face, a quick tuck back to the friendly confines of the peloton (such as it is.) Jeff was pulling at a good 24 mph into the wind.
Caryn did her best to stay behind Jeff during the Flagpole Hill climbs and felt pretty good that she finished only a few meters behind. No rest for the weary though, as it was then hard tempo that would have even made Vangeli hurt a little bit. He always goes to the front and rides tempo, and it usually takes a stoplight to get him to stop.
Back at the lake, Kevin chooses his escape with the regularity of a Rolex. A bit of mud just past the FDR era CCC worker statue caused the pursuit to slow a bit, and then it was full gas to chase Kevin down. Another escape, pursuit and then catch, it is becoming very "Jacky Durand" like, Kevin's escapes. Kevin's wife told me he was disappointed that he was caught, but you have to try over and over and then one day, freedom! Happiness!
All that is left is the lovely Loving Hills. Caryn said that Jeff accelerated up the first with stunning speed, then waited at the top with a "I forgot, where do we go?" The second one they climbed together (I'm thinking that the convuluted way needs more than one trip to learn the path) and then the last drag up the third. Jeff sees an SMU jersey and says, "Look, who is that?" Caryn said "someone has cheated!" a Jeff takes off after him. Caryn then finds that her nitrous bottle was empty and the turbo refused to spool up, so her valiant effort to keep up failed. At the top the three who have made it (the two chasers and the "direct route taker" see a tandem as discuss how silly most people on a tandem look, yet both Caryn and Jeff discuss how fast they can be with the right combo. Jeff's dad has threatened to violate style man's directive about jersey choices while riding a tandem, just to throw speed and power in the faces of those they speed by. Kevin's earlier efforts have cost him, so his arrival causes him to say "So did you have lunch or what?"
When Caryn got back and relayed the account of the trip, she was spent. The trip from SMU to Loving had only taken an hour. Ouch. Maybe my hurt knee will stay hurt a bit longer! Kudos to Noah and Kevin for hanging in and returning with legs and lungs still attached. And to those who read this and might get a bit scared, pain produces speed (the next time out!)
I will keep everyone posted on Samuel's trip to Colorado Springs, where the Collegiate Track Nationals are happening this weekend. We are very excited about Sam's progress on the track and hope he sends ripples of excitement throughout the weekend.
Convalescing with trepidation....