the start was a little chilly, probly about 40, but looking like a fine day ahead overall. lots (50?) of riders at start and off we went. all was well with a big bunch up front zipping along and: squish! rear tire going down. see ya everyone. the tire was cut by a big piece of glass, and thanks to brother rob for the tire boot. into the wind I finally solo'd. passing a few small crews, Alan and MikeO threw b'day salutations. biker bob and dean too. two guys from baltimore! caught me and I had a little help to the 1st controle. Tony gave me a tire to carry, and off we went. at 100k controle, I found Ian and Tim and john o too. yay! I came to enjoy, not do a solo soul searcher, so I felt much better.
|ouch! that's a glass shark tooth..|
the route rolled some from here and we cruised along peeling off the warmers as we warmed up nicely. it was off and on with other riders, but tim and I stayed together for 300k to the end. tony had a suprise truckload of subs and sodas in the middle of nowhere before we reached golfland (pinehurst) and army territory. we filled bottles and got cards signed again around the base, then Erwin. here the sun was dropping and out came reflective wear. just after dark, the rear tire finally gave up. tim stayed with me as Ian and crew went up the road. three rounds of pumping and pulling the stem out of the valve, arghhhhh! let's go! into fayetteville and we found more riders, felt like a good thing, 'cause it was a little funky 'round there. I jumped on the wheel of the recumbent, he had the route in his GPS. we stuck together and jammed all the way to lumberton. the temp fell 20degrees when we left the city and I was freezing. the warm room felt good, so did the hot pizza! also bryan and colonel mike were waiting for us.
everyone looked like eskimos heading out for the final 100. except me. I had no top layer and we were heading back into the 30's. about a mile out, tim said he had a shell in his pack and i tried it on. bingo. now to stay awake! one more quick stop for a jolt. pedal pedal, riders on retour. pedal pedal, bryan and mike. four again. good. dogs. bad. shouting rednecks, very bad. more retours. stay awake! finally in clarkton. coffee. let's get back.
the pace is not too brisk and I have to make a few bursts up the road to get some heartrate going. I barely keep my eyes open the last few k's..I am so glad to get back. 5hrs sleep is not enough for rides this long. that's all. it was a 20hr ride. thanks tony and fellow riders for a great (long)day!
note: I gave tony the loaner tire back, and haven't ridden the serotta since then.