Diablo Junction – 16 miles
Today was the hottest ride I've done this summer. Not the hottest I've ever done certainly, but definitely hot enough to sap your strength and ruin your attitude. When it’s REALLY hot you can see the heat waves rising out of the pavement trying to melt your bike; I don’t like those days at all.
Nicole is on vacation so I gave Amanda a ride to the start. JB rode from work and I figured that was all of us. There was a reasonably large Diablo Cyclist crowd at the church so JB and I started out with a good pace to get a head start. It became clear very early that the heat was going to be a factor though, so we weren’t at full speed. We stayed together until the Dumpster Gate and then he slowed down a bit and I pulled away from him gradually. Shortly before the Bump, Mark motored by going about twice as fast as we were; he was wearing a lycra jersey and he ALWAYS wears wool so you KNOW it was hot today!
Then down below Clavicle Cracker another guy rides up and asks me if I’m Diablo Scott! “Yes!” I said, “that’s me!” He introduced himself as the guy that I “nipped at the line with panache” from my blog entry last month (see June 23, 2004 blog entry). He said he liked my blog writing and that he tried to start one of his own a year ago but didn’t keep up with it. He explained that he sat up that day because he was training for the Death Ride and was going to the Summit – once he realized that the rest of us were going to stop at the Junction he eased off. Anyway he’s the first person I’ve met who knew me from my blog and that’s pretty cool. Then he rode away from me easily and mentioned how he LIKED it this hot.
I was on a manageable pace given the heat. Even though I had two bottles of cold drinks it seemed like too much work to actually drink from them. In my mind I pictured Lance’s time trial in last year’s Tour (TIOOYK) and how he got dehydrated and finished with his mouth caked with salt. I couldn’t convince myself to go any faster so I rolled into the Junction at 40m41s and then drank everything I had.
The usual socializing at the Junction plus Tour de France commentary (today was the Alpe d’Huez ITT). I was surprised when Jeff rode in because I didn’t know he was coming. Then we all split up and it was over.