Diablo Summit - 33 miles
Best weather of the year by far today. First time up with no jacket, but to be safe I had a T-shirt under my jersey, arm warmers, and tights. JB and I started off at a quick pace, I tried not to let on that I wasn't feeling 100% for some reason (probably not enough time at the health club the last couple weeks). He said there were a couple guys we could probably catch that started about 5 minutes before we did.
So by the top of the Bump there was no doubt that he was going stronger than I and that was OK and we stayed together until Big Shady Oak when he took off trying to break 40 minutes. He didn't quite do it, and I was about a minute and a half slower at 41m55s.
At the Junction we met the two guys he thought we could catch but didn't - they were Bill and John from Orinda and had both just gotten confirmations for the Death Ride so they were starting their training today. JB had to go home but Bill and John invited me to go to the Summit with them so I did but first I took off my tights and rolled down my arm warmers - it was getting hot. We talked a bit and found out that Bill knew some guys from my company. They were both a little older than me and were both strong friendly riders. They hadn't done the Death Ride before and asked me what I knew about it - training, gears, clothing. I think I helped a little bit. So by Muir Picnic Area it was pretty clear that they were riding stronger than I was and that was OK and they slowly rode away from me. They got to the Summit about a minute and a half before I did.
Just as I was getting ready to descend, Peter showed up so I talked with him for a while. He's registered for Primavera and that's always a good century. Another rider rode up just after he did and said to Peter - "How can I get as smooth as you? You have a very smooth pedal stroke!" That's true, Peter climbs in the saddle with really nice form, and I'm sure he likes to hear that.