Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Diablo Junction, 17 miles

JB is feeling much better but still doesn’t have his Della Santa wheels fixed and still can’t get out of the saddle, so today he rode up his touring/commute bike with the granny gear. He left just ahead of me, trying to get a head start. The Diablo Cyclists were congregating at the church and it looked like a big pack. I caught JB before the Gate and we rode together for the first couple of miles. Mark A. and another guy came flying by us near Moss Landing but the other guy lost Mark’s wheel after another couple hundred meters – he was a stocky guy with good speed but not a super climber, I see him a lot up here but don’t know his name.

Near the bottom of the bump a rail-thin teenager with red aero booties came around us – he looked like a natural grimpeur. Right behind him was “Big Jim” the Diablo Cyclist guy I saw on Primavera last month. I dropped JB at this point and rode with Big Jim to the Bump and then pulled ahead of him too. Then I passed StockyGuy, and I almost caught the GrimpeurKid too!

Around the Lower Ranch I got passed by StockyGuy but I stayed ahead of Big Jim all the way up to the Junction. I kept looking back expecting more of the DC riders to catch me because there were a lot of them down there, but I must have been burning up the course! Elapsed time: 41m43s (remember that I rode the first two miles pretty leisurely).

It wasn’t until I got to the Junction that I noticed Mark was riding his single-speed QuickBeam with cyclocross tires on it… that guy is an animal, but also very soft-spoken and friendly. The GrimpeurKid was there putting on some knee warmers and Mark joked that he could use arm warmers on his legs because they were so skinny. Another twenty or so folks rolled in while we were waiting around and it was good to have such a great turnout.

Wildlife Encounter: Three young deer munching grass on the slopes above the Upper Washout on my way down. No mother doe in sight, must be the time of year to cut the apron strings. Also a whole flock of turkey vultures fighting for the good parts of a squirrel carcass. I was concerned they wouldn’t get out of the way in time – that would be interesting, a collision with a vulture in flight with a beak full of entrails!

Please sponsor me in the Tour de Cure charity ride for diabetes on May 23…That’s Sunday – click the link NOW!

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