I have been struggling to find the time to do any sort of consistent bicycling, whether it be for pleasure or for training. And then the Spring Classics came like a steam roller. I was expecting to do the Salem Monster Cookie. It’s mostly flat, so you don’t need to train hard for that. But the following weekend, Ride Around Clark County, is almost 4000 ft of climbing terror over the span of 65 miles. Surprisingly to me, I completed it in record time. I did take precautions, walking up the harshest grades. But still, having had no real distance mileage under my belt, it was very surprising.
Inspire has a lot to do with it, though, especially on the flatter sections of ride. She doesn’t understand slow. And she almost complains when this overweight pilot slows her down. But the plus side is that she glides on flat pavement. If you can get a head of steam on a flat section, she takes off.
Which brings us to the unexpected ride. Margo signed up for Reach the Beach, the 100 mile ride from Portland to the coast. But due to yet another car accident, she couldn’t ride. So what do you do with a paid $150 ticket? Yep. Kent took on the 82 mile course from Newberg. This was the first time I’d done it since 2011. In spite of that, this was my 2nd best pace on RTB since 2006 (still a personal best). Credit goes to Inspire, for hanging with two pace lines in the stretch of ride where the headwinds are absolutely brutal. Just for reference, where I was with those groups, we were pulling 16-18mph. When I got dropped five miles out of Sheridan, my speed dropped to 11mph. All because of the 20mph headwinds in the valley.
But I made it to the finish before the 5pm “Bus of Shame” (sweeper vehicle). And surprised the personal entourage (Margo, Mary, Melissa) who thought for sure I’d surrender with Melissa at Grand Ronde. I just couldn’t resist sending Inspire on the downhill from the coastal summit to the beach.
Spring Classic Pictures