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“Ride #86: Can't Shake My Tail!”

From: Seth Dillingham In Response To: 4986  Cycling in August, 2005
Date Posted: Wednesday, August 24, 2005 11:12:01 AM Replies: 0
   
Enclosures: None.

The weather has been great this week. Monday was a little warm and humid, but nothing like earlier in the month. (Since Monday, it's been even cooler and drier.)

After 65 miles on Saturday and just 20 on Sunday, I thought I'd do a "boring" 36 mile ride. This is the shorter, slightly flatter version of my regular training route: I leave out the trip up 117 and down Col Ledyard Highway (taking out 10 miles), and skip most of Pumpkin Hill Road (which leaves out the worst hill).

As I rode into Old Mystic, I saw another rider (a "rabbit") crossing over Rt. 27 onto River Road. He looked fit, but tired, and was just noodling along. I had to wait at the light, so he got further ahead *like a good rabbit should). When I caught up with him, a car was behind me so I said hi on my way past and warned him about the car (which stayed behind the whole time, never did pass us).

He sped up to stay on my wheel. Something evil awoke and told me to go faster, so I did. He stayed on. Faster. Faster. He's still there... I can see his shadow. Faster. After half a mile I was going 25 mph and could hear him breathing and could still see his shadow, but I wasn't able to shake him.

I could have gone a little faster, but River Road is four or five miles long and falls right in the middle of my ride. If I burned myself out there, the rest of the ride was going to feel very, very long. Plus, he had a great draft. So, I just kept that pace all the way to downtown Mystic.

When we reached the stop sign at the end, he thanked me "for the wheel." I said, "I should charge for a tow like that!" (I was smiling, it was a joke, don't worry.) He said he'd pay, but then he rode away. I need to tape a tip jar to my handlebars or the back of my seat. ;-)

A couple miles later I stopped at Mystic Cycle to adjust the cleat on my right shoe. I was about seventeen miles into the ride, and my average speed was over 21 mph... and that included picking my way through traffic in downtown Mystic!

The second half of the ride was slower, and actually dropped my average below twenty. Looks like I burned a little too much fuel on River Road after all.

Stats: 37.48 miles (60.34 km) in 1h 53' 38" for an average speed of 19.78 mph (31.86 kph).


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