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Solvang Double -- what a day(17 posts)

Solvang Double -- what a dayDog
Apr 2, 2001 6:10 AM
Saturday at the Solvang Double Century ( ) was one heck of a day. Set some PR's for myself, and got to ride with a bit of a cycling celebrity (not realizing it at first). Not the same route at the Solvang Century a few weeks ago.

Covered the first 100 miles (rollers, but no huge hills) in 4:45 total time, and finished in 10:14 total time, with 3 flat tires in the second century, 9:41 riding time total. Steve Grussis (here is the Photocrazy page with Steve and me on the far left: ), a local strong Cat 3 and I rode together, and we took off in front of the tandems, among others, around 30 miles. Big mistake, since we didn't know the route, and it was not marked at all (and we didn't take the time to read the route sheet as we went). We missed a turn and added 2 miles, and then did a two man team time trial for 10 miles catching the tandem train. We actually caught 2 strong tandems and solo riders, but I was nearly blown up, and we had 160 miles to go. Cruised with the tandems for a while, but then after catching 2 people who blew through the first rest stop, a group of solos took off in front of the tandems again.

Turns out, the 2 were Cassie Lowe, who has won RAAM womens ( -- and 8th over all at RAAM last year), and the guy who got 3rd at the Furnace Creek 508 ( last fall). They were smokin'. We went right by the lunch stop at 105 miles (didn't see it, we were going so hard), and when the tandem train passed us while we pulled in a convenience store for water at 120 miles, we jumped on our bikes and 5 of us did a gut wrenching team time trial into the wind, literally -- 10 second blowing up pulls at 25 mph, and caught the tandem train again.

I had my doubts that I'd last the day, as we were going as hard as I've ever gone in a 40 mile road race -- 95% heart rates, pushing hard up every hill, not stopping for enough food or water. After we caught them, we cruised with them a few miles to recover, but then took off again when the tandems slowed for hills.

We were crusing down Highway 1, when I blew out my front tire (so much for Spin Skins). Just Steve and I stopped, and everyone else went on (after they stopped with me as a matter of courtesy), including the tandems and their wheelsuckers. Messed up by not seeing the gash, and blew out 2 more tubes before booting the tire -- a 20 minute stop in all.

We hammered hard to catch, but were 20 minutes down, now, and just the two of us. No way. So, we just went hard all the way back. Interestingly, from 160 miles on, I felt not much different than at the beginning, as long as I stayed aerobic. I was pulling at 23-25 mph on the aerobars, just nearly blowing up, but somehow able to sustain it despite the earlier pace.

Cassie and one other guy finished at 3:05 in the afternoon (they hooked up with the tandems, but took off on some giant hills 15 miles from the finish, tandems in at 3:15, and us at 3:29 (mass start at 5:15 a.m.). Seemed like, if not for the flats, we'd have finished with Cassie. This was a good confidence builder for the possibility of my doing the 508, and maybe even RAAM. Cassie did RAAM in 10 days, 3 hours. Of course, that's nearly 3,000 miles.

Yes, I'm a little sore today. We averaged over 20 mph on the bike for 200 miles, but with a whole bunch of hill hammering, catching up, and generally inefficient riding. What a day.

So, what happened to the new, cycling-mellow, gotta-focus-onbill
Apr 2, 2001 6:35 AM
-some-other-stuff Doug Sloan?
Whew. You are a god. Congratulations. Sounds as if you've earned feeling both a "little sore" and pretty darn good.
change of plansDog
Apr 2, 2001 6:47 AM
Going to take a year and give the ultra thing a go. I'm pretty psyched about it, and I'll just have to make everything work together. Not easy.

Wouldn't it be scary if this is it? :-)ET
Apr 2, 2001 8:56 AM
Congrats, Doug! You're amazing!
Those Daze you Remember ...Breck
Apr 2, 2001 6:45 AM
They stick in your mind and part of the reason you are out there.
No one remembers the EZ Sunday rides.

My buddy John Lockman (formerly Banner, Ca.; now Oregon) used to do the Tee shirts for the once Local Julian 7500 Endurance MTB Race ( ~80 miles; 10K ft. of climb) and always had the Skeleton riding the bike with the caption "How Much can You Endure?".

Great treat of a story to share.
Would like to see more of these posted.

those aren't...js
Apr 2, 2001 7:49 AM
AEROBARS, are they???!!!
great deal on doug sloan key chainsjohn de
Apr 2, 2001 8:02 AM
i think they are phoneys though..look at the cheesy back drop
What hurts the most...E3
Apr 2, 2001 8:30 AM
...after 10 hours in the saddle? And, are you going to ride any today?
Apr 2, 2001 8:44 AM
I have some soreness right around where the edges of the chamois in my shorts are. Thighs a little sore. I'll ride an easy 22 or so today, maybe on the Milano.

The aerobars help to relieve hand and wrist pain quite a bit. Of course, you can only use them when alone or leading a line of experienced riders on good roads. The aerobars are significantly faster, too.

Not as much pain as I would have expected. One thing good about going faster is that you are sitting on the saddle for less time.

Nice job ...Humma Hah
Apr 2, 2001 10:28 AM
... you finished the double about as fast as I finished the single!
Man, you were flying! I set a PR too...Lon Norder
Apr 2, 2001 11:22 AM
13:30 total time - 3+ hours slower than you! I just started riding doubles last year (that's my excuse). Beautiful course, but complicated. I went off course several times even though I rode it last year. I took a right on 166, but luckily someone yelled at me before I was out of earshot or else I might have ended up in Bakersfield.
I am not worthy, I s&*k!look271
Apr 2, 2001 1:01 PM
Here in the Northeast, most of aren't in any condition to do a century, let alone a double. Good job! I did a flat cent last year @ 22 mph w/ a 7 man paceline so I am impressed. I'm working on getting in shape to do a metric century billed as "the toughest metric century you will ever do." We'll see. It's May 5 in Lancaster County, PA. Check it out:
Are you the guy sitting up high with the white legs?Starliner
Apr 2, 2001 1:38 PM
Fast, fasst, fassst, man. Congrats. I wonder if riding with Cassie gave you an extra shot of adrenalin.
Cassie nearly killed usDog
Apr 2, 2001 3:03 PM
Cassie is very strong, and seemed like pretty much all business while riding. She climbed effortlessly where others of us struggled. She actually got 7th in RAAM last year over all, nearly beating some previous winners (like Kish). She seemed to be a very nice person. I understand she's doing RAAM again this year, so root for her.

You rule!bike_junkie
Apr 2, 2001 8:53 PM
That's phenomenal Doug, heck of a job! I'd like to just do a century, jeez!

Justin at my LBS won FC508 solo in '97 & '99, and was entered in RAAM last year until his health wasn't 100% at the last minute and he pulled out. The guy is a monster, and those ultra endurance folks have my respect.

re: Solvang Double -- what a daySkip
Apr 2, 2001 9:45 PM
Congratulations Doug! That's quite a milestone. Keep it up.

Apr 3, 2001 5:36 AM

Well done! Thanks also for the intro to Cassie.