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Ride Report - Charles Finney Ride (sorry, no pics)(3 posts)

Ride Report - Charles Finney Ride (sorry, no pics)TNSquared
Jun 9, 2003 8:22 AM
This weekend I completed my first metric century, at least the first one for which I actually paid my hard-earned cash to suffer.

I was so pumped that Friday I left work early to pick up a new jersey at my LBS. I hit the jackpot - last year's Mapei/Quick Step jersey on clearance. I hoped that the poser factor would be reduced by the fact that the team is now defunct (and hey, I knew better than to buy the complete kit.) My wife's feedback - "I can't believe a grown man would actually leave the house in something like that."

The ride started on Mud Island in downtown Memphis, not too far from the world's only stainless steel pyramid. (Can you say ill-conceived?) After avoiding several near collisions in what was a very squirrely departure from the parking lot, we headed basically northeast into rural Shelby County. The course was relatively flat, with several good series of rollers throughout.

The first 12 miles or so went easily, at which point I suffered from a huge lapse of judgement and decided to jump on the "J Train" (J and J2 actually) as it came blowing by.

The group was about 15 strong and going well over 20 mph. I did my best to stay in touch, which I managed to do until about 40 miles, at which point my legs said "what the h#ll are we doing?" and my brain said "I have no f'ning idea." I dropped off the back so fast that they put 1/8 mile gap on me in the course of about 1/8 mile.

I crawled the next four miles into the SAG, where I pondered another lonely 20 miles solo. Unbeknowst to me, though, J had flatted and came rolling into the SAG just behind me, so we headed back out together.

J pulled me the rest of the way, checking over his shoulder fequently to make sure I was still hanging on. I have to say, there has been no more welcome sight lately than the baby-poop green Surly in front of me.

In no time we reached the final turn that would take us back onto Mud Island and just a mile or so to the finish. Then J's sadistic alter ego surfaced. "We can't turn here." Now the road looked fine to me, but I was in no position to question anything.

Then J said "We have to earn this ride." Uh-oh. J took me through the underbelly of north downtown Memphis specifically so that we could climb the overpass type bridge over to Mud Island.

I summed up everything I had left, shifted to my smallest gear (39x25) and started up. At one point I tried to stand, and every muscle fiber from my ankle to my hip simulataneously cramped. I sat back down real fast.

Over the bridge, one left turn, and done. Or so I thought, but just to prove that I don't have one frickin' lick of sense, I let J and his cohorts talk me into riding back home, about another 23 miles. Thankfully, the route home was flat, involved multiple stop lights, and we rode at a pace that I could handle.

I didn't track all the numbers, but my average for the metric was 18.6 mph, and for the day I had 85 total miles with an average of 17.2 mph.

And best of all - nobody gave my sh!te about wearing a Mapei jersey while riding a TREK!!
LOL--the "J" trainJS Haiku Shop
Jun 9, 2003 8:58 AM
J2 was on a mission--to finish this rolly polly 62 miles at 20 mph. and he did it--20.8 mph, to be precise. i suspect he pulled 85-90% of the way, main engineer on the J2 train. i hung on for dear life in 2nd position until about mile 35 of the 62-miler, where i went to the back of the then 20+ member train for a breather (didn't want to vomit on anyone). of course my breather was accompanied with a puncture, nobody knew it, and the J2 train was way way way down the tracks by the time i was back on 2 mostly-inflated tires.

TNSquared was dumb enough to ride home with us. three of us left my quant mempho suburb at 6 am for the ride downtown, and ended up with 100+ miles at the end of the day (J = about 110 miles at about 17.5 mph average on bike with about 2 hours off the bike). TN2 keeps riding his longest rides with J or J2 or both of us, LOL.

the ultimate in low IQ was witnessed by all yesterday as we three (TN2, J2, J) came back out for a 30-mile sunday "recovery" ride across the hilly roads NE of memphis. J2 had a puncture on our pre-ride, i had a puncture halfway through the ride, then another one in the last 3 miles (only brought one tube tho).

Mr. TNSquared hung in well 'til i quietly informed him of the 3 upcoming sprint lines (each around 3 miles up the road from the last). hoping he had a wheel, i most weakly worked up a lead-out into the first two. stopped on the way home for my vehicle, since riding 30psi for another 3 miles was not wise, 32 spokes or not.

TN2 suffered mightily on sunday (can you say "heat stroke"?) and has proven his meetle during his short time on the "Team ExLax" farm squad. he's nearly earned Division I membership, but has yet to complete a 100+ mile death march. what he didn't tell you is that he sandwiched a few hours of live music (he's an accomplished musician), beer, and some questionable sleep between saturday and sunday rides.

here's a shot of the CF ride start, taken sunday:
Sounds like a fun time, cool looking bridge!...nmrwbadley
Jun 9, 2003 7:02 PM