Thursday, August 31, 2006
thursday morning ride report
there is nothing to get your day started like a group ride. a little bit of socialization, a little bit of intesity... okay, a lot of intensity. it's better than coffee.
jay, mike, will p, chris, and i met up this morning to ride 1st bridge. i'm not going to pull punches... relatively speaking, this was a pretty strong group. jay and mike can mix it up with the best on single-track, chris is capable of some "monster pulls", as will put it, and somebody needs to explain to will that "out of shape" doesn't exactly describe his fitness level.
so we start rolling down river road, then cut through bound brook, and it becomes pretty clear: while the power we're putting out as a group is plenty good, the skill level leaves something to be desired. little things, like going from 2nd wheel to first smoothly, pulling smoothly, dropping off smoothly, not braking EVER, things like that. generally, smoothness.
so, by the time we got to elizabeth road, the plan had evolved. instead of doing a group ride at moderate pace, we picked the pace up a bit so that pulls would be no more than 30 seconds long, forcing us to practice the smooth.
the improvement was immediate. we've still got a lot of work to do and a lot of experience to gain, but there is no doubt that the group was more cohesive, more productive, and way less scary by the time we got to the sprint on van cleef. technically, i guess i won, but that's only 'cause i caught the other guys looking at each other when i attacked early. chris almost bridged up to me in one decisive move, showing yet again that he is going to be a powerhouse over the coming year.
we continued to cruise through franklin, getting to the "Greg Lemond Hill Sprint", so named for reasons that i've never understood. it was mike's turn to pimp-slap us; he looked at me and said "when can we start sprinting?" (there had been some confusion at the first sprint). i replied "well, now, but we've got like a mile left, and i'll just jump on your wheel".
he sprinted. i could not get his wheel. dude is fast.
alas, the length of the effort got to him, allowing the chris and will train to catch him. chris took the KOM points (do you get it yet? chris is strong!)
residents of franklin, jay and mike left chris, will, and myself to softpedal home. when will turned towards college avenue, chris and i decided that the burning in our legs wasn't quite painful enough. we did a nice little team-time trial from landing lane to old town. personally, i kept hoping that we'd get pulled over for speeding... perhaps someday.