Sunday, October 09, 2005

Bike Ride Report - Seagull Century

I rode the Seagull Century yesterday. I didn't see one seagull. I think they drowned. By the time I was done, I was about drowned too.

It rained continuously non-stop the whole time. There were stiff headwinds the whole way, too.
It wasn't at all cold, though, it was mid seventies, kind of balmy. It was like swimming.

Here is the Element section of the parking lot. Debra's in front, and another guy with a blue one in the back.

The guy with the blue one says he didn't sleep in it. But for me, the Element gets more like home every week.

I was going to camp at the Salvation Army with Debra and some of our friends, but they bagged it due to the weather forecast. So it was just me camping in the Seagull parking lot in the cozy Big OE.

Crisis! Before I even started, I discovered my front brake lever was cracked! Where it clamps on the handlebar. It was flopping around all over.

Luckily for me, the repair stand was already set up at 7:30, and the guy in charge made a quick dash back to the store to get me a new brake lever.

What a lifesaver. I had the (lousy) breakfast in the Salisbury U. dining hall, and was underway just before 8:30. I wasn't in a big hurry, I was naively hoping that maybe the rain would let up if I waited a bit. Right.

Here's the scene at the first rest stop, at Pokomoke State Park. This was just over 20 miles in.

At about 65 miles, you get to Asseteague State Park, on the beach, where the wild ponies frolic. I saw one, he was standing by the entrance bedraggled and sullen looking. I didn't take a picture. This is the rest stop, where people throw their bikes on the ground and hide under the tent and eat a banana.

I always find a fence to lean my bike against.

I took a little break and walked to the top of the dune. Pretty rough surf today. The wind is blowning about 25 mph from the southeast.

This dude is cheating. He's missing the special experience of riding into the stiff wind with the rain coming down hard and stinging through your rain jacket.

I pretty much hammered the whole thing. I have a dream that someday I will ride a century in less than 5 hours. That dream was not for this day. It took me 5:23 rolling, and just under six hours on the clock. Average speed 18.5 mph.

Which was exactly the same time as last year. Last year was the Reynolds Weld Lab Dual 26 T-Bone. This year was the Cobrabikes Royale. The conditions were considerably worse this year, so maybe I am showing some improvement.

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