Monday, March 23, 2009

General Miller wouldn't have it any other way

Marty: Let's...uh talk a little bit about the history of the group.
I understand Nigel you and David originally started the band
wuh...back in...when was it...back in 1964?
David: Well before that we were in different groups, I was in a
group called The Creatures and w-which was a skiffle group.
Nigel: I was in Lovely Lads.
David: Yeah.
Nigel: And then we looked at each other and says well we might as well
join up you know and uh....
David: So we became The Originals.
Nigel: Right.
David: And we had to change our name actually....
Nigel: Well there was, there was another group in the east end called The
Originals and we had to rename ourselves.
David: The New Originals.
Nigel: The New Originals and then, uh, they became....
David: The Regulars, they changed their name back to The Regulars and
we thought well, we could go back to The Originals but
what's the point?
Nigel: We became The Thamesmen at that point.

My first epic ride of this season went off rather well. The Scott CR1 (saunier duval team bike, not the newer CR1) and I performed as well as I had hoped. I need a couple of small tweaks on the bike, and I suffered no incidents of knee or ankle pain at all. The ride was schedule to be 3 1/2 hours but ended up 4:45. This was due in part to waiting for a rider who really shouldn't have attempted the ride, but also for getting slightly lost, and riding on a hilly dirt road (nice and soft from the snowmelt) for two miles or so. By the end I was getting tired and hungry, but it was the ride leader that cracked, and we ended up dropping him hard on the last hill before we got back into nashua. He didn't bring nearly enough food and didn't eat enough before we left.

We started with 5 riders, then picked up two more along the way. WE headed up 119 through willard brook SP, and continued on 119 into New Hampshire. The ice storm last winter had left severe damage to a lot of the trees up there, it actually looked like a hurricane had gone through with all the snapped and downed trees.

At one point, Our Hero and Blogger Extraordinaire Solobreak had decided on a route of his own, and went about his merry way. This was before one rider known for his affinity for the dirt decided to take us on the hilly dirt road, which was known as 'old new ipswich road'. I guess this would be as opposed to old ipswich road, new ipswich road, old old ipswich road, new new ipswich road, or new old ipswich road (hence the spinal tap reference).

Anyways, we were down to six riders at that point, and once we got to a recognizable area, the one rider who should have stayed home took a direct line back. We stayed together for a while longer until we got to abbot hill road in wilton, nh, then the two we had picked up on the way out decided to take the easy way back, so then we were three. Me, this Team Type One rider and long time friend, and Our Host.

It turns out that Mr. TT1 has been training for the TT1 RAAm team. He claims to have been riding for 12 to 15 hours /week since the beginning of the year, and has 2200 miles in. He had being quietly riding with the group, not flaunting his fitness, until we took this loooong downhill called General Miller Highway. He's about my size (a little dude), but he pulled almost all the way down. I couldn't come around him, and didn't really want to, he was haulin'.......

So we hit Abbot Hill road, maybe a 1/2 mile long, maybe an average pitch of 6%, and he just rolls away from us, and not slowly. Our Host attempted to go with him, but between his lack of food and TT1's SOUPeriour fitness, Our Host cracked as quickly as he accelerated to try and catch TT1, then I simply rolled by him. TT1 had a good 30 seconds on me at the top, and when I caught him he wasn't breathing very hard. We coasted down the other side, and Our Host had to work to catch us.

Finally getting back to the nashua area, we started up Farlee Road at a moderate pace. TT1 rode respectfully, letting me set the pace. I glanced back half-way up to see that we had gapped Our Host by over 100 yards. Farlee road isn't a big hill, it might be 1/2 mile at 3%, but Our Host was as dead as a teenagers cellphone after a day of texting.

This was the very first one of these rides, hosted by Our Host, famous for his spring rides, where he cracked to the point of me waiting for him. I was quite hungry at this point since we were out well over an hour longer than planned, Our Host was in bonk, then TT1 says "I haven't eaten since we left". Well, I guess there's alot to be said for putting on 2200 miles over the past ten weeks. He noted that it was all base, just LSD, zone one training, with little above zone two.

Solo finally got back, had to be almost an hour later. He had well over 5:30 on the bike, and I can't imagine he didn't get a century, since Our Host, TT1 and I did 80 miles.

The Scott CR 1 was fantastic. It climbed as well as you would expect, but was smooth and stable on the descents, and took every quick move with grace and predictability. It behaved especially well on the dirt, even when avoiding the pothole on the dirt descent . I believe the only time I felt something that suprprised me was a frost heave on the General Miller Highway. I'm a bit too far forward on the bike due to a long stem, (new one on order), so in the drops on the down hill doing over 40 I felt the rear end jump a bit higher than I would like, but it was still well under control. I used to ride a Devinci compact aluminum years ago that use to toss the rear end around even on flat roads when I would hit a bump in the pavement. The rear wheel on the Devinci left the ground a few times when I was riding in a hard pace line on that bike. This was nothing like that, as even when I _did_ fell the rear wheel come up it barely left the ground, and I'm sure once I dial in my position it will take quite a bit more than that to come off the ground. The only other issue is the saddle, it's a stupid light selle san marco, and very hard. I'll get used it, it was just a much for a 5 hour ride the first time out.

On that note, the CR1 comes in at just under 16 pounds with a older set of Ksyriums (not even SLs!). With my Zipp 303s on the bike it will be under 15.

I had hoped to get out on the MTB on sunday, but a late night bonfire/birthday party left me a bit drained on sunday, and I had plans to head to boston with the family in the afternoon. Sitting around a bonfire until 1 am with a 12 pack of Molson isn't exactly the best recovery regimen.

I'll undoubtedly be getting more road miles in this week, and I'll report later on how that goes.

1 comment:

EyeBob said...

BTW, your host for that ride has now gifted Soups with a new nickname.....He will (for now) be called Soups Contador.