Friday, October 27, 2006

The Ride - part 2

I've been on the road for work practically since we got back from Death Valley so it's taken awhile to get the next entry about the ride. I said in part one we didn't have any injuries, but we did have two riders, Ann and Andrea, who were nursing injuries and were unable to ride in Death Valley, even though they made the trip. We also had several riders who have Type 1 diabetes. They were out there fighting the heat and wind with the rest of us. I know how hard it was for us, I'm in awe of someone with a life threatening disease being able to do that course. Last Saturday was a very hard day. At 5:00 a.m., when we got up, it was already warm and unlike the day before it was windy. The ride is "out and back" style. 52.5 miles with a light wind mostly at our back. We made great time. Then we turned around and came back 52.5 miles, into a 20 MPH head wind with gusts to 30 MPH. Also, the last 6 miles before the turn around is the climb up to Jubilee Pass. 6 miles at a 6% grade. It took us an hour. The wind made a difficult course a little piece of hell on earth. There were very good riders who said it was one of the toughest rides they've ever done. Our fastest riders got in a pace line on the way back so they could go 11 miles an hour! That passed for fast in Death Valley.
Another member of our team is Danielle Musto, who is the ranked second in mountain bike racing. Danielle was the first woman to finish the ride. She also has a blog and you can read her thoughts on the ride there. Just click on the new link to the left or on her name above.
Speaking of links, click on the Flickr badge on the left and you'll see a whole bunch of pictures from the ride. In part three we'll post links to other people's photos and some video.

This is the part of the team (we had 34 riders) that we rode most of the course with. Sue, Mary, Tom, Peggy, Lynn, Nicole, and Joe.

Beautiful but desolate countryside.

The day of the ride was Mary's birthday. The day after the ride we recuperated in Las Vegas and it was Tom's birthday. Use the comment section to guess how old we are.

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