Thursday, March 4, 2010

Tour De Cure in Orlando Florida or Tour de Freezing Toes

I completed the Tour de Cure 61 mile ride on Sunday in about 3 hours and 30 minutes of total ride time, averaging 18 mph.  I was going to do the century, but I didnt quite make the 250 dollar goal I set for myself, and it was chilly and very windy.  With as little road riding as I have done in the last two months - Im glad I rode the 60 miles instead of the 100.

Its easy to forget how much fun an organized ride is when you haven't done one in a while.  There were almost a thousand riders this year.  I showed up before 7:30, following the flyer's instructions, to register and pick up my packet.  Luckily the registration booth was right in the middle of somewhat of a swamp, so my socks got soaked right through my shoes before I started riding. Hurray!  The packet contained a map, a very nice Haynes T-shirt, and some diabetes information.

Right at 8:30 the announcer got us revved up by talking about the amount of funds raised (close to 250k), had a young lady sing an excellent rendition of the Star Spangled Banner, and then launched us.  There were alot of people surrounding the start gate yelling, screaming, and banging cowbells.

The cowbells thing pretty much happened throughout the ride.  We got a police escort for the first 12 miles or so, and didnt have to stop for any stop lights - except for one light, where someone just ignored the police motorcycle and went through the light anyway. The large group quickly broke into pieces and I managed to hitch onto a pretty fast group lead group until a quick bathroom and sandwich break at a rest stop.  The rest stops had bananas, sandwiches, cookies, gatorade, and a ton of stuff.  One of the rest stops had a DJ.  Pretty cool.

Here I am at one of the rest stops:

Note my gorgeous blue shoes.  I have had those for like 8 years.

The route was great this year, literally starting 10 minutes from my house, and riding within a block of my front door.  Im thinking I will do this every year. The crowd was great, the sheer number of riders was pretty impressive as well.  I finished the ride around 12:30 or so - after riding in a ridiculous headwind for well over an hour and a half. The wind was absolutely terrible. I cant tell you how many people I passed that looked like they were really struggling to keep upright. I was actually struggling at around the 50 mile mark, as I wasnt quite keeping up with my nutrition as well as I should have and I was getting seriously hungry.  I downed a clif bar and a couple shots of gel and felt better within a few minutes. For the entire ride I ate

At the finish line I was cheered and I think someone took my picture.  I was really beat after riding those stiff headwinds and tried to eat a little bit of Woody's bbq.  The chicken was yummy, but I just cant eat a meal only a few minutes after a ride. I went out for a big lunch with wifey, did a little shopping, then on the way home around 3:30 there were still riders on the road!  We passed one guy that looked absolutely beat.  Im thinking those were the century riders. 

Im looking forward to another big group ride, this one was a blast!  I really have forgotten how much fun it is to ride on the road with a group. Ive also come to realize that I need a new road bike.  I have a 2002 Giant TCR 0 with bullhorns.  I set it up this way when i was doing some triathlons in 2004 and my right 'brifter' stopped working.  I got handlebars, bar-end shifters, and brake levers all for the price of one single brake/shift lever.  This bike is quite light at around 17 and a half pounds - it was top of the line uh, 8 years ago.  I'm thinking of getting a bike that has less of a racey stretched out  geometry and getting one a little more comfortable like a Giant Defy, Specialized Roubaix, or Scott CR1.  It might be a while before I can do that though.

No comments:

Post a Comment