A running account of the "race without an entry fee"..... The Tuesday night ride

Tuesday the 26th

Welcome to the Sleeping Giant Gran Fondo.
Special thanks to cheshire residents and the Police force for their patience.
Official apology; see below....

     All the fair weather riders oozed out of the wood work tonight. Nearly 70 riders eventually hooking up with the ride. Thankfully there was a southerly wind and some fast guys up front to make everyone feel good and fuzzy about themselves. The ride started off slowly as everyone was content to enjoy the nice weather. Either that or everyone was ogling the monstrosity that Dillon P was demo'ing tonight. ( Litespeed Archon C1... super stiff, uber fast, gets few points for comfort. ).
      Mike McG, MoHoney, Vivid shorts guy ( aka Danny B ), Dillon P and a NYU rider finally got things rolling along right before the crap road section. Chris C was the first one to really dig in the heels on Mount Sanford Rd but Mike McG, Eric M and NYU lifted things, keeping Crowle on a short leash. That took everyone to Mountain Rd where the gent on the older litespeed, Hunter P and Guido kicked things off. Guido rolled off the front along with Hacker for a brief moment but there was PLENTY of guys rolling thru. From there, all the way down Mountain, you pretty much had to take a number in order to trade paint up front. Plenty of guys to do work + tailwind meant any ol fred could roll along with the boys... But that's a nice change right?
      Once onto Moss Farms Bob German, Hacker, Guido and Eric M hit it hot up-front right away to keep everyone on their toes. Rattatat moved up front along with Joe K and kept it fast up to the chicane. Mike McG got it rolling up to Marion Ave. followed by Hunter P and Thomaas B but a parked truck at the corner brought everyone to a screeching halt. It took a little to regroup and get rolling again but Chris C put himself out there along with Mike and a CCB rider. Into the industrial park with guns blazing. Again, it was perfectly possible to wind along, work pretty hard and never make it to the front cause there were plenty of guys. The hills on West Johnson started to thin out the front. Yalie with the vivid shorts (name?) launched off the front in a bid to get himself a sprint upset. Mike McG, Jacinto, Bob German, Eric M, Julio L and Everyone's Favorite Dave also took the chance to move off the front but everyone, including the Yalie was brought back pretty quickly. Mike McG, looking to get in a get workout, stayed up front and kept the speed high as everyone started looking for position. Mike actually rolled off the front alone as everyone figured their best chance was to sit and wait. Die schnelle maschine, Guido, wasn't cool with that and hit the front to close the gap. That gave everyone something to follow up to McG just at the crest of the hill on Rienhard, before the sprint. Guido passed Mike alone as Eric M, Hunter P, and Ratta were queuing up behind. Ratta started if off, Hunter P was next, but Little T was waiting in the shadows and had plenty of time, plenty of room, plenty of kick to come around all, taking it over Hunter P easily.
        Larry M and Eddy A quickly rolled off the front on the descent, looking determined to pounce. But Eddy was just teasing us and ended up turned to head north. Gruppo Compacto heading up Peck Ln toward Route 10. But not before Joe K rolled off the front alone, into the headwind, throwing caution out the window. He was uncatchable for a bit as everyone on the front was either a teammate ( Ratta, Hunter P, Larry M ) or gassed from the effort. He came back just as the cut up pavement section was crossed. Eric M, Rondo and BikeShopBob peeled off due to flat tires.
        The headwind on route 10 stood everyone up. It was slooooow. No one was willing to drill it for obvious reasons. Guido moved up to the front not giving 2 craps about wind speed. He had a little help but overall it was lollygag time. A few guys rolled off the front, plus a few guys who took shortcuts were getting caught in time for the stop n shop sprint. There was a small group off the front being led by Rattatat. On his six was last weeks winner, Blue tires \ blue shorts ( Danny Blizzard ). Behind Guido was catching up and Jacinto was leading the usual suspects across the gap. Guido gets the prize for this one tho, well deservedly so.
        The rest of the ride was a circus side show........Fine motorists of Cheshire ( and the officers who police them ), many apologies..... Bicyclists get all jittery when the wind blows at our face. We will be better next time. Promise.....
         For the final kilometers Rattatat gets the Big Balls Award for stomping his way up and ahead of everyone a couple times. In the end Guido rolled off the front with Little T in hot pursuit. Up the hill, Hunter P had a head start and stayed in front of Mahoney, Tri Doug and Gregg F.

Good ride everyone. Next week the big loop, which hopefully will dilute traffic on the return home. If not, things are gonna get all.... Bacon-y