In the group shot there is Aaron, Bob C, Mike, Ian, James, Jeff, Jon, Bob L, Kerri, Steve W, Steve J. (Bob Leclair is a friend of Bob C that rode with us last year)
Missing but not forgotten, Joel, Bruce and Joe, and found along the way Darrell and Kevin.
This year’s is a different story than last. great, GreaT, GREAT, verses good and really not good.
Much to everyone’s delight the threatening forecast changed to moderate winds with chances of rain and pleasant temperatures. For icing on the cake, we had strong tail winds both days - Saturday, NE 10-15 km/hr, Sunday ESE 10-15km/hr. Who said that a cyclist always has a headwind, maybe we just start in the wrong direction!
After a van ride thru traffic past Kinston, multiple circles around Carlton campus looking for the hidden registration desk, and a ‘where are you call’ from Mike H, we got registered. Then off to meet the others at Pub Italia for dinner. Of course it was good company, a beer or two and pre-event pasta. Off to sleep, or for Aaron some toe surgery, or watching hockey for Ian and Bob. Meet for an early breakfast and in BCC tradition an early start. We were rolling by 7:30 or so and made great time across the relatively flat roads to Perth. Approx 70k with ave. speed of 33-34 (love the tail wind) Took a short break at Perth, had a sandwich, topped up the fluids then headed south to the lake district. This is rolling terrain, some fairly steep medium length climbs, and an awesome descent into Westport. The descent is made up of 2pitches and a short flat in the middle, the upper is approx 10%, middle 3%, bottom 15% and has some sweeping turns, with an elevation drop of approx 75m. Smooth pavement, no traffic, no brakes and in an aerodymanic tuck, I reached a max speed of 79km/hr – very cool!
After Jon, Steve, Mike and Bob, split off from the bunch, the rest of us stayed together and arrived in Kingston in record time. Thanks to monster pulls from everyone, the average was over 32km/hr!
Checked-in at Queens, got the luggage, relaxed for some after ride health food ( beer and chips)
At Queens, the residences and food service were good. Ample food, just a note for next time, getting to dinner earlier would let us find seats together. Seems like people arrange to arrive on the hour, maybe it would be better to be at dinner for 5:45 instead of 6.
Day 2, breakfast at 6 – waffles, eggs, roast potatoes, juice, fruit – load em up!
Luggage to the bag drop, get together and off we went about 7:30. Another great day on the bikes. BCC was on fire, double paceline, single file, passing others with a woosh, I don’ t think that more than a few riders passed us on either day.
A couple highlights of the day, getting a packet of chocolat GU at the top of the Westport climb, and catching the back of a train going across the flats into Perth. We had reached the top of the last major hill, approx 30 km from Perth, and we were flying down these long 1 to 2% descents at 35 to 38 kph (remember the tail wind), Kerri noticed that James was missing and bet that he would just appear sometime, and what do you know? James had joined a 40-45km/hr train and zoomed past us calling “à la gauche”. Ian and I were at the front and answered the call to bridge up and join. We connected and became a long single file snake for at least 20minutes with the 3 monsters at the front doing all the work to pull at least 40 people.
Very cool to ride that way, the effort to stay there was so small that my heart rate stayed in the low 130’s for the whole time.
Perth was the lunch break. We were joined by a few more BCCers , new member Darrell and long lost Kevin for the 70 km to Ottawa.
We had another fast day and another fast average of around 32kph.
And, my bike computer says I burned 4950 Cal on Saturday, and 4550 Cal on Sunday.
Thanks to everyone for the great company.
Congrats for a great ride and especially to Aaron, Jon and Steve for their first 180’s.
Special thanks to the Ottawa Cycling Club for the great job of organizing the volunteers, co-ordinating the residences, food, roads, police support, to give 2200 riders a fantastic experience.