Friday, August 8, 2008

Marin Century Redux

If anyone stumbles upon this site, you have to put up with my lousy use of English. So as a treat we have a real Professor of English, who also is one of the few recumbent riders to do both the whole Death Ride and the Davis Double in 100 degree weather! From thepost ride email exchanges, take it away Professor Dave... (the opinions expressed are solely those of Professor Dave and not necessarily endorsed by Pumpkincycle.)

Other than Thomas's company at the rest stops -- his positive energy was almost able to overcome my negativity -- I'd have to try hard to come up with anything else I really liked about yesterday's Marin Century. Actually, the food was good. And, Rest Stop #3 was in a beautiful park -- one of the nicest rest stops ever. That's the list.

However, I have no trouble coming up with a really whiny list of the things I did NOT like. I won't say it was my worst day on a bike by a long, long shot, but it could be the suckiest day on a bike I ever paid $75 for! Definitely not a recumbent-friendly ride.

Top 10 Things I Hate about the Marin Century:
10. People who say "Hey, taking a nap on that thing? Ha. Ha." (OK, this happens on every century, so maybe doesn't count. But, I wasn't in the mood for it yesterday given various items listed below.)

9. It's a tie between: a) People who swerve to left when you yell "on your left." (OK, this ALSO happens on every century, so maybe doesn't count.) and b) Team in Training types. (Actually, these two groups over-lap quite a bit.)

8. Jack-ass from Lombardi Sports (aka: Mr. Testosterone -- whose sorry ass I eventually left in my dust. Ha-ha.) who had to steer me into oncoming traffic every time I tried to pass him, then would pass me back on the anti-recumbent climbs (see below).

7. No parking. Parked a mile away from start/finish area. (Those damn double century guys must have taken all the parking!! How the hell did you guys do 200 miles in that wind??? You are supermen!)

6. Toilet at start/finish with no toilet paper. (Please creatively utilize seat cover to wipe sensitive areas.)

5. 30 hard miles between Rest Stop 1 and Rest Stop 2. Then 15 easy miles between Rest Stop 3 and Rest Stop 4 (which comes 10 even easier miles before finish). Useless!

4. Anti-Recumbent Device #1: Short, steep rollers. Lots and lots of short, steep, hateful rollers.

3. Anti-Recumbent Device #2: World's worst cross-winds and headwinds on steep uphills that push slow-climbing recumbents into gravel and/or other riders.

2. Anti-Recumbent Device #3: Even bigger gusting cross-winds that ruin a recumbent's ability to fly down what would be fast, wide-open downhills. (I swear my front wheel left the ground once!)

1. Seemingly 100 MPH head, cross, gusting, swirling f--king winds that f--king ruin just about f--king everything else, including the few f--king opportunities to enjoy the stretches of nice scenery, of which there were too f--king few!

Sorry you all missed it!

I don't believe a word of it--Dave looks happy, he is almost smiling. (Action Sports International photo)

We then told Professor Dave he'd have had more fun on the double (at least he would have seen the toilet paper before we all had a spitball fight at 4:45am)

I'm glad you had a better day (and a better attitude!) than mine. It wasn't a terribly hard day for me, don't get me wrong. My overall speed was tolerable. It just wasn't any fun most of the time.I was thinking even as I was riding the course that this course would suit you much better than it suited me. The rollers between Marshall and Dillon Beach are the kind of thing that totally kills momentum on a bent -- short, steep climbs that, on a road bike, you can just get out of the saddle for. But, on the bent, they grind you to a halt. I wish they had been more like the gentler rollers between Marshall and Pt. Reyes Station on our recon trip! Those were perfect for the bent: pick up plenty of speed going down hill, and keep your momentum on the next little uphill with a nice little tail wind. Saturday it was more like: get NO speed up on the downhill because of the headwinds and die on the uphill. The so-called Marshall "wall" was much more fun than the rollers.Anyway, I'll know better next time. Note to self: "Leave bent at home."Congrats, Jay, Jack, and Don on the Double!

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