ride report by peter.
i woke to the dreaded sound of rain this morning and the sound of cars swishing past. normally this is not a problem, but this morning was our spr breakfast and a wet ride would mean soggy riders in my house. the only saving grace was that the rain only lasted briefly and was over by 5:30am. hopefully the roads would be dry by the time we started.
we had close to 40 people rsvp for the breakfast and we usually pick up a few more on the day, so i was expecting a decent turn out. there are also those that will ride but not stay for breakfast, so our numbers were up over 50 by the time we headed off. we were playing the amended banister road course this morning as we needed to finish in como rather than the city so the shorter ending meant we would extend the ride down to stock road. back along south street and up banister before nicholson and albany hwy. a detour along manning road would bring us to como rather than the causeway.
the ride started well enough, we managed to get caught at the lights quite a bit and it split the group as expected. it was the usual disjointed start but we eventually found our way down canning at a leisurely pace. the hill preceding the stock road intersection was always going to be interesting even at a leisurely pace it would be too fast for some riders and the group fell apart a bit there. not real problem though as we regrouped at the red light.
along the rolling hills of stock road we maintained an easy pace and there was minimal damage to the group. i continued to play the sheepdog roll and flitted between the front and back of the group to help it stay together. once we turned onto south street, the rolling hills became a bit bigger and a few riders like stu and mike fell back to help some of the struggling ones get back on. as this was a breakfast ride, i wanted the group to arrive as much of a group as possible. a few friendly lights meant that we hit banister road as a pack. it was also when the rain started.
when we left the car park this morning there was clouds to the north and to the south with showers pouring out of each. we were dry but heading south. looks like we caught up to it.
the rain wasn’t particularly heavy, but in a big group it doesn’t need to be as the spray from your own tyres, the rider in front and the one in front of that, all seem to be landing on your head. the road was quite wet so the spray was probably double the actual rainfall.
the pace stepped up somewhat and riders began pushing to the front. no real roll though, but more like a series of continuous attacks that drove the pace higher. in the wet conditions it made for an interesting experience, but at no time did i feel like it was dangerous. the aussie crates boys, brendan and steve, were forcing the pace along with the usual suspects like nick and jens. the absence of ryan meant that there would be no last minute flyer up the side to blow everyone apart, but the pace was starting to take it’s toll. i eventually made a move as i thought that we were coming to the end of banister road, but i miscalculated as we still had a way to go. it was dryer at the front, however, until the aussie crates led the pack back around me.
pretty soon we were at the end and from what i could see through rain drenched glasses, the crates boys got there first. we slowed, or rather were slowed by the lights to allow the majority of the group a chance to rejoin. a gentle pace along nicholson gave me a chance to drop back and help a few struggling riders.
as we approached the lights at spencer rd i looked up to see a rider on the ground and a few others getting untangled. the rest of the group were already up the road, so no real chance in getting them back. it turns out that canadian bill, took off to fast and smacked into the rear wheel of jens. canada came off second best in the coming together of nations as jens stayed upright, while bill ended up on the deck. not real damage apart from a big can of humility, which has probably now doubled after everyone gets to read it on the blog.
the group had gone, so mike, stu and myself got this litte group of about seven of us together and headed for home in the rain. quite uneventful really, except for the dry roads around curtain uni, which showed that it had only rained around the canning vale area.
the soggy group had started filing into the garage by the time i got home, and it was shoes and socks off and water wrung out of armwarmers and gloves before heading in. lorraine and kate and jody had the place prepared and there was hot food and coffee awaiting. the toasted ham and cheese sangas were a hit along with the big pot of hot chocolate which was not big enough apparently. there were massive amounts of food and i am pretty sure that no-one went home wanting. we had set up tables outside again, in the vain hope that the weather would have been nicer, but it wasn’t to be. hopefully the next one in three months time will yield better results weatherwise.
the breakfast entry also provided a ticket in the raffle and the two ritchey torqkeys went to doug and ryan. the pump went to lisa and the conti attack/force tyres went to brendan, well actually his better half jody’s ticket won them, but he has the bike.
we then had the bike weigh in as people were dragging there bikes out of the garage. the biggest surprise was the darren managed to whittle a bit more off his already exceedingly light bike to come in at 5.94kg. well under the uci legal limit of 6.80kg. fortunately for him, he doesn’t race so the uci will not be checking anytime soon. after davina’s superlight specialized (the benefit of being sponsored) there is a massive glut of cervelos, with four r3’s coming within 100 grams of each other. there may be some weight saving coming up before the next breakfast between these guys to see who can get the upper hand. with this bulk of lighter bikes grabbing the top positions, my 8.34kg (forgot to reweigh mine) seems rather heavy. that is till we chucked phil and noel’s 10+kg monsters on the scales. these guys are carrying the equivalent of 4-5 full drink bottles of extra weight when they ride. i think i can see a good purchase for that christmas bonus this year boys. in the meantime, it will only make you stronger.
so another successful breakfast (in my opinion anyway) and it gave everyone an opportunity to catch up a bit more. lorraine (and kate) did another outstanding job on the food and the doggy bags didn’t go un-noticed even though they were stuffed down the font of a few guys vests. i now have enough evil brownies to last me a week, well a few days at least. they will probably go straight to my hips.