Monday, May 22, 2006

Cycle Salt Lake Century

JuniorSprinter and I went to ride the Cycle Salt Lake Century Saturday morning. It is a fantastic ride from the State Fair Park in Salt Lake City, to Antelope Island in the Great Salt Lake and back. It is about as flat as a ride can get here in the intermountain west.

Everything looked like it was going to be a great day. We met a friend (WI) from work who was planning on riding with us. Saw another friend from work with his team all decked out, ready to hammer. Then the ride started...

JuniorSprinter Spits Out A Lung
JuniorSprinter has been sick most of the week. He was feeling better on Friday, and had started eating again, but I was already worried about being able to do the full century. As soon as the ride started he began coughing. A couple of doses from the rescue inhaler helped a little, but he wasn't doing well. So at the first rest area we made the decision that the century was out, but we would try to push to the second rest area and do the 67 mile option.

GeekCyclist Was Stupid
I don't know how many times I have told people, don't make changes before the big ride. I even talked myself out of replacing the bar tape and switching seats from my mountain bike to the road. But I couldn't resist. I had picked up a nearly new wheel set for the road, and it already had an 11-28 cassette on it. My old rear wheel has had a bunch of spokes replaces and I have a hard time keeping it trued. I had to swap it out. BIG MISTAKE!

When I got to the ride I noticed a little "thumping" as I rode to the start. I figured it was just the repairs in the parking lot. But as the ride started, the thumping stayed constant relative to my speed. We went about 6 miles before I couldn't take it anymore. We got off, checked the wheel, removed and reinstalled the tire. No luck. This wheel has a definite flat spot. I am pretty good at maintenance, but I think I may take this one to the shop.

Lesson Learned: Never, Never, Never change something the night before the big ride...

We Survived
The wind was very favorable as we rode north out of SLC. That just meant coming back, with JS coughing and me cringing every revolution, we were headed into a pretty stiff wind. Luckily we had WI from work with us. He did some monster pulls at the front, and dragged us back to the fairgrounds. In the end we did about 72 miles in about 4:30 which isn't to shabby, but certainly not what we wanted.

Our next big organized ride is going to be the MS-150 in Logan at the end of June. Hopefully we will perform better there.

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