Driving up to Mile Square parking lot today, I noticed that Cap't did not bring his bike. Talking to him, we found out that he was recovering from sickness and have not eaten much for the last few days. My first thought was, great... it's gonna be a slow ride. Boy, was I wrong!
The turnout was great, we had almost 30 riders. Most of our fast guys were here: such as The Animal, Mr 30 MPH, The Gear, The Contender, Sang, Tan, and Greg. Group B was well represented also, among them Mac Daddy, Big Minh, Anh Minh, Viet, Ngoc, Chi, and I. The Italian was there with a tandem, and was the only tandem that came out today. There were a handful of riders that I did not recognized. These folks were new and came out ride with us on the last ride before Christmas. Hope we don't get lost!
Mad Dog drove up and droped off his wife, Christina (sp?). MD had an appendix burst 13 days ago and could not ride, but the Mrs wanted to go for it. Wow, brave woman. We all assured MD that we would look out for her.
On the way to the trail, we picked up The Rock Racers who had on an Astana kit with the Giro d'Italia pink leader's jersey??? What's up with this??? We were so used to seeing them in the old kit that we didn't recognized them at first. Mr Party Vinh hooked up around this time too I think.
On the trail, the fast guys kicked it on and took off like a rocket. I decided to stick back with Christina with a bunch of other Group B riders. She was actually doing very well drafting and had no problem maintaining a 21 mph speed average.
The first flat happened on the trail. We came upon Mac Daddy fixing a flat on the side of the road. Big Minh, Anh Minh, Viet, Duc, and I stuck back with Mac. He finished the repair and we pull hard to the first rest stop.
On PCH the fast guys took off again. Christina was tucked in with the fast guys but could not hold on half way to Jamboree. I came up with the Group B and we picked her up. The group combined at the stop to Jamboree. Everyone started Jamboree together, but the climbers of the bunch quickly took off. We met with everyone after the right on University.
After the regroup, the boys went to work and pull the group to Harvard. I was the last person in the group when I hit a pothole. Immediately I heard air hissing and I yelled "Flat". As everyone slowly pulled away, I yelled "Flat" again and heard someelse repeated the yell to alert the guys up front.
No such luck though. Our fast guys were so focus that they did not hear the call. The folks in the back who heard was our Group B riders, and it was either stop and loose the main group's draft or continue. They knew I had a map of the route so they continued on.
I quickly changed the front flat by swapping with a new tube, got on the bike thinking that I could catch up to the pack if they slowed, only to found out that I also had a rear flat. Darn!!!
I only brought one spare tube, which I just use to repair the front. So for the next 15-20 minutes, I looked for the leak. Turns out it was a very small hole that looked like was caused from a pinch flat. The next 5 minutes was sanding the area and gluing on the patch. Good thing I had my bike pump. We are back in business!
I was approximately 20 miles into the ride. For the next 30 miles, I was trying to follow the map, which was not 100% correct, and I gave it my all in hope that the group stop at the Circle K break. No such luck!
Got back to the parking and found out that I was not the last rider back. Christina, Big Minh, and Viet somehow got lost also. Jason mentioned someone called them and they were a couple of miles away.
I was so tired so sat there a bit to chat with Jason, and then made my way home. At home, guess what... I saw that the rear tire was flat. No wonder the last few miles back was so hard!
I got more of a workout than I initially thought. The ride was fast, but with many flats. I am sore as heck now, but definitely got the bike itch satisfied. Can't wait for next Sunday, and this time I am bringing 2 spare tubes!