Phong dances on his pedal... and put the hurt on FedEx. It was time for the student to teach The Teacher! FedEx groan as he tried to match Phong's acceleration... but the inevitable happened as it had in this week's Tour de France stage... Phong began to gapped FedEx!
BEEP... BEEP... BEEP... BEEP... BEEP...
Phong groaned as the alarm woke him up from his sleep. He groaned even harder as the physical and mental pain revealed themselves once again on his body and mind. The GMR ride yesterday did not quite turn out as rosy as that of his dream. Here is what really happened...
The Magnificent Seven riders of Scott, Roxy, FedEx, BigH, Billy, Hoa, and myself showed up to ride GMR today as a preparation for this Sunday's climbing clinic. Although I have not climbed for over a month, my mental well being made me think that today was going to be a great day for me on the hills of GMR.
FedEx and BigH arrived late, so the rest of us decides to get a 15 minute head start. I was thinking that this was additional padding exactly that we need to put the hurt on these climbing men. The start was fun, as we chit chat among ourselves. We also found out that today was Roxy's birthday and she was celebrating it in an epic style. Happy Birthday Roxy!
Photo - 2011 Rookie Contender Hoa
Photo - 2008 KoM Billy
Photo - Birthday Girl Boxy
Photo - A1 Road Captain Scott
Photo - The Front Pack
2 miles up GMR and KoM contender Billy and Rookie Contender Hoa took off and disappeared from our view. We were already traveling at 8 mph, and I could not get anymore speed out of my body, so I settle in with Scott and Roxy.
So in this year's TdF, Andy Schleck attacked Contador and Contador could not respond. In an email to the Viets, I dubbed FedEx "Alberto Contador" as they both had this dancing style of climbing. I also asked our members to test our FedEx as we have not seen him in a while and I wanted to see if we can have an "Andy" among today's GMR crowd.
Well around 5 miles up, any hopes of me becoming an Andy Schleck shattered as in the back distance, I spotted FedEx coming up fast! FedEx had spotted ourselves and he zoned in like a cruise missile. Check out these pics.
Photo - Oh.. No.. The Attack Is Coming!
Photo - Here He Comes!
Photo - There He Goes!
8 miles up and here comes BigH. BigH was so silent in his attack that he surprised Scott, Roxy, and I when he charged pass us. I did not even have time to pull my camera out as BigH disappeared from our view.
9 miles up and I had hoped that we would have a break at the East Fork. Nope not today as everyone elected to continued on. Okay, I thought, it's do or die as the second half of GMR is harder than the first half.
15 miles in and I bonked BIG TIME! By this time, I was alone and was crushed physically and mentally. I was crawling along at 4-5 mph and was contemplating stopping for a rest. When I spotted Hoa coming back down, as he had to go to work, I was strongly contemplating turning back as well. Seems the body and mind forget the suffering of a true mountain climb like GMR, even as short of a duration of 2 weeks, if you don't go out and climb. I am now paying back big time for that month of no hills.
Good thing the last 3 miles of GMR is a slight downhill. I reached this part and knew that I could finish. Scott and Roxy also waited for me at the notch and escorted me up to Baldy Village.
Photo - Billy Describing the Roads to the Ski Lifts
Photo - The VeloViet Crew at the Village
We had a great time talking at the top. Turns out FedEx time was 1 hour and 26 minutes. Yikes!
I decided to turn back with most of the guys while Scott and Roxy continued on to the Ski lift to finish celebrating her birthday in epic style. Here they are...
Photo - Roxy at the Top
Photo - Scott at the Top
Today's ride was brutal for me. The Contador took flight and dusted us all! Billy and I chatted at the parking and Billy noted that FedEx was the one who was willing to suffrered the most. Even when his heart is at 190 bpm when he caught up with Billy, he stood up and pushed himself even more! Lady Palomar will be extremely interesting. I think the climbers will have to gang up if they want to dethrone this mountain man.
A2 folks come out this Sunday and attend the VeloViet's climbing clinic. Although the suffering will not be as extreme as yesterday GMR ride, I promised that you will learn a whole lot from these phenomenom climbers.