Saturday, March 24, 2012

Return of the Titans

When I started riding mountain bikes, and you know trying to get fast, there was a Tuesday Night ride known only as Todd's ride or the fast ride. Guys would come out, and frankly I remember my first couple of times out, I got my doors blown off. It became known in our community as the Tuesday Night Titans.
Bobby's Boy Keith Goulet and Todd the Maestro getting ready to unleash hell.

People got dropped. I am quite sure that Todd took great pleasure in dropping people. I can remember the first couple of years I did this ride, getting dropped. "shit, I only made it 45 minutes this week... Maybe next week I'll hang for 50." I have vivid memories of the first couple of times I actually finished the ride with the group. And when finally after probably 5 years of trying, I could show up and with some certainty expect to finish the ride with the group.
quick catch of the breath for a flat change circa 2005

 Hell the first time I could turn the screws a little on Todd might be one of  my proudest moments on a bike.  A lot of really good riders came out of that ride. I am proud to have cut my teeth chasing Todd through the woods of Middlerun.
The maestro dreaming of ways to rip off my legs.

This year is a different year for me. The Red Cup ride, which is frankly my favorite ride every week, isn't happening on Thursdays. So with the help of Chris Jackson and Jim Vetterlein, I've been heading up a fast paced, training ride on Thursdays out of Fairhill. Two weeks in, and we are starting to get a nice group of consistent faces. The ride is hard, hell after trying to throw the kitchen sink at Nick Sear's last week, I could barely walk up stairs on Friday. But I digress, the ride is hard, people do get dropped, people do pull up.
Once a week Paul, still a regular on the Tuesday night ride. That hat not so much.

While not the intent, it is a hard ride, and I want everyone to get what they need out of the ride, and have fun. All the while, making sure folks can get back to the lot safely. Perhaps exhausted, hopefully motivated to comeback and push it a bit further the next week, but safe.
Peaches, Buddy and Fatme all cut our teeth on the TNT ride...

I'm really excited with the group, so far a super solid mix of guys who have been slapping me around for years, and a number of guys I haven't historically ridden with, but bring some punch to the ride. It's a great group, and I hope has the potential to become a ride that attracts the best and the brightest, and the up and coming from our community.

Yup out the gate,folks are getting to learn each other's riding style, and frankly the first 20 minutes have been a great sorting out process, but once things have been getting settled we've been rolling along nicely. The group has been about 10 riders strong or so. About a third of the group is guys who are racing on the expert level, and the other 2/3 are strong sport riders or as I like to call them "dirty fucking sandbaggers". My goal is to help the "dirty fucking sandbaggers" make the next step, and transition to the expert class with success.

More exciting for me, is that just a couple of weeks in, word about our ride is starting to spread. I've got folks reaching out to me saying, " I hear you got a good ride going down there, I'm gonna make it out next week!" That makes me really stoked. So will this ride ever replace the Tuesday Night Titans? I doubt it. But, I'll keep showing up and try to throw the kitchen sink at whoever is willing to follow me around for 1:45 at Fairhill...

Stava has certainly taken off in this area, and I'm happy to say that both of our rides resulted in a number of new KOM's and most importantly everyone putting in their best times on segments out there. To me the benefit of chasing Nick, Dennis, Tim and Peaches over hills and through the wood is pretty  obvious, looking at the data, further cements the facts: the ride is fast, we are pushing each other. win-win.
Data doesn't lie: 6 of the 10 fastest times on this segment were during our ride last week....

Thanks to everyone who has been coming out, let's keep this thing rocking and rolling...

fatmarc vanderbacon

1 comment:

Possumrider said...

Well said marc, the Red Cup ride was always my goal, just to make it, then to hang on, Todd you are sorely missed, you've made me a better rider and for that I thank you. c