Weekly Long rides:
4/04 112 Miles three loops
4/11 125 Miles 200K Brevet
4/25 101 Miles solo
5/02 145 Miles three loops
5/08 168 Miles to Ames
5/16 260 Miles the last 160 with Crew Support
5/23 246 Miles 58 in the dark then 300K Brevet
One of my riding partners (well at least one if not more) accused me of needing to have my head examined after riding 260 miles on a very windy and chilly Saturday May 16th. So to prove he was probably right, I completed the Big Dog's 300K (189) mile ride on Saturday. That in itself is not too crazy since there were 12 others who completed the ride. The crazy part was riding 58 miles ahead of time. The ride started at 5:00 am so I had to leave my house at 1:30 am Saturday morning to make it to LeClaire in time to start the ride. This did not thrill my wife.
The 300K ride was a great training ride for RAW because of the amount of long climbs. The 189 mile out and back route started from Leclaire and basically did the Sunday TOMRV optional century route backwards. The towns we passed through were McCausland, Follets, Low Moor, Elvira, Sabula, Bellevue, St. Donatus and then Key West. Key West is basically Dubuque. It sits at the top of the hill where highway 52 and 61 cross just south of Dubuque.
Mike Doyle has been a great riding partner to have around this spring. He did the 50/50 in April the 50/50/50 in May and was even crazy enough to join me for 100 miles of the windy ride on the 16th. After all that, he was still up for the challenge of this 189-mile adventure as well. To top it off, he is already signed up for the very challenging 200 mile Balltown Classic on May 30th.
Mike and I were joined by Larry Ide from Monmouth. Larry is a legend in Ultra-Distance cycling and has many notable results on his resume. I have done several rides with Larry and it is always interesting to see what his diet for the ride will be. Check out the diet for a 400K he completed last year. On this ride Coke was his main fluid of choice and he always had two in his water bottle cages.
The ride featured 8,400 feet of climbing with steep climbs between Sabula and Bellevue and long gradual climbs between Bellevue and Key West. The three of us stayed together the entire ride. The weather conditions were great with very little wind until we had about 50 miles to go and then it was tailwind to blow us back to LeClaire. Our total time was 10:45 with 9:25 (20.1 mph avg) on the bike.
The Balltown Classic ride is up next on May 30th. I have participated the last four years in this event. This out and back rides starts in Dewitt features 11,000 feet of climbing as you head north to the little town of Balltown north of Dubuque. The ride starts out like a race with a pretty big group staying together until you start to hit the hills at about mile 50. Then the group shatters and it turns into individual survival. The last two years Bill Ford has been the first finisher and I have come in fourth. The goal for this year is to get done in around 10 hours to set the course record. Check in next week for the write up.