Activity: road cycling
Location: Boyce, VA > Rockland > Stephens City > Middletown > White Post > Boyce
Distance: 64.2 miles (rolling)
Duration: 3:21
Weather: sunny and hot, 81-90 degrees
Climbing: 3,000′
Avg HR: 164 (max 190)
Type: aerobic

PPTC “Apple Blossom Bouquet” ride. This was a bit of a hammerfest, and I easily won the first county line sprint, even with some other race horses in the pack. The combination of the heat and the pollen (I’d forgotten to take my allergy meds in the morning) took their toll on many in the group. For me, though, the icing on the cake took place during the second county line sprint: I had the easy break and then POW! My new chain fell off the big ring, mid-sprint. I tried to re-rail it, and it kept coming off. It turns out that I’d bent the chainring! Ouch! I was very lucky not to crash, and I still took second in the sprint while spinning madly in my small ring-small cog combination.

I had to ride in the small ring for a few miles after that, which allowed the rest of the pack to move on at a faster pace. However, thanks to Jason’s inquiry, I managed to straighten the ring using vise grips, thanks to the tools of two amateur truck mechanics (thanks, guys!). Jason and I eventually caught up to the pack, which had been slowed by a field of roofing tacks that punctured one rider’s tire.

After the regroup, we rode out the last 20 miles of the route, though we missed the cues at White Post, which meant that the classic, over-the-hilltop finish sprint was missed and the distance shortened by a few miles. Given the unseasonal heat, not many were fazed by this (save for Jonathan, who had totally planned out his victory move). All-in-all, a good ride, though I was quite spent at the end.