Day one of the 2009 Tour to Tanglewood is over. It turned out to be, as feared, a wet ride. We began riding at around 8 AM. There was only a light mist to start, and I thought, if it stays like this it won’t be so bad. It didn’t stay like that.
I started the ride at an easy pace. I figured I would take my time and get warmed up nicely before trying to drive too hard. A little before the first rest stop at 12 miles I was starting to feel pretty good, but then I also began hearing a noise I didn’t care for coming from my back wheel. I was having a little brake rub.
I got a mech to look at it at the stop. I must admit, they do this ride right, with mechanics at the start and finish and the rest stops along the way to help out with bike issues and to keep riders on the road.
It was at the first stop that I met up with my team-mate Scott. We stuck together for the rest of the ride and pulled each other along. It’s also when the rain began increasing in intensity. The middle part of the route got pretty wet. We stopped at the second stop as well, and my brake was still rubbing so I just flipped open the caliper and rode the rest of the ride with it open. The brake pads were new so I didn’t feel like I had any significant loss in stopping power even with them open. Anyway, by this point we were pretty much wet through and through and starting to get the well known shoe squish.
We passed by all of the remaining rest stops and kept on target for the finish. The ride really went pretty smoothly despite the rain, but it would have been nicer without it.
At the finish there was lots of nice clapping and encouragement for a job well done. Marcella was there at the finish line cheering as we arrived too. My cycle computer recorded a ride distance of 46.5 miles and an average speed of 16.8 mph. The duration of the ride was 2 hours and 46 minutes and I think it wasn’t yet 11:30 AM at arrival. Which means we must not have departed from the start until closer to 8:30 as opposed to 8 like I said earlier.
The post ride got a little chilly. We parked our bikes and went and found the Polo tent that was set up. One of the volunteers got me a nice cup of coffee and we sat down to unwind a bit. Unfortunately the rain kept getting progressively worse and I started to feel a little chill. Before it got too bad we went over to the food tent which was catered by Carabba’s, which was excellent and hit the spot.
Then we went and got my bike and took it to another mechanic who spent some time with it and re-trued my rear wheel which is what was causing the brake rub. By this time I was getting pretty tired, and feeling very wet. So we gathered up our stuff and headed home. But not before I parked my bike out with everyone else’s who is planning on riding again tomorrow.
Tomorrow morning I will catch the shuttle very early back out to Tanglewood park and ride my bike back. Which should be approximately 42 miles; slightly shorter than today. The weather report for the morning is calling for grey skies, but not for rain, and sunny later, and the temperature should be warmer. I hope so.
Aside from a nice nap in the later afternoon I’ve spent a fair bit of time since getting home trying to get my shoes dried out to wear again tomorrow. And now it’s time for bed so I can get up in the morning and do it again.
Thanks for your support everyone! Oh, and I sent a couple of pictures from my cameraphone to flickr at a few points during the ride. I think a couple from the start, one from the first rest stop, and then of the Polo tent at the finish. They should give a little feel for the weather and the scene. I’ll try and do a few more tomorrow. Hopefully drier weather will encourage me to use the camera a little more frequently. You can find a link to my flickr page over in the sidebar of this page. Just scan around and you’ll see it.