Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Stick with me, I'm lucky

On Saturday I did the St. Louis 400K. It was a great ride and I set a personal record.

People

There were a total of 17 people riding. 6 doing the 200K, 3 doing the 300K, and 8 doing the 400K. I chatted with John during  the first part of the ride and found out that he is planning to retire as RBA after next year. I am considering taking over for him. Someone needs to do it and I figure that I owe it to the sport.
After that, I bridged up to the group that Bob Booth was in. I always enjoy riding with him. I never even saw the fast group. That's probably good because I wasn't tempted to hang on.
Bob Booth was there and I always enjoy riding with him. We rode together for the rest of the ride.We spent a lot of time riding with Jason until he split off on the 300K route. Bob and Jason were doing most of the pulling and I was hanging on.
In Sparta, Bob and I were joined by Jeff, who had dropped back from a slightly faster group.

Weather

The weather was very good. There was almost no wind for most of the ride and even a little bit of a tailwind in the evening. It was hot in the middle of the day during the climbs near Ava. And there was a severe thunderstorm just after midnight.
We were actually very lucky there. There was a chance of thunderstorms for most of the afternoon and evening. We were hoping to avoid any bad weather but we could see the lightning in front of us as we headed north from New Baden. Several times lightning would light the landscape as bright as day for several seconds, but still no rain.
When we got to Marine the front moved in and the wind really started to pick up out of the northwest. I saw a bank with an overhang and we took shelter there before the rain started. We ending up waiting about 45 minutes (and taking a short nap) while the storm passed. After that the rain was gone and we finished the remaining 15 miles with no problem.

Equipment

Nothing much to say here which is a good thing. I used the rain cover on my trunk back but probably didn't actually need it.

Physical

I was pretty tired when we reached Ava. I bought a soda but couldn't drink it. I just drank water and tried to recover from the heat. I got a little sunburn on my arms. I think I must have sweated the sunblock off.
I did not worry about not eating enough. If I wasn't hungry, I didn't eat. I did drink a lot of soda at the controls. I think that I might be part hummingbird. I don't think I had any issues with bonking.

Psychological

I set my pacing as if I were planning to finished in 20 hours. I did not actually think that I would; I just used this a a trick to help me get me out of the controls faster. It turned out that if not for the storm we would have finished in under 20. Even with the delay I set a new personal best of 20:20. Of course I had a lot of help from Bob and other riders.

Stats

Time: 20:20
Rolling time: 16:15:26
Distance: 254.34
Average 15.6

1 comment:

commuterDude said...

Well done! I remember riding through New Baden quite a bit during the old Mississippi Valley 24hr way back when - good, quiet roads.