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GLGA recap

First of all I would like to thanks Corey and all the PCL volunteers for putting on a great event, there was even banana station in middle of nowhere, it was perfect event this can be only achieved by hard work and good attitudes. I would also like to thank MOD and Trek Omaha for graciously donating prizes for this event.  I would also like to thank my lady Megan who spend a whole day with my parents’ crazy shi-tzu which enabled me to ride the event.

Now to the recap. The day for me started around 3:30 am Up  and early. My parents went to some catholic retreat which means I was left behind to watch their crazy dog pikus.   After walking the dog and eating my daily wheat bagel peanut butter and honey I waited around for JP to show up to my house.   We packed our bikes and headed to Lincoln around 4:30 am.  Just enough time to change  get ready and listen in at the riders meeting.   At the start I saw Dale from Bike Masters we talked about gear selection, Dale decided to push 48-22 which is a pretty tall gear for the  hills we were going to ride this morning.  My plan was pretty simple let the hammer fest go by at the start then, hangout and keep on wheel of Jeff Bonsall. This was done for two reasons a) Jeff is pretty good rider and has a lot of experience in gravel races b) he’s from Lincoln which means he rides these roads a lot changes of getting lost were minimum

The race started off and sure enough hammer fest ensued upfront, the lead group pulled a lot of riders for good 10-15 minutes. I decided to hang back along with almost all  the single speed people. At some point our little group had 6-8 people almost all of them singles speed, nice!!!. My plan of staying with Jeff worked pretty good  we even built a little gap on everyone before we had to stop at RR crossing and wait for the train. Eventually we went through and about 10 miles from first checkppoint started to pick off geared people, branched oak road was taking it’s toll on the average pace.  I eventually ran into JP who was with the front group for about first 20 miles. We pulled into Valparaiso first checkpoint. I kind of wanted to wait for JP and ride to Malcolm with him so we did that, sneaky Jeff was already gone.    JP and I rode out to Malcolm, and we were doing pretty good at that point at some point JP started to get cramps I just rode kept on going.  This is when I was joined by Warren Wiebe and rest of Laurence crew. Those guys are really fun to ride with and keep good pace we rolled in to Malcolm a minute after Jeff and Chris Hensen.  This break was a bit longer  but we did take our time and ate some food. JP eventually pulled in and told me about his cramps there is only two things I could told him that might help a) ride your own pace b) try standing up hills this will work different muscle groups and might help with cramps.  The Laurence crew and I took off to denton which was only 15 miles away.

The next stretch was really really fast and uneventful, we made it to Denton in no time, we ran into some other people at the station there, Scott Bigelow and Steve Fuller. Unfortunately  Warren lost some spokes and had to fix his front tire.  Unfortunately for me I ate breakfast sausage, egg and cheese sandwich, it seemed like great idea at the time. I left the Laurence crew behind and latched on to wheels of two Lincoln guys Kevin and James and stayed with them for a while. This lasted for some time until my stomach was telling me that pork is not always good choice.  I had to slow down  for bit  and two guys I was with took off I kind of had to let them go.   At some point during the ride to Cortland someone from PCL was giving out bananas I ate one and that made my stomach feel better.  I eventually rolled into Cortland to see Kevin and James.  They were ready to head out and I was faced with a decision.  Either hurry up and go with those guys and most likely get dropped, go alone or wait for some other riders.

Strong north wind which would be pretty much in my face for last thirty something miles made the decision easy I waited until someone else would come and I could work with them against the wind. Sure enough Scott Bigelow and Steve Fuller were not that far behind.  We all agreed to go together.  The last leg was windy Scott and Steve  did great job pulling upfront  we were making good progress.  Steve eventually slowed down a bit and Scott and I rolled in easy pace on  the Mopac toward the finish line. Final time 10:44.

My computer said I was moving for 9 hours and 20 minutes.  Rest of the time I was busy stuffing my face with various corn syrup derivatives and talking to some people.   I would think that I was riding pretty close to Jeff’s pace and the difference was the amount of time we spend at each stop by really it doesn’t matter.   One lesson I learned from this is that my body works a lot better if I have some caffeine at  each stop and no more sausage biscuits I’ll keep those for later

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