Ray was looking for company this past Saturday, to attack the Dayton Flyer 103k yet again. The times I have ridden it, finishing in time was always an issue. Not much fun, stressing practically the entire route! But, glutton for punishment, and always needing to build more character, there I was.
I had hoped to start on time, for once. No, not this time either. The weather was cold and foggy. Sometimes not a whole lot of visibility foggy. We are in an air stagnation phase here in the valley, and for us, that means really dense fog. So we were all reflective geared and lit up. Mostly.
A few miles out, I came up with a flat. First flat ever on these tires (Some Xpress). Checking the records, that is 3775 miles without a flat. Not one. Nice. Of course, the tires not being removed in all that time made for a bit of work getting it off, but the reverse operation when quickly, and without tire levers. The cause of the flat was a shard of glass.
Pause at the first control to get our not lit rider illuminated. New batteries for the rear blinkie, and connecting the generator light helped a lot. :-) I inhaled a PayDay bar.
Off to Dayton. Stag Hollow Rd was dry (yay! no mud!) I ate part of my sandwich along here. Then through Lafayette and back roads to Dayton. We were ahead of time, but not by a whole bunch. 20 minutes?
Discussion along the way as to what our control strategy would be. Ray wanted something hot to drink. I noted that the Center Market (other end of town) had hot things. Didn't want to enter into the timesucking vortex of the Block House Cafe, and I wanted some Red Bull and food. Ken peeled off right in town; I think he went to the ATM. Ray, Kevin L, and I headed to the Center Market. They had bananas! Got a banana, the Red Bull, and a really big cup of coffee, which I poured into my thermal bottle. I was headed back before the control closed.
Ray and Kevin caught me on the other side of Lafayette. We didn't find Ken until Yamhill Rd - the other gravel stretch, with the added bonus of (occasionally steep) climbing.
The sun came out! I did have to stop and put on the sunglasses. Yay sun!
Over the rollers on Spring Hill, then into the Lake Store; last on-course control. Fortunately, not like the other times; we had enough time that I sat down on the store bench and drank a bottle of grapefruit juice. Kevin had left, and then Ken. Finished the juice and headed out. I knew Ray would catch up.
Saw Ken up ahead. I do not remember if I passed him or not. I must be getting old. In any case, Ray did catch up, and we talked about how done we felt. Miles back!
As it was just over 7 miles to the end, we soon found ourselves in Forest Grove, headed for the coffee shop next to the Safeway. Kevin was already there. Ordered coffee and a cookie; and we all finished up our cards. I should mention that no receipts collected that day bore any resemblance to the time they were issued.
Finished at 6:34 elapsed time, with 14 minutes to spare.
Bike computer says: 65.3 miles (extra distance to the Center Market and back) and
3300 vertical feet.