Friday, June 8, 2007

A Brief History of Ride

Ok. We’re in real time, people. I catch the Van Galder bus to Janesville, WI, in 15 minutes. Metra’s Bluesfest Blackout, mind you. From there it’s a 21 mile ride.

In preparation for tomorrows event, a brief history of my long distance bicycling.

1996—I can remember my first long ride. From my apartment at Broadway-Clark-Diversey all the way up to Lawrence Av. and back. When I tell people at work they cannot believe the distance —15miles.

1997—Long forays into the suburbs hugging the curbs of major highways in insane Saturday afternoon traffic. I stop into work and loudly announce I have been to Wisconsin and back—ON MY BIKE!! I complete my first century—the Harmon 100—on a mountain bike with knobbies.

1999-2001—I ditch the Rockhopper for a marginally better machine—a Bianchi Pista (an off the shelf track bike.) The night rides begin. Somewhere the 120 mile threshold is crossed.

2002—Ridding buddy Craig Ludington accompanies me on a 170 mile/17 hour Peoria to Chicago ride. Weary and confused, we eat MacDonald’s in Joilet, only to find 3 dozen taquerias immediately around the corner. In September, Greenfield and I ride 420 miles from the Rosemont Blue line to St. Paul, MN. 143-156-91-30 are our insanely long 3.5 days over Wisconsin. Here I perfect my patented sitting on the crosstube at 33mph maneuver, as the fixed gear has the cranks spinning faster than I can keep up with bombing the hills of Baraboo. We arrive to Pro Bike/Pro Walk as gods.

2003—An attempt to ride non-stop from St. Louis with Adrian Redd and Grant Davis is thwarted by my most spectacular motor-vehicle collision ever, over the hood, off the windshield and onto my head. The next month, I do the trip solo to ‘celebrate’ my 30th birthday. Late November and my water bottles freeze solid—I thaw them in my pants. I push through incredible knee pain for the last 50 miles, track bike as torture rack. A 14 mile mistake puts me at 334 miles in just under 36 hours.

2004 to present—nothin’ much.

This weekend is the longest ride I have ever attempted.

I am anxious and afraid.

May God have mercy upon my soul.



Tom said...

Terrific blog, TC. See you at the 600k start.
"We who are about to ride, salute you!"


Anonymous said...

so... how'd it go? we're all rooting for you, TC!

Lisa said...

welll, WTF? how did you do?? waiting w/baited breath over here...

Josh said...

is this like one of those season ending cliffhangers?