|7:00 am - +4C, 7km/h winds from the west, sunny.
14 riders registered.
Slow start as usual - I'm coming to grips with the fact that I'm not a morning cyclist! 7 cyclists disappeared in the distance, and I didn't have the energy to reel them in. Dean, a recumbent rider, rode behind me, a couple of cyclists came along behind him, and 3 (a father with two sons) were riding together but one flatted and we never saw them again. Part way along, the wind swung around to the north and increased in speed - there were some nasty crosswind gusts. At about 35 kms, we turned south and flew for the next 10 kms to the first control - I hit 42 km/h (fast for me!). That was the last of the good tailwinds.
On to the second control. There were more trees which blocked the wind, and my energy level started to improve. It also got warm enough so that I could ride in my cycling gloves ... with my fingers exposed! Caught up to Gwen and Neil who had slowed a bit, and shortly after that we arrived at the Elma control, where we caught up to jacal1. I had a large, delicious slice of pecan pie that was probably a good 500+ calories! Mmmmmm!!
The next 25 or so kms were into the wind, and so 4 of us rode a paceline, and Dean rode along on his recumbent behind. I'm not fond of pacelines, but they do help make the miles go by faster and they can help make fighting the wind a little bit easier. We took a break in a campground to eat and stretch, and then set off again. While there, I removed my winter jacket and donned a vest! Warmth!!
I think I've discovered the source of my difficulties with racing. I didn't warm up enough for the races!! Apparently I need to warm up for 125 kms before I have the energy to ride fast!
After that break jacal1, Dean, and I took off and flew down the road!! We were into the Beausejour control, 29 kms down the road, in about an hour! A quick break there, and we were off again to Lockport, where we stopped briefly, and then we roared down the last 20 kms at about 30 km/h! That felt GREAT!
We were done in 9:56 ... an hour less than last week for me.
I feel much more positive about this ride than I did about the one last week. What a difference a week can make!