I’m sorry. I know what I just did to every one. They did that to me Saturday night. And about 300 other people. And now you know what inspired me to join Team Fatty. We had 80 members, probably 30-40 ish rode. It was an amazing experience. Because we won the team fundraising challenge, we led the pack. Carly Fiorina was back this morning, sans the wig.
It was a really brave thing to do. This time I recognized her, we were also much closer to the stage since we were first out. She blew the air horn and off we went. And we rode like Lance. We had police escorts and empty streets. It was freaking awesome! I rode it like I stole it for the first mile and that’s all I had in me. The cops were driving at 20 mph. As the day progressed I ended up riding in a very loose pack of about 10 people who kept passing each other back and forth depending on which discipline was highlighted in that portion of the ride. Trust me, the Clydesdale took out everyone on the downhills. My climbing/descending clinic also helped. Age, treachery and a little skill goes a long way, further on a downhill.
I wasn’t five miles into the ride and I felt that familiar feeling. I looked down just as a guy pulled up next to me and said “Do you have a pump?” I ride with a pump shoved in my jersey pocket so I had one. I pumped it up and rode another two miles and had to stop again. This time a SAG wagon was right there so I had him pump it up. I lost about 20 minutes at the first Power Stop having a bicycle mechanic change my tire. Hyland Family Bicycles provided the mechanics AND the tube. He found the offending shard of metal, removed it, changed the tube, mounted everything up and off I went. So a big thumbs up to the handsome young guy from Hyland who made it all better. I had to pit at the second Power Stop because the bathroom lines were off the hook at the first one. That was about 10 more miles down the road. I skipped the next two. I knew we were coming up on Metcalfe Road so I took a pit where I thought we were at the bottom. We kind of were.
You know the rules, click the elevation button while I draw your attention to miles 32-35. That is a thinly sliced piece of Hell. Over half of the riders had to walk up most of it. I kept trying to get back on but it was just too much. I had heard that Lance himself complained about part of the route. This was the part. It was soul crushing. But it was only about 3 miles total. Once we got up that hill and right before the downhill there was Satan by the side of the road. No shit. A guy dressed in a devil suit. I recognized him. His name is Alex Arato. He raised over $33k. He’s a New Yorker still living there who came out for this. His father passed away from pancreatic cancer at 43. Alex is 46 now. When I recognized him he thanked me for riding. I congratulated him on doing such an amazing job raising funds. And because he was Satan, he offered all of the riders ice water. I love that guy.
I’m in much better shape than I thought I was going to be after the ride. Thank you all for all your support! There’s only one thing left to say.