A few minutes before 6 pm. Great weather for a Tuesday night ride. Low 70s with a bit of chill in the air. Just add armwarmers and I’m good to go. Start w/ eight in the group. The usual fast rollout down the craters of the moon road.
Along the way, a few guys in club jerseys hop on.
By the time we hit around mile five, about two dozen riders sporting various local team kits jump in with us. I can sense the faster guys in our group are salivating, but not me. Unfamiliar riders on narrow somewhat busy rush hour streets make me skittish.
I end up somewhere in the middle of the pack at a major road crossing without any familiar faces.
I see our guys are off the front after the crossing, so I give chase. As they are way off in the distance, all I end up doing is dragging a bunch of faster riders with me, all of whom gradually pick me off and spit me out the back. Riders are over the center line cresting hills, rounding corners, jockeying for position, and I get a strange feeling this is not where I want to be.
I drop back, let the groups go, and then start to chase. The rest of the ride is just digging deep and working hard. By the second pass of the rollers and what passes for a big climb on the ride, my legs finally respond and I feel good riding with the remainder of our group who waited at the top of the climb.
All in all, a pretty fast ride, but another reminder that close quarters racing is not in my blood.
Can’t wait to do it again next Tuesday.