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LSR Willow Park Brevet (400k) - CycleOther


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Willow Park, Texas
United States
Lone Star Randonneurs
85F / 29C
Overcast
Total Time = 17h 00m
Overall Rank = 1/16
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

Ugh, I don’t wanna write this, but at the same time I want to remember this ride. Perhaps I can try to keep it simple (there’s a first time for everything).

I left Longview around 5:45 pm on Friday and drove to Weatherford. Checked into the hotel…which doesn’t believe in elevators and my room is on the second floor and I have to carry my bike and all my gear upstairs because I’m not leaving it in my car. Get everything unloaded, changed clothes and went for a run. The hotel was right next to a truck stop and there were 18-wheelers everywhere. There were no roads around that place so mainly had to do a couple laps of the I-20 access road until it dead ended. It was already dark at that point, but the traffic on the interstate provided just enough light for me to make out the road. I must have looked like the biggest dork out there. Finished up and took a shower, watched some TV and tried to go to sleep around 11:30 pm.

Hey, that was nice and short! :)

Oh, and the time is riding time. Total time for the ride is right at 17 hours including the stops.
Event warmup:

I slept horrible that night, just kept waking up. Nothing unusual for me though, I was super nervous about the ride. I had the alarm set for 4 am, but I woke up on my own 10 min. before that. So, got up and started getting ready. I went through my entire bike box and picked the things I thought I would need to take with me. I put my lights on my bike and loaded my saddle bag. Decided I was going to have to have my bento box too. I filled my water bottles and camelback and then began loading my car. Good grief is my bike heavy when I load it down like that. I can’t imagine how the LSR people do this with their huge packs they put on their bikes. I’m so glad I don’t have to carry all this stuff in the race. I stop by the gas station to get some water, oj, pop-tarts, and a granola bar and I was on my way. My hotel was about 12 miles down the interstate from the ride start.

I get to the ride start and get my stuff together. I get nervous watching all the LSR people with all of their ‘luxuries’ they can carry since they have bigger bags and stuff. Me, I picked out things at the hotel, then got to the car and had to dwindle down some more. I barely had the bare essentials. Aired up the tires, put on sunblock, etc. etc. I then checked in and picked up my cue sheet. I then went to the bathroom at the gas station and prayed I had everything I needed. I was seriously concerned that I was biting off way more than I could chew at this point in time. I mean, my longest ride so far this year has only been 110 miles and I had only ridden this distance once in my life and that was almost 2 years ago and that was with lots of breaks. There was a good group there and I was wondering who I could ride with. One of the guys was riding his bike around the parking lot and hit a curb and destroyed his front wheel. Luckily the ride director had a spare wheel at his house and he only lived 5 min. away. So he left to go get it and that meant we would be leaving a few minutes late since this happened 10 til 7 am. At 7 am, the control is technically open and people are free to start if they wanted to. Mark, Clay, Raynelle, and Sharon went ahead and left. I was wondering if I should get going too since I figured I would need all the extra help I could get, but I know how I would feel if I was in the position of the guy who’s wheel was messed up. Plus, this meant I would get to ride with the group. Dan said that he wished I had gone with Mark and Clay…umm, ride with Mark the RAAM man?? Ha ha, that’s funny. Mark did 4-man team RAAM this year. He attempted solo RAAM in ’05, and was within just a couple hundred miles of the finish when he had to quit due to failure to meet a time cutoff (I think), then he was going to try it again last year, but 2 weeks before the race on a training ride, a dog took him down and he had several severe fractures. He was still on crutches when I saw him late last October. Anyway, did I mention that I was probably going to DIE on this ride?? I don’t think Mark is the guy I need to be riding with! Anyway, Gary returns with a wheel for Val, and we wait while Val switches out tubes on it. As we are waiting I have to go to the bathroom. I sit there thinking, ‘Go, you’ve got time. No you don’t. Yes, you do, if you hurry and go now you can make it before they leave. No you don’t. You just went 15 min. ago. You’ll be fine. No I won’t, I really gotta go!’ Anyway, Val gets the wheel on and we roll out around 7:15 am. I did NOT go to the bathroom. Perhaps the feeling will just go away. It’s just 48 miles to the next control.

Bike
  • 15h 12m 30s
  • 247.25 miles
  • 16.26 mile/hr
Comments:

Control #1 to Control #2 (Willow Park to Glen Rose)
As we get going, I quickly realize that I had looked at the cue sheet wrong and it is actually around 100k to the first control. Son of a biscuit! I don’t need to pee, I don’t need to pee, I don’t need to pee (yes I do!). As we take off a group of about 4 triathletes come by us and asked if we are doing the Peach Pedal. Umm, nope, gonna go a little further than that today. We saw lots of cyclists out and about for the Peach Pedal. We tried to convince them to join us, but they were only doing 40 miles. Ahh, come on 40 miles, 400k, what’s the difference? Lol. The first couple of roads (SR 5 and Airport Rd.) would be the same roads we would come back on so I tried to pay attention to things I would want to look out for on the way back in the dark. Things are going fine and I’m just chit-chatting with the group. I got to talk to Brenda about RAAM (she was on the 4-person team with Mark and did team RAAM last year as well). We turned on to FM 51 and it was a smooth road, wide shoulder, with the wind, and quite a bit of downhill, yeehaw! It was so much fun and we were cruising along nicely (good, the faster I can get to the bathroom!). I couldn’t hardly get in my aerobars much on this section because it just put more pressure on my bladder. I’m not kidding you, that is the worst I have ever had to go to the bathroom in my life, it was ridiculous. I tried to focus on the gorgeous scenery, etc., but the pain was too great. I nearly had tears in my eyes. Anyway, as we headed south, the clouds were getting darker and I feared rain, but it never did rain on us. It was so nice and cool as we started out that morning. We made it to Granbury and there we meet up with Mark and Clay. They had stopped at the gas station there. I was hoping that maybe the group would want to take a pit stop, but these are Randonneurs, ain’t no stoppin’ for them. Everyone had enough water and we weren’t stopping until the control. I can make it, I can make it. I forced myself to drink on this section, but it’s so hard when you have to go so bad. We turned out of Granbury on our way to Glen Rose. As per my usual of getting too excited on the bike I kept finding myself in front of the group. Mark, Pat and I started riding up ahead. I was worried about riding fast, but at this point, riding faster meant getting to that bathroom sooner. Pretty soon, we see Sharon and Raynelle and pass by them. The group was right behind us, so I thought. We start to pick up the pace and I hear what I think is Brenda and Rani talking behind me. However, I soon discover that it’s Dan and Clay with us and I don’t see the group. Ugh, I think I’m getting into dangerous territory. The last 10 miles or so into Glen Rose are quite hilly and we had to climb dinosaur hill. Mark had taken off and Dan had fallen back so Pat, Clay, and I finished up into Glen Rose. GET OUT OF MY WAY!! I’ve never bolted off my bike so fast in my life! I didn’t take anything off. I ran for the bathroom and finally RELIEF! I’m ready to ride now! I apologize for talking so much about needing to go to the bathroom, but it was never not on my mind that first 100k. I bought some water, trail mix, pb crackers, and some fig newtons and had my card signed. Filled everything back up, ate some and was good to go. The group rolled in just a couple minutes after us. Pat decided to go ahead and head out and I wanted to also. I liked the idea of having the group behind me because if I ran into trouble then they would be behind to sweep me up. Plus, we were just going to ride slow until the group caught back up. Mark went with us and we were headed to control #3.

Control #2 to Control #3 (Glen Rose to Clifton)
This section was about 46 miles long. The road from Glen Rose to Walnut Springs was horrible chip seal and some pretty big hills. Not too much fun. Mark was climbing those hills like they were nothing while Pat and I cranked them out a ways behind him. We finally got to turn off on to FM 927 which was smoother and almost zero traffic, it was so nice. Plus, a lot of the hills were so that you almost had enough momentum from the downhills to get you to the top of the next hill with virtually no effort. We would kind of alternate who was riding ahead (it was never really a draft situation, we were spaced apart). As we approached the end of this road, Mark was just ahead of me and Pat was right behind me…again, so I thought. I looked back as I made the turn and Pat was no where in site. Crap! Don’t leave me with MARK! So, I pedal up to Mark and we ride side by side and of course I have to pick his brain about RAAM. After awhile, he says to me, “Can I offer you some advice?” Sure. “I think you better back off. The last 100 miles are extremely difficult.” Coming from him, I took his advice and backed off. However, I wasn’t feeling like I was pushing at all. I mean, sometimes I climbed a hill a little harder than what I would have liked, but I was far from pushing beyond my means. Knowing what laid ahead for Mark I think my riding pace was pushing him, therefore, he thought I was pushing myself. The last few miles on Hwy 6 into Clifton were relatively flat and felt nice. We rode the first 100 miles in 5.5 hours (riding time) so a pretty decent pace considering the terrain. We rolled into Clifton and stopped at the control to refill and get our card signed. As we are filling up I walk outside and see the group riding past the gas station. Umm, Mark, the group just went by and they didn’t stop. Turns out, he had stopped us at what used to be the control. The RD had moved it to another gas station. So, that meant after we got our stuff together we had to ride down the road to the correct control to get our card signed. Oh well. Okay, let’s go Mark! I think I was perhaps hurrying him along, but I wanted to keep rolling while the rolling was good. Oh, I also noticed on this section that I had blisters forming on my hands. I hadn’t been able to ride in my aerobars much due to hills and the first 100k bladder issue.

Control #3 to Control #4 (Clifton to Hico)
This was the shortest section at around 42 miles. Clifton was the southern most point on the route which mean it was time to head back north…into the wind. The wind wasn’t bad for the day, but it was still a headwind and when you add that to the hills, made for a workout. The road started out on some un-fun chip seal and Mark said that there was quite a bit of climbing as we headed to Cranfills Gap and then into Fairy. As we started out I rode alongside him and we chatted some more. Mark says to me, “So you were worrying about hanging with the group today?” Umm, yeah, don’t count me golden yet, we’ve only gone a little over 100 miles, still have almost 150 to go. Plenty of room for bonking. As we continued on, I was starting to pull more and more ahead of Mark. I would look back and see him a ways behind me and back off to let him catch up. Hmmm, starting to remind me of the Italy Brevet I did last year. I did have the advantage of my aerobars though. The LSR group is getting ready to ride Paris-Brest-Paris in August and aerobars are not allowed so none of them had theirs on today. Plus, Mark was still recovering from RAAM. The further we road the further behind he was falling. Alright, time to dig out my cue sheet. Up to that point I had been relying completely on everyone else to tell me when to turn. I looked up my next turn and took things pretty easy. Ate some trail mix and kept the fluids going. I was really proud of myself today because I drank lots and ate lots…things that I am usually horrible about doing. The high for the day was only around 88 so not too hot, but with the humidity I was sweating quite a bit. During this section the sun was also coming out more. A lot of times it would be behind a big white fluffy cloud, but when it wasn’t, it’s amazing how much hotter it feels with it beating down on you. At the next turn I stopped and waited for Mark to catch up. We made the turn, but once again, he quickly fell behind. I think I was gaining more ground on the uphills than the downhills, which was really weird. Alright, I’m gonna have to be a big girl and get myself to Hico on my own. I can read a cue sheet. I got to the turn in Fairy and almost got taken out by a huge german shepherd and a pit bull. Not the welcoming crew I was hoping for. Managed to avoid disaster and continued on my way. I felt like I was going so slow on this section and I watched my average speed start to drop. Grrr. Oh well, I was still ahead of everyone else so I can’t be doing all that bad. I felt the blister on my right hand burst on this section too and boy did that sting for awhile. I made it to the control in Hico and went to clip out. As I did I hear the sound of metal clinking on the pavement. I look down at my BROKEN cleat on the ground. Doh! Not good. I’m 100 miles away from home! However, I was surprisingly calm. I took my time going to the bathroom, picking out food, water, and ice and getting things prepared for the next section. Mark and Clay rolled in and then a few minutes later the group rolled in. Mark didn’t look all that great and he was going to eat at the restaurant across the street. The majority of the group was going to take a longer break here as well to eat. I had already been there awhile and really wanted to keep moving. Thankfully, Raynelle and Clay wanted to keep truckin’ too. So, I waited a few more minutes for them to get their supplies ready. Raynelle was finally ready and we decided Clay could just catch up.

Control #4 to Control #5 (Hico to Lipan)
This section was 51 miles long. As we rolled out I pondered how this was going to work on a broken cleat. I guess I could still push down on that side, but wouldn’t be able to pull up. However, somehow it was still clipping in (looking at it the next day...it really was hanging by a thread, I am so lucky it held together). I guess I had just enough for it to grab on to. So, I was thankful for that, but tried to not get too forceful on that side to prevent it breaking all the way. As we head out of Hico we have to go up a hill. Raynelle immediately drops back and I assume she’s getting a drink or messing with something on her bike. I slow up at the top of the hill and as she gets to the top of the hill she tells me that hills are her weakness. Well after the next couple of hills I realize she wasn’t joking! Oh my gosh, it was like she was hitting a brick wall. Nope! I can’t wait on this, I gotta keep moving at my comfortable pace. Going too slow is almost as painful as going too fast. So, time to pull my big girl britches back on and read my cue sheet and get myself to Lipan. We road on some pretty rural FM roads with little traffic and often pretty rough surfaces. I quickly realized what Mark was talking about when he said the last 100 miles are difficult. Holy Cow! Talk about HILLS! I climbed and climbed and climbed…and climbed some more. Yeah, there were downhills too, but man did those uphills wear me out! The scenery was gorgeous though. I would bomb down into a valley, but then look across the way realizing that I had to climb back up out of the valley. Mother Chicken! I’d haul as fast as I could to gain any momentum possible to get me up as far as possible on the hills. A few miles before Bluff Dale there was a series of 4 HUGE hills. They weren’t hills, they were walls. I would approach each one thinking, you have GOT to be kidding me. After each one there would be a little downhill but not as much as what I thought there should be. Finally, after the 4th hill, there was a really big downhill. I let myself get up to 35 mph coming down, but that was it because there were several trucks with trailers passing me and it was a pretty curvy section. At the turn in Bluff Dale I checked behind me and didn’t see Raynelle so kept on going. From here, it was only about 9 miles into Lipan. The miles seemed to crawl by. I would look at my computer thinking I would have ridden about 5 miles since the last time I looked, only to discover that I had only been one. Ugh, are you serious?? I would say these last few miles before Lipan were my low for the day. I wasn’t tired or achy, but my legs were getting fatigued on the hills. I felt so incredibly slow. I told myself that I would eat something bigger in Lipan for ‘dinner’ and have some chocolate so I had that to look forward to. The last 4 miles before Lipan things started to level out more and that made me happy. I rolled into Lipan at 8:15. Awesome, I had made it before dark, which meant only one section in the dark. I walked inside and hem-hawed forever on what I wanted and then got in line to check out and get my card signed. This place was called the Pac ‘n’ Sac so it had more grocery type stuff than your normal convenience store. Well, these two women in front of me had lots of groceries and of course had to buy some scratch-off lotto tickets and scratch them right there at the counter. Perhaps they were trying to find a way to pay for all the groceries?? Who knows, but I wanted them to MOVE! I finally get up there and I ordered a greasy fried convenience store burrito, lol. They had some booths so I sat down and ate my burrito, candy bar, and coke. Awesome dinner, ha. As I was finishing up my dinner Raynelle showed up. I decided that no matter how slow she rode, we needed to stay together on this last section in the dark to make ourselves more visible to traffic and to watch out for each other. Raynelle’s husband surprised her by showing up out there with a sandwich from Subway, fresh new bottles, and a change of clean bike clothes. Dang, where can I find me one of those?? As I’m getting on my night gear, Mark shows up. He had come back to life and was riding much better. I was glad he was feeling good again. Anyway, Raynelle and I take off on the final stretch, woohoo!

Control #5 to Control #6 (Lipan to Willow Park)
This last section was about 48 miles. Raynelle’s furthest ride at this point was 200 miles so every pedal stroke past Lipan was further than she had ever ridden. I was proud of her and she was in good spirits, but dang was she slow on those hills. I tried to stay calm because we were on the home stretch, but I just kept thinking, man, I could be home so much quicker on my own. She was riding good on the dowhills and flat sections so I tried to focus on that. Mark caught up to us after a few miles and I told him that I was going to hang back with Raynelle for safety purposes. He agreed that was a good idea and was going to hang with us as well. I as happy with that because he’s done this route before and knows where all the turns are. FM 4 was pretty tame hill-wise and it gradually turned to darkness on us. You will find that it is the hardest to see at dusk and dawn when there is just a little bit of light left. It’s much easier to see once it gets pitch black. Raynelle turned on her headlight and it was REALLY bright. I asked her what it was and she said that it was a Nightrider HID. I thought, man, that’s what I gotta get. However, she then told me that it runs on its own special battery pack that is huge and only lasts about 3-4 hours. Hmmm, nevermind. I think my new head light will be fine for the race (and BTW, the clamp for this light is so much better than my other one. No more fiddling with it in the race this year, problem solved!). We tried to keep Raynelle up front as much as possible since she had the best light and she was the weakest link, therefore, she needed to set the pace (Mark hung more to the back because he had lots of reflective gear on his bike). However, when it came to the hills I usually had to go in front of her because I seriously thought I was going to fall over. I guess she probably had a triple and could drop down to an easier gear, but I couldn’t get low enough to go that slow. We made it to Tin Top Rd. and made the turn on to it. This was probably the most stressful stretch of road for me. It was dark, there were lots of the big oil and gas rig trucks hauling by, not to mention lots of cars going too fast, it was a two lane road with no shoulder and towards the end, there was no reflective paint so it made it hard to make out the road. Oh yeah, and it was hilly again too. I was so ready to be done and going so slow made me want to just hang myself. The thoughts of just ditching her crossed my mind so many times, but I just couldn’t do that to her. It was almost guaranteed that if I went ahead, Mark would too because he’s extremely competitive and wouldn’t want to have someone getting to the last control before him. Like me, Raynelle had thought before starting this ride that we might be finishing around 1-2 am. So why in the heck did she bring a light that didn’t last longer and with no spare?? Her light would go out 15 miles before the finish and she had to hang close behind Mark and me to make it to the end. Not smart! Anyway, I was beginning to think we were never going to see the end of Tin Top Rd. because it was super hilly and Raynelle was really just losing steam in general. I kept trying to talk as positively as possible counting down the miles and talking about what we were going to eat at the end. Oh, and we also saw a couple of snakes on this road. Not sure if they were dead or not, but they were not flattened. Eeks! We finally made it to the turn off of Tin Top and I could relax a little bit with not having to worry so much about being mowed over by the traffic. This road was much quieter. Again, we creeped and creeped along. As we creeped along, I was sitting more into the saddle and starting to notice my sore bottom more, which just made me want to take off even more. We made the turn back on to hwy 51 which is where we were backtracking the way we started out the day. So, back on to that smooth smooth road. Overall though, it was a gradual climb uphill. It wasn’t bad at all to me, but Raynelle just wasn’t overcoming it with any kind of quickness. Ugh, I just wanted to get behind her and push her! We finally get on to Airport Rd. and we have less than 15 miles to the finish. This road was more flat and some more downhills so that helped Raynelle out. However, this was another small narrow rd. with no paint so hard to make out the road. At least there wasn’t much traffic on this road. Oh, and there was some people shooting off fireworks out there too so that was fun to see. We reached the end of this road quicker than I thought we would actually, I had remembered it being longer. We make the turn on to SR 5 and this road has construction on it so no shoulder and it is lined with cones. Again, there was quite a bit of traffic on this road which was crazy for that time of night, it was already after 11 pm. Raynelle’s light had gone out on Airport rd. and Mark’s lights and my lights were starting to get pretty dim. I had more batteries packed, but we were so close, it just wasn’t worth the effort to stop and change them. We were looking for Bankhead Hwy. but we weren’t seeing it, in fact, I rode right past it and Mark had to call me back to turn around. Oops. This was a short little section back to the I-20 service rd. We were almost there! Back on the service rd. we had some added light from the Interstate so that was nice. The Whataburger sign finally came into view and we were so excited! Crossed under I-20 to the final control and we were done! We finished around 12:15 am.

What would you do differently?:

Go to the bathroom one more time before I left !! Ha ha. Not have things like cleats break on me. Reapply sunblock! Wear better gloves! I think all things considered, I rode pretty well. I cannot believe how great I felt during and after the ride, just amazing! Usually things like my back, neck and shoulders start to get achy and I go through waves of hot spots on my feet, and my knees start to get cranky, but not this time. Such a confidence booster and I really enjoyed the day out there.
Post race
Warm down:

Well, I didn’t plan the last control ending at a Whataburger so don’t blame me for eating the food. Boy did it taste good too! We ordered food and got our cards signed and sat down and ate. We had a nice little chat and I found out from Raynelle that the group was talking about me earlier in the day when she was riding with them. Oh really?! What did they say?! Was it bad?! Apparently Dan and Pat were talking about me (and included girly imitations). She said it went something like this: Yeah, and notice how Gina isn’t here. Miss, I can’t ride with the group, I can’t do this, I’m scared. She shows up at the 24 hr ride with her hair in pigtails looking all innocent crying, “I’m scared. I don’t think I can go that far.” Then she breaks the course record. Then she comes out on these rides riding with the front guys. We ain’t buying her lies anymore. She’s such a liar! Lol, oops! I really am always scared on these things though. I’m not trying to lie, honest! I’m so glad that I have survived everything with them so far. We finished eating and then we had to ride back under I-20 to where our cars were parked. I had taken too long of a break off of the bike because, oh my goodness didn’t sitting on that seat hurt. I literally rode back to the car standing up the entire time, lol. The bottoms of my feet were pretty sore, but instantly felt better as soon as I got my sandals on. We slowly loaded up and turned in our cards. As I was leaving Pat and Clay showed up and when I got on I-20 to head back to the hotel, I saw that the main group had made it to the Whataburger. I made it back to my hotel and left my bike in the car, praying no one stole it…I just didn’t feel like carrying it up there for a few hours just to have to cart it back down. After taking a shower and everything I probably laid down around 2:30 am. The room next to me had loud people, couldn’t tell if they were fighting or what, but took awhile to go to sleep. Then, I was wide awake at 4:30 am. Turned on the TV and watched it until I was able to drift off again. Woke up again at 6:30 am and decided that was it. Loaded up, ate at the Cracker Barrel and was home by 11 am.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Well this ride wasn’t about being fast, just about finishing it. I know I could have finished sooner if I didn’t always wait for people, but that’s okay.

Event comments:

Once again, a fantastic time with great weather for July and beautiful scenery. With all of the rain this summer, Texas looks like an overgrown jungle. I probably shouldn’t have talked to Brenda and Mark so much about RAAM. Just when I talk myself out of it, then I want to do it again. Mark said for me to not let money be a reason to not do it because so many companies look for women to fund since so few do it. I told him I would feel horribly guilty if I took the money and then didn’t finish, but he said that companies know the high risk of failure for that race. Ugh, it’s got me thinking again. Anyway, this ride was such a confidence booster for my race in October. There is hope for me yet!




Last updated: 2007-07-16 12:00 AM
Biking
15:12:30 | 247.25 miles | 16.26 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/16
Performance: Good
Wind: Some
Course: The ride started in Willow Park and we rode south to Glen Rose, then Clifton, then back up to Hico, Lipan, and back to Willow Park. This is a more hilly area of Texas. Great scenery and really green right now with all of the rain. We found all types of roads from extremely smooth asphalt to really rough chipseal.
Road: Rough Dry Cadence:
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Hills:
Race pace: Drinks:
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall:
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Evaluation
Course challenge Just right
Organized?
Events on-time?
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]

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2007-07-16 1:50 PM

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Expert
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Longview, TX
Subject: LSR Willow Park Brevet (400k)


2007-07-16 3:02 PM
in reply to: #887867

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Expert
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Longview, TX
Subject: RE: LSR Willow Park Brevet (400k)

You are such a HOSS Gina!  What you just did is absolutely incredible.  It's hard for me to even imagine that you could've done this faster.

By the way, I think I may ride with Brenda occasionally...well more like 2 or 3 times.  There is a Brenda in a cycling group I joined (Greater Dallas Bicyclists) and she introduced herself to me at one of our local group rides.  She mentioned that she does longer rides, and I believe she did RAAM.

And also, if you don't mind waiting awhile for me to build my base to maybe half of the base you have already built, maybe you can talk me into doing RAAM!  (see long-term goals)  But I think you already knew this. 

2007-07-16 3:16 PM
in reply to: #887867

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Expert
736
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Longview, TX
Subject: RE: LSR Willow Park Brevet (400k)
Ooh, I think that's her!  Her name is Brenda Barnell.  I am not aware of any other Brenda's from Texas that did any part of RAAM.  She lives in Dallas and works for Chase bank.  Wow, lucky you for getting to ride with her.  She's so awesome.  That 300k (350k) brevet that I did last year with them in Mineral Wells, we rode the entire way together and I shared a hotel room with her.  She's so nice and obviously freakin' awesome on the bike.  The Lone Star group is all mainly out of the Dallas-Fort Worth area so chances are you are riding with more than one.  They all amaze me with the amount of miles they can put away in a year.
2007-07-16 4:01 PM
in reply to: #887867

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Expert
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Subject: RE: LSR Willow Park Brevet (400k)
Wow, great job and a very interesting RR! Congratulations!
2007-07-16 4:43 PM
in reply to: #887867

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Extreme Veteran
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Denver, CO
Subject: RE: LSR Willow Park Brevet (400k)

Mmmmmm. Whataburger. That makes the whole 400km worth it Amazing ride, Gina. I'm not surprised everyone talks about you!! You make it look easy!

What, no 10 mile brick to finish it off? Come on, hoss chick, you know you had it in you!!

2007-07-16 4:52 PM
in reply to: #887867

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Elite
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South Florida
Subject: RE: LSR Willow Park Brevet (400k)
You are too cool!!  I love that your 12 mile ride to the start of the race is the longest I've ever riden my bike other than one time at a race.


2007-07-17 12:29 PM
in reply to: #887867

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Master
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Granvile, Ohio
Subject: RE: LSR Willow Park Brevet (400k)
What a fun report.  You have a knack for detailing the fun and interesting stuff.  (like having to pee - I so felt your pain!

Awesome ride!  BTW, it says ALOT about your character that you wanted to surge ahead, but you stayed back to ride with someone because it was safer.  She would have been in a world of hurt without the light.  Gold star for you.
2007-07-18 7:31 AM
in reply to: #887867

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Champion
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MA
Subject: RE: LSR Willow Park Brevet (400k)

Awesome job Gina!

Love your report...so detailed so full of information. It helps me think about doing this stuff in the future...ah but not this far to start. Daylight sounds good....12 hour ride around 32 miles seems more contained.

You are such biker chick...thanks for sharing it with us 

Simple question, why not get off your bike and pee in the woods? I do it all the time...makes me feel much better than riding 100km on a full bladder. 

2007-07-20 12:49 PM
in reply to: #887867

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Dallas, TX
Subject: RE: LSR Willow Park Brevet (400k)
That is some serious distance there. I don't ever see myself doing something like that. I am sure my butt and back would never hold out that long. How you rode through those blisters... amazing. I would have pulled over and gotten band-aids and what not.

You were very nice to stay with that lady... even though you wanted to sprint off. On a ride that long, riding slower than what you know you can do has got to be painful. Really drags out the ride.

Brenda... she's the President of the Greater Dallas Bicyclists... I ride with her on occasion. Very nice lady who loves cycling.

Well, great job making it 250 miles!
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