Sunday, October 24, 2010

LiveStrong Challenge 2010 - Day 3 (the 24th), the Ride

Up front I'd like to say THANK YOU to all my friends who donated to the cause this year. You are making a difference to someone, a person who needs that help. I made a little video, the sound is quite bad though given I was close to a loudspeaker. You can understand most of it though, I think, well, I can, sorta.

One minor disappointment I had is I thought my camera had used all its battery partway through the ride, thus I missed taking more pictures. However, once I got home, it was functional again. I'm wondering if some moisture caused the misbehavior as I was carrying the camera in my back jersey pocket. I think I need to go with a handlebar or helmet mount for a more reliable setup.

Here's the GPS trace for the ride (

As usual, there was a sea of spandex in every direction. Other than grouping the riders by distance (90 up front), there's no special ordering at the start line except for the top fundraisers who are placed at the front. Just before the ride, Patrick Dempsey and Lance talked a bit to the crowd.

One of the other Team Fatty started out next to me. I don't recall seeing him subsequently on the ride.

I did ride with another Fatty for a pretty good distance in the middle of the ride, he was faster than me on downhills and flats, but I could outclimb him, thus we stayed together for the most part. I believe I eventually pulled away on the later part of the course where it just seems hillier to me.

I was wearing the same dark Fatty jersey as the fellow to the left (with the exception of the pink sticker), instead of the LS jersey I received at checkin. I debated which one to wear but it seemed more proper to wear the team colors so to speak to help encourage the other Fatty riders out there.

About an hour in, Elden caught up and passed me, he was doing the 65 mile loop to get back earlier to meet other Team Fatty members as they finished.

Note the curve to the left, just after it are two cattle guards. I was unable to get the camera securely back into my pocket and hit the first one with just one hand on the bars, the result was a slide off the road to the right and eventually me sliding on my left side to halt just before the second cattle guard (and a fence).  The result? Nothing, nadda, not even dirt on my clothes. Even more reason to alter how I'll be taking pictures in the future.

A few more highlights, Rest stop 4 where the 90 mile route separates had a live band playing, not your typical rest stop entertainment.

The Rest stop just after Blanco was supported by the Texas4000 crew, a group of riders who ride from Texas to Alaska each year to raise money for cancer research. They were very energetic and greeted riders with whoops and hollers, they were definitely having a good time.

After Blanco, the sun started to break through for the long ride back, and it's about the time my camera began acting up, so I only have a couple pictures from this point on.

Once I finished, Fatty found me, we talked for a bit about the ride.  I put my bike in the 'corral' and headed over to the beer tent and then subsequently the food tent. While eating, Janeen showed up, we got to talk some more about her cross country ride.  This was the first time she rode since she had finished that. She's concluded she's built for endurance and not speed.  I'd most definitely agree.

After resting a bit more, I packed on up, headed back to the car for the drive home, another excellent LiveStrong weekend passed.  Here'a a writeup from the local paper.

I look forward to next year and hope I can count on my friend's support once again!

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