|Ready to start - in the back!|
As everyone who follows cycling knows the Chequamegon Fat Tire Festival was held this past Saturday. An amazing event which brings riders from all over the country and runs like a well oiled machine. Due to the large number of riders people are allowed to place their bike or "ghost bike" at the starting line ahead of time in order to secure their place. This would require some logistical maneuvering on my part as we were staying in Cable, WI, some half hour away. My plan was simple, I'd just squeeze in somewhere among the masses and no one would really notice. Most good intentioned plans don't work out the way they are supposed to, this would be no different. As I attempted my "squeeze in" a 16 year old militant female volunteer promptly stopped me demanding to know if I had a "ghost bike" positioned in there somewhere, caught off guard I responded sheepishly, "no". She quickly directed me to the back of the line. I finally was able to find my place and it was approximately 1 block from the starting line. I was definitely closer to the back than the front. I tried to think this through as I scanned my fellow competitors, a somewhat large house wife in her 50's was to my front right, a man in his 70's was a couple over to my left. I was pleased to see these people at the race, but I was not lined up where I needed to be. I figured I'd do my best to fight my way through the masses until I found a group riding at a speed similar to my own. Little did I know that I'd be shuffling through the crowd for close to 10 miles.
It was about 14 miles into the race when I felt like things were underway and running smoothly. Still in large crowds or groups of riders I found it hard to draft as there was little organization within. I was forced to constantly leap frog up to another group. It wouldn't be until late in the race that I was able to fit in nicely with a fast moving group of about 8 riders.
|Still competitive, even if it's for 206th|