Okay, no more talk about the mid-life crisis, the votes are in. I'm not going to tour with Duran Duran, I do not want anything to do with Walt Disney's frozen head, I would very much like to drink tequila on a beach, but instead I'm going to do something ridonkulously hard. I, along with some friends from the Death Ride team, are going to France. Well the France part isn't that hard. I mean as long as you don't tell them you're an ugly American it's not. Not that they won't be able to spot me right off. Anyway, here's the deal. We will be riding 8 days in the Pyrenees from the Mediterranean to the Atlantic. The Pyrenees are the mountains on the border between Spain and France. In the Tour de France the Pyrenees are known as the difficult mountains. They're steeper, higher and the weather tends to be hotter. Here's a quote from a professional cyclist Jonathan Vaughters:
"The Tourmalet and Hautacam are some of the toughest mountains ever paved. Conquered in a car, they are majestic and beautiful (as long as the engine doesn’t overheat), ridden on a bicycle, they are hell. Now maybe Rob will tell us he’s doing this precisely because those mountains are hell. You know, the ‘just to see if I can….’ idea. Well, sure, I can try to shave a fully clawed, feral cat, just to see if I can , but the question here is WHY?!"
The Tourmalet and Hautacam are two mountains we climb on day 7. Check out the link to the ride description. So we won't actually be riding in the Tour de France but we will be riding the same routes. It's going to be like fantasy baseball camp for cyclists. Except instead of playing in pretend games that are akin to a beer league softball game, we'll ride the actual routes the pros ride. I realize that it looks like there are better ways to spend your vacation, but hey, when these opportunities come along you just have to step up and take advantage. Life's short, I don't want a eulogy about how I didn't grab opportunities and do something extraordinary. So this will be different. If anyone wants to go on this ride, there are still spots open. I'll work on the other items on my list and I am open to a few more suggestions.
After this year's Death Ride we'll take a couple weeks rest and then pack up the bikes and head to the real mountains. So we will be there July 27th through August 6th. If anybody who reads this blog happens to be somewhere in the Pyrenees, I will be happy to buy the wine at dinner.
Tales from the RoadWe've been riding our butts off this training season. I haven't written enough about our riding exploits. To catch you up - I have shaved my legs yet again. It's an annual ritual, kind of like the molting of a chicken. Except most chickens don't live that long to have too many moltings. Anyway I've got that clean shaved professional wrestler look to my legs. (I did not shave any thing else) One of my team mates, a guy, shaved his beard, head, and legs. Of course it was a guy, we don't have many women that have beards. Strike that, none of the women on the team have beards. In fact, the biggest treat about riding on the Death Ride team is you get to ride with some fantastically fit women. And they're nice people too.
Alright, back to the guy who shaved his head...that's a little too extreme and frankly a tad bit unnecessary. I have enough trouble keeping my hair in my head that I'm not about to shave it off. I have one of those stretchy bandanas that I wear under my helmet. It effectively give me the appearance of being completely bald, that is not a look I want to aspire to. In fact when I take my helmet off I look like a 6 foot 2 inch Q-tip. Just when I thought the ultra-revealing bike pants were enough indignity, they create these goofy skull caps. Sure I get the form over function bit, but couldn't they have at least put a design on there like some type of animal. At least then when I take my helmet off it would look like I had an animal on my head. Now that would be cool. Can you imagine the look of surprise if I took my helmet off and it looked like I had a raccoon or snake on my head?
BTW if you happen to be in the vicinity of Markleeville CA on July 12th, you can see some fit women and some bald men, a couple hairy dudes, and maybe a guy with a raccoon on his head. That's the date of the Death Ride, only a month away - yikes!More Raffle Tickets
I'm still selling raffle tickets. Anyone interested in tickets, drop me an email. I can get them to you. If you haven't received yours yet, they're on their way. The raffle is on June 25th. If you're in the vicinity of the Sports Basement in Walnut Creek we will be hosting our raffle. Food and drinks will be provided. Also if you've purchased a raffle ticket you're entitled to 20% off any merchandise in the store. That's a huge bargain.