Wednesday, June 23, 2010

A TOUR SAVED, BEGINNER GROUP RIDES IN THE OFFING

 

Tours/Races I am following:

 

BIG NEWS FOR JIM ARTIS AND FARGO!

Fargo Logo

Jim Artis of Cycling Experiences got a major shot in the arm saving, in all likelihood, the remainder of his tour yesterday when Ashley Guy of Utah Trikes in Payson, UT contacted him via email and let him know that he would sponsor Jim and Fargo for the rest of their tour to Fayetteville if Jim so desired. Of course, JIM SO DESIRED! You can get Jim’s take on this at his blog post of yesterday.

I spoke with Jim last night and this morning and he is in great spirits and body. Jim is a veteran of many century rides and there was never a question that his spirit or body would call a halt to the morphed Tour with Fargo. Finances, however, can bring a man to ground and Ashley’s great offer came just before Jim was going to have to make some tough decisions. So, thanks to Ashley and to Jim’s indomitable spirit and belief in Fargo, we get to keep virtually riding along. I also know that Jim is forever grateful to the great support he has received from his readership/friends in the blogs and on BROL. So, thanks to everyone who helped keep this tour going!

Today, Jim has put in over 11 hours on the road as he approaches his next city, Worcester, MA. According to my calculations using Google Earth, he has travelled 37.8 miles thus far today. For those keeping track of such trivia, he is now further south than his initial riding partner Raphael Giraldo, as Raphael has headed into Boston for TOD: Ride for the Republic commitments.

The Tour Divide

Mountain Turtle Logo The “Mountain Turtle”, Kent Peterson, keeps “hastening slowly” as he rides the Tour Divide. Kent is passing/has passed through the Grand Tetons and is headed for the Great Basin. In contrast to the weather that Jim Artis and Raphael Giraldo experience on the east coast, Kent is daily in and out of snow and mud. He reports that he had a great sleep last night on Cat Creek near the Ashton Flag Ranch Road. Today’s post at KentsBikeBlog gives more overall race details (now 3 basic groups of riders with 60% of the race starters having abandoned) and the sad news that a racer from the front group was involved in a head-on collision resulting in serious injury. The rider, Dave Blumenthal,  has been taken to a hospital in Denver. Kent, being the cagey, veteran rider that he is, rides in the back of the 3rd group biding his time, hastening slowly always.

…and now for some LOCAL NEWS!

BicycleHaywoodNC, which is our local advisory council formed in 2009, will be sponsoring the first of 6 Thursday evening group rides for less experienced riders. This effort is part of the Council’s attempt to increase the number of cyclists in our area, help develop good riding behavior, and increase the presence of cyclists on our local roads in the hopes that other vehicle operators will learn increased awareness of us. We will be rolling out from the LBS in the neighborhood of 6:00 p.m. Prior to leaving the shop, each bike will be reviewed by the shop staff for notable safety issues and a short safety “chat” will be held with the group. In addition,  local Chief of Police Bill Hollingsed, has committed to providing a Bicycle mounted officer to accompany us unless emergent matters dictate their need elsewhere. At a minimum, the patrol units will be aware of our presence in advance and keep an eye out for us. We will also be accompanied by members of BicycleHaywoodNC and a wrench from the LBS.

As the ride leader tomorrow evening, I intend to keep the group within the town limits and hopefully demonstrate that cycling through our town can be done safely without making major climbs. (Note: Waynesville is the eastern gateway to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park so we have significant mountainous terrain.) I’m hoping that a seed will be planted about riding that last mile to the store and leaving the car at home!

Obviously, we’re hoping for a significant turnout. An article appeared in the local papers this week advertising the ride. Time will tell how successful we are. I’m pleased that we have commitments for a minimum of 6 weeks from our Council membership to lead the rides.

Until later,

- Zeke

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