Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Hell of a ride

The instructions from our bible (Cycling Tips) were simple, meet at 6:30pm sharp with a “slow and social” outward journey before cranking up the pace on the return leg with attack after attack. It sounded far too enticing to not be a part of and our very own Serge opted to be the LAID Cycling guinea pig for the Tuesday night romp through the streets.

Waiting a little down the road and looking like a Meerkat; keeping a watchful eye for predators Serge checked out every group that past him. None looked likely candidates for the “bunch”, but then the unmistakable noise of a peloton [insert noise here] coming over the hill got his attention with around forty riders motoring along.

The Russian national under seven vodka shot champion got on his bike and pedalled like his life depended on it to catch the wagging tail of the bunch. Fortunately he did and he sat on the back to catch his breath whilst the slow and social part unfolded.

Someone didn’t read the memo with speeds of the peloton reaching 40-45km/h as they hit Brighton and the group reach sixty in total. Every set of lights presented a challenge as the bunch weaved through peak hour traffic in order to catch the green lights and not miss the runaway train. Our boy was managing to stay on, just, whilst wondering what the return leg would bring once the “speed” was turned on. Fortunately the current speed meant little oxygen was spared for the brain to think.

Rolling through the motions the group, and Serge managed to average around 40km/h for the remainder of the outward journey. Mordialloc came a lot quicker than anticipated and there was no respite as the group built the speed back up on the homeward journey. Slightly uphill out of Mordi, cranks spinning and speeds were hovering around 39km/h.

2.79km from the halfway mark on the section between Parkdale and Mentone Serge lost contact with the rampaging masses. He was left alone and now exposed to the elements without the supporting blanket of the peloton. The average speed dropped by around 10km/h as did his head. The Tuesday night Lantern Rouge was now left to find his way home in the darkness thinking about the next time where he’ll surely hang on for 5km after the turn.

A mind blowing (and lung blowing) experience that still has the adrenaline coursing through the body.

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