Monday, June 06, 2005

Sierra Century 2005 - Done!

Chris & I had an excellent day on Saturday at the 2005 Sierra Century. We left our houses at 5:30AM, arrived in Plymouth, CA around 6:30AM. Registered, changed, stretched, loaded up with energy gels, aired up tires, and hit the road at 7:30AM. We did the Metric Century (65 miles, 4700' of ascent) this year, with hopes of the full 100 miles next year! This was the 30th year they've run this event, and they sure did a great job. Everything was well organized, the course was marked well, and the rest stops were phenomenal. All the fresh fruit you could eat, along with sandwiches, potatoes, nuts, trail mix, chips, V8, Gatorade, cold water, soda, pretty much anything you needed. We blew right past the first rest stop at 20 miles without even realizing it, and the next one wasn't until mile 43. We ran out of fluids on the climb a couple of miles before rest stop #2 in the tiny little town of Volcano, CA. The route has a great warm up with rolling terrain and no steep climbs until after mile 20. Chris had a broken spoke early on in the ride but he was able to continue with nothing more than an annoying clickety-clack noise all day. I knew right where he was at all times ;-) My bottom bracket started creaking on the last steep climb of the day, hopefully it's ok and just needs an adjustment. After the rest stop was the steepest climbing of the day up Rams Horn Grade with an elevation top out of about 3200'. There was one small water stop, then a ripping 10 mile descent down into Fiddletown, CA for rest stop #3 - which was again stocked with fruit and everything else you could want. They also had bike mechanics at each stop to help out with any problems you might be having. Also roaming SAG vehicles with mechanics to help you out on the road or pick your tired ass up if you couldn't go any further. At this point we only had about 5 miles to go back to the finish line. We felt pretty good and probably could have rode a bit further, but decided to stick to the original plan and complete our Metric Century. We rolled back into Plymouth at 1:30PM. Changed, pounded recovery drinks, then headed in for a pasta dinner. We were pretty worked by now and it was actually hard to eat. I pretty much forced myself to eat some more fruit, salad & pasta. Other items of interest were the people riding mountain bikes, the tandems, the triple (yes 3 people on 1 bike) and our Google jerseys. Chris & I both wore Google jerseys (no planning, just by coincidence) and all day long people were asking us about them. "Do you work for Google?" "Hey where did you get those jerseys?" "Hold on a minute Tom, I need to stop and make a Google search." "Go team Google!" We lost count of how many people commented on them. All in all it was a great event and I'm already looking forward to it again next year. Chris has some pictures he'll post up to soon.
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