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Tour de Phoenix 65 Miles (Arizona)

- draft
2003/04/12
-  +
.First Posted: April 12, 2003.

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Tour de Phoenix 2003 track Strange how circumstances repeat. When i was at my last Tour de Phoenix in 2000, i didn't think that being late would come in handy in the future. Now, I was able to find and park at the same spot as last time -- a little side road in residential area. From there i saw the first few waves of riders pass as i was preparing. At 7:15 i was ready to join the gang -- a gang at least 700 strong.

We left city of Mesa behind and entered Phoenix and Scottsdale. The blue uniforms of Mesa cops were replaced by gray outfits of the frequent motorcycle cops. As we rode on the normally busy McClintock Rd during the morning hours, we had the traffic blocked for us at every single intersection. We never stopped. The coolest thing was police car parked diagonally right in front of the traffic from the right -- now that's a real roadblock. Further on in Scottsdale, one cop had his hand inside the traffic-lights control box -- different.

Tour de Phoenix 2003 - my number Up until the 10mile mark, we rode fast and 20mph was constantly showing on my speedometer. M average speed was 20.9mph - wow. At SLEDGE, we passed next to a lady cop, and someone must have asked her how she's doing, because i heard her say "Alright" in a tough-cop way. We had already 20miles behind us, and i was starting to have trouble keeping up with the crowd. I glanced at my GPS -- we're going uphill slightly. So it's not just me. I slowed down to more my pace because i was getting worn out. Then i slowed down more and more as the hill kept on rising. I sank as low as riding at 5.3mph. Ouch!

I saw a dude ahead with a hand-cycle -- he did all the work with his arms. "Good job" i told him as i passed. It's one thing on the flats, but uphill must be hard for him. Little did i know that 5minutes later he'd be passing me and i'd never see him again. Finally, at TOP OF HILL 1 there was an end to the uphill battle. For at least 2 minutes i didn't paddle at all as i enjoyed the downhill stride reaching 35mph for max. As the downhill flattened out more and i was pedalling at 20mph at MAN DOWN, i heard a noise behind me while someone else passed me from the right. As i glanced back, I saw a guy sliding with his bike on asphalt -- ouch. At the least he must have bent his front wheel. At most he had one bad road-rash, something broken and broken bike frame. Since the dude that passed turned around, maybe he had something to do with the fall. He might have been zig-zagging and cut-off the faller.

Within 1 mile of MAN DOWN we turned left onto highway 87. We were out of civilization and heading for the scenic Bush Highway -- Saguaro Lake area. At STRUGGLE i couldn't wait to reach the half way point. My body was stressed and i wasn't catching my breath properly. I was anxiously awaiting a break on downhill -- any downhill at all. And where is that turn towards Bush Highway? Finally 35 MILE MARK and finally the turn. And then my desired downhill. Then real downhill -- WOOO-HOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. I just sat up, and let the gravity do its thing. I have no idea what was interesting about points 032 033 034 -- it would be nice to have a voice recorder with me. We passed by Saguaro Lake, then we approached huge cliffs on the left and right -- the mornings have definately better light.

Tour de Phoenix 2003 At CIVILIZATION we passed the scenery behind and i started looking for the finish point on my GPS. The road was now flat, and at 22.5 MPH and 25 MPH i was impressing myself. I was alone for a long time, not enough energy to catch anyone and whoever passed me -- well not enough energy to follow them either. I just held on til the finish. Shortly before FANS, i heard a motorcycle cop on a built-in loudspeaker -- he was talking to me, telling me to go to left lane and turn at the signal. He blocked the lane behind me as i rode in the fast lane for several hundred yards. At TURN RIGHT i was just heading straight when another cop in the middle of the intersection started screaming "TURN RIGHT. TURN RIGHT." Okkkkkkkk, you could have signalled buddy. I made a quick right without braking much. And then there was FINISH. But they didn't have sliced whole oranges this time -- bad guys, i was dreaming of them for the last half hour.


The day's statistics were:
Distance: 64.2 miles Time: 3h 56min Average: 16.2mph Max: 34.9 mph Total Odometer: 2269.0mi
#Pursue Passion#
.First Posted: April 12, 2003.

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Notes:
• I wasn't as wasted at the end as i like to be. For some reason my heart wasn't in it today. Maybe 5hours of sleep had impact on it.
• Link to PBAA bike events: www.pbaa.com
El Tour 2003 Top finishers : nuts! top finishers had average 27.3mph in 2h 34min!!! last person in 7h 7min; 690 finishers, my position: 524 in 4h 9min
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