I’m cruising down the road with the club, four bikes back and we’re topping 24 mph, heading to 25. I’m down in the drops, slipping under the draft created by my friends ahead of me. We are just a few seconds from the sprint point. This is the lead-out.
The guy at the front is toast and won’t have anything for the sprint, he’s been up there for almost a mile now. The rest of us have just enough dry powder though… I upshift one gear… Three pedal strokes and I can see the finish line around the corner – a green Lennon City Limits sign. I count down… Three… Two… One!
Still in the drops, I’m out of the saddle and I’ve got my head down. I’m putting every watt of power I’ve got in my legs into the next twenty seconds. My Venge responds the way Venge’s do when you stomp on the pedals. I launch forward instantly and I’m over 30 mph in three pedal strokes. I’m passed the lead out man on the second pedal stroke and I’ve got one behind me nipping on my heels and one in front that I’m reeling in with every pedal stroke. I know I’ve got him. I pass 33 mph as I pull even with him… I punish the pedals with everything I’ve got. 34 mph… 35… I cross the line a half a bike ahead though there’s no arms above the head celebration because that’s just rude in a club ride. Still…
My wife nudges me and sits us up on the recliner so we can put the footrest down. “Wake up”, she says. “You’re racing again. Let’s go to bed.”
I glance at the clock. 12:34 am, I still have four more hours. Sweet. Just enough time to dream about climbing a mountain and see just how fast that Venge can go on the way down.
*This is an adaptation from a discussion my wife and I had last night on the way home from bowling, during which we both had a chuckle about how she can always tell when I’m cycling in my dreams because she always lays her head on my chest and I wrap my right arm around her… and I shift when I dream.