And so Venge Day part Deux came to pass… erm… No, that’s not a good way to put it, because it was freaking awesome. Sure, the temp was barely out of the 30’s and I still needed “layers”, but the full foot covers stayed home, as did the earmuffs and the heavy gloves. The sun was out, the breeze was strong, and it was a full-on, legit Tuesday Night Club Ride.
All of the expensive carbon was out Tuesday night, too.
We rolled out at 6:00 on the nose, with barely a couple of miles for a warm-up (too much commute to make the 5:10 warm-up lap). Again I chuckled at how simple the whole Garmin start is. Push a button and go. The first mile was mercifully easy into a tough breeze. I chose the pothole side of the road for the first couple of miles, but that was the protected side when we turned north with a nasty cross tailwind. Another stint into the cross headwind and we turned southwest and it got gnarly in a hurry. We went from guys on the hoods to the drops with the turn – but the speed stayed pretty steady. The only spikes were when Todd and Justin got up front. Justin is a “400 watts for two minutes” guy and Todd is a “you’ll pay for the awesome draft I create” kind of guy – he’s big and it’s like drafting a battleship, but he’s fast. You pay for that draft when you’re second behind him.
I managed to stay with the group for something like fifteen or sixteen miles but one of the guys caused a gap going up a hill and I didn’t have enough want to in reserve to chase the group. A tandem and another buddy of mine got caught too, so we formed a nice little four-bike train and took a slick shortcut.
Into the tailwind section of the ride, our pace picked up a tick and we rolled for the home stretch. We picked up another but lost the tandem as they ran out of gas – easy for a tandem couple to do early in the season, I know from experience. The final stretch was mid-season form. We worked well together, as if we barely missed a beat from last season. There was even a 31+ mph sprint finish.
A fantastic evening it was, and a perfect Venge Day… part Two. I’ve got some work to do on saddle position as the new saddle wasn’t quite as comfy as it was on the Trek – something is slightly off, but I’ve got time to tinker (incidentally, I rode the Venge on the trainer last night and couldn’t figure anything out – the saddle felt like butter on the trainer).
I slept like a baby Tuesday night. Funny how that works. A little intense workout (26-ish miles in 1:14:26 for a 21.3-mph average) and I can feel my body change from winter hibernation mode to “it’s on, baby” just like that. Gotta love it.
My body just works and feels better, and I love it.