Compared to some, I am a hubbard (as in Old Mother Hubbard). Even so, I still manage to over take about 10 times more often than I am overtaken. Not bad for an old fart.
I left town bang on 5pm the other night. So did about 30 other cyclists, which meant I rode home in the biggest pack yet. The 1750 might have the pace, but we had the numbers. Due to traffic light changes etc, the pack split and the front third got away whilst the rear two thirds (including me) was left behind.
I caught the front group on Lilyfield Rd at the lights. It was a really good old fashioned traffic jam, with bikes mixed in with cars turning left. When the lights went green, mayhem ensued. Of course the sluggish ones were all at the front, with the speedy ones chafing at the bit at the rear.
The bike lane is only one bike wide, so overtaking is out of the question if there are cars coming up behind you. You just have to sit on the tail of the hubbards and wait for the traffic to clear. It seemed like an eternity waiting for the cars to get out the way - I was constantly looking over my shoulder to see if the next car was going to be the last car, when thankfully the bloke behind me called that it was, and off I went. And from that point, it was on for young and old.
I divide cyclists into three groups - those that accelerate on hills, those that hold a constant speed, and those that change down and grind away in the granny gears. Even though my legs had been hurting all day, it was amazing how the pain vanished as soon as they were presented with a challenge. The challenge was simple - take out the hubbards - and that's what they did. With gusto. And I didn't even have to get out of the saddle to do it - notice that the camera doesn't wobble violently from side to side, which is what happens when you stand up and go for it.
I was rather cooked when I got home. I was thinking of collapsing on the couch and going to sleep when I opened the fridge door and found the sweet nectar of the Gods - a bottle of Coke. Aaaaaah.