[BVC-CHAT] [Riders] tnp
cmenzel at tamu.edu
Thu Jun 11 17:20:41 CDT 2009
On Jun 11, 2009, at 9:52 AM, Dan McAdams wrote:
> 1) It is the Tuesday Night Group Ride. To riders across the nation,
> this means, prepare to suffer, get dropped, wish you were in better
> shape, wish you were younger, wonder how those strong guys got so
> strong, think about doping, and experience a range of other
> adrenaline/lactic acid/fatigue induced irrational emotions that for
> some reason on Thursday morning you start recalling fondly.
> 2) It is called the Take No Prisoners ride right?
I realize that your entire message is light-hearted, Dan, but your
unanswered question here suggests there are two significantly
contrasting views in the debate about the controlled first lap.
However, again, since the first lap is followed by two laps of
unregulated, balls to the walls, no-prisoners-taken suffermania, it
seems to fit your two criteria perfectly. So the only substantive
objection in the neighborhood seems to be that two laps of attacking,
race-pace riding is not enough -- to which I think the "no
lollygagging on Grassbur" compromise (which allows those who want to
ride hard immediately to start hammering -- steadily -- at the front)
seems adequate. (In fact, this isn't really a compromise but a return
to what was standard TNP practice up until only a couple of years ago;
until then, the hammer was expected to drop immediately after the turn
and, just as a matter of fact, if not by overt agreement, the pace
often stayed steady for the first lap.)
However, I have sensed another objection (though not from you, let me
emphasize) that I don't think has any merit at all: a controlled first
lap somehow sullies the "ideological purity" of the ride. The ride is
only for "true TNPers" who have the strength and mettle to survive —
never mind the effects on any of those newbies who come out thinking
they can hang with the big boys. It is true that we occasionally say
things like that in jest (well, half in jest :-), but the fact is
that, overall, the BVC roadies have always been an inclusive lot that
welcomes new faces and tries to be encouraging as well as
challenging. I myself don't want that to change, and I think the
controlled first lap is a particularly good way of exhibiting both of
those qualities. The controlled lap gives folks the chance to see how
well they can hang on in a fast group; and beginning on the second lap
they quickly get a taste of all out, pack-shattering road racing.
Newer and weaker riders will typically get dropped quickly but, having
had a chance to experience a good portion of the ride, as well as the
chance to get to know some of the regulars, they will be much more
inclined to keep coming out to learn and get stronger.
> But, since ride protocol seems up for discussion, if I do make it
> out next Tuesday. I think the group should ride "briskly" with
> consistent tempo for all three laps while protecting me from the
> wind. When I do get dropped, the group should slow and send back
> strong riders to get me. Then, extra care should be made to keep me
> in the group. As we approach the finish, all riders should appear to
> go hard, but in fact start soft pedaling with 100 meters to go and
> allow me to finish first. Then, the group should pepper me with
> questions like "how did you get so strong?" "what kind of training
> have you been doing?" "Have you lost weight?" A few statements like
> "man, that was a hard ride tonight" and "your looking fit" would
> also be appreciated.
I'll try to remember. :-)
> On Jun 10, 2009, at 6:51 PM, Christopher Menzel wrote:
>> Eloquently put.
>> On Jun 10, 2009, at 5:44 PM, Kevin Baker wrote:
>>> maddogwillie2002 at yahoo.com wrote:
>>> >Hence, i have swiftonian modest proposal - at the grassbar
>>> intersection true tnp'ers turn left and ride their hearts and
>>> lungs out and their legs off while the lollygaggers continue
>>> straight on Elmo Weedon and ride the Weedon loop at whatever pace
>>> they chose.
>>> if we had a larger group with many more riders with moderate
>>> speed, I might agree with you. As it is, it's a struggle to keep
>>> the tnp from rapidly evolving into a boring team time trial. If we
>>> started attacking right after the Grassbur turn the group would
>>> likely be in bits before we got to Riley.
>>> How many new riders are going to keep coming out if they get
>>> popped in the first two miles? In my opinion, the only reason this
>>> ride is still viable is that we've made it at least somewhat
>>> accessible to different levels (and allowed some talented riders a
>>> chance to develop and catch the bug). Turn too many people off and
>>> you'll be reduced to four guys doing intervals together east of
>>> Given the likely outcome of what you're advocating, I'm not sure
>>> what it is that you want to get from this ride. If it's just
>>> fitness, there are plenty of ways to get a better workout without
>>> putting undue pressure on newer/weaker riders, e.g. start late and
>>> TT back to the group on Elmo, take a hard pull on a downhill or
>>> into a headwind, do a few off-the-back intervals. Otherwise, I
>>> think the current guidelines are a reasonable compromise between
>>> hard and inclusive/fun.
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