Mad Dog Seriesby Eddie Duerr
“God gives us strength for a little while so that we can help each other.” — King Arthur
Thirteen years ago, I could barely ride my bicycle 12 miles. Today, I am helping a group of riders ride “Centuries” or 100-mile bicycle rides almost every weekend. My point is, wherever you are in your fitness spectrum, I have been there. Many people along the way have helped me. You, too, can ride a “Century” and the “Mad Dogs” invite you to join us sometime this summer.
The beginnings of this adventure began this winter when I was talking with Bill Pustow, an LBC “Yellow Jersey” winner, and he mentioned his quest to be in the Top 5, nationally, with the Ultra Marathon Cycling Association. To accomplish this, Bill has to ride “official” centuries. I offered to help him with his quest.
Bill knew that I have a deep love affair with the state of Iowa and told me about a bicycle club in Iowa called the Big Dogs. The Big Dogs ride at least one century per month for the entire year. I joined them and in the process, a few others joined us. My comment was “if people can ride centuries in Iowa in January, then we can too.” On January 13, Bill, Anong, Mike, Tim and I headed for Boston, Ky., to ride a century. It started out at 21 degrees and about 6 miles into the ride I looked at Bill and he had icicles in his beard. I knew then it was cold!
If you have ever been to Abraham Lincoln’s Boyhood Home just south of New Haven, Ky., perhaps you know there is this giant hill about two miles farther to the south of the Lincoln shrine. As we climbed this hill, we saw huge ice formations coming out of the hillside where the road had been cut through. When we got to the top, we were in a gray, wet, misty cloud. In addition to that, everything was frozen, the grass, the trees, the ponds and even some of the streams. Not only was the 20-degree temperatures rough, the visuals made it seem colder. However, we had good company and we were dressed properly, so we made it to Munfordville and back. We used every bit of daylight, from sunrise to sunset. It truly was a magical day.
As “Mad” as it seems, Tim did his very first century that day. In February, we picked up a couple of other “Mad Dogs,” Jim and Jay. Jay did his first century ever in February.
I was a protester to the name “Mad Dogs.” I wanted a kinder, gentler name like “Sugar Bears.” Luckily, I was outvoted. Now, after six centuries through March, I really have come to appreciate the name “Mad Dogs.” We still haven’t had a warm century but the weather hasn’t stopped us from doing them. We are creating a sort of following from around the region who are looking forward to hearing about the exploits of the LBC “Mad Dogs.” Bill even heard questions about us in Texas when he went there to ride six centuries in eight days. (That is “Mad,” but Bill is tough!)
There are some ancient desert Benedictine Monks who believe this: “it is not taught but caught; it was a whole way of life....”
Mike Pitt, Ride Captain extraordinairius, and I invite you to join us on a “Mad Dog” Century. We have a special love for first time century riders. Mike and I will help you make it through your first century. We can’t guarantee that you will have fun the whole 100 miles but sometimes happiness is victory! When you have finished, we will celebrate with you and you can be a member of the “Mad Dogs.”
The highlight our year will be when we host the “Mad Dog 200” on August 25. This ride is part of the “Midwest Triple Crown,” a series of 200-mile rides. Riders who want to part of the “Triple Crown” need to ride three 200-mile rides. Our version will be the OKHT Century with Sunday’s return route, then the riders will return to Sawyer Park, put on their lights and ride another 40 miles. Doesn’t that sound “Mad”?
Ride safe and be happy.
Copyright ©2001 Louisville Wheelmen. All rights reserved.
Web posted: 24 April 2001
last updated: 30 April 2001
by Duc M. Do