From the Presidentby Earl Jones
Itís the start of a new season and anything is possible ... again.
After the hard winter that just passed, Iím really looking forward to more time on the bike. Only the heartiest riders regularly took advantage of the LBC schedule, which, as usual, was pretty full.
The Mad Dogs, of course, are among the heartiest. They didnít take any time off. Their January 26 New Haven century will probably be remembered along with the one that Joe Ward found recounted in an 1880 edition of the Southern Cyclery. According to the story the December 19, 1880, Louisville-Frankfort-Louisville ride was the first bicycle century in the US.
Iím sure that the Mad Dogs (Tim Chilton, Jim Moore, Larry Preble, Steve Rice and Joe Nalley) noted some similarities in their adventure and the 1880 one. Both groups encountered snow and had a few crashes. Both groups obviously enjoyed living on the edge: riding the first century and continuing on the century route after encountering snow at the 30-mile mark! But there were important differences. The 1880 group rode on high-wheelers and took 18 hours. The Mad Dogs made their trip in less than 10. I imagine that in another 100 years people will be talking about both groups.
The less mad among us passed the time with less risky pleasures. The twice-weekly trainer tours had record attendance. AB Sandefur has done a great job the last three years putting on these tours. Thanks, AB, and thanks to the Broadway Baptist Church for their hospitality.
Some of us read about cycling, from local touring routes and lore from Joe Wardís Wheeling Around Louisville to Lance Armstrongís Itís Not About the Bike, his story about recovering from cancer and winning his first Tour de France.
If you didnít use your downtime to get your bike ready for the season, thereís still time. Aside from a thorough cleaning, donít forget to check the chain and cables for wear. Add some spiffy new handlebar tape and maybe a new saddle and youíre ready. Or maybe itís time to get that new bike youíve been thinking about. You work hard. You deserve it. If you like the bike youíll ride more. And youíll be healthier. In fact, your life may depend on getting that new bike! (Iím seriously thinking about getting a triple. Last yearís Bike Virginia in the mountains of western Virginia convinced me.)
Itís also a good time to plan a cycling vacation. Whether youíre thinking about one of the nearby tours or thinking about Canada or France for the centennial of the Tour de France, don't forget to wear your LBC colors.
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web posted: 4 March 2003
last updated: 4 March 2003