EDIT: Thought I better note what this event was. Fatty (aka Elden) at Fatcyclist.com thought up this event after winning a bet last year to ride his rollers for 100 miles. This year he opened it up to everyone to register for with help from Twin Six. Over 400 people rode it, raising over $20,000 for the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Here's my "race" report from the ride. You can find out more info on the ride here http://www.fatcyclist.com/2009/03/30...es-of-nowhere/ . Read other race reports at Fatcyclist. You can donate to my fundraising page for the Philly Livestrong Challenge here.
Well, this was my first century attempt of my life. I've only been riding since November and only consistently since February. My wife and I live in Qatar where we teach elementary school. When I heard of this event, I had no choice but to sign up. My mother-in-law was diagnosed with lung cancer a couple of months ago and it's been tough being half way around the world.
I decided to do my ride outside as I don't have a trainer or rollers here. I picked a stretch of road that we ride often at the Losail International Circuit where they hold Moto GP races. The track has some access roads around it that are well lit and very low traffic so a lot of area cyclists frequent it there and have group rides to do laps after dark. I took one stretch of it and rode it roundabout to roundabout, 50 times.
Satellite image of the route.
Alarm went off at 1:45 AM and I popped up and made some oatmeal. Grabbed the breakfast burrito my wife had whipped up the night before (what a great domestique!), filled the cooler with ice and headed out the door. Got to the course at about 2:45 and wanted to be on the bike by 3:00.
There was the normal jitters before an event. Am I ready for this? Will I embarrass myself? Will I get smoked by a guy on a knobby tired singlespeed? Will someone be wearing the same jersey as me? As luck would have it, I was the fittest, best looking rider with the best bike at the race, but not too nice a bike that I seemed silly to be on it and be so fat. It was all right in the sweetspot.
The view at the starting line.
I put the iPod on, fired up my favorite podcasts and hit the road. First pedal stroke at 2:58 AM, right on schedule. I rode as long as my first bottle held out and stopped at the car to refill. Checked the computer, 42 km (26 miles) in and feeling really good. Light was starting to crack over the horizon and my pace was higher than I expected.
Got back on the bike and rode another 20 km when my wife and a couple of friends on the way to the airport in Doha stopped by to say hi at 5:30. My wife, LIndsay, stayed around for the rest of the ride handling all the domestique duties. She was awesome and I couldn't have done so well without her. Got a few rolling bottle exchanges, cleaning the sunglasses, keeping the food coming.
Rolled on to the 100 km mark and took a break for some food and hydration. The quads were definitely getting a little sluggish at this point. If I stood too long I'd get some cramping. Tried to drink more water and calm them down, but what are you going to do?
The sun was still coming up and making the day quite a bit hotter. It was getting into the 38 C (100 F) area and I was trying to get done as fast as I could. Another cyclist showed up, a triathlete and he got in and rode a few laps after we offered him some water from the cooler and explained what the hell we were doing out there. 135 km down.
25 km to go and I was feeling good that I was going to finish and quicker than I had originally thought. I was counting down the laps and my rear was getting more and more sore (longest time I've been in the saddle and my DZ Nuts didn't get to me obviously before the race). The last few laps I definitely was thinking about the people this event would help, my mother-in-law, my uncle, my grandfather I never met, my wife and her sisters who have a genetic condition predisposing them to colon cancer, Susan. The thought of everyone else riding this ridiculous and pointless event for such purpose pushed me on and I raised my fist as my odometer rolled over 100 miles. I limped in to where my wife and two friends were waiting, cheering me in.
We headed home as the mercury climbed to 42 C (108 F) and fired up the grill for some celebratory burgers and dogs.
Finishing time: 9:30 AM
Final Distance: 161.97 km (100.64 miles)
Saddle time: 5:39:51
Average Speed: 28.5 kmh (17.7 mph)
Max Speed: 41.7 kmh (25.9 mph)