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Ever Encountered a Pro While on a Ride?

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Ever Encountered a Pro While on a Ride?

Old 01-15-24, 10:52 AM
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Ever Encountered a Pro While on a Ride?

Yesterday I was out on The Loop here in Tucson, and I got passed by a rider in a lot of yellow on a really cool bike. Second glance reveals a Jumbo Visma rider in full kit on what I assume is his new trainer for 2024. He'd already gained a few seconds on me when I decided a chance like this doesn't come around often, so I got up out of the saddle and hustled up there to grab his wheel. Back of the jersey said Simmons, and a little research turns up a young guy from Durango CO who trains down here, first name Colby. Anyway, I hung around back there for three minutes, maybe four, just sort of digging the vibe, then fell back and let him do his thing. But it was a pretty cool highlight to the day's ride.
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Old 01-15-24, 11:56 AM
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I would think that's pretty common in Tucson in the winter, especially on Mt. Lemmon.
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Old 01-15-24, 12:18 PM
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Cool. He's the younger brother of Quinn Simmons.
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Old 01-15-24, 12:20 PM
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Originally Posted by tomato coupe
I would think that's pretty common in Tucson in the winter, especially on Mt. Lemmon.
If I hated climbing a little less I might be able to test that. hahahaha
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Old 01-15-24, 12:20 PM
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I've encountered real pros riding in Spain. Girona and Mallorca.

When I arrived to ride in Mallorca some years ago (early 2020), a friend told me "normally, when you see somebody in full team kit, they're a wannabe. Here, it means their on the team."
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Old 01-15-24, 12:33 PM
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Yes. '95 Giro. Riding to a stage finish at the Bianchi factory. Pantani came spinning the other way in fully kit. He was sitting out the race after an accident earlier in the year.

Lance and the rest of Motorola sped by me while I was attending to a mechanical along a bike path on Conshohocken, PA.

New Year's Day, either '00 or '01. I was riding home from a friend's house who lived near Valley Forge after spending the night thee. Stopped at a picnic table to strip off a layer when Bobby Julich same spinning buy in full kit riding a SS. He was living with a girlfriend not that far away.

The day before the 1987 U.S Pro Championship I rode for a while behind 7-11, which, at the time included Hampsten, Heiden, Kiefel, Grewal and even Roll. Quite a scene. A long line of rag tag locals (I didn't even own a jersey back then.) working at the edges of their abilities trying to keep up at near 24 mph while those guys were chatting away up front. I rode for a while with Coors Lite later that morning.

Mid-2000s I saw LeMond at the T-Town velodrome swap meet. He was about to go for a ride with two friends. Nice guy. Stopped to talk to the crowd for a while. And yes, he was riding a LeMond.

In '00 I toured Andalucia for 7 weeks. While climbing El Puerto del Viento heading to Ronda, I got caught and eventually dropped by some team out training. Really can't remember the name, but I politely asked one member if he would help me with my "equipaje" (luggage). He smiled, politely declined and rode off.

Niboli in "rosa" and the start of the final stage of the 2013 Giro. They rolled out of a pasta factory and up to the starting line.

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Old 01-15-24, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan
I've encountered real pros riding in Spain. Girona and Mallorca.

When I arrived to ride in Mallorca some years ago (early 2020), a friend told me "normally, when you see somebody in full team kit, they're a wannabe. Here, it means their on the team."
Yeah. I have heard that teams often train in Mallorca in the winter.
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Old 01-15-24, 12:37 PM
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I got smoked by George Hincapie in a Zwift ride. Does that count?

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Old 01-15-24, 12:39 PM
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Photo below was taken while Ashton was in the middle of the 1048 mile Flint Hills Ultra, which he won handily:


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Old 01-15-24, 01:29 PM
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I rode up Old La Honda one day with a Webcor pro, chatting away.

When we got to the top, he said, "Nice riding with you, but I need to get in some some tempo today." And he rode off.

I had been doing tempo.
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Old 01-15-24, 01:34 PM
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We used to have a Tue/Th afternoons group ride that left from a local HS, crossed the river and meandered around the rural fields across the river before returning. I'd very occasionally join and try to hang with the pack, which usually included Cat 2 and 1 riders and the occasional pro, wintering here. At some point every ride, the pros would simply drop the pack and motor on, never to be seen again.

Part of my education that we are indeed built differently from those folks. Okay, me at least.

When Amgen came through town I occasionally saw a team out and about on training rides, but it's not as though I ever had a "Hey, that was Cavendish!" moment. Miss that race.
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Old 01-15-24, 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Bald Paul
I got smoked by George Hincapie in a Zwift ride. Does that count?
Lots of imposters on Zwift. Any reason to be sure it was him.
Also, uh, he's at 1.7 W/kg?
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Old 01-15-24, 01:57 PM
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I'm a 'pro' contractor (licensed electrician). Does that count?
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Old 01-15-24, 02:02 PM
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if i ever did i wouldn't know it. i don't follow those guys, just the empty road ahead of me.
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Old 01-15-24, 02:32 PM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse
I rode up Old La Honda one day with a Webcor pro, chatting away.

When we got to the top, he said, "Nice riding with you, but I need to get in some some tempo today." And he rode off.

I had been doing tempo.
I rode across the valley about 10 miles with a local pro. He stood on the pedals the whole way, chatting about a mutual friend, checking traffic, etc. I was pushing a bit, trying not to embarrass myself.

I was climbing Hwy 39 solo when Rahsaan Bahati came by with a small group. I said something about not being worthy and he told me I was doing fine. He made a couple jokes as they rode off. I felt better.

In the mountains on my way down and Ivan Dominguez was in the area. He stopped to help a stranger fix a flat near the bottom.

I did an Adobo Velo century and some people from Road Bike Action were invited. Neil Shirley and some other continental pros showed up. I was on a twisty, shallow climb when they went by. About 12 of them, moving along like a well oiled machine. I went as hard as I could for a minute just to watch them. It's different than watching them ride by. Amazing how smooth they are.
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Old 01-15-24, 02:32 PM
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Fast Freddie Markham used to ride with SCCCC (Santa Cruz County Cycling Club). (I did a few rides with them, not with the top group.) He was into the Human Powered Vehicle testing and training, at the time. Training himself, testing lightweight recumbent designs/refinements in a carbon fiber frame, Calfee Stiletto.
Here is a youtube I found of him riding (descending) Bear Creek Road, which was close to my home and a regular ride.
He also trained on the mountain roads on recumbents with a full length body sock, man he could fly!

for reference Bear Creek descends from just under 1800' to about 500' on crappy earthquake cracked pavement over about 7 miles (I think). From near Hwy 17 near the summit to Boulder Creek, CA.

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Old 01-15-24, 02:35 PM
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Originally Posted by big john
it's different than watching them ride by. Amazing how smooth they are.
^^ This.
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Old 01-15-24, 04:23 PM
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Big old race club called the German Cycling Club, here in Long Island had a Thursday 6PM ride with 30 or so participants typically. George Hincappie would show up on occasion if he was visiting his folks who lived in Farmingdale, NY, a near by village. You would know George was present as the friggin speed was 25 out of the lot and everbody got dropped on the hills. I never saw him, he was in the front and I was never in the front, LOL.
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Old 01-15-24, 04:41 PM
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About 10 years ago I was at Lowes motor speedway for time trials as a guest rider. I smoked the 65+ 10 mile trial. George Hincapie came to me and talked about the bike I was riding . It was my 1987 team 7/11 bike. I have visited his camp several times as my daughter lives near it.
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Old 01-15-24, 06:56 PM
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The triathlon circus comes here and also the Canadian national cycling championships was here last Sept.
The course goes right by my doorstep so I can't not see them. They also have an amateur fondo, but that got rained on. LOL.
So they had junior and senior races for both genders. I "raced" all 4 in 2 spots on the course. A medium hill just a block west of me and a 1.5 mile flat part. Both have a close path I can try pace them, on the hill I'm right beside them. I was on my fastest bike, with SA XL-RD5w. LOL. I did both 3 times with all 4 classes.
The 3 slower classes I could keep up for 100 yards or 2, with favorable tail wind, 23.5 to 24.5 mph. Yah I know they would be at 50% effort, but I don't have a peloton either.

So on the downhill with the men, I tried to time my start when they were 100 feet away. The 2nd pass I went too soon an spoiled it.
The last time I got it perfect and got going 33.5 mph. They were taking it easy at 37 or so. So they went by about 8 feet per second. One rider finally gave me a thumbs up. LOL. That pass I actually felt some slipstream and the hum of the CF wheels, only about 6 feet from them. Starting in 2020 the city poled off that traffic lane for the summer.

The race was a brutal course of 20 laps, 120 miles I think. Flat with corners for a mile then this hill by me, then another twisty mile up and back down. Then a flat 1.5 miles to a steep hill with medium steep another 1/4 mile to the finish line. Over 100 of the 180 riders bonked out. It was a pretty hot day as well. I talked to one of them while awaiting the finish.
The next day they had a criterium on a 2x2 block square course. Races were up to 45 min. plus 3 laps. I went to watch and looking for a spot I said to people on a curve that it's dangerous there. Sure enough, right there, half way in the men's race one guy got off tracked and braked but still rammed a lady. She went down like a tree and her head smacked the sidewalk. She didn't pass out somehow.
The park that's part of the tri course is being refurbed the next 3 years, so no race. Gets fewer spectators every year anyway.
I actually had more difficulty pacing those girls, but their race is barely 90 minutes. LOL.

>> And back in 2014/15 the Tour d' Alberta attracted about 20 of the best guys, including young Peter Sagan who won I think. There was a city course, time trial and 4 days on the highways, I saw some of both. One of those days I rode my new Rohloff tour bike farther than they did, 108 miles. LOL.

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Old 01-15-24, 08:52 PM
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Every time I ride by Hunts Point...
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Old 01-15-24, 11:51 PM
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Do moto rides count? I was on my Ducati in Avila Beach. Stopped at the base of the commercial pier. A bicycle guy came rolling thru. Wanted to talk Ducs. It was Lance Armstrong. USPS team was training here, using it to get ready for the TDF. Funny, Ned Overend was a Duc guy, also.......

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Old 01-16-24, 12:05 AM
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I rode and chatted with Justin Williams this past Saturday on the big group ride in my area. We talked about his new bike (Factor), and I reminded him that I beat him in a crit for a State Championship title. It was 20 years ago, and he was 15. For some reason he didn’t remember it as vividly as I do.

Early 2000s, “Fast Freddy” Rodriguez showed up to that same group ride a couple of times.

A group of 8 of us did a ride from Pasadena to Santa Barbara (about 100 miles). It was a steady tempo pace all day. North of Ventura, we came across a guy wearing a pro kit. One of our group recognized him as a Canadian rider on a Continental team. He jumped on the back of our train. A couple of miles later he said, “Thanks, guys, but I don’t want to ride that hard today”, and dropped off.
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Old 01-16-24, 12:07 AM
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Originally Posted by gorillimo
Do moto rides count? I was on my Ducati in Avila Beach. Stopped at the base of the commercial pier. A bicycle guy came rolling thru. Wanted to talk Ducs. It was Lance Armstrong. USPS team was training here, using it to get ready for the TDF. Funny, Ned Overend was a Duc guy, also.......

The USPS team used the SLO area for early season training for a few years.
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Old 01-16-24, 05:17 AM
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Yes.
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