Saturday, December 7

Ride, Ride, Ride: the Inaugural Kentucky Century Challenge

This past Thursday, December 5th, the inaugural Kentucky Century Challenge coasted to a close.  Those of us that could make it put a foot down at West 6th Brewing in Lexington to reminisce, commiserate, and to make off with our snazzy new jersies.  Some of us misjudged the size we’d need, but only because we couldn’t psychically see all the bacon burgers we’d eat between the time when we selected our sizes and when we picked the jersies up.  Weep.  I love bacon burgers, but I wanna look svelte in my jersey.  What’s a fat boy to do?
I just LOVE watching Netflickers on my iStrava
An-NY-WAY, all blubbering aside, I now have my Kentucky Century Challenge jersey, club cut, size FTA.  And I’m going to wear it.  Maybe under a sweatshirt…
Actually, the jersey fits me quite well.  What I’m saying is…the jersey looks good; I just push it out at funny angles and curves.
Way back when Mandy said: “You should do this” I questioned her motives.  I still haven’t come across a life insurance policy on me.  My initial concern wasn’t “could I ride three centuries on top of the Mohican and Leadville” but “could I commit to three organized century rides and fit them into my busy year.”  
I missed out on the Redbud Ride which I wanted to do.  I rode the Horsey Hundred like it was a race (Jeff) and was glad to have ticked that local ride.  Then I rode the Preservation Pedal with Jeff and Casey.  It was probably my favorite of the three I did, but I’m still excited to see where it will go in 2014.  And it was too cool to get to do the Old Kentucky Home Tour with Mandy, Jeff and Casey and see Mandy get her first century.  That was a great cherry on top of the KCC sundae.
Photo of Jeff's jersey, not sure who he pissed off
All told I rode five centuries in 2013 and attempted a sixth.  Prior to this year I had only ridden two other complete centuries and had attempted a third.  Somewhere along the OKHT I threw out that in 2014 “we” should ride a century a month.   It’s feasible.  In fact, if I can manage to tick a long ride in January and February then the rest of the year should be in the bag.  
Next year the OKHT will not be part of the Century Challenge.  There is a new ride in E-Town that will be included and the Preservation Pedal will move to a new area as well.  SO the second year of the KCC will basically include two new routes.  I’m planning on doing the Redbud, so if I choose to do the Challenge in 2014 I won’t have to retrace a single mile I rode in 2013.  Pretty enticing.
Mandy has expressed an interest in doing it herself.  I know she can.  So perhaps we’ll have matching KCC jersies next year.
It was hectic for me the night of the jersey pickup.  Suffice it to say I was on the fence whether I would even go or not until I got the text from Jeff saying they would not be going.  Someone needed to pick up our jersies.  I decided I’d go.
It was kind of anticlimactic.  For me there was no bike riding involved with the endgame of the KCC.  I had wanted to ride from my office to West 6th, pick up the jersey and ride back to my car, but because of some heavy rains and my time crunch I just couldn’t justify it.  I drove.
I got the jersies, chatted with the two people there that I knew, and then tried to hang out for a bit.  I just couldn’t pull it off.  Looking around the room it just didn’t seem like my crowd.  The rides didn’t seem so much like my kind of activities either.  I did them solely because I wanted the “free” jersey.  I know I would have enjoyed the Redbud.  The Horsey was more enjoyable than I expected, and the route of the Preservation Pedal was the most enjoyable of all three of them for me.  By the time I got to the OKHT I was done with Fred rides…I mean club rides, and I wasn’t as impressed with OKHT as I should have been I guess.
Let’s face it; I’m just not the club rider type.  I’m more of the lone cyclist kind of rider.  I don’t like to be encumbered by the social entanglements that come from being a member of the group.  I want to start riding when I want to start riding and I want to go where I want to go.  I’m okay negotiating these things with another cyclist or a small group, but I just don’t enjoy the mass rides as much as I thought I would.
The Triple Bypass was a great ride, it was my first such ride, but I think I would have enjoyed it ten times as much if I had just ridden my bike from Evergreen to Avon because I wanted to.  Truth is I would have picked a different destination than Avon if I had planned the ride.
The KCC was a great concept.  I got an anti-social, anarchist cyclist like me to do three roadie-os in a single year and its got me thinking about doing three more next year.  Kudos to Pam, Rachel, and all those who worked to make the challenge a reality!
And congratulations to all of those who met the challenge and rode all those miles!  Kentucky is a great place to ride. 


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