Today will begin my series of reports to be found here on Trans Iowa V6. Today is the staging day. I will be loading up the "Truck Without A Name" and then driving to meet d.p. in Grinnell for some last minute prep before the big shindig at The Grinnell Steakhouse where we will be reuniting with many old friends and meeting a few others for the first time.
This is always the funnest part of the event, in many ways. We all look forward to this "excuse" to get together, hang out briefly, and pedal some bicycles for a really long time the next day or two. The pre-race is really too short, in many ways, but it is what it is. You can always sense the cameraderie, the nervousness, and the excitement in the air at these gatherings. It's just the tip of the iceberg though.
For those who wonder, I usually get up and say a few words, then we "call up" each racer individually, hand them their race packet, and then most will rush out of the room to peel out the first cues and look at their maps to see where we are headed. Then they look at the weather for the umpteenth millionth time, futz with their equipment, and second guess their set ups until it is time for lights out.
The alarm always comes too early to signal that your fitful nights "sleep", (if it can be called that), is over and it is time to suit up and toe the line. Then you see them coming. A few at first, then by bunches. Blinking lights, red and white. Twinkling off in the distance as they stream towards the start line. Some will be dropped off by car, no doubt, especially this year if it is raining. Then I will call for them to line up behind the truck. I'll give them some last minute "blessings", toot my horn at 4am sharp, and d.p. and I will lead out the throng of riders to the first gravel road sector.
That's a spectacle that few ever get to see, but is well worth it. One of my favorite parts of Trans Iowa.
That's it in a nutshell. Everything that leads up to the start of Trans Iowa V6. For updates on what I see out there, you might check into Twitter @ guitated1961, or search for Tweets with the #tiv6 tag. There probably won't be any audio-blogging since all the free sites are defunct. So if you were looking for me to do that, I won't be. Sorry! If you are racing in Trans Iowa, we encourage you to Tweet up your experiences and to hash tag the messages you Tweet with #tiv6 . It'll be fun, and a great way for folks to follow along from several vantage points.
Otherwise ya'all will have to wait patiently until Sunday night for a very brief report, or be lucky enough to be hanging out at The Barn where occaisional feeds will be phoned in to the folks there.
See ya on the other side!