Friday, June 29, 2007

Bedtime Stories

With the passing of the Big Wheeled Ballyhoo and my post event, behind the scenes work. I haven't had much time lately to get around to doing much more than work at the shop and get the important tasks of the week taken care of. That hasn't stopped me from doing one nightly activity though.

That activity would be my catching up on the Great Divide Race. This is really epic stuff. The event, which has been going on for two weeks now, is a backroads race down from the Canadian border to the Mexican border along the Great Divide route as set up by Adventure Cycling. The rules are pretty simple. Time trial the route as a self sufficient cyclist. (Well, there is a little more to it, but that's pretty close to the mark)

This year there were more people lining up for this event at the start than in the previous four years combined. They all are required to call in every day to a specific number which records there message which is then transcribed by Tom Purvis and posted to the site linked above. It helps you see the agony, drama, and hard work involved in this trek across the U.S. Pretty interesting stuff, especially in light of the morass that road cycling has fallen into.

The Tour de France used to be my thing to check out, but not anymore. This Great Divide Race has supplanted it. Why? Well, it's more in keeping with the spirit of challenge and overcoming than the Tour is. It's not over hyped, or hyped at all, really. It's still a grassroots, underground, for the spirit of it all event. The tour? Gutted of any of that. Empty and devoid of anything "true and good", if one can say that about cycling. Maybe I'm a romantic luddite, a reto-grouch, and just not seeing what others find in the Tour. Whatever. All I know is that these Great Divide racers have captured my fancy and I love a good cycling tale before bedtime.

So, I'll keep reading!

If you are so inclined, catch up on the story so far and get ready for the first finishers sometime this weekend. It's going to be awesome! I think it'll inspire you to go out on your own long epic ride this weekend. Do it! I'll be riding somewhere too.

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