Sunday, February 02, 2020

Trans Iowa Stories: The Finish Line Agreement

The look of exhaustion. Matt Wills upon finishing T.I.v5
"Trans Iowa Stories" is an every Sunday post which helps tell the stories behind the event. You can check out other posts about this subject by going back to earlier Sunday posts on this blog. Thanks and enjoy!

The end of Trans Iowa v5 was a pretty special one. I've briefly recounted a few highlights in the past, but ironically this event's finish has not been well documented. I'm not sure why that is. In my final report on it on my blog, I glossed over a lot of things that were pretty remarkable, really.

While Corey, "Cornbread" Godfrey did not make the finish, a couple of the other "Lincoln Crew" guys did. Matt Wills finished on a single speed, and Matt Gersib, who was then someone I had just become friends with, finished as well. Ol' "MG" and I became pretty tight in the years afterward, but there will be a story coming later about he and I and T.I.v7 which put that friendship to the test.

But as for the finish line, it was just one of those things. Unplanned, organic, and "real", as they say. I already related how that David and I arbitrarily chose a mail box at the end of a drive way as our finish, but there also was a wide, grassy lawn there as well which ended up becoming a "lounging area" for supporters and riders who were coming in. That is, if they could drag themselves that far! Some immediately got off their bikes and sat right on the road. I remember B.J. Bass doing that. And Matt Gersib, well he just laid himself right out on the pavement and had a short nap!

Others were taking advantage of the grass and kicking back. I recall that finisher Andy Stockman, from California, had a gal friend there that worked for New Belgium Brewing. She had a cooler full of beer that you couldn't get in Iowa at the time. Craft beers being kind of rare back then, and we had New Belgium "Fat Tire Ale", but nothing else here. Well, she busted out that cooler and we had ourselves a few brews right there under the Sun! It was pretty fabulous, and again- completely impromptu. 

MG cashed out. I remember thinking this was a bit amusing, but I was concerned about how we'd get him up as well!
Then  there was the second finisher of Trans Iowa on a fixed gear bike, Ben Shockey. It was pretty crazy that he managed to pull this off, but he did, and I remember the shocked looks of the bystanders when they realized Ben had been on a fixed gear. There was a set of HUGE rollers on the Benton/Iowa County line that I just had to ask Ben about. He said he walked up and down them! They were just far too steep, long, and too far into the course for him to risk it on the fixie. That was about three miles worth of walking, by the way!

This was one of the nicest finish line experiences Trans Iowa ever had. I believe it got into the 70's later in the day, and the morning and early afternoon was Sun drenched, calm, and just beautiful for an early May day. We had our last finisher two hours before the cut-off at 2:00pm. So by the time we had finally accounted for everyone, all the folks hanging out had long gone. When David and I had realized no one else was coming in, it was already about 2:00pm. I remember we stood there remarking about things that had transpired during the event, and then the inevitable pause in conversation hit. David looked at me, stuck out his hand, and said, "T.I.v6?"  I grabbed his outstretched hand, shook it, and said "Yeah!, Why not?", or something to that effect.

In a Trans Iowa full of "one-offs", the event ended with one last example of a "one-off"- an agreement to do the next Trans Iowa immediately after finishing the current one. That would never happen again, well.......kind of. You'll have to wait for a while to find out what I mean there.

Next: New Things

1 comment:

thejacobsons said...

TI V5 is one of the highlights of my life. Thank you so much for organizing it and giving us all a great challenge. - Paul