Sunday, June 18, 2023

The GTDRI Stories; The Aftermath Of Number Nine

My mangled Oakleys from being hit by a truck in the 9th GTDRI
 "The GTDRI Stories" is a series telling the history, untold tales, and showing the sights from the run of Guitar Ted Death Ride Invitationals. This series will run on Sundays. Thanks for reading!

The immediate effects from having been hit by a truck and tossed into the air like a rag doll hit me hard after this GTDRI in 2014. I had a bout of PTSDI had messed up GI issues, I got really sick. I wasn't hardly riding at all, and I missed most of September because of all of that. 

The bike I was riding, the Tamland Two, was fine. I had to install new handle bar tape, and that was it, amazingly. But I could not bring myself to ride the bike at all for quite a while afterward. It wasn't until October that I was able to get back on it again without feeling afraid and anxious. 

Life changes were coming into effect as well. I had an end to doing 29"er MTB reviews and a beginning in doing gravel stuff as a focus and not as a side gig anymore. Meanwhile I was at a shop wrenching which was showing signs of being non-viable by 2015. My mind was starting to consider what might be my next move. 

I also started co-hosting a podcast back then. Hard to believe its been THAT long ago already, but there ya go. It was exciting at first and so was getting out from underneath the old 29"er gig, but it didn't take long into 2015 to realize I may have traded one bad gig for a not-so-great one. The thing was, gravel stuff was really where my heart was at anyway, so it was "better" from that standpoint.

Meanwhile, things were getting sorted with insurance from the truck hitting us. This kept communications up between a few of us that were on that ride. There was a distinct feeling that there was "unfinished business", and that the following year needed to be another attempt at the same course. So I had that thought and felt that was what needed to be done for all of us that were a part of that incident. Closure might be found if we were able to just get that route done the way it should have happened, and maybe that was more for myself than anybody else. 

There was a bit of chatter in emails and some comments to the blog that the name of the ride should change as a result of the ending of the 9th GTDRI. The word "death" being of particular note here. Well, I understood why people might feel that way, but to my mind changing the name would be giving that man that hit us power that he did not deserve. If the name of the ride was going to change, it wasn't going to be for that reason. 

While 2015 would mark the 10th GTDRI, I wasn't ever thinking about that milestone like I did with regard to Trans Iowa. It's ironic too, because typically I would have made a big deal out of that for the GTDRI. However; the incident with the driver of the truck made me take a different view of matters and celebrating that tenth GTDRI wasn't nearly as important as marking a close to events that happened that humid day near Edgewood, Iowa on a hill on a gravel road. 

Next: Gravel Changes

No comments: