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Blowing up the pace line
Last Post 04/23/2015 09:12 AM by Mike Shea. 17 Replies.
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Red Tornado

Posts:148

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04/15/2015 12:15 PM
So this cat shows up for our club ride last night, he's been there a handful of times before, and after the "A" group split he joined those of us in the "A2" group.  (This ride usually ends up with "A1", "A2", "B1" & "B2")
Insists on pulling as much as possible even though he still doesn't know the route that well.  Actually rode straight through a couple intersections and we had to call him back.  He also took one corner way too wide and did a little impromptu 'cross.
When we finally did establish a proper paceline, every time he overtook the front rider he would keep the hammer down so the rider being overtaken had to accelerate hard to close the gap (that guys was me several times) or this guy would ride away.  When we told him to ease up after overtaking to match the speed of the rider he just passed, he says "Yeah, I know", then proceeds to keep the hammer down.
A couple guys remarked that he seemed more interested in seeing who he could blow up than in working.  I agreed with them.  It was only after we finally let him ride away for a stretch that he started working with us, not  against as.  There are a couple places along the route, as well as the last few miles to the finish, where attacks are accepted and even encouraged; so it's not like we try to keep everyone on a tight leash 100% of the way.  Seemed to me like your typical super-fit guy, riding a high-$ bike, but clueless as to pack etiquette - and not real willing to learn either.
This guy was clearly one of the strongest in our group, but either didn't know or didn't want to work with us.  Next time he shows up a few of us are going to explain the expectations of the group to him, and if he doesn't want to cooperate he'll be doing a solo ride.
zootracer

Posts:578

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04/15/2015 12:41 PM
You need to bring in a winger who will blow him completely away. Better if it's a very fast gal....
Orange Crush

Posts:2017

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04/15/2015 01:21 PM
I often blow up the paceline and I'm just riding by myself. It really pisses me off.
vtguy

Posts:298

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04/15/2015 02:56 PM
A well functioning pace line is one of the great joys of cycling. Dude doesn't know what he's missing.
huckleberry

Posts:501

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04/15/2015 03:11 PM
"I often blow up the paceline and I'm just riding by myself. It really pisses me off." - OC

; )
Red Tornado

Posts:148

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04/15/2015 03:20 PM
Posted By ed custer on 04/15/2015 12:41 PM
You need to bring in a winger who will blow him completely away. Better if it's a very fast gal....
There are several female riders who could easily "chick" this guy.  Problem is they're up in the A1 group.
We start out as one big A group (30-40 riders) and at about the half-way point there is a "selection" when the elite guys really bring the hammer down.  A2 is typically Cat 5 people and others like me who used to race/ride really hard, but work-family-etc. has thrown a wrench in that gig.
One guy threw out the suggestion of all of us taking turns attacking him, a'la TdF GC guys trying to crack one guy in the mountains.  Don't know how well my body would respond to that, though.
Red Tornado

Posts:148

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04/15/2015 03:22 PM
Posted By Orange Crush on 04/15/2015 01:21 PM
I often blow up the paceline and I'm just riding by myself. It really pisses me off.

Unfortunately, I have never/will never experience that feeling......
zootracer

Posts:578

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04/15/2015 03:48 PM
Maybe someone could jam a frame pump into his front wheel .......
Orange Crush

Posts:2017

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04/15/2015 04:01 PM
Posted By Stefan Eckardt on 04/15/2015 03:22 PM
Posted By Orange Crush on 04/15/2015 01:21 PM
I often blow up the paceline and I'm just riding by myself. It really pisses me off.

Unfortunately, I have never/will never experience that feeling......


You'll get there. Old retro engines blow up and blow smoke all the time. BTW - you answered your own predicament; the guy should be riding in the A1 group instead of sandbagging the A2 group and that should be the message.
Red Tornado

Posts:148

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04/15/2015 09:39 PM
Posted By Orange Crush on 04/15/2015 04:01 PM
Posted By Stefan Eckardt on 04/15/2015 03:22 PM
Posted By Orange Crush on 04/15/2015 01:21 PM
I often blow up the paceline and I'm just riding by myself. It really pisses me off.

Unfortunately, I have never/will never experience that feeling......


You'll get there. Old retro engines blow up and blow smoke all the time. BTW - you answered your own predicament; the guy should be riding in the A1 group instead of sandbagging the A2 group and that should be the message.


I think he could survive in the A1 group. Probably the "big fish in a small pond" scenario is at work here. Next time I'll bet the A2 folk will not be as tolerant of his games.
zootracer

Posts:578

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04/16/2015 11:59 AM
It's been a long time since I have been on a group ride, years. I forgot about the group dynamics. I remember once going for a long mountainous 80+ mile ride and being told "we don't drop anyone". Yeah right. I was second to last, good thing I knew the route. At approaching age 73 I still love riding. I don't know what my life would be like without it. I'm thinking I can ride into my 80's. I can't ride fast anymore. I blow up fast if I really push myself. I actually enjoy the solitude. I'm a lone wolf type of guy. Never thought I would still be riding when I was in my 70's. I feel great when I'm on my bike. The only thing that has really changed is the technology and the traffic. Have a great day....
KootnaMoots

Posts:47

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04/16/2015 03:43 PM
Yo Zoot, You can do it. I just finished 24 miles, turned 82 mar 31. I am tired and won't be mowing the lawn but I will have a beer and a nap. As long as you can push the pedals down you got it covered. My motto "KEEP MOVIN'"
Koot
huckleberry

Posts:501

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04/16/2015 07:22 PM
Zoot and Kootna - you guys are awesome!

I tired of riding in groups a few years back - lone wolf here also.

This evening, I'm lying in bed, just got home from ankle and knee surgery - looking forward to a Summer on my bike as I finish my house in Washington.

Funny thing today - the 90 minutes it took me to come out from anesthesia, I was speaking in a British accent the whole time - couldn't speak good old "Merican if my life depended on it ; )
zootracer

Posts:578

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04/16/2015 07:41 PM
Good luck with your recovery Huck I had hip surgery in '05. I was talking to my doctor after I came out, but don't remember a damn thing.


Kootna-yeah, I know what you mean about mowing the lawn. With the drought here in Ca the lawn will be brown and dry this year. Thanks for the encouragement.....
stronz

Posts:447

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04/22/2015 08:29 AM
Good healing Huck! Zoot and Koot -- my hats off to you guys. I'm 52 and love riding and most def am a lone wolf. Only thing I regret about not riding with groups (which I have come to despise) is that it generally gets me into better shape and makes me faster -- I guess thats the good thing about all that testosterone and competition: you wind up pushing it a bit more. Havng said that I dont care that much as I'm not racing and dont mind taking a few extra minutes on my usual rides. EVERY time I have ridden group rides over the last few years I've been reprimanded by the "leaders" because I broke some rule or other - or avoided a crash just by sheer luck because some asshat couldnt handle his bike or wasnt paying attention. One ride I went on the "co-leader" was a woman -- an intense and miserable bitch who took herself waaaay to seriously (strong rider tho)- told me I was the most selfish rider she had ever met and that the other leader wouldnt let me ride with the group again. All because I pushed too hard going uphill and some people were dropped; not the whole group mind you, just a few. We waited for them at the top (and this was the standard procedure of this group I was told before) Meanwhile she took a flier off the front on an uphill during the same ride. I told her she was right I was selfish -- in no way shape or form am I riding my bike to help, please or improve anyone else. And btw you can get someone else to drive you home (we had carpooled to the start as it was a pre-arranged all day ride about two hours from home and I had driven her there. Pretty funny actually that she couldnt resist criticizing me knowing we'd be spending 2 hours together in the car. I wound up driving her back but had someone else in the car so I didnt have to talk to her) But seriously it is all about me when I ride. Correction - not all about me. But it is not all about "the group." It IS all about enjoying the experience, the environment and life. It aint about staring at the friggin tire in front of me. I'm definitely not a pack animal when it comes to riding. And we have to wait for everyone who gets a flat. "Close the gap" "Dont drop anyone" bla bla bla -- just leave me the eff alone and let me ride my bike.

Just re read the above - a little extreme -- but truer and truer as I get older and older....
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