A semi-vintage ride?

This ride was new on the calendar last year and I enjoyed doing it then. I’ll be in the area again this year so I thought why not? This time I will be riding one of my new favorite bikes, a 1991 Sancineto. It comes from a third generation family of builders in Cuneo Italy and are considered by collectors to be among the “Holy Grail” of bikes. For me, it is just a wonderful bike to ride in the real world!

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We had cool temps at the start (mid 40’s?) and the pace stayed brisk but reasonable for some time. That helped to keep a large lead group together until Sacaton, where after leaving town it started to break up. Also on the cool side, a short while past Sacaton we encountered a bike race, part of the Arizona series. Car traffic was held but we were allowed to enter the course and continue. It was not the TDF but it was nice to see some local racers out.

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Even a classic bike is subject to the forces of nature, in this case a thorn took me out of a wonderful paceline on the way to Eloy. I sat my butt down in the dirt on the side of the road and made the repair of my flat tire. I would ride alone again for the next little while but hey, what’s new? The bike was going good otherwise and it was a beautiful day!

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After a quick stop in Eloy for some chocolate milk I was off. The winds were still light and I was headed back north. Although riding alone I was feeling good and cruised along at about 19 or 20 mph. There were some other riders close by but we were each riding our own pace and did not hook up. As we approached Coolidge we turned east into a building wind. That would continue for the rest of the day. I caught Phil from Tucson on this upwind leg and we rode for a while but we ended up on our own again later.

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In the end, much of the last 30 miles had favorable winds and made it a nice run into the finish. Temps reached 77 degrees and I didn’t put on any sunscreen so I got a little fried. It was worth it though to have a nice day in the sun. My food consumption for the day was a little unusual. Due to recent dental work I was unable to chew and so did this ride on 4 chocolate milks, 2 bananas, a couple of bites of pie and water. It was not enough but I didn’t bonk.

Thanks to trail boss Tom Baker for seeing to us throughout the day. On a nice day like this it is hard to watch the others having all the fun.  Susan, I hope you had a good day off!

Here is a link to the Gila River 200 km brevet route. Thanks to Steve Atkins for providing it.

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