Sunday, 10 May 2015

Echelons and American Flyers

Today was educational. Nitemare gave a lesson on echelon riding in fierce crosswinds, while I was shocked and saddened by the lack of knowledge about the cinematic cycling great which is American Flyers and did my best to explain why it's a such a classic - pure cheese, but classic cheese. Doesn't Darragh look like the Russian?
In planning the route I took into account a strong southerly wind and tried to think of a few bail-out options for anyone who fancied a short cut to coffee. What I can't predict is who is going to turn up and what legs they are going to bring. We went straight to Ballynahinch battling into the wind, then flicked left up Valverde Hill to Drumaness. Lanterne was on an off day and sat up early on - probably a wise choice.
Straight on, all the way to Tyrella (pausing only to take a quick pic for Sean's folks) and then left along the coast. For a lot of riders forming a diagonal echelon was a new experience, but with a strong cross tailwind they learnt quick. Through Killough and Ardglass where I turned with Brian for a direct hit on Downpatrick.
Nitemare took the rest on to Ballyhornan, then back to Downpatrick with a pure crosswind. 1000 yard stares over coffee told a story of dark dark times.... educational! Downpatrick isn't a common stop for us, but Norma J's served up bacon baps and fries that hit the spot.
Home was via Annacloy, Kilmore, Listooder and Saintfield catching a lot of tired riders doing the Dromara Coastal. I'm sure almost everyone will have tired legs tonight, it's amazing how the weather has every bit as much influence as the route. Well done to everyone for digging in and in the words of the Velonomati Rules "enjoying their work".


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