A club record 79 riders signed up for this annual Eastern Shore jaunt that features flat roads from the Annapolis area eastward to the Atlantic Ocean shore and back.
Chip and his Severna Park Peloton compadres were out in their best SPP finery, ably assisted by Katie Adams and Sherrie Provenza, spouses to Chip and Clint Provenza, at the registration and finish check-in tables.
The weather promised clear skies and high temperatures in the 60s, but also a gusty southwest wind. The route is something of a squished triangle, with a middle section that runs south along the shore and a westerly section afterwards.
Those were the toughest miles, right into the wind. Once we made it to the third control, at mile 69, the route trended more toward the north and we got some much appreciated tailwinds.
MG and I started out with the field, then spent most of the first half in small groups. We stopped at the Dolce Bakery in Milford, Del. at mile 50 for some caffeine and sugar snacks. We had a nice visit with Janet and John Bodine and greeted other riders who decided to take advantage of this unofficial stop.
The trip in the winds through the control at Slaughter Beach and on to the lunch control town of Milton, at mile 69, was draining. We arrived famished and stressed. The town was designated as an open control, meaning any establishment was acceptable to get our cards signed as long as we got a receipt.
The first place we stopped, The Gallery Espresso, was staffed by just one employee who was not having a good day. I shed a tiny tear to walk away from any place with a real espresso machine.
We split and went around the corner to The Vintage Cafe, where we got a sandwich, some pretty good coffee and a much needed break from the wind.
MG and I had a better ride from there, and loved the tailwind sections that blew us and the group that formed along the way — Jack Nicholson, Bob Torres, David Ripton, Nigel Greene and Joe Kratovil — north along variously wooded and open sections.
The finish at 4:17 pm, or 9:17 overall, was a good one for us. This was our first 200K since PBP and we did not know how well our legs would respond. At just 1:20 off the bike, we were able to get back to the finish before sunset.
There are some good accounts of this ride. MG has posted a nice story about our ride and our other Veterans Day weekend outings at her blog, Chasing Mailboxes. She has also posted a combined set of photos we took at her Flickr page — click the gallery image below to see more.
First timer Lisa S. posted about her successful ride, with dreamy night miles to the finish, at her Rambling Rider blog. Congratulations Lisa!
It was a great fall event. Thanks to Chip and all the helpers, and to our fellow riders for sharing the journey. We’ll be back.
Here’s DC Randonneurs RBA Bill Beck’s summary report.
A record 79 riders started the Eastern Shore Flatbread 200K RUSA brevet yesterday, and all finished! The weather was beautiful with sunny skies and temperatures rising from the high-30s to the low-60s. But a brisk wind from the southwest made that flat course into a tough ride on the return from Slaughter Beach.
Special thanks to Chip Adams for again organizing this gorgeous ride. It was a big job with so many riders. A big thanks also to Katie Adams and Sherrie Provenza who helped register riders at the start and checked in riders at the finish, all while managing pizza orders – a big job with 79 riders!.
Congratulations to Earl Janssen for completing his R-12 award, Theresa Funari for her R-24, Clint Provenza for his R-36, and Tom Reeder for R-72! We think Tom’s streak is the longest for any rider east of the Mississippi.
There were also 8 riders who became official randonneurs by completing their first brevet. So congrats and welcome to Michael Caha, Jane Cross, Richard Downs, Alex McKeague, Jack Nicholson, Lisa Shiota, Jonathan Winkert, and Ping Xiang.
Preliminary results are posted at http://www.dcrand.org/dcr/results.php?page=display-results&year=2011.
My photos are posted at http://www.flickr.com/photos/wabeck/sets/72157627993903523/ and Mary Gersema’s are at http://www.flickr.com/photos/gersema/sets/72157628114335094/.
A GPS track of the route is at http://connect.garmin.com/activity/128517507.
Next up is the Woodbine Wallop 200K on December 10. This is a challenging ride with the second most feet of climbing per mile of all DCR routes. A nice contrast to the Flatbread! I like having it in December so you can keep cool while working up those hills.