The 2015 GASP (Greater Austin to Shiner Peddle) is in the books. Five hours 40 minutes elapsed time - 3,096 calories burned - 17.4 mph average.
The start of the ride was very wet with severe thunderstorms having just rolled through the area a few minutes prior to the ride. We actually ended up catching the storm and rode in the pelting rain for about an hour. Fortunately all the thunder and lightening was long gone and we only had to contend with the pouring rain.
The start was incredibly fast. Being slightly downhill for quite aways, and a little into the wind, I quickly dropped everyone and led for the first 10 miles. After 4 or 5 miles it was just me and the lead out vehicle and everyone else was so far behind that you could not see them anymore. Eventually, at an intersection the lead out vehicle told the motorcycle policeman to pace me while the lead out vehicle circled back to pace everyone else.
Eleven miles in I hit the first sustained uphill and then a huge, 50+ riders, pack passed me on the uphill. I’d been averaging probably 26+ mph but this long uphill slowed me down to 10 mph for quite a while.
Here you can see that even with the long uphill I still averaged over 21 mph for the first 10 miles and about 20.5 mph average for the first hour of riding.
And then the rain starts. Big ol’drops, that when you’re traveling 30 mph really hurt when they hit your face. Well, at least I was mostly enclosed in the velomobile. Glad I was not on a normal bike.
The quest is a real speed demon.
|Year||Elapsed Time (HH:MM)||Description|
|2015||5:40||Quest (10 mph headwind a lot of the way)|
|2014||7:14||Bacchetta TiAero (10 mph headwind whole way)|
|2013||6:22||Musashi (10 mph tailwind)|
|2012||7:41||Optima Baron (really wiped out at end)|
|2011||-||Musashi DNF after 88 miles|
My best GASP time by far and I was very tired at the end but not extremely wiped out like I have been in prior years.
I only stopped once on the ride at the 45 mile marker rest stop. Needed to “de-hydrate”. Once back on the road I went the remaining 65 miles without stopping. I supplied pretty good, stayed well hydrated, plenty of home-brew sports mix. Energy chews, cliff bars, etc.. I had lots of food left over and a whole 16 oz bottle of water unopened.
Shortly after the 65 mile mark I could tell I was starting to cramp some (inter-quads) so I started stretching while coasting the downhills and very easy peddling the uphills. About mile 85 I started getting some hot foot which I was also able to stretch out somewhat. Mile 90 my left knee was getting really sore whenever I put any power into peddling so I mainly did pulling with the left leg and easy pushing with the right leg.
Tomorrow I’ll be icing down the knees for sure.
About the 65 mile mark I decide to call Robyn and let her know about when I should be arriving in Shiner. Well, I got her voice mail and started leaving my message with my usual greeting “Hey love, how’s it going?” - immediately the woman on her bike just in front of me turns around faster than I could blink and stares at me real hard. Hmmm, maybe I should hold the phone up to where she can see it. I know the yellow banana bike is a chick magnet but she did not look amused.
About 70 miles in I started passing riders who had started at the 50 mile point for the Half-GASP ride. In prior years I was lucky if I could catch some just before arriving at the Shiner brewery. This year I passed a bunch of them, especially on the long hill just heading out of Moulton which is about 8 miles from the finish. After 88 miles, I, and everybody else, where just trying to finish the ride without keeling over with exhaustion. Very few people were passing me on the uphills anymore, but on the downhills I was coasting up to 25 mph passing riders left and right.
It has been five years now since I took up riding. The GASP ride is one of the first organized rides I ever rode. It has been a good five years with lots of riding memories. Who knows, I might actually stick with this riding thing.