From time to time I wander through old photos squirreled away on my laptop. It’s a pleasant diversion, and that really is the key word – diversion. Mostly I’m doing it to avoid things I should be doing around the house, like cleaning up the spare bedroom I’m continuing to use as a staging area nearly 2 1/2 months after moving to my place here in Templeton.
Perhaps if I post them I’ll be able to move on to things I need to do in the here and now. So let’s take a little trip to back in the day…
For years I rode too much by myself, only occasionally latching onto some group of riders I might come upon by chance, then never see again. One Saturday morning at around 7am I was rolling past Malaga Cove Plaza in Palos Verdes CA, when I saw a group of riders gathering at the west end of the plaza. It was one of those moments when you consider that if you have free will you can make the choice to join or not to join. Neurologists who claim there is no such thing as free will posit that your response (not really a choice) is based solely on what has gone on in your life up until that point, including your genetic traits and epigenetic influences, and if all of those could be known, the response would be predictable.
Me, well I just thought, “I’ve had enough of riding alone, I want to suck some wheel today.” So I pulled into the plaza, rolled up to a fellow in the group, asked if I could join them, and proceeded to ride with the group for probably 15 years. It was called the Doctors Ride. Shown below is a pic at the start of a ride on a winter morning at the Malaga Cove Plaza Neptune fountain. I count 7 doctors in the group, you’re in good hands…
Before, and after, the 1984 Olympic velodrome in Carson CA, there was the Encino velodrome in the San Fernando Valley. I got briefly enthused about track riding, took classes to get qualified at Encino, and drove out there numerous times to ride with friends and acquaintances from South Bay Wheelmen. I even bought my own KHS Flite track bike from Bill Ron’s Bicycles in Redondo Beach CA, just a couple of blocks from my home at the time.
The pix below are me at Encino (pointing the wrong way on the track), and the SBW Weel Wabbit ladies. (click on either for larger versions)
TdF Training Daze
Back in 2003 and 2004 I went to France for cycling tours in the Pyrenees and Alps. But before the trips there was the training, and the training, and the training… Here are some pix from the training. My riding partners back then included Chuck Watson, multiple state and national racing champion, and Patrick Brady, founder of the Red Kite Prayer, a very successful cycling web site.
Back in 2008 I put together a Thanksgiving Day ride in Palos Verdes as an alternative to the more well-known holiday ride/shoot-em-up from Manhattan Beach to Mandeville Canyon. It was mostly friends from South Bay Wheelmen, as well as my work colleague Mario Obejas who had just started riding seriously. Nothing against the Mandeville ride, but I’d rather not do it with 300 of my closest friends. You need gallons of chamois butter to squeeze all those riders up and down that narrow strip of pavement. Besides, Palos Verdes is much closer and leaves more time for relaxing with latte and pastry post-ride.
We did a couple of the bigger climbs in PV and ended with brunch at Creme de la Crepe in the Riviera Village section of Redondo Beach.