Sunday, September 06, 2009

Large turn-out challenges Capn Carbon and GOG.

Saturday Sept 5th.

Saturday’s ride was one of if not the largest gathering to date for the Thorns and Roses.
It was made extra special by several guests who elected to ride with the group.
In attendance:

Todd Pechner – Slow Todd
Kathy Blum – Special guest and MS150 Hibernian Team member with Kevin and Theresa
Dennis Heffernan – Special guest and MS150 Team Captain of the Hibernian team.
Tray Wofford – – he is a CAT 3 Racer and was there to check the group out and to ride with his family he was brother of Taylor Wofford (DOC).
John Wofford – Special guest and DAD to (DOC). A very strong rider who was happy to ride (GOG’s) classic bike.
Josh Carter – Moving Violation – Congrats on his continued strong finishes in his races. He is finishing consistently in the money. He may have to take out special insurance on his legs since they are making money for him. He would not want anything to happen to them so getting insurance from Loyds of London could protect his income from being impacted if something catastrophic would happen to those strong legs.
Beth Gonzales
Mary Walton
Will Stewart
Sheri Stewart
Karen Kemerit
John Garrity
Jae Brainard
– the ROSE Matriarch
Shawn - Coach Shawn
Shawn Richardson – the Green Flash (rumor has it that he would rather be nicknamed Super Pickle)
Megan Hegarty – Fist time with the group and was invited by Nicole Lewis
Gray Talley
Dwight Mouton – new dad
Steve Cope – Capn Carbon
Tim Devinney – The Love Train
Jeff Giordano – Claim Jumper
Kevin Smit – GOG
Theresa Smit – Mother Theresa.
Doug Augustine – Rumble Strip
Sheila Augustine
Paul Eppers
Mary Ann Feagan
Frank Lewis
Nicole Lewis
– needs a nickname
Patti Lewis - Patti Melt
Christy Miller – Pink Triassholette
Joe Pittman – on his new bike
Steve Sparano – Sporadic Steve
Barbara Wedel
Suzanne McBee – the first to arrive at the start and could be considered a Very Special Guest. Now With a Nickname read on to learn what it is.

The write up for this days ride is being provided by Capn Carbon with the perspective of the ride from the Thorns. With input from Sproadic Steve who helped Some of the Thorns find their way home when dropped (NOT THE SPIRIT of the ride) by the Thorns.
This write up is further augmented by Dwight Mouton who rode with the Thorns until they left him at a stop light ( again NOT THE SPIRIT of the ride). His account of the ride can be found at his blog


NO Stems were dropped and all enjoyed the ride. Many even said they LOVED BIG WOODS.
Consider this the next time you decide to ride with the Thorns (Take No Prisoners) or Stems (No drop lots of fun and well calculated challenges) or Roses (mileage and average speed has no purpose).

GOG rode with the stems and has failed to provide his account of the chaos that transpired on the ride. Stems became Thorns with some Thorns then riding with the stems, and some Thorns breaking off to do their own thing.

Let it be known that Patti Lewis (Patti Melt), Sheila Augustine, and Theresa Smit (Mother Theresa) all previous ROSES are now Solid Stems and soon could be ready to regularly hang with the Thorns.

The following is provided by Capn Carbon – Thank You Capn. Notice his Writing style is closing in on the Writing style of GOG. Also notice that he is slowing down and his riding style is closing in on the riding style of GOG.

From Capn
To respect everyone’s time, I will keep this blog posting as brief as possible!

Several major shocking moments before the ride even began. When Capn arrived at Bruggers at 7, Suzanne McBee was already there – what, how could this be??? She had promised free coffee and beer to everyone if she did not make it to the coffee shop by 7 and that was all of the motivation that she needed – MAJOR OMG. Second shock was coming out of Bruggers at 7:20 and turning the corner to see the mob that had accumulated in the parking lot. WOW, was there a huge group of riders. A record breaking turnout for sure with several very strong first timers including Karen, Mary, and Doc’s bro and padre and others I am sure I have overlooked – sorry. Lots of regulars were there including Slow Tim, Green Flash, Frank, Coach Shawn, GOG, Theresa, Love Train, Slow Todd, Doc, Sporadic Sporano and his better half Carolyn, Josh (Moving Violation), Jeff (not #6, not downhill racer, and not the one with a broken collar bone, aka Claim Jumper), Christi the Pink Triassholete, Barbara, John, Dwight, Joe, Sherri, Willi, and on and on and on. GOG has the full list (see above). There were too many ladies for Capn to remember and keep up with – is that possible? One other fact that shocked Capn was that Slow Todd was there but was basically invisible for the day with no attacks, no snide remarks - almost as if he was not there at all. Maybe he was still sore about the pack discarding him last week when he blew a spoke or maybe he had other issues on his mind like his genetic disorder that prevents him from riding up hills fast. Anyway, after a brief lecture by the GOG, the mad mob rolled out of Bruggers and headed out through Preston.

GOG and Capn looked at each other and knew this was going to be both trouble and a lot of fun. Lots of chit/chat and bantering from the get-go. Joe was proudly riding his new full carbon race machine and looking forward to putting it to the test. Initially, there was some disorganization on Ron’s Pull as everyone was looking for Ron to set the pace and receive his due respect. Ron was a no show today so Capn had to assume the point position and he steadily ramped up the speed (as Ron would have done) which got all of the Thorns twitchie, aggitated, and ready for a fight. The Green Flash, Josh, Jeff (Claim Jumper - not #6, not with the broken collar bone) and others quickly blew past Capn who was in oxygen deficit by this point and needed some draft relief. Capn recovered enough to put the hammer down for one last pass to squeak out the win - GOG owes Capn $100. This front group then stopped to wait for the GOG and the others. They waited and waited and waited and waited. The Green Flash could not wait any more and nominated the group to move on.

With mixed emotions, the group agreed and dropped the GOG knowing it might not be “In the spirit of the ride”. The group then got disorganized again after crossing 55 and up past the fire station. Capn went back to check on GOG and others who might still be trying to catch the group. He was looking for Doc’s bro who was a Cat 3 racer and felt like he had a score to settle or a bone to pick (remember that Capn is not playing with a full deck of cards). The angry mob of Thorns took this opportunity to dramatically pick up the pace and enjoyed dropping Capn and several others who were trying to chase them down. Everyone regrouped at the end of the next road (no idea what it is called but is the opposite direction of Up Chuck hill. (That would be Yates Store).

The group then formed a pace line and rolled at an awesome pace toward 751 on Old Kelley road. It was there that the Green Flash busted out of the group to claim the first Durham County line sign - GOG owes Green Flash $100. However. shortly afterwards, the second and MUCH larger Durham County line sign was claimed by Capn as he was the only one who remembered there was 2 county signs. Everyone agreed that that sign was worth double due to the size - GOG owes Capn $200.

The group continued to hammer at a good clip before hacking a left off of 751 and onto Stage Coach road. It was there that Suzanne got trapped at the front riding side by side with Capn. As expected, she was gabbing (FOR EVER NOW KNOWN AS GABBY) while riding her bike at full throttle. Then a long steady climb forced her to pull back as she could no longer talk and ride fast from the front of the pack. Suzanne retreated, got draft relief, and continued gabbing to whoever would listen.
A left turn off of Stage Coach followed by the fist right but the pack onto Old Farrington. The Thorns continued to devour hill after hill on their way up to the Lystra gas station. At several times. the pace line ramped up to over 25 mph but the group stayed tight. The pace was being pushed by the Green Flash, Coach Shawn, Frank, Jeff, Sherri, Willie, Love Train, Slow Todd, and others. Awesome job!

A well deserved break and then the group waited and waited and waited for the GOG and the Stems to arrive at the Lystra Gas Station (planed rest stop). It was here that the Love Train admitted that he was still a little grouchy but said that Lystra would cure him in a few minutes. Christi the pink triaassholeete was NOT feeling well and did not look good (should a guy ever say this to a girl?). However, she did recover and finished 50 miles with the Stems. Josh had a race the next day so decided to bolt back to the parking lot and cut it short. He is a wise man for his age. Finally, GOG and the Stems arrived just at the Thorns could not wait any longer and were mounting up for Cul-de-Lystra. Several riders switched groups from the Stems (as they wanted more workout than the GOG could provide) to the Thorns including Sporadic Sporano, Nicole, and Megan.

Off the group (Thorns) went toward Lystra. This was Karen’s, Dwight’s and Megan’s, and several others first ride up the famed “Cul-de-Lystra”. After climbing this minor hill, they all wondered what the big deal was and why everyone is so afraid of this stretch of the road. As the Thorns approached Lystra, the Green Flash attacked early and mounted a huge lead heading up this small mole hill (Lystra). This provoked a massive attack from the group which shattered the peloton. Eventually, Capn caught up with the Green Flash and the 2 battled it out to the top with lots of blood being spilled. Then Capn came back down Lystra to help harrass Nicole and Megan and encourage them up the hill. Remember, Megan did this riding with platform pedals – ouch – GREAT JOB.

From there Capn struggled to catch the lead group who was already at the 15/501 intersection. The angry mob decided to roll on and drop Capn, Nicole, Megan, Sporadic, Joe, and Dwight who were all assuming that everyone would regroup at the light. Joe and Dwight got caught by the light and then joined up with 2 other riders that they thought were with our angry mob – Wrong! Capn chased down the lead group just in time to miss the turn (thanks to Love Train) at Jack Bennett and then caught a raft of SH#% from the group. Everyone should know by now that Capn is directionally challenged and never should be followed or taken too seriously! It was at that point that Joe and Dwight got separated from the front group of Thorns – not good as they then had to ride all the way back on their own. Major apologies by the ride leader (Capn) for letting this happen on a “no drop” ride.

After turning on Jack Bennett, things got a bit crazy and the ride got very interesting. Just prior to the big downhill, Capn yelled out to Jeff (not #6) and Wilie that they must have been out drinking late the prior night based on the very slow speed they were riding. Well, that was all it took for Willie to put the hammer down and take off like a rocket. Frank was hot on his tail closely followed by Claim Jumper, Capn, and a huge trail of strong ladies. Then, out of the blue, Sherri kicked in full testosterone and dropped everyone going down that steep hill. She just smiled as she raced past her husband Willie and everyone else. Unbelievable performance. This got Frank and the Green Flash agitated and they tried with no success to chase her down. GOG owes Sherri at least $300 for this effort which shocked everyone. Capn was devastated and retreated to the back of the pace line which was actually very nice as all of the strong lady riders had aligned themselves in a tight draft line, and were planning to take out the other guys as they collapsed one by one.

Capn commented that he would rather ride in the perfume fumes (Karen, Mary, Barbara, Suzanne, etc.) than behind the likes of Claim Jumper, Frank, Green Flash, Love Train, and the others just up ahead. The group collected and rolled up to the Lystra Gas Station intersection. Capn asked if everyone was there and sensed a few were missing.

Later is was learned of others who were missing at this point.

The next paragraph is supplied by Sporadic Steve Sparano as he recounts the events that took place as the Thorns continued the SHRED any and all who dared to ride with them.

(Here's a potential entry for Saturday's ride blog: (from Sporadic Steve)
On Saturday's ride when I was helping Nicole and Meaghan return from the carnage known as the Thorns, we were passed by a somewhat familiar only took a second to retrieve the ancient memory stores that would allow me to recall this rider. After a moment of cerebral processing, I realized it was none other than Mr David Bridenbaugh. I recognized him as he cruised by (like we were standing still), I called out 'is that Bridenbaugh', the figure turned and said Hi. He slowed, we said Hi, shook hands, and chatted briefly...we finished by saying that once the start time gets later, he will be joining us.

As he was about to continue his ride, I mentioned that Steve Cope was up ahead and that he could probably catch him. As if a lightning bolt hit him, his eyes lit up, he shifted, cranked hard, I blinked, and he was the legendary but rarely seen...The Ghost of Bridenbaugh. )

Thank you Sporadic Steve for continuing to understand the Sprit of a NO DROP ride

Now back to the write up as best Capn Carbon could recall.

The angry mob wanted nothing of a break and just rolled down the hill increasing the speed as they chewed up the miles. The group rode across the lake bridge at a high speed and took a left onto some woman’s chapel road (Martha Chapel). At the turn, Sherri, Willie, and Suzanne all went straight in pursuit of MORE miles as they clearly did not get enough workout from the Thorns. They are all training for an upcoming triathlon and needed more miles – at least that is what they said. The group pressed on without the “triassholetes”. It was there that Karen, Mary, and Barbara demonstrated a lot of strong riding and their ability to ride hard up the long steady climb while in full conversation. The Green Flash and several others broke away from the main group but were eventually chased down by the peloton.
At one point coming up the hill, one of the ladies was overheard (by others in the group) that they were feeling “Thorny” based on how well they were riding. This caused quite a stir within the main pack as several riders overheard the comment and thought (hard to hear with wind in the helmet) they heard something different than “Thorny”.
After that point, several of the stronger riders suddenly pulled back and rode in the trail of perfume wondering what was actually said and who said it. A right onto 751 and then a quick left at the strawberry patch had the group heading straight for the county line. Since Josh and Brian Farkas were not there, the threat of a massive sprint attack was not on everyone’s minds. However, like normal, Claim Jumper picked up the pace and bolted for the line with Capn, and Frank in tow. It was close, maybe too close to call, but one thing was for sure…. Frank and Capn were both wasted after the sprint attempt and Frank commented that he may have had too much Boyland Bridge brew the night before.
A left, then right, and through the 3 ugly sisters (Nicole’s Roller Coaster) before heading for the fire station and the 55 intersection.
Then, Capn made a comment that “may” have been taken out of context by the ride group. He was very impressed by the bike rack that Mary had on the back of her classic steel frame bike. He went on to say that he had a steel framed bike (Mean Green Machine) that he rode across the country and that it had 2 nice racks on it. It then became obvious that Mary was not following why Capn was commenting about why his bike’s racks were better than hers.
Then it happened… Capn blurted out “Mary, you have a very nice rack”. !.!!!@#$! Well, the long train (not LOVE TRAIN) of strong ladies with the perfume draft all clearly heard Capn’s comment BUT DID NOT HAVE THE FULL CONTEXT of the conversation. At this point, Mary blushed but did not apologize for her nice rack and the ride continued as Capn got glaring looks from the rest of the ladies.

The only remaining challenge for the day was Capn’s Graveyard which runs along the railroad tracks the opposite direction of Ron’s Pull. In the past, Capn would routinely crank up the pace and the group got dropped. Well, this has not happened for many many weeks as either Capn is getting weaker, the Thorns are getting stronger, or both. Capn gave it everything left in the tank and pushed the pace well above 25 mph to only look back and see a long string of strong riders on his tail. He eventually pulled over to have the Green Flash blast on for the final sprint points – GOG owes Green Flash $100. Capn told Claim Jumper that the section of the road should be renamed to Capn’s Pull instead of Capn’s Graveyard as he no longer has the juice. Claim Jumper quickly responded by saying the name is still perfect but the meaning has just changed over time. Capn is simply being buried by the group week after week so the name is still valid.


A final regrouping and down to the coffee/bagel shop for well deserved refreshments following the 50 mile ride at a 19.2 mph average. TOTALLY awesome ride, incredible day, and a great ride group.

The Stems did 51 miles at a 17 mph pace that included a time trial run down Big Woods with Tray Wofford and his dad John taking first and second.

The Roses rode into RTP area covering the 30 miles at a 15 mph pace. But who realy validates this anyway.

Sundays ride.
Sept 6th 2009

Much more intimate
Back to the Spirit of the ride.

In attendance

Steve Cope – Capn Carbon, the angry chipmunk, the Gnat, the Chiwauwah
Tim Devinney – The Love Train – spent time serenading the ladies on the ride.
Jeff Giordano – Claim Jumper
Kevin Smit – GOG
Theresa Smit – Mother Theresa
Steve Sparano – Sporadic Steve
Carolyn Sparano – Sporadic Carolyn
Laura Spell
PattI Lewis
Brian Farkas – The Red Baron

Today’s ride was shaping up to be a relaxed ride compared to the Madness of Saturday’s
Ride mayhem and mob.

The pack was happy to ride together and to enjoy a more subdued style ride.
Relaxed and fun loving is the best way to describe the day’s ride.

A bullet dash recount of the days ride.

  • The route is not important.
  • The speed was not important.
  • The banter was limited.
  • The Spirit of the Ride was the Best Ever.
  • The Love Trains singing was FAN-OMINAL as he serenaded the ladies on Holland Chapel road (aka Waffle Run) – American Idol is in his future. THORNS GOT TALLENT.
  • The fact that Claim jumper disrespected GOG not once but Twice on Kevin’s Crawl,
  • The fact that GOG rode his fixed Gear bike is Note Worthy – and still Claim Jumper had the nerve to disrespect GOG.
  • The fact that Capn Carbon felt compelled to Jump into the CSH ride as the Thorns and Roses were completing their ride is ONLY PATHETIC. Look for an Intervention session to save Capn Carbon.
  • 34 miles at 17 ish mph pace but who really cares.