Ship Cycling's annual collegiate road season shakedown ride went down Saturday with characteristic violent winds, cool temps, but relatively blue skies...and a record turnout! Seventeen riders started, including seven Ship Cycling students (Alan, Jay, Jeremy, Michael, Pete, Rich, Steve), three visiting students (Courtney, Luke, Micha), two Ship profs (Christopher, Goatesause), one Gettysburg College prof (Eric), two Ship alumni (Eric, Jon), one regular suspect (Brian), and one non-event newbie (whose name I can't remember, sorry!).
What was up for grabs:
That's a horse (1st), a tiger (2nd), and a dino (3rd).
And, yes, that's gold spray paint. Awesome.
The coveted limp chicken award. For the last-placed
finisher...but you have to finish!
The race really began to heat up at the third dirt road section. Micah put in a monster acceleration up the hill on Brethren Church, showing he's ready to tackle the dirt at Battenkill, obliterating the 10-rider strong group behind him. Causalities through the rocks included a dropped chain (Gettysburg Eric) and flat tire (Christopher).
After the rocks, the front four (Micah, Alan, Jon, Goat) regrouped and caught Jeremy, who'd been up the road for several miles. The five rolled along together to the Maclay's Mill Murder Molehill, where Alan put in a monster dig, separating the front group and dropping Jeremy for good.
Several miles later Pete fought back to rejoin the lead group, losing contact through the final rail-trail section, but again clawing his way back before the final lead-up to the decisive Stromsberg stretch.
Goat put in a dig midway up the Stromsberg dislodging Pete once more and setting Jon (who by this time had lost the use of his rear derailleur) and Micah for a sprinters shoot out. Micah led through from 50 yards with Jon on his wheel, but unable to make it around. Alan, sitting up comfortable in third (to comfortable!) reacted too slowly to a charging Goat who sneaked by at the line to steal back one of gold-painted trophies.
Micah, displaying his hardware.
Christopher & Eric (I'm not sure who finished first)
By the time I left the parking lot there was still a red Jeep with a bike rack and no sign of the Surley rider (whose name I can't remember) that I had just met that day. So, it's still unclear to whom goes the Limp Chicken Award. If the Surley rider finished, it's his. Otherwise the prize goes Steve. Stay tuned...