I had been looking forward to this day both to meet my Pedal Pal, Anthony Venida, and to see the 2012 alumni who came to help and the alumni of the Key to Keys ride. I arrived the just as the the groups were rolling out to the Inner Harbor for the Sendoff Ceremony. I took my time then gave chase. I caught some riders.
I saw many of the 2012 Team San Francisco who came to make the first day remarkable. And they did.
Before the teams rolled out I met some of Team Portland because I knew I'd be riding with them on Tuesday. Then Team San Fran rolled out to the American Visionary Art Museum where they would form groups.
I rolled out in the first group with alumna, Erin Mack, along with Anthony. I wanted to be in the first group because the Baltimore to D.C. ride seemed to always have problems with cues. I made the cues and rode the route ahead of time although I had to dispel the rumor that I actually had ridden it this morning. Since we rolled out at 8:00 a.m. that would have had to been about 4:00 in the morning. Not happening.
I brought my own chalk to chalk the cues but that would prove hard to do because the alumni beat me to almost every turn. Still, the chalk that Livestrong handed out in 2009 when Lance Armstrong returned to cycling would prove useful.
We were comfortably in the lead until Anthony dropped a chain and Jeff Graves' group came flying by. And Jeff's group would lead the way the rest of the day.
After donated Papa Johns pizza in Berwyn Heights, I joined Jeff's group to chalk some turns on the Anacostia River Trail. Things went perfectly.
|Shut Up Legs|
When we reached the Washington Monument, Jeff asked if we could do some bonus miles around Hains Point. So we did -- which is what I did last year to Jeff's group -- without them knowing. But this group was much more refreshed and ready for it.
We reached the host in Alexandria and waited for the other groups. Erin's group, which I left, missed a cue and went across the Memorial Bridge instead of 14th Street Bridge but no big deal. I would not call that "lost."
Rain threatened and we had a few sprinkles but that was all. This is a great group of young people representing the 4K and they will do well. Ride safe my friends!