Last year I rode my first 24 Hours of Booty not knowing anyone in attendance other than through a cyber invitation from Bryan McMillan. We had never met before then. But I had a good time and soon discovered some of the 4K for Cancer riders were there as well.
|Some of Team Fight|
This year I decided to be a team captain. Officially we were Team Jake's Snazzy Pistols, in honor and in memory of Jake The Hero Grecco. I signed up his step-father, Gary Gravina, my sister, Betsy Sherry, and John Phipps, a friend I met a couple of years ago while riding the Saint Mary's Century (or was it the Southern Maryland Century?).
|Barry, Betsy, John|
A couple of days before the event I heard from Gary who mixed up the event dates and could not attend. That was a big set back. But I still looked forward to the event.
|Bootyville early morning|
Last year I knew no one in advance. This year some of my Key to Keys Teammates attended as well as last year's 4K riders, Jeff Graves and Erin Mack.
I decided to tent, still not sure that was a good idea, but arrived early enough to set up the tent. With not much time before the start, I joined fellow survivors at the front of the line for the Survivor Lap, which I think is really half a lap. Meg Shipman, Paul Lemle, Jessica Tanner, and Thomas Backof from the Key to Keys ride, all were at the front.
After the first lap (I won) I dropped back and rode with Betsy. I introduced her to all the K2K riders I could find.
While I rode at a decent pace, I talked more than I did last year and didn't rack up the miles. I also had more fun.
I carried a wooden whistle which sounds like a train whistle. As I approached the kids that were riding I gave it my best train whistle sound. That always got smiles. It slowed me down but that was OK.
I was invited to the Yellow Jersey Dinner and took Betsy as my guest. It was the same dinner as the other riders got but with speakers. Less riding.
After 6:00 p.m., my friend, Adam Lewandowski, came over from Race Pace Bicycles to work and brought a Trek Domane for me to test ride. Even less riding while we switched pedals and put my lights on that bike.
By 9:00 p.m. John had reached 100 miles and was checking out for the night. He had a hotel. I was envious.
Last year I rode until the Midnight Pizza arrived and my light gave out. I had 120 miles at that point.
This year I had to pick up the pace to get 100 miles before midnight.
After Midnight Pizza I decided to get some sleep. This would not be the year I would actually ride for 24 hours. I don't know if I would try that. Maybe some day.
By 6:00 a.m. I was awake and went out on the course at 6:30. I rode for a bit with Brock Yetso, President and CEO of the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults.
Breakfast, by invitation, was a Survivors Breakfast. It was the same breakfast as everyone else got but we had speakers. More down time. (This is not to diminish the speakers. They were all good.)
After breakfast I had a great surprise. Last year during the 4K for Cancer, Team Portland was greatly effected by Jake's story, and ultimately, his passing. I had met Jake's Pedal Pal, Chey Hillsgrove, on the day they left Baltimore, but had been friended on Facebook by one of the riders, Trish Kallis.
And after breakfast there she (Trish) was. She called my name. I was taken aback certainly not expecting to see her here. It was great to finally meet her.
|Trish Kallis, Barry Sherry|
Late morning we tore down our campsite. More time off the bike. But I rode when I could. Ultimately I got in another 41 miles before we all joined in for the last lap.
Great weather, great friends, and fighting cancer. It really doesn't get any better than this.