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10th Annual Tour de Lions Bike Ride Inline Skate, Grays Chapel, NC, May 16, 2009

eebee's picture

It'll soon be time for the lovely but hilly Tour de Lions. Info at tourdelions.org. This year it's at a NEW LOCATION near Grays Chapel. See below for details.

I took a quick look at last year's photos and saw one of Andy and Melinda. Unfortunately it's titled "skaters have to watch downhills". Well we do watch the downhills as we're clocking 20 to 40 mph, but honestly we welcome them, trying to get up enough momentum to carry us up the next hill. However, neither Melinda nor Andy look like they're freaking out at any downhills in the photo. They look totally relaxed.

Distance options are 10, 20, 40 & 75 miles. This event is superbly planned and executed with a whole village full of volunteers for breakfast, rest stops, lunch and dessert, as well as ample sponsors so that most entrants get a door prize. Organizer Fred Lineberry usually goes out of his way to ensure smooth pavement with minimal side-roads and intersections, and a few years ago at least, I remember not having to break much or have to be on the look-out for any glazed motorists pulling out in front of me. 

The start this year has been moved to Providence Grove High School at 5555 Mack Lineberry Rd., in Climax, NC for more parking and bathrooms, since the event has grown. Hmm, does that mean the legendary '6 mile climb' back to the finish is no more?!

Google maps finds the address best if you take out the town name but leave in the zip like this... 5555 MACK LINEBERRY RD, 27233


roadskater's picture

Thanks for adding an event! I need help with that, ha!

Thanks for adding Tour de Lions. It's a great one, and they love the skaters, it seems. They're very welcoming and this is how we were invited to Tour de Kale, and where we met Andy, too. A good day I'd say.
MikeB's picture

what distance will you do?

5/16/09 is in my calendar for this event albeit tentative. Will you do the 40? (probably my max) And may just consider the 20 if the hills on the TdL website are as nasty as they look.
roadskater's picture

Probably 40 Miles or More Not Sure

We'll typically do 30 or more when we can, but sometimes we've opted for shorter of course. Since there's a 75 miler, we'll be somewhat confident that we'd make it back from 40 miles before the last 75 mile rider finsishes, so we're a bit more comfortable picking the 40 miler in that case. The folk at this race are very supportive and it's good countryside so we'll try to do 40 I bet, but I think there may be a skater or two who show up for the 20. Andrewinnc? Are ye out da?
eebee's picture

No worse than TdK

My memory of the Tour de Lions hills is that they are steep but not all that long (except for the old finish, which seemed to drag on forever!). I think Tour de Kale's hills were just as steep, but way longer :-). We used to enjoy the 30 miler but that has been discontinued. It was the perfect distance for easing back into long-distance roadskating after the winter. Unfortunately I have also had a track record for not being able to haul myself out of bed on Tour de Lions morning - not used to those cold, early workouts. With this great event, however, the afternoon remorse is never worth the lie-in.
roadskater's picture

Yeah 40 May Be Optimistic

We'll have to see how it goes between now and then. That 44 we did the other day was not hilly by piedmont standards (being on a rail trail). The 40 might put a hurtin' on us! Of course that might be good.
skatey-mark's picture

Probably 40 miles

As much as I'd love to do 75, I probably won't be up for that yet. Or, rather, would probably finish well past the last bikes which I try never to do at a cycling event. Since they're showing us a courtesy by allowing us to skate, I think it's reasonable that we pick distances where they don't have to wait around for us any longer than it takes for the last cyclist to come in. At the rate I'm going, that may be my first roadskate of the season... (Hopefully not!) - SM -
roadskater's picture

Yes It's Good to Finish Unlast

There have been exceptions, like the later in the season Tour de Tammy 2008 (where they practically begged us to skate as long as we wanted and could, and had a dinner table set up for us on our return), but we try to pick a distance where we can finish before the last rider of the other distances. This can be hard to guess, since the slower cyclists often don't feel comfortable taking the longer distances. You might be out there knowing you left riders at the last rest stop, but they might either turn onto the short course, or even abandon, making you last on the road, even when you're careful. Often the slower cyclists don't want to "be in the way" so they won't do as much as they could for fear of being last as well (even if they could make it...one reason the Roadskakter.net Carolina Century hopes to support century attempts by slower cyclists). I don't mind if other skaters go for the long distance even if that makes them last, but I agree with Mark's take on it, Barring special arrangements and circumstances, it feels better to be "in the house" when others arrive rather than to have that feeling that everything's packed and ready to go when you arrive back at the start/finish.
roadskater's picture

The Night Before Tour de Lions

Final decisions in the a.m. of course but...here's a table of the hourly forecast for climax, nc... http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?CityName=Climax&state=NC&site=R... here's the hourly forecast graph... http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?CityName=Climax&state=NC&site=R... Call me any time after 6a if curious whether we're going. We hope to try for 40 miles if all goes well and will punt to 20 if need be. Skateylove, roadskater

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