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Paul's Bicycles Winston-Salem T2T Training Ride

Jack's picture

Paul's Bicycles training ride began on a beautiful summer's day with temps in the low 80s and a moderately sized group starting the 25, 36, and 50 mile loops. There were 6 skaters, who in the end splintered into individuals or pairs. Each, guided by their partner or own internal drive. The course, in my opinion, was the most demanding in terms of road surfaces which at times were very rough with some great climbs thrown in for good measure. A solo downhill at 39.0 mph prompted a whoop as the thrill of the day. It seems most courses we've done this year have been relatively smooth, whether by design or happenstance, this being the one exception.

I'd like to thank Valerie for the leg wrap which she artfully applied at the rest stop. Insisting, in a very nice way, that it would be wise. The abrasion, the result of a spasmo (spastic moment) on my part, was minor. Fortunately, my asphalt rolling techniques have developed to such a high degree over the years that although some loss of skin is involved, actual impact force and resulting soreness is minimized. A dubious skill, but a highly useful one, nonetheless.

Although, as previously mentioned, the skaters were split up, the camaraderie of others was still felt and the mutual experience shared.


andrewinnc's picture

Re: Fall

Hey Jack, sorry to hear about your fall. I can relate having took a major spill myself in the early spring of this year. Glad to see yall had such a good turnout and the roads were favorable (for the most part). Seems like there is almost always one section of pavement that is not too favorable to inliners. Happy skating.
roadskater's picture

Yo Andy

Yo Andy we've missed you out there. Saturday was split 3 ways almost from the start. 2 of us were not even quite there at the start, 4 of us stayed together only very few miles, and I think we must have come in solo, solo, 2 and 2. More details later in my report. BTW, speaking of injuries, if anyone has signed up for T2T and can't make it for any reason, be sure to contact the MS Society soon and let them know so they can release you from any fundraising obligations. But hopefully everyone will be feeling uninjured and ready to go by Sep 5 and 6. There are plenty of course support folk (SAG vans, motorbike course monitors, HAM radio ops) to keep track of us even if we're not with other skaters and to take us from one stop to the next if we need that, even. The Tour is such a no-stress event, the only times I've been wired were because of my attitude about myself, not the Tour's attitude about me. OK, and of course I also might be short on sleep and high on worry for company coming to town for the tour, but it's still good stress. Anyway, the Tour to Tanglewood has always been wonderful to skaters, indeed. It's a great day to see over a thousand cyclists mostly in a great mood because they're out doing something they love and helping others at the same time.
timv's picture

Paul's Training Ride

I'll second Andy's comments. Thanks for posting and I hope that you're still thinking of your injuries as minor. ("Minor injuries" are usually suffered by someone else!)

I didn't get out on the open roads until fairly late this summer, and I haven't been the gutsiest downhiller in the bunch on the training rides I've done. I've had some minor speed wobbles starting to happen and wondered how much of that might have been my legs getting a little tired and twitchy towards in the later part of the event, how much was an effect of wear to the inner faces of the wheels from aggressive T-stopping earlier on, how much more stable larger-diameter wheels or longer frames would be, etc, etc.

I'll be interested in hearing more about your experiences leading up to the incident. Maybe Tuesday. Take good care of the scrapes and scratches in the meantime, and thanks again for the report.

roadskater's picture

Speed Wobble and Wheel Size and Frame Length

Timv I'm sure you've heard me pontificate on everything, but just for the record, I've had 4x76, 4x80, 5x80, 5x84 and 3x100+84 setups. Once you try to learn double push, skating in some K2 4x80s on a short frame is tons of fun! As you know from autos and mobikes, the frame length makes a huge difference is turning and "push" and "squirreliness" and such. The 4x80 setup is sweet for carving, but I think it's the shorter frame that makes the difference, rather than the size of wheels. This same carvability is perhaps exactly speed wobble. On 4x80s Silver Hill outside Stone Mountain Village in Georgia is pretty exciting and a bit scary. Even on 5x80s I felt a bit like I was floating. On 5x84 frames, which are over 13 inches, maybe 13.5, I was amazed at how solid it felt. The same was true going up and over Stonewall Jackson inside Stone Mountain in the counterclockwise direction (from above). The point is that my 5x84 setup was incredibly solid feeling, even though the particular frame model was known to be not the strongest made. When I went to 3x100+84mm frames, I was surprised the first time over these spots again. I had that floating feeling again a bit, and was totally surprised. I was back to a 12.8 frame (same length as a 5x80mm frame) and at about the same height. I'd say that I'm a little less certain on the 3x100+84 setup when I go over Silver Hill. Add to that the slight increase in traffic over there, and I must admit that I softpedal it a bit (to use the bike term) at the top of Silver Hill. [Let me add that for several years I have adopted a policy of NOT tucking at the top of Silver Hill as well. It's a .75 mile downhill and staying in a tuck longer than necessary affects the 1.1 mile climb that follows in my opinion. So even when in a tuck, I'm trying to keep my legs bent but straighter than a severe tuck to keep them viable for the climb up to the rest stop and the 5-points at Lickety Split in Stone Mountain Village.] I'm still not certain that 3x100+84 is overall better than 5x84. I think it may be easier to climb on the 5x84 setup. For level ground, especially rough stuff, I think 100s are better. I'd like to try a 13.5" long frame with 100s or 110s on it. That might be the perfect setup, as long as just as low to the ground as 5x84. But if the double push is really important to you in terms of curvy swishy carves, that will be harder to do with a longer frame. With a longer frame you can still double push, but it will be a less curvy arc in general, in my opinion. This may actually be better of course! If the important part of the undercarve is straightening the underpush leg (and I think so), this can still be done of course!
eebee's picture


Jack I can't thank you enough for your expert roll. If you had scraped to a halt instead I would have tripped over you without a doubt. In fact, the way I remember, it was one of those slo-mo things: Oh there's a skater lying horizontally across my path - I don't have the time/agility/muscles to jump clear over him - guess I'm gonna have to kick him and trip - oh wow! He rolled right out of my path! - I wonder if he's ok... You bounced right back up! I'm glad it turned out to be nothing more than a flesh wound. I made my own skate (not to mention Blake's) completely miserable, being pounds heavier and out of shape from 2 weeks of vacation. We're talking sitting down in ant hills on the side of the road rather than facing the pain and misery of climbing yet another hill. I even walked up some of the gatorback hills in the grass. So by jumping into that training ride with both feet (honestly even the 35 miles would have been too much for me, much less the 40 we ended up with) I managed to scare and loathe myself back into training this week in the evenings :-) yay! I think our 2-person paceline hit 41.7 on that Friendship-Ledford hill. BTW: there's a big ridge at the bottom, but you'll be ok if your weight isn't on your toe wheels, unlike mine. My skates left the pavement at that ridge and slapped back down in a heavily-pronated bambi stance. Later I realized I had ripped my cue sheet in half on that hill.
roadskater's picture

Jack I Think I Saw You Spin Some Too

Hey Jack... What a spill and recovery! I think I heard you say out loud the answer to my unasked question...you said, "I have NO idea!" But it was clear that you were good to go, and even better to go than the rest of us still! I remember knowing I didn't even need to stop, just stop pushing, because you were up already. I wonder if I got any photos during this time!? We'll see. I've yet to look at the shots from Saturday, owing to that being an unexpectedly busy day with family events. Sunday was truly a day of rest, including Indian food, yum, and watching lots of PBS documentaries taped for educational purposes!
Jack's picture

Frames, Rolling, and Spins, Oh My

Good stuff on frame length, wheel sizes, etc., Blake. It's always good to have someone with first hand experience, explain these various trade-offs. I know I'm fairly old skool with the 5 x 80 13" frame setup, but I do like the stability, maneuverability, and climbability compromise. Honestly though, I was seriously wishing for 100s over the gatorback Saturday, they had to be better than what I had. 

Seriously glad I didn't get in anyone else's way during my mishap, that would have  upset me, not to mention the other person :-) I ended up finishing with Charles, the megafundraiser, talking to him for the last 3 or 4 miles, quite a guy. He had large praise for you Blake, and I concurred.

Rested Sunday, ran today (Monday), looking forward to Tuesday eve at Country Park.

P.S. looking for a source for Hyper Hyperformance +g  80mm wheels

BladesoFire's picture

Paul's Skate

Hey Jack Mike here. Thanks for your patience with the novice! I hit the rubber leg wall at about 33 miles and was not sure I was going to make it! I think I will start out much slower this time. Hope to see you in HP tomorrow!
Jack's picture

Hey Mike

Probably the toughest overall skate I had done all year as well. I can assure you, I have been where you were that day many times before :-) I just took a forced week off due to total fatigue, but think I should do ok Saturday. Just starting off slow as well and setting the pace as it comes. Looking forward to seeing you. Jack

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