Saturday, March 2, 2013

Do's and Don'ts of the Thursday Night World Championship

With DST a week away, that means the Thursday Night World Championship is just a couple of days after!  I love this ride and the craziness that us wannabe cyclists have made it into.  I know not everyone comes to this ride looking to put everything they have into it, but for those of you that like to ride in the front or might someday want to here are some do’s and don’ts:

1.  Don’t make any attempt to socialize with anyone of different cycling skills, gender, or bike preference in the parking lot prior to the ride.  Triathletes have their area, road racers have theirs, and recreational riders have their spot.  If you’re new, there’s a shitty spot in the corner where you can stand until someone decides to respect you.

2.  Don't ride in your aerobars when you’re behind anyone in a paceline unless you want to crash into the guy in front of you and take all of us down with you (for triathletes only).

3.  Don’t attack or attempt a breakaway at any point prior to where folks turn off for the sissy short loop.  Even if you are successful, nobody will take you seriously and you will be hunted down like a dog as you have violated the rule of hammering during mandatory initial social mileage.

4.  Do let stronger riders in your slot in the paceline if you’re struggling.  It's in your best interest to let them wear themselves out in the front anyway.

5.  Do be prepared at every RIGHT turn for a sudden spike in power.  There are attacks at every right turn.  Every.  Right.  Turn.  These attacks are also mandatory, though not necessarily by the same person.

6.  Do roll through pole position even if you’re not strong enough to take a pull.  Just allow yourself to ease into the pole position and immediately roll off to the left.  Pulling off behind the leader as he pulls off is a sissy move and only disrupts the rhythm of the paceline.

7.  Do give an elbow flick to signal the guy behind you when you are ready to wuss out on your turn at the front.  If you can work a middle finger into it as well, that's a bonus.

8.  Do point out obstacles in the road for us behind you.  We’re getting tired and punchy and we need all the help we can get to stay upright.

9.  Do take the Thursday Night World Championships seriously.  It IS a World Championship and points are being tallied by somebody.  I don’t know who, but somebody. 

10.  Don’t sprint to the Greenville city sign just before Hastings Ford.  We don’t do that anymore.  It’s a miracle nobody got killed sprinting on this section of highway 264.  The last sprint is at Bradford Creek Golf Course.

11.  Do feel free to keep the pace lifted when we turn on to 264 to head back into town, but understand that this is officially the cool down point so nobody will care or feel like you just dropped us.

12.  Do talk all the smack you want.  Refer to #9 if you’re unclear as to why.

13.  Don’t declare that you need to pee and you want everyone to stop and wait for you.  That’s for winter rides and other stuff.  Stop to pee and you just get yourself dropped.  If you catch up though, much respect.

14.  Do have everything you need to fix your own flat.  We’ll probably stop with you to help and make it look like it's a respect thing, but really we're just using you as an excuse to stop because we're exhausted.

15.  Don’t cry like a little girl if you get dropped and you’re all alone and you don’t know the way back.  You should have learned the course, which is posted on EC Velo’s website.

16.  Don't be the smelly guy.  Nobody likes to ride behind you. It's very simple: your clothes should be clean when you put them on.  After that, you're free to soil them as you please.

17.  Do play head games.  Blabbing to everyone that you have a race on Saturday and you're just going to "spin" easy tonight, and then attacking at the first right hand turn with everything you have is just plain good tactics.

18.  Don't take it personal if you are the new guy in a slick racing kit and you feel like all the attacks are directed at you.  They are.  We're just giving you a chance to earn respect.

That should pretty well cover it.  See you at the TNWC!