Sunday, August 30, 2009

Wanna be's

A few weeks back I passed a couple of shaved-leg racer-wanna-be's at the beginning (meaning before I was even warmed up) of my commute. Now I know that racers aren't always going to blow my doors off, they're likely working their training plan and I'm not relevant. What I do know is that they are easy to spot at any speed because they are smooth and steady. These guys were neither.

They pulled onto the road about a quarter mile ahead of me and I rolled up onto the second one's wheel for a moment waiting for traffic to clear enough to pass them. When I did the second one made some snotty comment about stealing their draft.

I like encountering racers on my commute. I observe them and sometimes learn something. They are nearly always examples of road courtesy; racers know that they only get down the road by protecting their riding mates and receiving protection in return.

After passing them, the first one sort of freaked out and jumped up on his pedals and tore out down the road like he had big money on a sprint finish. It wasn't a bad effort but he looked pretty goofy when he ended up missing the turn onto the bridge. He didn't touch the floor, he just was going too fast for the U turn and rolled past it as his buddy started shouting at him to turn.

I wasn't racing them, I wasn't even warmed up but this hairy legged, oversized backpack carrying commuter passing them without even breaking a sweat must have just been too much. I had to laugh since if I had been warmed up and interested I could have given Mr. stomp-on-the-pedals a run for his money without a problem even with my loaded pack.

I just turned and proceeded over the bridge but I glanced over my shoulder several times just to watch them huffing along trying to catch me. The bridge is a little over a mile long and when I made the turn at the end I never saw them again. Now I'm not complaining about them, I just find it a bit entertaining that they made it so clear that it wasn't OK for me to pass them but then couldn't catch up to me when I wasn't even trying to out run them.

Wanna be's; gotta love 'em. At least they are out there riding...


  1. I think they're first name is Fred... but that's just a wild guess.

  2. Oh, and the next time you see them, politely direct them to this post by the BikeSnobNYC. It is enlightening:

  3. Next time, if there is one, pass them. As you do say, "I'm just coasting." That'll really get them huffing and puffing.

  4. Well, I shave my legs and race, but I'm also 60 years old. I do pretty well nonetheless. The other day a hairy legged young guy on a bike thought he'd show me up. After much huffing and puffing, he said, "you're pretty good, are you category 3?" I replied, "I was once Category 1, but now I'm an old guy." He said, "You're flying." I replied, "I'm having a rest day...", and then I dropped him.

  5. Badger - Yes, Fred, I'm sure of it and the BSNYC post is a good one for the occasion. Great retort before dropping the huffy puffy dude.

    Snakebite - LOL, I'll have to try that next time.

  6. I think that's what Snakebite really says to the guys on aero bars on the bike trail here.

  7. Anonymous3:43 AM

    Wow, you're so cool thinking you are better than any other bike rider...I want to be just like you when YOU grow up.

  8. Dirk - I suspect he does while passing the aero bar guys on his Big Dummy.

    Anon - Funny, telling me to grow up with a juvenile comment. Thanks for the humor...

  9. I like the missing the turn part.


  10. And now imagine the fun when you are a female rider and have such an encounter ... I mean, really, it's still ok to be beaten by another guy, even if he's got unshaved legs - sort of - but beaten by GIRL??? LOL I always chuckle inside.

  11. BN - I had a hard time not laughing out loud at him over that one.

    Groover - I have no issue being passed by a GIRL, in fact I often enjoy it for the improvement in the scenery :-0

  12. Where are you working now? That bridge is on my daily commute and no I was not the shaved legged roadie you past, though I have no doubts you could hand me my you know what with no effort.