Many of you regulars here to iamtedking dot com will vividly recall Ryan from his mid ride explosion unequal to anything witnessed prior. This is perhaps how you stumbled upon Ryan on the internet and maybe some of you have continued to follow Ryan. In need of new bib shorts, he writes ride communiques. Yes, ride communiques, not race.
In similar fashion, I have a lot to cover and so rather than simply bullet pointing it, I will ride-slash-race communique here to efficiently cover all grounds. I can’t compete with RKelly, but I can still do this cause I feel like it. Mostly this allows me to write in the third person, so please allow King to begin.
The First Annual Ted King Tour of New England – A two bike, primarily off road journey between New England’s two finest states with 5 tough races over the course of just 12 days. (Yes, that’s seven rest days.)
– Stage 1. Wednesday 9/14 King victoriously races the season opening Wednesday night training series at Kingman farm presented by Seahuston. Is awarded oatmeal and chocolate chip cookies; his benevolence knowing no bounds, King shares cookies with all present.
– Local cyclocross prodigy Dylan McNicholas is fined 50 Swiss franKs for only putting in a quarter effort despite being so ill he dropped 6lbs overnight.
– Saturday 9/17 King attends an evening wedding with the reception at a brewery for ideal pre-race preparation – little to no sleep and something more than just a slight headache on Sunday morning ensues in three hour drive to Sunday’s venue.
– Stage 2. Sunday 9/18 King races the UCI(!) Green Mountain cyclocross race at Catamount in Williston, VT. Starting 3rd to last, King drops 3 positions and maintains DFL for 1/2 a lap. He then turns on the afterburners and crawls his way to 5th place.
– Post race video. You can see how this stage race unfolds over the course of this video.
– King is awarded most aggressive by a panel of himself for racing the entire thing stone-faced, as exhibited below. Don’t show the competition that you’re hurting nor horribly out of your element with odd facial gestures. The jury also heard of his previous night’s escapades and issued a high five.
– Monday 9/19 King and Kenda/5 Hour Energy’s Shawn Milne travel to Lyme, NH en route home from Vermont to slay mountain bikes with acquaintance turned friend, Joseph. General Classification leader King perform recon for next Sunday’s Vermont 50, a 50 mile mountain bike race in nearby Ascutney, VT. With the actual race route off-limits until race day, King scouts local knowledge that these Lyme trails mimic the terrain for next Sunday. (Race official’s editorial: Joe turns out to be exactly correct.)
– Stage 3. Wednesday 9/21 King continues to stage 3′s Catamount Wednesday Night Training Series. From his previous experience here the Sunday prior, King learns that starting last row is a bad idea. King therefore stages himself in the 2nd row in a field of about 60 riders, including all ages, all sexes, all abilities, and all bikes. Yes, bikes since a handful of folks race on MTBs. King goes on to win the race despite Al Donahue’s enormous late race surge, thereby cushioning his lead in the TFATTKToNE.
– King, however, is docked 8.4 points by pro cyclist/race official/race promoter/tattoo maven Adam Myerson for starting so near the front. Unbeknownst to King, apparently if you’re a “pro” you position yourself in the back during such training races. With a lot of stammering and very little substance to his argument, King squabbles futilely with officials that he was unaware of this offense, but to no avail. Beers on King.
– King curiously thinks that he is now a cyclocross racer after three fluke results. Mind you, he is yet to shoulder the bike because King is yet to see a proper uphill run or sand section. Saturday looms on the horizon as thick and dank as the impending deluge of a forecast. Uugh.
– Friday’s rest day brings King to Coach Danforth’s White Trash Club Med, as titled by Ben Higgins. Complete with rope swing, zip line, various ladders and log river crossings, a tree house, and rope bridge a la Indiana Jones, this place is awesome. The two young children who live here love it – so do us adult guests.
– Stage 4. Saturday’s NoreasterFest Cyclocross Race. Oh good grief, THAT’S what cyclocross is all about? Sheesh, axle deep mud sucks. Sand, absurd descents, mud sections in which you’re supposed to “drive” your bike, all add up to a horribly difficult outing for King. Starting mid-field, precipitously dropping backwards before learning a thing or two and picking off a few riders, King finishes the day in 18th. This photo exhibits the aftermath of a muddy CX race and this is after a leap into the lake for a quick bath.
–Stage 5. The crown jewel on the TFATTKToNE two weeks of excellence. Yes, the Vermont 50. Awake at 3:30am and racing getting underway by 6am, it is mysteriously dark at that time of day. In fact, it is still dark until around 6:40 when it’s time to open up the gas and really race… since participants without the benefit of a light can now see.
– Racing with a nice fellow named Neal from Connecticut, King and his breakaway companion Neal opened up a gap on the field for the opening ten miles. On an extended climb and sensing his partner in crime fading, King applied pressure to the pedals and went solo for the remaining 40 for the WIN. 700 cyclists and 500 runners can’t be wrong, the Vermont 50 is incredible!
– I would like to say, “Courtesy of Strava, the Vermont 50 race looks like this!” …however much of this race takes place on private land and apparently we don’t want to irk the folks who own this land. So instead of showing bugging those folks, let’s look at the Burlington NoreasterFest CX race instead.
And best yet, I won a pair of prizes: a headlamp and a custom jar of Vermont-50 Maple Syrup!