Ask anyone who knows me well and they’ll tell you that I’m very keen on efficiency. My life’s to-do list is lengthy which leaves little time for dillydallying. As professional cyclists we’re told don’t stand when you can sit and don’t sit when you can lie down. That’s sage advice – meanwhile in the La La Land in which Ted King romps we live by the mantra, Don’t lie down when you can do something and don’t do something when you can do many somethings. All at once.
Therefore when the stars align and the intricate schedules of six very good friends overlap for one special Saturday in July, this not only marks a reason to celebrate, but it serves as excellent reason to go for what amounts to two massive bike rides… in one day. Naturally, a two-for-one is the picture of efficiency.
Or the 200 Not On 100, clearly. Dang, you know it’s a decently large day in the saddle when it doesn’t even fit on this map.
I won’t repeat myself, so the full song and dance (that is, the reason why this ride came about) can be found here. This ride is simply a ride. Getting out with friends, tackling a head-slappingly long route, throw some requisite dirt into the mix, precede that with a road trip followed by late night antics the night before, toss in some of New England’s most scenic and historic roads, and you’ve got yourself a soul-ride. Racing bikes for a career is truly incredible and I’m humbled and blessed to be in that company. Massive soul rides like this, however, are one of the primary reasons why I ride a bike.
The 200NotOn100 gained plenty of regional and then national recognition. The day is characterized by a whole slew of mini stories, which collectively surround this special Saturday building it into what it ultimately became. One of my favorite of these stories is that of a Kathy and her family of four who caught wind of the original 200 on 100 ride and rode it over the course of five days with her husband and two young boys. Staying apprised of our 200 on 100 ride, which became the 200 NOT on 100, this Saturday they flew their plane from Massachusetts, took aerial photos of noteworthy segments of the route, found a landing strip on the course and were out emphatically cheering with posters in hand(!), before it was wheels-up and they flew on to Portland to be part of the “unofficial welcome committee.” Another great story is Rich who found us right after the ride’s high point on the Kancamagus Highway and with a special gift bag delivery of NH maple syrup and Moat Mountain tall boys to help prevent the mid-ride crack. Again with two very young children in arms. I reckon the word is getting out!
Chomping a Fluffernutter, Ryan graciously accepts the maple&Moat gift bag. Thanks Rich.
While not a charity ride, it has enormous potential to go in that direction – as is, in addition to the t-shirts we’re selling, we passed around a hat at the wicked post-ride BBQ and collectively have generated close to $4,000, entirely for the Colorado Red Cross.
Community. That’s what the ride is all about. It’s the cycling community in Colorado to which so many of us are connected. Moreover, the sense of community last Saturday rivals anything I’ve experienced on two wheels. A dozen riders before the sun was even up in Burlington joined us rolling out of Burlington, while plenty of riders latched on for five minutes or fifty miles. The reception upon our arrival at Scratch Baking Co. was phenomenal, including my family, childhood neighbors, my best friend, his wife, and newborn son, the incredible community inherently built around Scratch, the Healthy Kids Happy Kids Me organization, folks I’ve known from my local bike shop for a dozen years, supporters, fans, and a whole bunch of others. Cycling is a community like no other.
Oh, another noteworthy addition to the day was watching Andy and Dave roll into Scratch more than three hours later. These two intrepidly set out with us at 6am from Burlington, were dropped before mile 50, but kept on truckin’ to arrive in Portland at 8pm. Incredible. And now a photo montage.
Some groggy eyes at 5:58am.
Good morning. ilovermont.
VT farm roads veiled in morning fog.
Only time we touched last year’s route all day.
Chandler tucks into the draft to ensure he can make the full 200 miles via scoot’.
Watching Tim drink maple syrup at the 1/2 way point to dig out of the bonk inspires the mega-sammy: speculoos, Fluff, and maple almond butter. White bread, naturally.
Maybe I’m gaining something of a reputation for Fluff? Nearing the top of Bear Notch.
Ryan ain’t hallucinating yet.
Support staff and the 3 riders, 200 Not On 100 complete!
Burgers, brats, beers, and plenty of this. Recovery food, my friends.
Oh right, these guys rolled in three hours later. Andy and Dave, you’re a couple of heroes!
Community. Cycling is community. Thank you. Thank you family, supporters, folks who made the signs on the side of the road, mid-ride delivery crew, our sincere “Friends” at Skratch, Scratch Baking Co., Strava, Allagash, Cutaway, and our friends from Maine to Colorado. Be safe, be well. Thank you.