Rapha Festive 500 2011 | Day 3 | 68.9 Miles

My 3rd day of the Rapha Festive 500 may have been my best yet.

Not the most miles but most smiles by far.

I rolled out around 7 to Ride’n’Roll on West Bay next to the Pinellas Trail.

Group ride

I love scoping bikes at races, rides and other events.  Like some sort of weather forecast…

You can surmise certain initial impressions about riders and what the day holds.

My verdict? Today would be fast.

Super great group this morning. Lots of teamwork, smiles and everyone waited for the single flat we had. #festive500

The group was big. Mostly comprised of experienced roadies, I felt comfortable in the peloton.

We slowly ambled our way northward towards the route John & I had done the day before.

Tempo? #rapha500

Speaking of John, he stuck out conspicuously in his hi-viz pHit pills kit.

Speaking of kits,  the Ride’n’Roll kits below sure stuck out as well.  Their team/club was out in force!

For @cass_kee, the Team Ride'n'Roll kits.

By the time our route reached its northern summit, we were in full on TT mode.

Maybe the hardest I’ll ape it all winter.

Below is the chase group as I fell back in after attempting to reel the ‘leaders’ in.

Right after I gave up my bridge the gap dream, the chase group. #rapha500

Luckily, the effort ended with a rest stop and i continued to get acquainted with local racers & riders.

First rest stop. It was tempo. Floridians Ape'n it #airportride style #festive500

While, at the rest stop and once back on the road.  I kept scoping out sweet rides.

Peek these Wiliers!

Wiliers

We had a steady spin back into Largo and I made sure to take my turns a the front.

Slow spin back to Largo

I swung by the store to grab my favorite recovery drink, chocolate milk!

#rapha500 #recovery

I can’t deny my brand choice wasn’t influenced by Steven of Boulder Velodrome‘s kit!  ; )

He hung on this hammer session fixed, which you know i can appreciate!

My last similar experience was at NAHBS but a brakeless century tops my list of not to be repeated feats.

Imagine If you were sponsored! @idontdohumans

well, after the ride slowly fragmented and the last few of us rolled back to the shop, I headed home.

I am grateful that my efforts for this contest have largely not been solo. Florida traffic is horrendous.

Most roads around here are three lanes.

Even with a bike lane the paranoia of a 97 year old careening a Cadaillac into my back plagues me.

See my new riding buddy? Thanks again @shakesmonroe!

But when even when on my own, i have a new riding partner.

Peek my new tattoo above by Shakes of Ink & Dagger Tattoo in Atlanta.

Family themed leg sleeve coming soon!

Below are my stats for the day.  I made it to spot 23 in the rankings.

Let’s see if I can end in the top 20!

Yesterday’s post is here and all photos here.

23rd place! #festive500 @rapha_n_america