30 Mile TdC route with Team Red

We met at MiraCosta College in Cardiff and rode the 30 mile route for the Tour de Cure today. The riders were all members of Team Red or Red Riders.The weather was fantastic and the ride was smooth.

Here is my ride data. As you can see we had a good steady pace for most of the ride. Everyone did really well on the ride, considering some of the riders have been riding nothing but the sofa since the holidays.

I’ll post some pictures, so check out the Flickr stream. Click

Next up; March 27th, also from MiraCoasta College, we;ll be riding the 55 mile route with the support of CCSD. We’ll meet at 8:00am for this one so CCSD can brief us on the rules of the road, get waivers signed and do equipment checks. Remember this ride is for members of Team Red and Red Riders only. If you are interested in becoming a member of Team Red send me a message and I’ll tell you how to go about it.. sdvelosocial@gmail.com (You don’t want to be a Red Rider if you can help it, that is why I ride)


Co-Captain Ben Wojcik





Great Day for a Train Ride

Well, we did it, we even got Markus to the train station at 7:15am. Once again the Surfliner was on time and very easy to board. The conductor pointed out two cars with bike racks which made it slightly easier than las time when we just put them in an empty baggage car. Fantastic ocean views on the trip north, we discussed the exercises the Marines were doing and got to see parts of the coastline the train passes that you don’t get to see from a car.

The weather was absolutely gorgeous, clear blue sky, bright warm sun and just a little breeze. I’m not going to go into lyrical detail about the sublime weather and streets of smooth glass free bliss. You get the point, yes you should have been with us. We mad a stop at Revo Cycles Espresso & Bicycles to refill our bottles and get a pick up from some good espresso.Nice place next time you’re in Dana Point check it out.

The breeze picked up a little more when we got to San Clemente but it was tail wind and we sailed through the state park in a double line with Markus and Bobby pulling the entire way at about 24 to 25 mph with little effort. I sat in and was practically whisked along with no expenditure of energy. I know for some of you that is not a really fast pace but we were just out for a good long ride not measuring ourselves against each other or anyone else.

We made it through Camp Pendleton with one flat tire. @bikecrave Jeff Bean flatted just before we got to Edson Range recruit area. @distractionmgmt and I went back but he needed little assistance and was soon back on the road dropping us and chasing the others who had gapped us. Now I know how Jan Ulrich felt when he did the ‘honorable thing’ and waited for Lance he crashed only to be dropped as soon as Lance caught back on.

Into the Oceanside Harbor for water and snacks and then straight down the coast to Java Depot for coffee and conversation. Some of the guys Bobby, Glen and Markus decided to pick it up and measure off from Encinitas to Solana Beach but that is not unusual at the end of a long ride. We all gathered for coffee except Jeff Rowe who had pealed off in La Costa to head for home since he was the only one to have ridden his bike to the train station in the morning.

Once again this crew of riders had provided me and each other with another terrific day in the saddle on another seemingly flawless southern California day. Check out my photos here and Markus has many photos of his So Cal rides and some video here and here.

Join us next time, and please invite an old slow climber to keep me company in the Lanterne Rouge position.


Co-Captain Ben Wojcik



Fooled me once

I thought today was going to be an easy day and was feeling good about that since, I had almost no time in the saddle this week. @VeloTutor’s wife was visiting from Texas and we were going to give her a nice friendly spin to show her what great guys Bobby had joined.

Alas, being from Texas they decided that the low 40s was a little too chilly for their blood. They did; however, come to Ryan Bros Coffee to meet every one and wish us a good ride. Also meeting us at Ryan Bros was @awkowal, Tony, his friend Juan and Erik Sjogren, of the Carbon Militia. He didn’t ride with us this time as he is still recovering from being hit by, you guessed it, an F150.He did introduce two of his friends, Jeff (yes another one and yes he climbs well) and Rat (that’s the name he introduced himself with but his real name is Andre Ratso Villa). These guys were strong and it was great fun to have them along. Thanks for joining us guys hope you can join us again.

This left us with an opportunity to reroute the ride.Luckily, Palomar was out because the snow level was very low and that means lots of people going up to see the snow with no experience driving in those conditions.Plus none of us had chains for our tires.

We, Jeff, decided the Half-Century route would give us some fantastics views today. He was exactly right, check out the Flckr link. What can I say it was cold, it was hot and we climbed and climbed as the route demands. We stopped in Rainbow and all of us old guys watched in wonder as Juan devoured a caramel apple covered with white chocolate and drizzled with milk chocolate. Yeah I did get a good look at it. Oh, to be young and skinny again.

That brings up a point, we had four new riders today and all of them dropped me on every climb.When are some other old fat guys going to join us so I have a chance to give up my Lanterne Rouge status.

So you already guessed I was last up the Champagne climb and was able to partially redeem myself on the Deer Springs / Twin Oaks run in to the finish. We hung out at Ryan Bros for quite a while reliving the ride and wondering how we managed two loops of this ride just last September. We also talked Tour and doping and other things. It was a very good day.

Thanks to everyone who rode today for a great ride and special thanks to everyone for waiting for me once again on the climbs.


Co-Captain Ben Wojcik



Dual Post – Palomar Mountain Two Ways & Torrey in the Mist

Palomar Mountain Two Ways

On February 5th 2011, World Nutella Day BTW, Bike Crave hosted a tweet-up ride to do two of the main grades of Palomar Mountain. From all accounts it was a rousing success! They has eight riders; @bikecrave, @cyclefilm, @rideescapade, @aviattorr, @VeloTutor, @gman92069, @distractionMgmt and visiting from his cave in the Mountains @cyclepath55.

What a group, never been glad to be at a memorial before this day; way too fast for me. They met at Rincon Casino as usual and then climbed South Grade, at this point some went to the observatory and then descended South Grade making it Palomar Mountain 1 way. I would definitely have been with this group. The others descended East Grade and then turned back up the same way. Big drop back down South Grade, apparently the switchbacks are not sufficiently sharp enough nor steep enough for Markus to need brakes. He told me today that Palomar was a no brake descent, huh??

Photos of the Palomar Two Ways here: Click

Torrey in the Mist

Bike Crave scheduled a recovery ride for the day after the Palomar Two Ways, I thought it was perfect since I didn’t ride Palomar I would be fresh and they would be tired and sore; in other words, about even. Here is how Jeff described it in the Twtvite:

Targeted 9 a.m. roll-out from Caffe Positano in Rancho Santa Fe. Take in some lovely rollers of RSF before heading            over to the coast and checking the surf along 101. Soft pedaling after a solid day on Palomar Mountain. Approx 3              hours in the saddle for this Sunday excursion.

You will notice words like “soft pedaling” thrown in there but I can’t recall ever actually doing any soft pedaling.

Another great turn out; @bikecrave, @cyclefilm, @rideescapade, @VeloTutor, @distractionMgmt, @fittecheric and @oneonfire -Tony DiLorenzo an amazing rider who’s fitness is remarkable. We met in the lovely village of Rancho Santa Fe at Caffe Positano. Another great little local coffee spot, bring cash or head down the street to the ATM cause they don’t take debit cards as Eric and I found out on our first trip and Bobby Griffith found out today.

As soon as we started I knew that it wasn’t going to be pleasant. With Jeff Rowe along and the turn up three witches I knew we were headed for  the dreaded Zumaque. Half a mile at 9.5% average gradient, not pleasant for a Clydesdale like me.

Then we had a nice cruise back to the coast. We stopped on Manchester Ave for water and food after meeting James Stout and losing Jeff Rowe to family time. Here Jeff Bean let us know that we had been too frisky and that meant we would have to ride Torrey Pines inside. He also said we would paceline it south but I tried to disrupt that as much as possible so I would have some strength left to do the climb. I was not effective!

We stopped at the bottom of Torrey to fill bottles and empty bladders. What isn’t that somewhat poetic?? Anyway Jeff decided our relationship was at the partially open door peeing stage so I told him that I felt that it would then be OK for me to openly break wind. We’re progressing nicely toward swapping bibs.

What can I say, I climbed the inside faster than last time at a higher wattage and lower heart rate. They still had to wait for me at the top. Markus was on his way back with oxygen but I met him only a hundred yards of so from the top. I bombed down Torrey like always but this time Jeff sprinted after my attack and held my wheel all the way down. That is our favorite part of the ride.

We headed down 56 and up El Camino and then back out San Dieguito and eventually back up to the village for coffee and talk.

I couldn’t have thought of a better way or better people to kick-off Super Sunday with. Thanks guys!


Photos of Torrey in the Mist: Click

Tour de Cure Kick Off Party

WOW! I was blown away by the turnout for the pre-party training ride. During the briefing it appeared there were 30 riders in the parking lot, but as we rolled it became apparent the number was closer to 50.

The weather couldn’t have been better, OK, maybe it could have been just a few degrees warmer. In light of the cyclone approaching Northern Australia and the ‘killer’ storm fore-casted for most of the country it seems petty to complain that it was sixty-eight degrees and it would have been nicer if it were seventy.

So we rode through Pacific Beach to the La Jolla Cove, stopped for a water, food and nature break before returning on a more coastal but slightly hillier route to Phil’s BBQ.

The party was already going with the ADA and KPRI giving away some great door prizes when I returned with the broom-wagon. The atmosphere was electric, the bar was open and soon the food was served. Can’t ever complain about the food served at Phil’s it is after all a San Diego landmark. A short program ensued with Kaitlin sharing her moving diabetes story and more swag given away including a 30″ Sony 3-D TV with a home theater system and tickets to the Eric Clapton show.

Again this was the best Kick-Off party in my three-year relationship with the Tour de Cure.

Additionally;  six riders signed up for Team Red including a couple who are already giving me a run for my fundraising dollar.  I will attribute this increase in membership to the snazzy jerseys that Raelynn and I were wearing on the training ride. Probably more her than I but I’ll still claim some responsibility for recruitment.

I have added a new set to Flickr!, so check them out.

Training Ride & Kick-Off Party

Most of you will know all ready I am on the volunteer committee for the American Diabetes Association Tour de Cure in San Diego. The actual event is May 7th 2011 and this year is the 20th anniversary. I do many things in my capacity as a volunteer but one of my primary objectives is to increase awareness for the event and increase ridership resulting in more money raised to find a cure and defeat diabetes. My personal connection is through family members living with Type II diabetes and my own pre-diabetic diagnosis last year.

If you are interested in following my efforts on behalf of the Tour de Cure you may follow me on Facebook asSanDiegoTdC, on my Tour de Cure Team Site or on twitter as @SanDiegoTdC.

As for this weeks event SDVeloSocial (me) will be riding in the Tour de Cure training ride prior to the Kick-off Party starting and ending at Phil’s BBQ on Sport’s Arena Blvd. The ride will be 25 miles and no one will be left behind. After the ride it will be time to party with free Phil’s eats, a live broadcast by 102.1 KPRI, and lots of great give-aways.

Registration will be reduced, and if you do not have a family or corporate team already you can join Team Red and reap all the benefits. Once again the Team Red site is here. Click

If you plan on attending please RSVP to afleming@diabetes.org the event is FREE but we need to have a rough estimate of attendees in order to provide enough food for everyone.

Don’t forget to RSVP

SDVeloSocial Half-Century Recap

It’s in the books,  good ride,  great friends and the weather couldn’t have been better. I was  in much better shape last September when we did two laps of this for the SDVeloSocial Century. I was cooked when we got back to Ryan Bros Coffee and called my wife for the broom wagon because I couldn’t face another mile of 5-7% climbing to get my heavy butt home.

Today’s ride was the largest of the SDVeloSocial rides so far. We had eight strong riders and me. @troymalone picked a good one for his maiden voyage, I hope he has recovered. @bobbygriffith made his second ride today and said he wishes he had found our group six months ago, thanks for the good words Bobby.The usual suspects made up the rest of the group @aviattorr, @bikecrave, @fittecheric, @gman92069, @rideescapade and our euro friend @cyclefilm.  Don’t forget to checkout his site to see what you missed today, everyone got a copy of EYES WIDE OPEN – The Making-of Cyclepassion 2011

So we met at Ryan Bros Coffee in San Marcos for a 9am roll out. We met another like-minded rider, OK, he’s a triathlete but we didn’t hold that against him. He rides with a group called the Carbon Militia in north county San Diego. We will join for a ride soon, I hope they make it to the Tour de Cure kick-off party.

Once everyone was assembled we rolled. If you have never ridden over N Twin Oaks to Gopher Canyon you should. Starts with a mellow climb with a twisty descent before it turns up steeply, the first +15% section of the day. At the top they waited for me and then we dropped down the steep side. If you are up for a challenge ride up this side +20% in two sections, blessedly short sections.

On to Circle R via Gopher Canyon, I hate this section of road, poor shoulder, narrow road and speeding traffic. Circle R went well, Glen rode it with me and we caught the others at the top, OK they waited for us. The weather was terrific, hard climbing without dripping sweat and clear sky made for terrific vistas on the way to Couser Canyon. Yes it’s still steep and yes I came up last where the guys were once again waiting for me.

We met a cyclist hater at the crest, at first we thought he was jesting when he told us we were all idiots. I thought he meant we were dumb to suffering up that climb but he made it clear when he said we shouldn’t be on that road at all because it was narrow and had no shoulder. Well some dander got up and told him to give it a rest, that we have an equal right to the road… He countered by wishing the roads would return to gravel because that would keep us off of them.  We finally left and tried not to let his ignorance dampen our spirits.

Glen once again helped me up Rice canyon, thanks buddy for keeping my hand off of the rip cord. At the Rainbow Oaks Market we re-hydrated and talked a little more about the hater. Then we started home. Down old 395, a very fast descent followed by a fast pace-line all the way to 76. Why we do that I’m not sure because the climb up to Lilac is probably harder than all the other climbs even though it is not the steepest. It just keeps going and going at about a steady 8%. At the top I met up with the group and onward we rolled, on another rapid descent.

At this point I was just in survival mode knowing I still had to climb from the Welk Resort to Deer Springs Road. I wasn’t the only one, Eric was having another bout of cramps and Troy was on the spiral down to bonktown. He and I were well behind the group when we reached Gopher Canyon. I did my best to pull him along the flat but his cadence was dropping.  He managed to get to Deer Springs Road, I’m not certain how, I’ve been to bonktown and it is not pretty. You certainly showed your determination today Troy, good show.

We did the usual high-speed pace line down Deer Springs Road back to Ryan Bros Coffee. OK, they dropped me at Buena Creek and I gave it my best alone as Eric had already gone solo because of his cramping. They managed about 25mph 27mph when Jeff was doing the pulling. I did catch them right at the end because they got caught at some lights.

Today was a terrific day of riding. Sorry I went long tonight, let me know if I need to write these up differently, I probably won’t change but you may feel better getting it off your chest.

Check the Flickr! link on the right for some pictures. Check Bobby’s blog for his impressions of the ride.

My Data

Bobby’s Data

Markus’ Data

Todd’s Data