Rapha Rides for Tohoku

Sunday, I participated in a race ride for charity.  Clearly, nothing is more charitable than a bunch of people gathering on a Sunday morning in the name of charity to do, uh, the same thing they would be doing anyway – riding their bikes.  To be fair, our donations were matched by both Rapha and Ride Studio Cafe in Lexington, where the ride originated, and proceeds go to the Japanese Red Cross.

I originally intended to provide you a jealousy-inspiring and media-rich ride report complete with photos, video, and a GPS map of where we rode.  Alas, my phone was not a cooperative tool in this endeavor, and I leave you with a medianemic account of a ride to who-knows-where.

The big unknown before the ride was how many people would attend such an event.  There were other scheduled Sunday rides, the hope of a Wells Ave. race (canceled on Friday), and an 8a.m. temperature of 31º to dissuade people for riding for Tohoku.  I assumed the $10 minimum donation wouldn’t be much of a deterrent, and judging by the multitude of $5k+ bikes line up outside Ride Studio Cafe before the ride, I was right.

Sadly, my only picture of the day.

In all, about 100 lycra-clad, Japan-supporting cyclists headed out on a route more convoluted than Michele Bachmann’s State of the Union rebuttal.  There were more than 100 turns on the provided cue-sheet – an average of one turn every 0.65 miles.  In fact, this was my one complaint of the ride: it was a nightmare route to follow if you weren’t with a group in which someone had an all-knowing GPS.

The roads, however, were pleasantly unfamiliar to me and it was great to glide along sparsely traveled roads instead of the mangled mess that are Boston streets.

For sure, this was an older group than I’m used to riding with, but with age comes money and with age comes – in this case – Cervélos, carbon wheels, and Garmin units as far as the eye can see.  One of the highlights of the ride was getting owned on a short climb by a woman who looked like she could have been my mom.  Ego deflated.

I could have been racing this weekend, but it was a nice change of pace to ride with the mature crew – and for a good cause, too!

Edit: Ride Studio Cafe posted their own ride report. The ride raised over $9,000 for the Japanese Red Cross which is awesome.  Their praise for the cue sheet makes me look like an a-hole for ripping on it, but I said what I said.

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One Response to Rapha Rides for Tohoku

  1. Old Grouper says:

    It was interesting for a first long ride of the year, and I did get lost for a bit – the
    cue sheet was particularly busy.
    But my only disappointment was that the average donation was only about $30
    (the sponsors were tripling donations up to $1000 per rider – how often does that happen in a charity ride?).

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