Hangover 100 ride

Sunrise over the Intracoastal as taken from Flagler Drive.

55mi. What started as a slow 14 mph slog ride in the dark with a group of 25 from Tri Running Sports ended in a high-speed finish with four of us returning from downtown West Palm Beach. We met at the store at 6:30, had donuts and bagels, and left heading south on A1A. No traffic made US-1 easy to ride on, then Singer Island to the Blue Heron Bridge. Austin road with us to the bridge then turned back. Once over the bridge, the roads were horrible. We snaked through as many back streets as possible to avoid US-1, but many drainage bumps and holes in the pavement made it tough to ride smoothly. We picked up a few riders along the route, people knew where we were heading so they came down and met us. We went onto Flagler Drive and rode south as if tracing the Palm Beach Marathon route. Around the canal and into Lake Worth, I noticed that at our slow speed, we would not be able to start at Bryant Park with the group coming north. We got to 5th st and saw the huge group of riders heading our way – too late for a pee break or food stop. I rode with Lanae and spent a few minutes talking with a few others on the ride down. Once the group turned north to rise with the Lake Worth crowd, I saw Dave and Michael that had started early, stayed up from and assumed I missed the ride. Similar thoughts from me, I told Lanae they would be coming but we hadn’t seen them so they didn’t make it I thought.  We rode mostly together back up through Lake Worth, into WPB and back onto Flagler Drive. Dave and I stopped for a rest room break in a park, then scrambled to catch the group. We rode up Flagler past First Baptist church, over the Okee bridge and right on the road leading to Flagler House. We caught up at the next traffic light, good thing because there were over 200 bikes rolling north through Palm Beach, I wanted to be nestled in with them so I could get through the traffic lights, etc. I met Robin Goldberg while jostling for space on the skinny road north of Royal Poinciana Way. We talked and she followed the small Juno group back over onto WPB to stop and have a rest at Starbucks. Michael and Dave had to be back earlier than I for a change, so they collected Lanae, Carol McGrath and I to ride north. Now with a hefty tailwind  we rode quickly up Flagler Drive, onto the WPB side streets, over the Skyway bridge, the crummy Riviera Beach neighborhood, the Blue Heron Bridge, and up Singer Island fast! I spoke with Carol about the Singer Island tri coming back in June, and then she dropped back. We finished by riding up US-1 and onto the beach road through Juno. Back at the store, I wanted to use a men’s room but no luck – it was locked. George’s efforts to get the store to be the ride starting point will be a failure for this reason. My speedometer said 55 miles for the 100k, I guess I could have stretched it and rode back to Lake Worth if I was concerned about the miles ridden.

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