Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The McFlurry Incident

I got about 1/3 the way through this post before I realized it was going to be a long one, but a good one. Grab a snack, coffee, beer, or whatever, and have a seat.

Road Trip!!

Yes. Finally, a bike race. I managed to race 7 times in the first 4 weeks of the season. But since then, it's been one race every other week. Strange. I remember when you could do stage races every weekend from Mid- March to Mid-June. Now, not so much the case. I may have mentioned it, but racing is so much fun, I could do every weekend! So, I'm going to climb on my soapbox and say this:

Riders, please contact your area promoters and implore with them to check the area calendars before scheduling a race to avoid conflicts. April 19, 20- Zero Races, May 3, 4- Zero Races. April 26, 27- 3 races within 300 miles! Velotek Grand Prix, Iowa City, and Tour of St. Louis. All of these are quality races and deserve a great turnout. The only problem is that there is only so many riders to attend. The end result is that none of the races had the attendance that should have, could have been there! Had they been on different weekends, I would have done all three along with dozens of other riders. But alas, they were not, so the HRRC/ Trek Stores team jumped in the Team Car and drove to Iowa City, where we figured the best competition would be. That's the end of my soapbox speech.

The best part about the racing is the road trip. It seems that the racing is always that. Racing. It's definitely exciting and awesome. But the driving, man! That's the best part. In the Team Car it was Shadd, Adam, Bill, and Joe. Basically, from what I remember, it was a bunch of us characters laughing for most of the trip. It does make the miles go by faster.

Speaking of miles: Shadd just got a brand new Chevy Impala as a new company car. Woo Hoo! So, there we were, leaving Bethany (mile 97 on I35 in MO, the last coffee shop stop until Des Moines) with our breakfast of McDonalds Hotcakes and eggs and back to our road trip when a Highway Trooper clocks an unsuspecting Shadd at 85mph. Awww hell! But, the guy is in the lane traveling the other way. Okay, that gives us a chance right? No, way! Mr. Officer veers directly into the water filled grass/ swamp median at about 50 mph to cross the highway and chase us down. All we could see was the enormous splash and the car emerging from being submerged from the standing water in the grass median. I was hoping it would get stuck like this car. But that's pretty much what he did, except he succeeded in his swamp crossing and indeed chased us down. I hate that moment when the officer is behind you, and hasn't turned his lights on yet. You think, "maybe he's not pulling me over..." Yup, there are the lights.

So, there's a Team Car pulled over with 4 elite bike racers in it. 3 of them are stuffing their faces with McDonalds breakfast. Meanwhile, Shadd tries to keep his cool. Here's a brief exchange. I may have altered some of the conversation, but you'll get the idea.
Officer: Good morning, you boys (never good when the cop calls you a "boy") in a hurry?
Shadd: Well, not really (thinking: we are be now!). I was just getting on the highway and about to set the cruise.

Okay, for anyone who hasn't been on a road trip with Shadd, his "cruise" used to be at just a hair below the sound barrier.

Officer: I believe I clocked you driving at a good deal above the speed limit. (Adam thinking: Yeah, you should have seen us an hour ago)
Shadd: You know, I thought I was a bit fast. I was getting ready to set the cruise.
Officer: Are you guys some kind of professional team or something?
Shadd: Sort of. We're heading up to Iowa City to race all weekend.
Officer: So you're a bunch of pro athletes and ya'll are eating McDonalds?
Shadd: Yeah, but the food isn't that bad for you.
Officer: License and registration.

Now, normally you hand over the license and some profound paperwork that the state makes everyone keep in their car. However, this Team Car is really just a company car that is doing double duty. So.... that means everything is in some the name of some company that runs the whole company car thing. Bottom line. NOTHING is in Shadd's name. Crap. Is Shadd going to go to jail? Is he doomed to spend the day in the Bethany City Jail? Will the evil policeman not believe this perfectly respectable citizen? Will we miss the race while we bail Shadd out of jail? How will Trina take this?

Okay, it wasn't that bad. Shadd did have to go to the cop car and sit with the guy as he writes out the ticket.

Oh, it gets better! While Shadd is in the cop car, Patrol Car, I believe. There's dialogue. It goes something like this:

Officer: So you guys are team huh?
Shadd: That's right. We're the HRRC/ Trek team from KC.
Officer: Shouldn't you have, like, a team van or team car or something?
Shadd: You know, we've been working on that for a while.
Officer: I mean, what do you have all those expensive bikes doing sitting on the back of that cheap bike rack? That seems a bit scary.
Shadd: We're hoping that all the bikes make it there.

Here's some pics of the Team Car:

Yup, that's the Shadd-wuar! Now, here's what a team car SHOULD look like:

Who are these guys? Oh, and there's a third car, but it wasn't parked next to these two.

And the Team Car bike rack:

What's that? $15000 of bikes on the back of a $25000 car, being held up by a $150 bike rack? Why yes, it is. Let's take a closer look.

Rhode Gear? Where can you find that at? I know, ebay $35 plus $14 shipping.

Basically, the Officer owned us. Not a good way to start the day.

But now, Shadd was on a New Plan. Driving slow. Old Plan is gone, New Plan is in!

Part Duex coming up!