Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sunday 20 Sept Ride

Ratty and Lion got off to a cold windy start, the Rat had tried his best to weasel out of the ride, but sanity pervailed (a real man does not say no to the fresh open plains that beckon). Off to the sandpan at a brisk pace 25km/h (ok that is brisk for us).

At the Sandpan (old mine with lots of ramps and small hills that motorcross maniacs have converted to a small track) Lion almost came a croper had Ratty not warned him that there was a massive hole after the ramp he was about to ride over - phew.
Off to the pan which had dried up somewhat, crossing over the dried mud that was once covered in water a few months ago. Below are photos of the two of us and the seagulls that we disturbed.

The next few kms were hard and relatively fast, Ratty reminiced that we first walked to one small hile next to the polar field - the legs are getting stronger.

A few kms from the end - yes you guesed it Ratty had another puncture. Two at the same time to be factual (but the front one sealed itself) so only the back one which had a new tube in from a puncture during the week was damaged. THE SCORE IS 11 NIL TO LION.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Lion Cub in the forest

Ratty organised a great event on saturday for 1st Benoni Sea Scouts - they did a hike to the airport and then rode their mountain bikes around the 2 tracks. Here is a photo of a Lion cub who went along for the ride.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Irene - Nissan Down and Dirty MTB race

Lion's ride
Was really an awesome ride.. managed to finish the 60km and I wasn’t last (was close though only seven finishes behind me), I took it really slow and enjoyed the ride chatting to the few that I could keep up with. Large field over 550 for the 60km (of which 10% didn’t finish) and 700 for the 30km.

The route was really great nice hills and single track with a cool forest piece in the middle. Lost my bike clock in the first bumpy part but 10km later by pure luck, I asked a rider how far we had gone - he didn't know...but he had picked up my clock and gave it back to me - wow what are the chances of that in a field of over a 1000 riders (he pulled out a few kms later).

Now that I can do the distance next time I will try to do it a bit faster and try make it before they pack up the finish line.

Ratty's ride
I thought it best to start with a simple definition,
"Karma ", understood as that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect, one's acts considered as fixing one's lot in the future existence.

No really the Lion is actually somewhat literate, both brawn and brain has he, hence his tenacious approach to a relatively simple 60km ride.

½ life or ½ man
Now back to the half life of ratty and the decay rate of bad Karma
Ratty had very cleverly faked injury, and strategized on why it would be better to only do half the distance, what worried him was the fact that the lion though him to be joking
This gave ratty half a nights rest before the race. In the morning he half filled his bottle with energy juice, ready was he for his 30/60km freewheel in the park and off he went to fetch the lion.

I think the lion only realized the rat was seriously downgrading when ratty registered for half the distance - Enter Karma – ratty was rewarded with a girly handout pack complete with pink razor. Ratty stoutly ignored the implication

Then the lion started chatting to the real girls doing the 60km event instead ratty sat in the truck and pouted pretending to stay out the sun. It really was not his place to talk to these obviously genetically superior alpha specimens, he doubted the lion ought to be either but the lion felt invincible.

Rat waited patiently as the lion prepared to start with the rest of the UNSEEDED 60km riders
Hmm he thought this lot are going to take half a day to finish, plenty of time for a snooze when he got back. As the lion slowly disappeared in a cloud of dust ratty assumed his position in the starting block, nice easy ride, chat, chat enjoy the rest of the afternoon, soon be back home while the lion filled in medical aid forms he thought.

The first 10 km rat took easy, striking up casual friendships and generally enjoying the fact that his heart rate had to be at least half of Richards. Round the bend and up the first hill, time to get serious and rat slyly found the inside line and geared down in time Snap – the Goose had broken a chain, small set back for the mechanic in rat and he was soon on the way again – it would be fun passing all the slower folks on the hill, hee hee. Snap again the Goose revolted a second time, rat let out a barely audible curse, No problem pass them again rat thought.
This time the rat had to wait until he was second last before he succeeded in begging a chain splitting tool as his had broken. Rat returned the borrowed tool and looked down to see he had forgotten to thread the chain through the front chain ring selector, he would have limited gearing for the rest of the race. Small hints of guilt entered ratty’s conscience as he wondered how far back the lion would be by now.

The downhill was great, even the stingy rat ignored the discarded treasures – old bike tubes and lost water bottles on route. Why do people do that?
The next little hill felt tougher the sun beginning to play a role, the lack of gearing however playing a larger role, the rat was forced to dismount and push, lucky no girls overtook him.

I think it was while re-positioning his chain whilst in motion (neat little trick don’t you think?) it had bounced off on the fast downhill, a consequence of the lapse of concentration during his earlier repair. Another momentary lack of focus must have followed because the rat woke to voices asking him if he were ok. He recognized the painful grunt as his own voice and realized he must have fallen (One would think this would pay the karma but alas there is more to follow).

Gingerly the rat proceeded, a thumping headache kept him company at the back of the race. He passed another injured beta male and stopped to help, wondering if he could bum a ride back on an off rode ambulance, this was not to be because an extremely keen 3rd class first aider relieved ratty of this opportunity.

The rat continued and under a tree he spied a damsel in distress, Ratty grabbed the chance to rest and offered to fix a puncture, gallantly offering her his only spare tube. He learnt with difficulty, perhaps the concussion playing a part, to spell her name and gracefully cycled side by side as they made their way to the finish. Could this appease the karma he wondered?

But Karma was still un-avenged, the lion was still sweating, no getting off that lightly rat man -- there’s more for you.....
Lovely stuff a spin tyre cut as the ratted Stan forded the stream, with latex spraying everywhere except sealing his tyre the rat dismounted to push again.

Ratty was both down and dirty after the race, but he felt good at least the lion had not yet finished and he could yet gloat at the sweaty little heap of despair he was sure the lion would be. The Alpha girls had left the car park (in fact most people had). The rat felt lonely but WOW! Hey! Wondrous beast! Here comes the LION. Well done big boy.

P.S. I missed you so.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Ratty poetry

Poem written by ratty before our big race on Saturday (he has downscaled to the 30km - 60km for the Lion)

No ride and no nook,
no beer till you puke,
just rest for your best.

Dream of the ride you have it inside.
First sleep,
then dig deep for the path may be steep.

To push will be queer, you must ride it I fear.

But the girls and fat men will be at it again,
by the time you get in they will have finished their spin.
With libido to spare, they will have loving to share.

Alas sweaty men though courage you have shone,
you will be left to hone your egos alone.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Route 42 John Deere Classic

At last photos of the 50km John Deere classic, Ratty and Lion are pushing and the real man Malcolm the machine rides it out.