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Century as a ride marshal


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Sunday's weather was fantastic. Sunny, cool mid-60 temps at the start. Century riders were able to start at 7:00. I winter until 7:45 because there's no point being a ride marshal if you're in front of most of the riders. There were three routes, 32 (red), 65 (blue) and 100 (yellow). Colored arrows indicated the route directions and there were cue sheets too. At the start I got a lot of questions, mostly, which color is this route or that one. Which way do I go at the start? Follow the yellow brick road munchkin. 

At the first rest stop, one lady asked me where she was on her route and handed me her cue sheet. Well, you're not on here, you're riding the 32 mile route and that split from the 65/100 miles riders about 12 miles back. She looked like she was going to cry but I told her the easiest way for you to get back is take the W&OD trail (we were right next to it) back to Reston. It's about 12 miles there and that will give you 32 for the day.

At the second rest stop I ran into a guy I had just sold a bike to on Saturday. He bought a Specialized Roubaix SL4. Very happy with the ride. After the 2nd pit stop I stopped to take a picture of a winery and a rider asked me if this was the 65 mile route. No, the 65 and the 100 split after the last pit stop. Isn't the 65 ride marked in yellow? No, that's the 100. 65 is blue. Oh someone told me at the start to follow yellow. Well they told you wrong. You can ride the miles back to the rest stop and get on the right route or keep going and ride a century. I'm going back he said.

several people called for SAG but didn't understand why they should wait in a nearby parking lot instead of on the side of the road. I told both of them that a parking lot is safer to load the bike than the side of the road and that the SAG vehicle could use gps to find them easier if they had Walgreens as a search name vs corner of Battlefield and Sycolin. 

At the finish they had a buffet set up with salad, pasta, chicken and fruit. Water or soda though some tables had bought six packs. I ate and went home, showered and changed no opened a double IPA from Stone. 

Great ride, 106 miles, 6:32, 4,419 feet climbed. 

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9 minutes ago, az_cyclist said:

How did you like being a ride marshal? I have done that 2 or 3 times, at least twice on Tour de Cure

I liked it. I saved $80 on registration, a free t-shirt and food just to answer a bunch of mostly stupid questions. The best was right after a hill that climbed 400 feet over a mile, there was a descent and a small climb coming up. One rider asked when the next hill was. I said I didn't know, I hadn't done this course before. He struggled to understand how I got to be a ride marshal if I didn't know the route. After I left him and rounded the corner another long climb appeared. I guess he got his answer pretty quick. Most of the riders really struggled with the climbing. Some walked, some took breaks halfway up.

all in all, I'd do it again.

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