By Michael Bello
Published 06/01/2021; Updated 06/01/2021

Today was ideal weather for the inaugural Northampton Cycling Club Tuesday C Ride of the year. The mid-70s on the thermostat was a welcome change from the 45 degree rainy weather from Memorial Day weekend that foiled the NCC’s first outdoor group rides of the season on Saturday.

I had the pleasure of filling in for John Coffey, our regular Tuesday ride leader this season. Despite leading countless Zwift rides, this was my first outdoor ride leading experience. I’m sure my inexperience showed, but fellow ride leaders Mark Rioux, Aaron Walker, and Eric Winkler were there and lended their expertise.

Before departing at 5:30 PM, we welcomed the group and reminded everyone that our plan was to take it slow as we readjusted to group riding. We wanted to be cautious, point out dangerous objects in the road, not stop without warning those behind us, and have fun.

We had 14 riders join us today. Board member Stephen Hyde joined us for the start of the ride and just as he broke off, another board member Roger Stawasz met up with the group at the top of Hospital Hill.

It was great to have a mix of riders today. We had some, like Henry Wheaton, who rode the Long Time Trial in Hatfield before the group ride. While others, like Ignacy Gaydamovich, joined us for the first time today. Several others have ridden with the club for years.

It was great to see so many NCC kits.

Our route took us on a loop to Westhampton. In total, we rode approximately 25 miles and ascended 1,300 feet. We returned to Pulaski Park around 7:15 PM.

Tomorrow is the first Wednesday Night Ride of the season and as always, it will head up to the Bookmill in Montague. On Thursday, the Hilltown Ride and the C+ Ride (starting in Easthampton) begin. Please visit the NCC Calendar for complete information on our rides, including start times and locations.