By Don Frank
Published 06/03/2021; Updated 06/05/2021

Welcome back to the first Wednesday Night Ride Report for the first WNR of 2021 that was not on Zwift. We met at the Academy, like the old days, with 18 or so riders who had yet to work out their Covid facial hair and hairdos. Everyone was very excited. We went out together and had a good tailwind pushing us up River Road. The faster riders (the A Group?) were shy about declaring themselves at the Hatfield Market, preferring instead to push ahead up the road, taking several, miserable, B riders with them. The two groups stayed in sight of each other, moving very fast with the assistance of the tailwind. Everyone was happy to be there, except the several B riders who got caught up in the split.

We circled around the Book Mill and up and down Taylor Hill, and then we reconvened. I was, of course, cooked. We were  back on Falls Road into the wind at a quicker pace when I got a cramp about two miles before I was planning to pretend I was getting a cramp to cover the fact that I was getting dropped. Peter Earmuffs turned around to rescue me, perhaps because he is a nice guy, but more likely he was covering that he too was about to get dropped. Our ride consisted of a stop at the store for electrolytes and a quick ride back home to Spoleto’s.

The rest of the group, by report, stayed together, just like the NCC advertises, it is a “group” ride. That is until they were passed by an elderly man with a straw hat playing the banjo on an e-bike. It turned into a race, where one party, the elderly man with a banjo, had no idea he was being chased. He passed them on the hills and they split up the group so that some of them could catch him on the flats, where they finally passed him with their usual grace.

Peter Earmuffs and I caught at least one of the riders  as we navigated our way over the Bridge into Northampton, where we met our illustrious NCC president for a beer.

Can’t wait to get dropped by everyone next week.