Mongo just completed what may have been the best three days in a row of cycling that I've had in a long time. On Saturday, as I've already chronicled, I dominated the Enemy Bike Shop "B" ride. Yesterday, Mongo participated in the 1st Annual "Alp d'Huez Mike" Memorial Ride. As is turns out, Mike is not dead...but instead has moved to Colorado. And...he showed up for his own ride. (That's Mike in second position and Mongo's arm in fourth.) Fun and hammering was had by all, and it felt good to mix it up with the A-Team and hang in there all day.
Mike pointed out to me what Mongo already knew...I'm (fat) too heavy to be as fast as I should and want to be. I've got the engine, but I also have the caboose. Mongo has to look no further for motivation than teammate, "Boonen"...who lost thirty pounds in eight weeks and has vaulted to the front of the peloton. From what I understand, it's a complicated diet involving sweet potatoes and having your girlfriend prepare all your meals for you.
Tonight, of course, was the 23/2300 Hammerfest. It was fast...real fast. We finished the loop with an average speed of 19+ mph. Mongo hung tough on all the climbs and actually got in position to lead out the Sprint with about 300 metres (European for yards) to go. Of course, I didn't win...but at least I was in the mix. Mongo did provide "Former Hammerfest Champion" Clay the perfect leadout for an upset victory over "Cat 3 Sandbagger" MC-Lean(TM).