Slo Joe "Cogitations"   
 Ride Stats
Distance: 71.14 miles Time: 06:32:00 Avg Speed: 10.89 mph
Max Speed: 47.00 mph Weight: 150 Effort: 3 - Moderate 11-13 mph
Route: South Africa Altitude Gain: 0 ft Terrain: Road: Hills
Bike: Bike Friday SAT R DAY (1st SOLD JULY 2012) SWB Bent Club: 'BentRider Recumbent Club
Weather Conditions: Overcast which made for a nice ride
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 Joburg 94.7: Perception=Well Done
The Johannesburg "Momentum 94.7" is actually a race/fun ride with over 28,000 cyclists. A race because there are groups of racers followed by thousands of recreational riders. You can buy a "Racetec" timing chip to get official recognition for the race. I did for the funnit. Somehow I'm thinking I'll be list as the "rouge lantern" of the race part.

The first group is the "Elite Racers", vying for the title and points in the race series. This is followed by the "racing tandems" and then the "recumbents and hand cyclists." There apparanently is still the perception that anyone riding a recumbent must have some type of physical challenge. Well for me that's easy: I'm slow!! We were a small group: About 3 hand cyclists, 1 rider on a trike, and all of "2" of us on recumbents. The other recumbent rider was riding a very nice high racer M5. Me? I was on a Bike Friday SAT R DAY with 16" wheels.

I'm sure the SAT R DAY and its 16" wheels were the cause of many of the comments to come.

One of the nice perks of being in the recumbent group was that following the elite and tandem racers, there was a lot of time with almost no one on the road. The reason being that the groups behind us were also racers: Masters, Women, Youth, etc. So as I slowwwwwwwwly pedaled along, I'd see a peloton in my rear view mirror, move way over to give them the whole road, and feel the whirrring rush go by. Sweet. See the pic of a group of racers going by and for some reason, one of the riders is looking at me instead of the wheel ahead of him. Yah, a 16" wheeled recumbent attracts a bunch of attention.

So for close to 1.5 hours I had most of the road to myself. (photo of highway below after a group of racers went by) Then the crowds started to pass me and I noticed the racer #'s increase: the 1,000, 3,000, 5,000 etc. By the time I finished I was seeing numbers in the 10,000 to 15,000 range. Even saw one rider go by me with # 28,372. I figured that was one fast rider who must have left a good two hours to three hours after my 5:35 a.m. start time.

And the comments? I'm not sure if the comments were because folks figured I might be physically challenged or they were amazed to see a 16" wheel bike pedaling along over a 100 kms ride. The comments went like this with some of the typical recumbent ones:

"You inspire me"
"Wow. You're doing great"
"Is that really comfortable?"
"You look so relaxed"
"Want to trade?"
And of course the proverbial: "That's unfair."

But the vast majority (hundreds at least) of them were of the "Am I hamburger?" variety: Many, many riders would say "Well Done!!" At first I responded with "thank you" and then I'm thinking: "Yo, you're doing better than're passing me." So my response to "Well Done", became "Likewise" and "You Too!!"

Great support by the Momentum 94.7 organizers and the thousands of locals who came out along the route with shouts of encouragement.

For ride I "done well"

The route and a hilly one it were. The ride even took us through downtown Joburg.

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