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Report: E Alpine Rd and Joaquin Rd

Thanks to Rob Schott for posting the following report, which has been recklessly reproduced here, without his expressed written permission, or the permission of Alto Velo, for which he rides. Let's see how Mark's breakfast survives next week...

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Low-Key Hill Climb
Installment 7: Alpine + Joaquin

As much as Bohlman into Orbit is a test of power skills, writing something about week 7 tests one's skill as an observer of the Hill Climb Series. Only 3.6 miles, it was over in a wink. If likened to baseball this was the 7th inning stretch; a chance to grab a beer and some chips in between the heavier action.

There was some excitement however. Would we reach the 200th registrant for the series? Just when the suspense was becoming unbearable, Alto Velo's impresario Kevin Winterfield announced to all within range at the registration area that some unsuspecting, although undoubtedly deserving woman was the 200th contestant and thereby entitled to a celebratory water bottle, which I believe he had just previously found rolling around in the trunk of his car. She looked somewhat embarrassed by all the attention and I'm sure would have been just as happy if they had announced that she had won a free enema while quietly in line to purchase a hemorrhoidal remedy at the drug store. She gamely clutched her prize while we clapped our appreciation for contributing to the success of the series.

Would it rain? The sky was a featureless and slowly deepening bruise as the rain moved in from the Pacific. But we got our licks in before the first drop descended.

Would Mark Anderson keep his breakfast? Apparently the chronicle of Mark's adventure from two weeks ago was widely appreciated as Mark returned and endured many questions about his morning intake, and whether he would again share it with us at the top. I heard it in the muted comments at the staging area, "Is that the egg guy?" Mark smiled through all of this while looking for an appropriate object with to which bludgeon me. I kept my helmet on and Mark held onto his chow. In a remarkable turn of events he was spotted eating (in brazen defiance) a Power Bar at the top of Joaquin.

Adn would Tracy Colwell once again beat the snot out of the rest of us? By quite a comfortable margin. He was inquiring about Zipp wheels after the race, apparently wanting to improve on already blistering speed.

Next week, back to a meatier climb with an assault on Hicks and Loma Almaden. I suspect a 26 tooth cog for the back or a triple chain ring up front will make the morning a little more enjoyable.


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