2013 Gentle Start ride report from Kathy Brouse:
As you read Kathy’s ride report keep in mind that this is what the Gentle Start looked like in 2011:
What a great start to the RO brevet season! We had 27 participants on this ride, three new members – Randy, Peter P and Peter H, and two day riders – Alex and Bob. Alex obviously enjoyed the day because he is now an official member, having registered today. It may take a bit more convincing to get Bob Rotenberg out again in the near future on a brevet as he is still wondering why there were no restaurants, Timmy’s or places to purchase a hot coffee on this ride! Oh dear, I did warn people. The new members are all very strong riders, finishing in the first group with, you guessed it, Renato, Brian, William, Albert and Stephen, in less than 8 hours.
To begin with, the day was not like a typical Gentle Start. The sun shone and the weather gods smiled on us until Maryhill, the furthest point north and east on the route and also the second control. Heading south the ride began to feel more like a true Gentle Start: the wind whipped up and the rain began at around 4pm for us in Campbellville. Riders who arrived back after this time were very wet. The wettest of all was Vaune Davis who did not bring any rain gear, but then she didn’t bring her cycling shoes either and drove back to the city to collect her shoes and start the ride 1 hour and 25 minutes after everyone else, thereby proving, once again, that she is gifted with superior powers of motivation, stamina and determination! Getting back to the weather report, there was none of the snow, sleet or hail conditions often experienced at this time of year and for that we were very grateful.
Many of us wore pink ribbons or jerseys on this ride to support one of our fellow riders, Bob Macleod, who recently lost his sister to cancer. Bob’s brother was there cheering us on in true marathon style, holding a big sign and shouting encouragement to riders at the roundabout in Cambridge. So great to see familiar faces again and good to see David Pearson returning after a brief one year hiatus from the club. In fact, funny enough, the last time the TO chapter saw David was on the brutal and legendary Gentle Start 2011 (pictured above)! Thanks everyone for welcoming and supporting new and day riders and congratulations to Phil Piltch and David P who rode this 210 km brevet on their fixies! Hurray to be back on the road with fellow Randonneurs and to hear so many plans and goals for the upcoming season.
Some photos from Stephen Jones: