• Patrick Gabrion

Cycling through my mind

Miles piling up. Sunday, Feb. 10, 2019; sunny and 26 degrees. Fat bike event at Brunswick Landing that drew nearly 50 cyclists. It was my first ride of the 2019 cycling season, covering just 10 miles through a wooded course. Still going strong as the calendar turns over to November. My mileage for the season currently stands at 4,291; shooting for 5,000. Only did 4,343 miles last year. Since keeping a logbook, which I started doing in 2001, I have topped 5,000 miles in a season twice: 5,221 in 2014 and 5,224 in 2015. I have several seasons in the 4,000-plus range. I hope some of you are still on your bikes.


Still putting bikes together at the shop. I wish this Trek Kickster would have been around when I was a youngster.

Reading about riding. I recently purchased three cycling-related books; just waiting on the shelf as I slowly plow through a "normal" novel. The three titles are "The World's Fastest Man, The Extraordinary Life of Cyclist Major Taylor" by Michael Kranish (Scribner, 2019); "Slow Is Fast" by Dan Malloy, Kanoa Zimmerman and Kellen Keene (Patagonia, 2013); and "Team 7-Eleven, How an Unsung Band of American Cyclists Took on the World and Won" by Geoff Drake with Jim Ochowicz (Velopress, 2011). I'll give you my impressions down the road.


Learning pays off. I'm kind of proud of myself for fixing a flat tire the other day after somehow picking up a thorn. You have to understand that my previous "loss of air in tire" situations this year have basically happened close to home, thus a hand pump was readily available. This time I was out in the boonies of South Gardiner — nearly 13 miles from home — so I had to use a CO2 cartridge to inflate the tube. For us rookies, a messy prospect is a real possibility, as I've seen others get the stuff all over the place instead of inside the tube and freeze their hands off in the process. I had no such issues and rode off into the sunset. Believe me, a year ago — prior to my receiving bicycle maintenance schooling from Alan at the bike shop — I would have been calling Vicky for a ride home. Instead of the usual "dang it, I've got a flat tire" moment, I conquered it.


Next event at bike shop. From mid-November through early December, Mathieu's Cycle Farmingdale will have the full range of Tacx smart trainers and Zwift cycling app available to try out. A kickoff event is set for Saturday, Nov. 16, at 1 p.m. The shop is located at 727 Maine Ave., Farmingdale. Bicycles will be provided and no sign-up is required.

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