In Which Heat expands the Peloton

As we halted at Woori Yallock to consolidate the peloton, it gave me a good chance to look around at the multitude of riders that were gathered before me. It seemed like there were bikes and lycra as far as the eye could see in all directions. At first I thought I must have been dreaming, but after I cleaned my sunglasses and could see more clearly it was still exciting to count no less than 20 riders who had turned out for our Thursday afternoon ride. I remembered back to the excitement we felt when we first achieved 10 riders in the peloton (and christened it a “decoloton”), and now we were enjoying a genuine “double decoloton” of cyclists.

Among those gathered before me were two riders who had joined us for the first time. Virginia seemed like a likely rider. As a postie I guessed she had at least gained a lot of experience on two wheels, even if it was “engine assisted”. Also visiting for the first time was her friend Ray. He was a strong looking guy who looked like he might have promise but it was not a good sign that he was wearing his bike helmet backwards. After we humiliated him into putting it on the right way, he insisted that it “felt better the other way”. Maybe he was trying to emulate Lleyton Hewitt, so maybe he has earned his nickname already – Lleyton.

With so many riders on the trail it was a little difficult to keep them all together. (In fact it’s hard to stay together when we only have 2 or 3 riders). Hooters had stayed home to finish darning his cycling socks so he never had a chance to meet our latest recruits, and they all missed out on a good laugh as a result of his absence.

As we descended on the Milgrove coffee shop like bees around a honey pot, we were reminded that the biggest problem with this location is the lack of chairs and tables. If only they could set up an adequate suppy of seats the place would be perfect. We all took the opportunity to stuff our stomachs with sugar and cream so that we would be prepared for the ride back to Mt Evelyn.

Big Al is still recovering from his Phillip Island crash so we all wish him well and hope that he will be able to resume his customary place at the front of the peloton as soon as possible. We also had a few other regulars missing for various reasons. If only we could get all our riders together at the same time we would be close to breaking the 30 barrier. Now that would be a sight to see.

All riders made it safely back to their cars, although ‘Lleyton’ was starting to slow down considerably in the final stages. With a few more riders under his belt I am sure that he will be powering up the hill and yelling “Come On” at the top of his voice. The warmth of the springtime sun is surely welcome on our pale winter bodies. What a great ride!