Jun 20, 2014

Posted by Jo W. in | 6/20/2014
Mileage: 91.9 miles

Day 20 was our longest day so far. The morning started with a downpour as we were leaving the host at University of Illinois. I wasn't too happy riding in the rain, but at least it wasn't scorching hot like the past couple of days. Fortunately, the rain stopped soon and the sky started to clear up. From Champaign, we quickly turned onto the back country roads with hardly any cars.

Before the first water stop, we saw a bunch of airplanes at an airport/museum and stopped for the photo op.

The miles went by pretty quickly, despite the highest mileage so far. The roads we took were great; virtually no traffic through the farm fields in the middle of nowhere. We usually ride in groups of four (me, Ari, Chris, and Brady) but since the roads were so deserted, a bunch of groups started riding together. We were able to ride side by side and take up the whole road, just chatting away the miles.

Whenever someone gets a flat, we have something called "Flatchat" and we take a selfie with the person who got the flat. I kind of failed with this pic because I didn't include the person who actually got the flat.

In the afternoon, we all congregated under a large tree for a moment of silence in remembrance of Jamie Roberts, our teammate who was killed a week ago in an accident. We all stood under the tree in a circle, holding hands. It was an emotional moment, and although it still makes my heart wrench to think about it, I felt as though Jamie was smiling down on us and felt peaceful.

We do a hand signal every day during our team cheer called "Jamie Love", which is like the Vulcan greeting (from Star Trek) with the four fingers making a V and the thumb at the side. It was her way of saying "I love you".

This ride was the most fun I've had. I got to ride with different people in our large "super groups" and had a blast. I also pacelined with Aaron, Brady, and Victor on a long, flat stretch going east with a tailwind at our backs. We were flying. And I love going fast and hard on the bike, which doesn't happen much on our rides. Our max speed was 35.4 mph.  Can't wait for more days like this :)


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