Wednesday, December 28, 2011

PA Dutch 200k

*** Update #2 ***
A few more mental notes from the pre-ride:
- I cannot overemphasize the need to watch for icy patches, black or otherwise.  We received a lot of rain earlier in the week.  The temperature was in the low 20s when we started Thursday morning, so we encountered ice in several places.  Some extended fully across the road.  It is supposed to warm slightly by the weekend, but that's no guarantee that all of the icy spots will thaw.

- While this route is well-known to many, it still requires attention to the cue.  There are so many roads criss-crossing all over in Lancaster County that it is very easy to find yourself off course.  The cue is top-notch.
- It is a LONG way from Controle 2 to Controle 3, not just because of the mileage.  A couple of interim oases have been noted on the cue sheet should you need them.  Watch your time.
- You cannot have too much lighting.  You will discover this on your way to the finish, especially if you don't have enough.

I plan to have breakfast at the diner at 7am and will handle sign-in from there.  I'll be in the parking lot afterwards for bike/equipment checks.


*** Update #1 (12/30/11) ***
The cuesheet has been updated to draft 11 dated 12/30, with changes from the volunteer preride.  If the current weather forecast holds, temperatures will range from the mid 30F's to 50F's -- the low temperature for Sunday will be around the high temperature we had for Thursday's  volunteer preride, which included unexpected snow flurries for much of the day.  It also looks like a rather stiff south west wind is in the forecast -- this will make the 45 mile leg from controle 2 to 3 rather difficult.  You'll want to bank some time on the way to controle 2, and keep your stop there very short... and finding a friendly wheel to draft behind would be even better.  In addition to the many cautions highlighted on the cuesheet, you should watch out for icy patches.  In particular, underpasses and run-offs from driveways and farms present a hazard in several spots along the course.  Also, there is some precipitation in the forecast for the evening, and you will be descending the colder, north face of some climbs towards the end of the course.

Organizers, Andrew Mead will be at the start to send you on your way, and Bill Olsen will greet you at the finish.  If you arrive at the finish before Bill does, there will be a sign-in sheet at the cashier where you should record your time.  The cashier will sign your card and hold it until Bill arrives.

Reminder: be sure to park your car in the Rita's lot, away from the diner.  And as always, be sure to check back on the website/message board for any last minute updates.

*** Original Post ***
What better way to kick off a new year of randonneuring than by bagging an ACP 200k?  The 4th annual PA Dutch 200k brevet will be held on January 1, 2012 (yes, folks, that's SUNDAY) to start the 2012 Pennsylvania Randonneurs R-12 series.  We will be riding the route that Rick Carpenter championed, but without Rick since he has now relocated to coastal North Carolina.  Unfortunately that also means we'll be missing out on the fine hospitality of Rick and Lora Beth that has made this event so popular in the past.  We will miss Rex greatly and wish him and Lora Beth the very best.  Since the Carpenter's house on the hill is no longer available for brevet duty, the start location has be moved to the Mt. Penn Family Restaurant.  This may be good news for many as that final 500ft climb to Queens Court is no longer required to finish.
Recognizing that many randonneurs may also be ringing in the new year, the starting time has been pushed back until 8:00am.  This also allows participants to enjoy breakfast at the start since the Mt. Penn Family Restaurant doesn't open until 7:00am on Sundays.  Registration details are posted on the PA Randonneurs website.
A course pre-ride is scheduled for Thursday so check back on Friday for any last-minute updates to the cue sheet.
One final note:  lights and reflective gear are MANDATORY for this ride.

- Andrew Mead, Organizer

*** Registered riders (as of 12/31/11) ***

Barbara Anderson
Ronald Anderson
Colin M Bailey
Jim Bondra
Geoff Brunner
John Capriotti
Blaine Chamberlain
Matthew Farrell
William Fischer
Ixsa Gollihur
Doug Haluza
Donald Jagel
Mike Lutz
Andrew D Mead - Organizer/Pre-Ride
George Metzler - Volunteer/Pre-Ride
Maile Neel
William M. Olsen - Organizer
Tom Rosenbauer - RBA/Pre-Ride
Norman Smeal - Volunteer/Pre-Ride
Bob Torres

If you want to join the roster, please send me an e-mail:

-Tom Rosenbauer, RBA

Saturday, December 17, 2011

2011 Final Results and Recap

Eastern PA 2011 Final Results have been posted at:

Validated 2011 brevet cards have started rolling out into the mail ... as of 12/17, I'm up the "L's".   Congratulations on all those hard-earned brevets -- collectively, we officially tallied over 75,000 Km in completed brevets.  Thank you for clipping in and being a part of that success.  But of course, none of those brevets would've been possible, if not for all the volunteers who stepped up and helped out:

- Glenn Ammons           600k finish
- Ron & Barb Anderson Jan. R-12, PBP Vests
- Bill Blank                     Aug R-12 preride
- Shane Beake               PA Wool Jersey, Oct. 200k BBQ
- Victoria Beake             Oct. 200k finish and BBQ
- Jack Bingham               Jan. R-12
- Andy Brenner              400k finish, 600k overnight
- Rick Carpenter            Advisor, Jan. R-12 Organizer, Mar. R-12, 300k & 400k preride
- Bob Dye                     PA Randonneurs logo
- John Freeman             600k sign-in
- Doug Haluza               Oct. 200k preride
- Barbara Harris            300k & 600k course sweep
- Guy Harris                  400k preride and course sweep, 600k sweep
- Mark Kaufman            Jan. R-12
- Don Jagel                    Feb. R-12, PBP Vests, 600k preride and overnight controle
- Andrew Mead             Advisor, Mar. & Sep. R-12 Organizer, 600k sweep, Jun. R-12, PA Message boards
- George Metzler            Mar. R-12 CafĂ© & Grill, Aug. R-12 preride
- Chris Nadovich            600k overnight controle
- Christine Newman        600k start
- Bill Olsen                    Advisor, Feb., Jul. & Aug R-12 Organizer, Nov. R-12 finish
- Curtis Palmer              Jan. R-12
- Becky Rosenbauer      600k finish
- Keith Spangler            Mar. R-12, Dec. R-12 sweep
- Christine Torres           200k finish
- Len Zawodniak            200k course sweep, Jul. R-12 sweep, Oct. 200k sweep

This was a year of many notable accomplishments -- too many to list completely -- but some selected ones I'd like to share with you include:
·         Two dozen or so Eastern PA participants made it to the starting line at PBP. While I was pulling for each and every one of you, it was especially gratifying for me to see the following riders have a successful ride: Yiping Lin from Taiwan completed her first U.S.A. brevet with PA Randonneurs; Ron and Barbara Anderson rode their very first event with PA Randonneurs in 2006 (the very first year of Eastern PA events); Christine Newman, with the confidence of an EM1000k and Eastern PA SR series under her belt, found redemption in 2011 after coming up a bit short in 2007.  Eric Keller, Chris Nadovich, Joel Flood, Roy Yates, and Cecilie Adams also rode their first brevets with PA Randonneurs; And Cecilie, as many of you already know, became engaged to Patrick Gaffney at the top of Fox Gap back in 2010 – all went according to plan, with their marriage just before PBP and a post-ride honeymoon in France.

·         There were a record number of Eastern PA Super Randonneurs: Cecilie Adams (2), Shane Beake, Gavin Biebuyck, Rick Carpenter (3), Tim Conway, Joe Fillip, Bill Fischer, Joel Flood, Patrick Gaffney (2), Doug Haluza, Guy Harris (3), Mark Kaufman, Eric Keller (3), Chris Nadovich, Christine Newman, Bill Olsen (3), and Roy Yates.  Well Done!

·         Bill Olsen clipped-in and finished 4060 km of the 4760 km on the Eastern PA calendar, missing only three opportunities to ride – most likely because he was instead riding a 1200k somewhere else!  Bill also notched another PA R-12 series.

·         Several other riders also completed their R-12 series. Of note, Doug Haluza completed an R-12, despite having a number of spectacular mechanicals to deal with on a couple of the rides.  Don Jagel joined the Eastern PA honor roll by completing an Eastern PA R-12 this year.  Rick Carpenter completed yet another R-12 series and is closing in on an R-12 streak of 5 years – Wow!

In 2012, there will be several domestic 1200k's to choose from.  The Eastern PA region will be offering many brevets for qualification and preparation including a complete SR series and an R-12 series of monthly 200k’s. And for those of you who are freshly minted PBP anciens, you just need a Fleche and 1000k to earn the prestigious R-5000 award – and the Eastern PA region will give you an opportunity to do so next year.  But in order to keep running all these events, we need some new volunteers to step up and take their turn at the front (and perhaps allow some of the regular volunteers to sit-in for a while). 

-Tom Rosenbauer, Eastern PA RBA

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

K-Hounds Among Us

From Dan Driscol:

In years past we have done an article in the American Randonneur congratulating all the K-Hounds past and present.  This year I’d like to share a spread sheet that shows just how impressive this effort has amounted to (see randon listserv for spreadsheet).  A grand total of over 1,417,354 Km's - of individual efforts of more than 10,000 Km's per year within 6 years. No other country in the world comes anywhere close to this accomplishment.

In the past 6 years 54 RUSA members have earned 107 K-Hound Awards for riding more than 10,000 Km in a calendar year, with female RUSA members being responsible for about 30% of these K-Hound Awards.

Although 2011 is not official yet, it will be the biggest pack of hounds ever, with 34 RUSA members earning K-Hound Status.

Congrats to our new 2011 K-Hound Klub members; Ward Beebe, Grover Everett, Stephen Hazelton, Ken Johnson, Spencer Klaassen, Joe Kratovil, Tim Lucas, Maile Neel, Ogden Olmstead, Bill Olsen, John Pogue, Susan Pogue, Bryan Rierson, Bob Riggs, Thomas Russell, and Catherine Shenk.

Congrats again to all for making RUSA such great group of over achievers to run with.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Stillwater 200k Retour Preliminary Results and Report

Preliminary results for the December 3rd Stillwater 200k Retour have been posted at:
...please let me know of any corrections or other issues.  Results will be sent to RUSA shortly, and then become final, pending RUSA approval.

Given the heavy rain earlier in the week, and another batch in the forecast in the next day or so, we managed to find another perfect December day for a bike ride: it was a crystal clear day, with temperatures starting out around 29F in the morning, and warming up to around 50F by the afternoon.  With a high pressure system parked directly on top of the course all day, the winds were thankfully calm.  Streams and river were flush from the abundance of rain we've had, with a few frozen seeps along the road early on.

18 of the 20 riders who clipped in at the start made it to the finish.  New participants, Cynthia Hearing and AJ Stachelek are both triatheletes from NYC.  AJ decided to call it quits at Portland, due to numb toes. Cynthia, despite a 30 minute late start, managed to make up the lost time and just keep ahead of the controle closing time by a handful of minutes.  But as she ran out of daylight, she lost her battle against the clock on the Tunnel Rd climb.  Although AJ and Cynthia came up a bit short this time, they promised me they'll both be back again next year. Special thanks to volunteer Keith Spangler for manning the controle at Lafayette and sweeping the course to Great Meadows.   Not only was it great to have a familiar face greet us at the half way point, it was also reassuring to know Keith was there to make sure everybody made it safely through and was there to handle any unforeseen problems.

Rick Carpenter is known to show up from time to time, with a non-traditional bike for a brevet.  On this day, Rick pushed the envelope to a whole new level, with his Fat Sand Boy, which you can see in his photo album posted here:
As the name and construction suggests, it's meant to be ridden on the beach - specifically, somewhere down in North Carolina where Rick is in the process of moving to.  I'm pretty sure that this beast weighs somewhere north of 40 lbs.  And despite all of it's heft, it doesn't even descend very well, due to the 4-inch knobby tires.  Compounding the difficulty factor with this rig, the gears in the internal hub started slipping on the climbs.  Along with this most unusual setup, Rick had a most unusual wild-life close encounter while riding down the road: a small bird smashed squarely into his face.  Immediately after the small bird impact, Rick was then slashed by the talon of an accip raptor, who was in pursuit of the panicked bird -- Amazing!

Of note, Doug Haluza completed his R-12 series -- this one, was uneventful with none of the mechanical problems he's had on a couple of the rides this past year.  Ron and Barbara Anderson completed their third R-12 series in a row for a streak of 36 months.  And speaking of streaks,  Rick Carpenter has one of fifty-something, and closing in on 5 years of riding at least a 200k or longer each month and  Bill Olsen has a streak of 14 months going with Eastern PA finishes.  Bill writes: "...thanks for another great event.  It was nice to experience last month's ride in reverse as some climbs are better this direction rather than the other (and some are worse in this direction) giving one a totally different ride.  Although I like the Retour start out of Portland, and the return home up through Belvidere in the dark, the change of start to Milford was a nice variation and the climb up Tunnel Road wasn't half bad, knowing that once I made it to the top, it was pretty much down hill all the way back home..."

Also of note, Jon Clamp and Guy Harris made it around the course in good time on their fixed-gear bikes.  Remarkably, Jon finished under 9 hours and within minutes of first finisher Geoff Brunner. Guy writes: "...Thanks for another great event.  Milford is a great start/finish - don't know how I resisted a trip to the Ship Inn.  Very sun friendly direction to run this course, morning sun along the Delaware and a nice decent into the sunset..."  Jon writes: "...Many thanks this year for stringing together a host of impeccable courses and cue sheets. Also to all the volunteers for their help in facilitating our sport. It appears seemless but undoubtedly requires alot of time and effort behind the scenes. Saturdays ride was a little brisk and I think everybody must have felt like they had blocks of ice at the end of their legs. I did for one. I rode fixed until the Quick Check control and realizing that we had some steep climbs and a few good descents coming up I decided to "flip" my rear  wheel as it offered a lower gear and the ability to freewheel. I also had the benefit of being able to draft Don, Bill and Matt on the downhill sections as I cannot pedal that fast. I think we were all surprised at our time! ..."

Len Zawodniak writes: "...The ReTour was ReWarding!    Decidedly cool at the start, bur warming up nicely during the day,  a great collection of riders, and good choices for controls. It was  really nice to have a volunteer at the lunch stop, Thanks !..."

Nigel Greene writes: "...Another memorable event by the PA Randonneurs. I really enjoyed the course and look forward to riding the opposite direction the next time its offered. The cue sheet was spot on and the controles were well spaced. .... As you know, this was my first year riding with Pa Randonneurs and I have to say I really found it memorable and enjoyable. Thanks for everything. I Look forward to next year's challenges  ..."
You can read Nigel's excellent ride report with pictures at his Iron Rider blog:

If you have any other comments or photos to share, you can post them on the message board or forward them to me.

This wraps up the Eastern PA 2011 calender of events -- for me, it was a satisfying conclusion to a great year of brevets.  In the coming weeks, I'll be sending out the year-end mailing with your validated brevet cards, reflections on the past year, and the 2012 calender of events.  The first event of the new year, will be on New Year's Day.  As you look ahead to the new year, I'd be interested to hear what your cycling goals are.

Tom Rosenbauer
Eastern PA RBA