Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Rusty Rail 200K Ride Report

Foregoing family barbecues and football games, a small group of intrepid cyclists clipped-in on the Saturday of Labor Day weekend to embrace the challenge that is the Rusty Rail 200K. Six of 7 riders (including the prerider) completed the brevet (86%), all of them documenting their passage with the new eBrevet App. Congratulations and well done to all. Preliminary results have been posted on the website.  Please review the results and let us know if something is not quite right.  The results will be submitted to RUSA after review and will become official once certified.

Temperatures were cool at the start, allowing the riders to crest the fist two epic climbs: Jacks Mountain, and Ulsh Gap before the heat and humidity set in. Sadly, Gerry Montague sustained injuries after crashing at high speed while descending Ulsh Gap. Fellow rider Brian Fitzsimmons was quickly on the scene to render aid and call EMS.

The five remaining day-of riders finished in regulation time,  and were able to enjoy the fine offerings of the Rusty Rail Brewing Company.

The start at dawn: how does this eBrevet App work?

Bryan and Gavin are the first up Jacks Mountain

Brian and Gerry on Jacks

Andreas on Jacks

Chris on Jacks

Gavin on Ulsh Gap

Gavin motoring

Bryan on Ulsh Gap

Brian and Gerry on Ulsh Gap, just before...

Andreas on Ulsh Gap


Here is what Chris Nadovich had to say:

Thank you Steve for yet another chance to tour the beautiful ridge-valley region of Pennsylvania. The climbs are tough, but they are separated by many miles of glorious spinning through the rural countryside. Certainly this is one of PA Rando's classic courses.  Thanks for creating the course and organizing the ride on such  a perfect day, weather wise. 

It's a shame such a great ride was marred by Gerry's crash -- the second crash on a descent in so many PA events -- makes me wonder about the insufficient speed of our club's guardian angel. I hope other riders take note of this disturbing trend and BE CAREFUL OUT THERE! Please, oh please don't ride faster than our failing angel. The next PA event also has a ton of descending, including a descent of Fiddler's Elbow. Please SLOW THE F DOWN. I promise that there will be plenty of burgers at the finish for even the slowest riders.

And, a note from Gerry:

I wanted to take a minute to thank everyone who took care of me and my family after Saturday's little incident on Ulsh Gap: Chris, Steve, and Brian in particular. I have a long list of injuries, expect to be back on the bike by the end of the month depending on the extent of how many fingers need surgery, definitely two so far. You guys typified why this is a special community.

Now if anyone knows a really, REALLY good bike mechnic / miracle worker....

Our thoughts are with you Gerry. We wish you a speedy and complete recovery.

Thanks to riders Brian and Chris for assisting at the accident scene on Ulsh Gap Rd. And thanks to Chris Nadovich for not dying on this ride so he can continue to fine tune his brilliant eBrevet App that is sure to be the salvation of randonneurs everywhere.

Join us next month, 28 October in Easton PA for the PA Rando Fall Classic. There is a 200K brevet and a 154K populaire.  Both courses are among the hilliest in our repertoire. At the finish, if you survive, there will be a Bar-B-Cue at CafĂ© Nadovich. Details can be found on the PA Rando website.


Steven Schoenfelder
Organizer, PAR Rusty Rail 200K