Before the TNR with Velo City, Mike gave a very direct speech about the rules. For the safety of everyone he talked about riding smart, and listening to the group leaders. Point taken. There have been a few crashes lately but thankfully no major injuries. On the Monday Macatawa ride though, a rider went down and ended up at Spectrum Hospital. Everyone seemed to be on point....except for one in particular in our group.
We started innocent enough through Holland. About 4 miles in I could tell the two riders in front of me were keeping an eye on a one guy. I had been watching him too, because he was all over the place. I told the two younger riders ahead of me to keep an eye on him because he was so sporadic. They both acknowledged and said they were already talking about it. We were trying to push him towards the back of the group and the three of us moved towards the front when we stopped to regroup. Problem...this guy rode around the whole group and ended up in the front again. He was easier to keep an eye on, but kept everyone else on their toes watching him. He would pedal and slow down, speed up, swerve, spit into the air (with 20 people behind him...classy), would tuck into aero position on the climbs, and even went onto his aero bars at one point. I heard someone tell him to stay off his aero bars but a few miles later he dropped to them again. I pointed and a guy in a Velo jersey yelled at him again. This guy responded "you can't be serious" so which I responded "your hands are nowhere near your brakes dude, and there are a lot of people in this group" so he finally stopped that.....but then he was giving updates to the leaders like he was in a trailer car. "no cars back"....."looking good back here"....."might be a car back"...ect. The same guy in the Velo jersey asked him what he was doing.....and his response was "riding with the Velo group...what are you doing". Dumbass.
I finally moved up into 2nd row and he was next to me for much of the ride. I felt better because he finally calmed down a bit and the ride went pretty smooth. After the ride Velo City offered us some pop and pizza with some added conversation. I made sure to point out to a few others that this guy could be a problem in the future and they took note of who he was, and what he was riding. This got me thinking......have I ever been "that guy" because nobody wants to be "that guy". So I asked.
I had a nice conversation with Mike about being "that guy" and how I would prefer that people tell me if I am doing something wrong for the simple reason that I really don't know the rules. I am still learning. I have been on maybe 6 group rides and I know that I have made mistakes, but I am also learning what not to do from watching other people, as well as what to do by listening. Nobody wants to be that guy. I don't want to find out in a few weeks that I am "that guy"...so that is why I asked. So far, I haven't pissed anyone off that I know of....or I am sure they would have told me. It keeps me on my toes though....because I am learning and I am getting faster/stronger every ride. Hopefully I can stay away from the "that guy" tag.....and as long as "that guy" shows up that I mentioned above.....I should be able to steer clear of the tag.
Ride on people.
Boyne Marathon July 14th
Holland 100 July 21
Going to be a busy month again!