Saturday, January 11, 2014

Sabato con squadra - Pinone.

Although I could call last Saturday's ride a team ride, it was a solo ride, so today is the first group ride for me in a couple of weeks.  We had a group of 6 at Illiopesca this morning, and Luca and I decided on the Pinone tour, returning through Montelupo and Chiesa Nuova.  Luca had a friend there, Simone who I had not met before.  There were two women there, one of whom I am pretty sure I have ridden with once before and another I had not ridden with.  The introductions were very fast, and we were off, so I don't remember their names.  We went out through Lastra, then Signa, then the route I like by the river and then up through Comeana to Carmignano.  The two ladies whose names I don't remember were a little slow, and we waited (actually doubled back) before Carmignano.  We resumed a normal speed, and Luca, Simone, and I had a little challenge to see who was last to Carmignano, as the last person was to buy cafe in Pinone.

Simone bought the cafe.   We separated after Carmignano and everyone took their own pace up to Pinone.  I was first up there, and I think it is the first time I have dropped Luca on a climb, but that may have to do with him staying with Simone for around 1/2 the climb.  Either way, I admit it felt good, as Luca is a strong rider and particularly a strong climber.  I would guess him at 5-6 and 140 lbs, so he is totally built to be a climber.  We had cafe at Pinone, waited for the ladies, and regrouped.  One of the ladies did not make it to the top, but we doubled back and she said she was going to return the way she came although she was less than 1/2 k to the top.  We let her friend know, and she returned with her.  That left 4 of us for the remainder of the ride, which was fine.

Another great descent awaits to Vitolini, then down to Empoli.  The route to Vitolini in particular is just really nice.  The road is also full of cyclists on a Saturday morning, as it is team time here in the mornings on the weekends.  At some point Simone was telling me he had found a perfect, like new, 1974 Bianchi at his uncle's.  I asked if he rode the Eroica and he said no, but asked if I did.  I responded that I would like to, but did not have an appropriate bike.  He offered his uncle's bike, and I would love it if it works out.  I will follow up later, as I would really like to ride the Eroica.  In the Eroica, you have to use a pre-1986 bike.

After Empoli, we did a pretty good job of staying together in a pace line and even picked up 3 more riders as we passed them on the way to Montelupo.  Good job staying with the guys, Laura.  Back to the 4 of us down the valley to Cerbia, and we came apart a little more as some people's energy was flagging.  We kept it pretty together, then took the climb to Chiesa Nuova slow and stayed together for almost the whole climb.  One of these days I have to stop at the bakery there as both Luca and Simone were talking about the best schiaciatta in Florence at the bakery.  Simone said sometimes on Sunday mornings there would be a line of 200 or more people to get some.  Maybe next time.  After regrouping in Chiesa Nuova, we returned through Scandicci and split up to return to our respective houses.  I really enjoyed the ride and the company today.  It also felt almost like May as we returned to Florence with the sun coming out and temperatures in the high 50's.  55.1 miles in 3:31 rolling time for an average speed of 15.7 mph with 2602 vertical feet climbed at an average temperature of 57.  Sweet ride!

Lastra, Carmignano, Pinone, Vitolini, Montelupo, Chiesa Nuova, Fi. by ridingwithcosimo at Garmin Connect - Details

Luca and Simone on the way to Carmignano.

Simone, Luca, and Laura just ahead of me on the way to 
Cerbia from Montelupo, almost on the home stretch.

On the ridge descent just past Chiesa Nuova, I decided I needed 
picture of the sky as the sun came out.  

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