The Red River Riot.
As told by Eric “Lacy” Swarvar, Racing Member, SS
After doing a few Spinistry Gravel rides I thought I knew what to expect. Kevin runs a professionally organized promotion like no other. An entry fee of $30 got me an option of 3 distances of 40,72, or 123 miles, I wisely choose the middle for my cross bike and I. Fellow Beards Mike and Greg were also at the race and after exchanging greetings at Muenster High School, we quickly realized the event was off to a start. We started to the back, which is never my favorite place to start. I began to push to get to the front of the group but only made it to the 2nd peloton. The group was led out by Kevin in his vehicle to begin the day. The pace picked up quickly and I settled in to a 17+mph average. At mile 4 a rider went down in a gravel turn. I did not stop to offer assistance as my level of medical training is not good and he already had 4 fellow riders helping. I rode a little cautious for the next few miles until the scenery drew my attention away from my thoughts on the wreck. From mile 8 to 25 I rode with a few individuals I know, but not working a pace line, we were turning the cranks and chewing the cud. At mile 25 a pace line formed and the speed picked back up. There were about 20 riders pushing through and at mile 30 my loins were releaved to feel pavement. I cranked the speed up for a fast mile hitting a 30.8 MPH average just to have a little fun with the guys on the MTB. It was my impression that the first loop was a 35 mile loop before coming back to Muenster High to check in. I was wrong since it was a keen 40 miles. I averaged a nice 17.3 MPH average, far from the guys in the first group with a 19+ mph average.
Loop two will forever be known as the bastard loop to me. It had a lot more elevation changes then the first but the scenery was equally beautiful. For a while I rode with Chaos(for those of you that have meet him you know him). He was rolling a single speed fixed gravel bike and was smiling the entire time. Halfway into the second loop you could break left to the winery or right to stay on course, Chaos went off to the winery with a, “Yhea Man!” as I pushed to stay on course. Thats when trouble occurred at mile 56. The real climbing began. 400+ feet over 4 miles and the peak of the climb was 160 feet over .7 miles….quads cramped and admittedly I became a hiker instead of a biker for about .3 miles. Once the hill leveled I jumped back on the saddle and started to pedal. I took about a mile to settle back in and feel good. Finishing 72 miles in 4 hours 32 minutes with over 4,100+ feet of climbing on gravel felt good. I consumed 3 bottles of Scratch labs, 1 water bottle, and 4 Scratch rice cakes. Next time I will eat a little more on the ride, I believe thats where the cramping came from.
After most Spinistry events Kevin provides BBQ brisket, beans, salsa, to make your own tacos or sandwiches. He also took pictures out on the course, posted the results in less then 24 hours, and emailed each participant their individual results by Monday. This is an event I will keep on my calendar year after year, and highly encourage everyone to hit up a few of his events.
Eric Swarvar, Medium Route, 26 of 90, 4:36:23
Mike D’Aurelio, Medium Route, 71 of 90, 5:39:43
Greg Campbell, Short Route, 20 of 80, 2:35:23
-Eric “Lacy” Swarvar
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