DC Randonneurs


		
	

2020 Announcements

Pre-2008 Results Now Online

Results for club rides since 2008 are visible on this, the club's main, website. Pre-2008 results can now be viewed by selecting About tab > Pre-2008 results. A summary page for those results will open in a new window or tab.

The results on this site are "unofficial" in the sense that since 1999 results only become official after being homologated by Randonneurs USA. But RUSA membership has not always been required for rides organized by DC Randonneurs or its predecessor Potomac Pedalers. So the pre-2008 results on this site include riders not shown on the RUSA site, which is restricted to RUSA members, as well as summary information available on the RUSA site but not in one place.

Most importantly, the new pages make available again pre-1999 results that are not available anywhere else. Current riders with pre-1999 results include Paul Donaldson, Bill Smith, Gordon Meuse, Gary Waggoner, and Ed Felker. But all members can get a fuller sense of this club's long and distinguished history by viewing the material now back online. Take a look.

Flatbread Pre-ride

Clint Provenza and I pre-rode the route for this fall classic on Halloween, a crisp day that wavered between bright sunshine and overcast.

Because COVID restrictions removed the possibility of pizza at the finish, we decided to move the start/finish to a location that offered pre-ride coffee and rest rooms, as well as ample parking. The new location is the ACME Market, which is on the route and about 0.6 miles short of the traditional finish. To get there, take the MD304 exit off MD301 and head north about 2 miles. There is a Starbucks inside to the left, and restrooms inside to the right, both at the front of the market and both quite satisfactory. Note: to minimize our impact on their regular customers, please park on the side of ACME, not in front.

Temperature was 40 (maybe even a little cooler) and dawn was just breaking at the start, however on ride day it will be daylight because of the end of daylight savings time. Unlike previous years where there was a tailwind all the way to Slaughter Beach and a headwind back, the winds were reversed (but not very strong). Riding into the rising sun is always an inspiring experience. I thought road surfaces were better than in previous years overall, although there are still stretches of chip seal your tired legs will notice in the afternoon.

As veterans know, the course lives up to its name. The biggest hill might be the approach to Greensboro, or perhaps a highway overpass. We skipped the popular Greensboro MD TigerMart (mile 29) but hit the Harrington DE Royal Farms (mile 43). The Dolce Café in Milford DE (mile 52) is also a popular stop. After identifying the second of 2 info controls (in Slaughter Beach – both info controls on this ride should be familiar to veterans), we headed south towards Milton but skipped the traditional lunch stop at Subway (mile 70) and headed for home.

The final control, the Liberty Gas Mart in Bridgeville DE (mile 89) was the same as it ever was, and a welcome opportunity to get a final eat/drink/restroom stop before the finish. The ride back was very scenic, roads through woods and farms, and the sun setting to our left (it will set an hour earlier this Saturday.)

All in all, another great Flatbread. Probably a little better than previous years on account of road conditions and weather.

Jack Nicholson

Time to Renew Your Membership

Membership in DC Randonneurs expires at the end of each year. Renew yours now (really any time after October 1), and your membership will continue from the renewal date until December 31, 2021. No need to leave this to the last minute, so take the plunge and renew your membership now.

RUSA Approves 2021 Schedule for DC Randonneurs

RUSA has approved the schedule of events DC Randonneurs submitted for 2021. Event details will be published on the ride calendar in coming months. In addition, DC Randonneurs can add RUSA brevets to the schedule with little lead time. So stay tuned, but pencil in these dates on your calendar.

Date Ride Type Length in Kilometers
02/27/21 ACP Brevet 200
03/13/21 ACP Brevet 200
03/27/21 ACP Brevet 300
04/09/21 ACP Flèche 360
04/24/21 ACP Brevet 300
05/15/21 ACP Brevet 400
06/05/21 ACP Brevet 600
09/11/21 ACP Brevet 200
09/18/21 ACP Brevet 200
10/16/21 RUSA Brevet 200
11/06/21 RUSA Brevet 200
12/04/21 RUSA Brevet 200

Old Rag Pre-ride

The DC Randonneurs fall brevet series continues with Crista Borras's classic Old Rag 200. The ride starts from the Wawa at the intersection of US29 Business and US211 in Warrenton VA, across from the old Howard Johnson's, now Red Roof Inn. Park on Waterloo Street on the north side of US211, west of the Red Roof Inn. Sunrise on Saturday will be at 07:21, so riders wanting to start right at 07:00 will need lights and reflective gear. The club's COVID-19 protocols will be in effect for all riders.

The current forecast is for clear, cool weather on Saturday. This means the route's many views of the Blue Ridge will be unobstructed by clouds, and leaves that were just beginning to turn on the pre-ride should be showing more color. In addition to the fall foliage, political posters will be out in full force from the horse country around Warrenton to the far more rural areas at the southern end of route. Pick your own favorites; I posted mine to Strava.

The roads along the route are in better shape than they have been for some time. I did not encounter any issues with gravel or other debris in the road; however, one heavy rainstorm between now and Saturday can always change that, so stay alert. Roads that had deteriorated badly in recent years (I'm looking at you, Rylands Chapel and Bohannon) have been resurfaced and are now in good to excellent condition. The only bad pavement of any concern was on the descent heading out of Warrenton at mile 2 and the descent off the shoulder of Old Rag at mile 72.9. These places are marked on both the cue sheet and RWGPS route.

There are some significant gaps between resupply points on this ride.

  • On the way down to Madison, Reuwer's Grocery at mile 28.2 is your best bet.
  • At mile 58.2 you will pass McDonald's on your way into Madison, and Jenny Lynd's pizza after you turn right on Main Street.
  • Syria Mercantile at mile 71.1 is open. Keep an eye out for the country ham muffins.
  • The Laurel Mills Store at mile 94.6 is open and operating out of a tent next to the gas pumps.
  • Your best bet in Flint Hill at mile 103.9 is Settle's Grocery a few hundred feet north on US522 from the right turn onto Crest Hill Road.
  • Orleans Market at mile 114.3 offers everything from a cold soda to a sit down meal—more than enough to fuel you to the finish.

This is a beautiful but also challenging ride. There aren't any huge climbs, but there are many ups and downs, some of them quite steep. According to my Wahoo:

  • From the start to the control at Syria Mercantile there are 5,100 feet of climbing in 71 mostly rolling miles.
  • From Syria Mercantile to Flint Hill there are 3,100 feet of climbing in 33 miles, including the climb up Old Rag after the control and all the steep climbs except for Piney Mountain.
  • From Flint Hill to the finish there are 1,800 feet of climbing in 30 miles including Piney Mountain six miles from the finish.

DC Randonneurs has run this ride virtually without change for over twenty years now. In addition to challenging yourself on Saturday, you'll also have a chance to compare your ride to your own past efforts and to the efforts of past club luminaries, some of whom are still riding and some of whom have acquired legendary status.

Ask the Board October 19

Club members are invited to an Ask the Board meeting on Zoom, Monday October 19 at 19:00. Meeting details will be distributed by email.

2020 has been a year of many surprises and disappointments for randonneurs. A lot has happened since our Annual Meeting at the beginning of the year, and we still have a ways to go before our next Annual Meeting in January 2021. So join the board for a preview of Gardner's plans for 2021 and beyond, followed by a chance for members to ask questions or make suggestions to the board.

As 2020 winds down, it's also a good time to think about how you can get more involved in club activities for 2021. In particular, think about getting involved with one of our functional committees:

  • Routes: Talk to Ed Felker
  • Rides: Talk to Chris Readinger
  • Social Media: Talk to Ed Felker
  • Outreach and Recognition: Talk to Emily Ranson

Getting involved can mean making a year-long commitment, or it can mean following through on a specific project. But make sure it's something that interests you and that you really want to do. DC Randonneurs is an all-volunteer organization, and the more people get involved, the healthier the club is.

Curtis Hunter

Curtis Hunter, who rode brevets with us from 2011 through 2017, has died in a cycling accident. No other vehicles were involved.

The bare bones of Curtis’s randonneuring career can be viewed on our website or RUSA’s. We encourage members with personal recollections of Curtis to post them to the club's forum or Facebook site.

This club has had more than its share of cycling injuries and fatalities. Cycling is a beautiful sport, but it is also dangerous. Please do all you can to protect your own health and safety on the bike and to respect the health and safety of others around you.

DCRand INTRODUCES TOUCHLESS COVID-ERA BREVETS

These are the rules and procedures for our COVID-era touchless brevets. Participants must:

  • Comply with all state and local rules for COVID public health precautions.
  • Bring a face mask, use it as required by COVID public health precautions, and bring hand sanitizer.
  • Maintain at least 6’ social distance at all times, indoors and out.
  • Maintain on the bike social distance of at least 10’ forward and backward.
  • Execute the RUSA liability waiver ­and the COVID waiver, in some electronic format delivered before registration closes.
  • Receive the cue sheet, optional control card, and GPS file electronically only.
  • Use traditional or electronic proof of passage, at the rider’s election.
  • Transmit traditional control card proof of passage to the organizer either as images attached to email or by US mail.
  • Provide electronic proof of passage by the rider’s GPS track or digital photos at controls.
  • Start within the start window, with the rider establishing her start time within the window.
  • Finish within the qualifying ride time determined by RUSA or ACP rules as applicable, with the rider establishing her finish time.
  • Come fully prepared to ride; DCRand provides nothing at the start or finish.
  • Follow all RUSA rules except as stated otherwise here.
  • Check back for updates; rules and procedures may change.

Board Minutes for June Posted

Meeting minutes for the DCR board meeting on June 1 have been posted to About > Board Minutes.

Board Minutes for March through May Posted

Meeting minutes for DCR board meetings in March, April, and May have been posted to About > Board Minutes.

Board Minutes for January and February Posted

Meeting minutes for the January and February DCR board meetings have been posted to About > Board Minutes.

DC RANDONNEURS APRIL EVENT CANCELLATION NOTICE  

              I regret to say that the DCRand Spring Series events for April are being postponed.  These are the Soldiers Delight ACP 300k on April 4 and the fleche on April 18.  We do not have any event scheduled in late April; next up is the Mother of All 300s on May 2, which six weeks away.

                My decision is based chiefly on being responsible for opportunities to spread the coronavirus.  As individuals we have to make our own choices and decisions, but when operating what are essentially social events, I have to take responsibility for not risking social contacts that could contribute to a rising social problem, if not crisis.  One reason I am postponing a 300k and the fleche is that these longer events are very difficult to execute without putting our riders in contact with service providers, in a situation which does not involve necessity.  There is also the consideration of possibly taxing emergency and medical systems as well.

                The disappointment about postponing the April events is probably split among those who just want to ride them, and those who were planning on those events serving as fitness-building or qualification for other events or awards.  I sympathize with both concerns, as I was planning on achieving another SR Series in 2020, and I love the fleche.  There is some mitigation of these concerns already, and likely will be more.

                RUSA has suspended the R12 and P12 programs effective March 1, so missed rides in March and April will not break a current streak.  Cancelled ACP events can be rescheduled until mid-October.  If you need to qualify for a 1200k or the like, the qualifications for most of those events are in the organizer’s discretion, and there is likely to be some flexibility in my estimation.  Of course, there is no substitute for riding the miles you planned on to prepare.

                I am looking at rescheduling both of the postponed April events in late summer and early fall.  I am thinking late August for a 300k, possibly with a 5 p.m. Saturday night start.  I think the fleche might work with our existing calendar on the first weekend in October.  There is already an ACP 200k set for September 12.

                After consultation with the DCRand Board, I have decided not to schedule petit events until further notice.  To the extent that you can self-support a ride, I suggest that you ride that ride and resign yourself that this is not the time to worry about RUSA credit.

                I encourage everyone to keep riding, while exercising social distancing.  That is important for us in a time of great stress, and will allow some of us to continue working toward fitness goals.  Stay well, G

O. T. Doe D. O. ACP 200k Wrap Up

                The DCRand Spring Series launched on the first Saturday in May, after our members had already collected a whole bunch of kilometers in petit events.  30 riders started (including pre-riders) the O. T. Doe D. O. ACP 200k on March 7, and 29 finished.  Starting conditions were a bit harsh, with temps in the low 30s and a headwind right on the nose for the first 19 miles, and still challenging the riders for 45 more miles into Dover.  The route then reversed direction at around the same time the wind started to slacken, making for easier conditions on the way home, under cloudless and warming skies.  Some of the riders were treated to the rise of a full moon late in the afternoon.  Some photos are on the new DCRand.org Instagram page at dc_randonneurs, thanks to Ed Felker.

                Spring has not yet sprung where route lies, from Frederick north into Pennsylvania.  Some of the winter wheat has turned green, but I did not see any buds or blooms driving through that region scouring roads for future events.  Late winter was showing its beauty, though, on lovely roads Crista Borras long ago picked out for randonneuring.

                After the ride I asked Bill Beck, when was the last time DCRand had an event for which he had no responsibility?  After a moment’s reflection, he said 2006.  Fourteen years is a long time to have a finger in every brevet and team event (and more), and we owe a real gratitude for Bill helping so many get so much pleasure and challenge out of randonneuring.  Even without an office at DCRand, Bill is not done helping us yet.

                This was the first large event we have run through the new website at DCRand.org, and things came off almost without a hitch.  Paperwork for sign-in is greatly reduced and registration of 28 riders was easy for one person to accomplish.  Financial accounting is already done and results would have been entered within 24 hours if the www gods were smiling on us.  It helped to have the RBA organize this brevet, and the exchange of paperwork will take more time when others organize, but new systems should greatly streamline the run-up and aftermath of our events.

                We have petit 200ks on Friday March 13 and March 14, then the Spring Series returns March 21 with the Old Rag 200k.  We have a petit Populaire set for March 22.  In April our Spring Series picks up distance with the inaugural Soldiers Delight 300k April 4 and Fleche on April 18.  We have three long rides set for May, as well.  See you on the road, G

Annual Meeting 15:00 - 17:00 Sunday, January 26

The annual meeting of DC Randonneurs will take place at Glen Echo Town Hall, 6106 Harvard Avenue, Glen Echo MD 20812 from 15:00 - 17:00 on Sunday, January 26. Come early (after 14:00) to help with room setup.

Please do not park on the neighborhood streets around the town hall. Instead, use the Glen Echo parking at 5900 Oxford Street three blocks east of the town hall.

Business will include:

  1. Filling three slots on the club board:
    1. Bill Beck, who is club treasurer, is term-limited and rolls off the board. The board has discussed the treasurer position with Jack Nicholson, and he has agreed to serve if elected.
    2. Chris Readinger, who is a member at large of the board, is not term-limited and has agreed to serve if elected.
    3. Ed Felker, who is a member at large of the board, is not term-limited and has agreed to serve if elected.
  2. Discussing and voting on a club budget and ride fees for 2020.
  3. Discussing the club's financial position with special reference to the insurance and liability issues facing the sport in this country.
  4. Discussing the new club website and social media outreach.
  5. Recognizing volunteers.
  6. Recognizing rider achievements.
  7. Other club business as proposed by club members.

Unlike previous years, the club has not scheduled a ride earlier the same day. Our full schedule of January petit brevets is now open for registration on this website.