Catching up: Round 3: The Midnight Classic

It’s been just over a week since I participated in my first Midnight Classic Bike Tour.  I have to say that I was pretty much blown away by the number of cyclists who rode that night.  There must have been over 1000 people on bikes, all pedaling through Memphis in the wee hours of the morning, all for a good cause.

My evening started out well.  After kissing the wife goodbye and promising to text when the ride began and ended – we’re like that – I biked over to my friend Matt’s house for a little carbonated fun and socializing.  After a while on his porch, the lot of us biked over to the Poplar Plaza parking lot and waited around for the ride to start.

Here’s my evening’s gear, plus my very first number from a sponsored bike ride.

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Number 3284.  I felt so special, and yet completely anonymous.

For the two or so hours that I hung around the Poplar Plaza parking lot waiting for the ride to begin, I managed to take in several rounds of bike polo.

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That’s some bad ass shit happenin’ up in there.

Here’s a shot of some bikes just near the polo court.

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Clearly, I need a new camera, or at least one that is not part of my phone.

As the midnight hour grew closer, I felt my eyelids starting to sag and my energy level begin to wane.  It was strange.

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Yep, no idea why that was happening.

Finally though, I lined up for the ride, with about 10 million of my closest friends.

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I wonder if Nikon is having a sale this week.  I was in the 9th wave of cyclists to leave, and while I started out a moderate pace, I soon realized that if I didn’t step on it, I’d end up finishing the race and arriving home sometime around October.  So I pulled the strap down and finished around the second wave.

After guzzling some water and chatting for a bit, I headed home.  I was too tired too sleep so I stayed up until around 4:00 AM reading.  Let me tell you, I was feeling great the next day.

All in all it was a really fun event.  I hadn’t counted on how much socializing there would be, and how much it felt like tailgating before a football game.  Next year I might come just for the fun.

Here’s a map of my ride that evening.

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A very respectable 23.5 miles that day, including the pre- and post-rides to and from home.  If you’ve never done the Classic, you should give it a try sometime.  I’m glad I did.

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