Raced home after work this afternoon to get in a ride before dark. We have a cold front coming through tonight, and this might be the last warm weather ride I’ll have for awhile.
Did the usual run to the Veloway. It’s an easy way to get in a quick 15, or 18, or 21 miles, depending upon how much time is available. I’ve been bad this week — haven’t ridden since last Saturday. I was looking forward to a few brisk laps around the course.
The Veloway is mostly flat. But on the back side, about halfway around, there’s a short, but steep hill. I hit the bottom of the hill at about 20 mph, and did a quick downshift to spin up the grade.
I must have shifted down more than one gear. The pedals started spinning fast and free. My right foot unclipped from the pedal, which caused the bike to lean left. I lost control. The front wheel went off the left side of the track, onto a sloping gutter. No way to recover.
The bike went over on its left side. I managed to stay almost upright, except that my right leg scraped across the front derailleur, and my left hand scraped the rocks along the track. Otherwise, no endo — no major bruises.
I got the bike up and pushed it across the track, out of the way of any other riders who might be behind me. A quick damage assessment found the handlebars knocked askew, and my nice bar tape was scuffed down to the bare metal — but not where my hand contacts it.
Once I straightened the bars and checked myself over, it seemed things weren’t too bad. I hopped back on and finished a 15-mile trip (The crash happened just over four miles into the ride). The bike rode fine.
I still can’t believe I lost it on this easy hill. I’ve ridden the thing hundreds of times — and that’s just this year. It just shows to go ya — you can never take things for granted.