Nails on a chalkboard

At least once or twice a year I have one of those races where I feel like I’m just staring at the wheel in front of me, hanging on until the race is over. After one of those races I tell people, “yeah I was in the race, but I can’t say that I was racing.”

What makes those races worse is how the riders around you — who you normally wouldn’t pay much attention to — can become so incredibly annoying. The guy with the shorts worn thin enough to see through. The guy who insists on moving in front of you on every turn even though he has no intention of going any farther. The jersey that smells like it hasn’t been washed for 3 races. The number that was pinned on crookedly.

The worst is the noisy equipment. At the Tour of the Valley road race I kept finding myself near this guy whose chain was rubbing on his front derailleur when in the big ring. After a while it was like nails on a chalkboard. I wanted to yell, “Dude! Trim the effing derailleur!” I couldn’t understand how it was not bugging him either.

The next day in the crit, I found myself next to Mr. Derailleur again. Still making noise. You couldn’t fix that after yesterday’s race? My only explanation is that he couldn’t tell the difference between that and a noisy Red cassette (which is another annoying sound).

After that race I as happy to get in the car, roll up the windows, turn on the air, turn off the radio and drive home. In silence.

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7 Comments

Filed under racing, Uncategorized

7 responses to “Nails on a chalkboard

  1. Jim

    One of the guys up here has pedals that make noise and drive me nuts.
    Trouble is that the owner is actually deaf (uses hearing aids) and can’t hear them. True story.

  2. Brian

    My own pedals were making noise and driving me crazy. I had to do something about that.

    In a race normally I don’t even notice that stuff. But it seems when I am just hanging on to wheels all of a sudden I notice all that annoying stuff. I guess that happens when you are not thinking about racing but only how much you’re suffering.

  3. I once turned an annoying noise to advantage. I was going so crazy listening to the creak of someone’s ungreased seat rails at RATL once that I went on a flyer, partly to get the hell away from him. Wound up in a 2-man break. I blame my 2nd-place finish on the emotional drain. (Well, that and the junior who was tooling around on the parking lot when we turned into it on the final lap. I braked. The other guy didn’t. He won.)

    • Brian

      Ha … I should have used that strategy … get po’d enough to get the hell away from the noise. Well except I didn’t have the legs to do it at TotV.

  4. Anonymous

    Dont like the noise, then start racing instead of getting annoyed.

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