JAM Fund Grand FUNdo – 2017


The JAM Fund Grand Fundo has became a signature cycling event in western Massachusetts, known for it’s cycling star power, beautiful and challenging routes, great food & drink, and warm community.  Living in western mass, I feel particularly fortunate to connect with so many cycling friends  at an event in my backyard that I otherwise would not get to see in my day to day life.

This year, Laura came back to do the full Fundo–67 miles and over 5,650 feet of climbing on a mix of paved and gravel roads.  It was a warm and cloudy day and I was grateful temps didn’t move past the mid 80’s.

Screen Shot 2017-07-24 at 5.52.02 PM

Laura & Gail.

We rolled out from Black Birch Winery in Southampton and hit gravel within just a few miles. Soon we all tackled the formidable King’s Highway, followed by Krug Sugarbush and then around mile 22, our first rest stop.

Screen Shot 2017-07-24 at 5.52.14 PM

KIT Teamies, Steph & Kathy at rest stop #1. I felt a little guilty in my NCC kit. They gave me a pass….”when in Rome….”  Northampton Cycling Club for summer, Keep It Tight for cyclocross season.

Soon after, we were back on gravel for what seemed like the next 30 miles. I was riding my gf’s gravel bike, a 2016 Specialized Dolce Evo, which was super comfortable. I loved the stopping power of the disc brakes and the Lazy-Boy quality of the seat. But it didn’t help me in the climbing department, and at 22 pounds, I was used to a lighter machine. I slogged through each hill, which slowed all of us down (sorry guys), but on the descents I bombed past everyone. The Specialized tracked superbly and I could confidentially hit 40+ mph on gravel and then stop on a dime.

Screen Shot 2017-07-24 at 5.38.20 PM

Laura’s taking a selfie and I’m showing her the pretty birdie.

By mile 50, I was more than ready for our downhill finale. 17 miles of reverse hills I was downward dogging it back to the winery. I REALLY wanted to hang out and enjoy the food and beer and friends, both new and old–but my son had been dropped off at a neighbor’s house after 2 weeks away from home (tech camp & a Cape Cod vacation) and I couldn’t wait another second to see my boy. I can’t complain though–It was a full day on bikes with friends at a terrific event supporting the next generation of cyclocross greats. I’ll be back next year for another helping!

-Karen

Advertisements

Tags: , , , , , ,

About Karen

Mid-life female amateur athlete focused on cyclocross, mountain biking, and road cycling. Always looking to see what is around the next bend in the road.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: