Arizona Road Cyclist News
J
ack Quinn, Editor

 © September 15, 2010

Published every other Wednesday (sometimes -- this issue is very late) and sent out by E-mail free of charge. To modify or cancel your subscription, click here.

In this issue:
     Citations Issued in Death of Doug Flynn
     Cyclists: Dupes of UN New World Order?
     Lightless Mesa Cyclist Goes to Pot
     Kitt Peak Time Treal -- This Sunday
     Arizona Hill Climb Championships -- September 26
     Criterium at DC Ranch -- October 2
     Tour de Scottsdale -- October 3
     Mountain Bike Movie at MadCap -- October 7
     Breast Cancer Awareness Ride -- October 9
     Tour de Fat -- October 9
     Cave Creek Bike Tour -- October 16 & 17
     Memorial Ride for Safety XIII -- October 23
     Tumacacori Century -- October 24
     Tour de Tempe -- October 24
     Heart of Arizona Century -- November 6
     McDowell Mountain Century -- November 13
     About Arizona Road Cyclist News

Citations Issued in Death of Doug Flynn.

You may remember that in September of last year, Yuma cyclist Doug Flynn was struck head-on and killed by an automobile coming from the opposite direction. The driver had pulled out to pass a tractor towing a farm machine despite the fact that the sun was in her eyes and she did not have a clear view of oncoming traffic. The accident happened in the small farming town of Somerton, just south of Yuma.

The Somerton Police subsequently referred the matter to the Yuma County Prosecutor for possible criminal action. The prosecutor declined to file criminal charges against the driver. (I am told that in the State of Arizona it is almost impossible to obtain a criminal conviction against someone who whose negligent driving results in the death of another person unless the driver is impaired or leaves the scene of the accident.) That left open, however, the possibility of issuing a civil traffic citation, which was up to the discretion of the Somerton Police Department.

Almost a year passed after the accident, and the Somerton Police Department had not yet issued a ticket and was evasive in answering inquiries about the case. In August, Ed Beighe, who runs the site azbikelaw.org/blog, notified me that if the ticket were not written by September 23, the one-year anniversary of Doug's death, the statute of limitations would make a citation impossible. Ed also informed me that he had been pressuring the Somerton Police to take action in the case but had not met with success.

I posted Ed's concerns to the Arizona Road Cyclist News Website and to the Arizona Bicycle Racing Association forum along with the E-mail address of the Somerton police chief. I have no way of knowing whether the subsequent E-mails sent to the police chief spurred him to action or not, but two citations against the driver were issued on September 1: "SPEED GREATER THAN REASONABLE AND PRUDENT" and "FAIL TO PASS SAFELY ON LEFT."

Doug Flynn was a licensed racer and the founder and president of the Yuma Bike Club. He is sorely missed.

My thanks to Ed Beighe and to all those who E-mailed the Somerton Police Department for keeping this matter alive. I believe that if it were not for the outside interest, the statute of limitations would have been allowed to quietly expire.

Cyclists: Dupes of UN New World Order?

If you think that politics in Arizona are bizarre, just be thankful that you don't live in the nearby state of Colorado where Dan Maes won a primary election to become the Republican nominee for mayor of Denver by running in part on the idea that cycling is "converting Denver into a United Nations community" and that cycling "could threaten our personal freedoms." Mr. Maes is particularly irked by Denver's membership in the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) and by Denver's bike-sharing program, which has placed about 400 rental bikes at stations around the city.

The Denver Post printed Maes's explanation of his opposition to commuting by bicycle: "At first I thought, 'Gosh, public transpiration, what's wrong with that, and what's wrong with people parking their cars and riding their bikes? And what's wrong with incentives for green cars?' But if you do your homework and research, you realize ICLEI is part of a greater strategy to rein in American cities under a United Nations treaty.'"

In all fairness I should add that despite his primary victory, mainstream Republicans have denounced Mr. Maes's tactics, and analysts say that he is unlikely to be elected in November. This contrasts with Arizona where several crazies seem destined to be elected or re-elected by comfortable majorities.

Just remember, dear readers, the next time you liberal, left-wing pinkos ride your bikes, you are playing right into the hands of the United Nations and its plan for world domination. You are probably also promoting illegal immigration. (What's the relationship between cycling and illegal immigration? I have no idea, but I wouldn't be surprised if one of our fine Arizona politicians doesn't soon make that connection.)

Lightless Mesa Cyclist Goes to Pot

A few weeks ago, a Mesa police officer noticed a man riding a bike at night with no headlight and drew the matter to the cyclist's attention. When the cyclist continued to ride in the dark with no light, the officer pulled the him over. In the ensuing conversation, the officer asked the cyclist if he were carrying anything illegal. The cyclist reportedly invited the officer to search him, and the search resulted in the discovery of a small plastic bag of marijuana.

There is some sort of lesson to be drawn from this story, but I'm not sure what it is. Perhaps it is that one should not cycle after sunset with no lights while performing an illegal activity. Or could the lesson be that it's a bad idea to invite a police officer to search you while you are carrying a banned substance? Or could it be that if a police officer decides to search you against your will, it will later turn out that you volunteered to submit to the search?

My thanks to reader Gordon Goodnow for drawing my attention to this story.

Kitt Peak Time Trial -- This Sunday

The annual Kit Peak Time Trial takes place this Sunday, September 19. As the event's name implies, the race is a time trial from the bottom to the summit of Kitt Peak, a distance of 11.6 miles with an elevation gain of 3400 feet. Registration will be conducted onsite from 6 to 7 a.m. the day of the race with riders to start up the mountain at 30-second intervals beginning at 7:30 a.m. Tucson riders can pre-register the evening before the race at Lerua's Mexican Restaurant, 2005 E. Broadway in Tucson. Registration for USA Cycling licensed riders is $20 for adults and $3 for juniors. For more information, click here.

Arizona Hill Climb Championships -- September 26

As has happened every year for 31 years, on Sunday September 26, Arizona racers will race up Mount Graham in Southern Arizona in a fierce competition to be crowned the Arizona Hill Climb Champion. Well, actually, there will be a number of champions crowned, one for each racing group.

There are two distances. Juniors under 17 race 10 miles. Adult men under 60 and Adult women under 30 race 20 miles. Other age groups get to chose whether to participate in the 20-mile or the 10-mile race. The top finishers will win championship medals, and the winner of each racing category will receive a free Arizona State Championship Hill Climb polka dot jersey. Riders must hold a yearly racing license in order to be eligible for a prize.

The entry fee was $10 for all junior categories and $40 for all other categories until September 12. Riders who are not yet registered must now add a $5 late fee, which doubles to $10 for riders who register on race day.

For more information on the Arizona State Hill Climb Championships, click here.

Criterium at DC Ranch -- October 2

The Criterium at DC Ranch is part of the Scottsdale Cycling Festival, which also includes the annual Tour de Scottsdale. The criterium will be held at Canyon Village, 18501 North Thompson Peak Parkway in Scottsdale.  The first race, for junior men age 10 through 14, starts at 8:15 a.m. and races proceed throughout the day for various categories and age groups culminating in the race for profession and category 1 through 3 women at 4:15 p.m. and the race for professional and category 1 and 2 men at 5:15 p.m. There is also a free kids' race at 3 p.m. and a free family ride at 3:30 p.m. The prize list for licensed racers totals $5,000. To see the race brochure in PDF format, click here.

Tour de Scottsdale -- October 3

The other important event of the Scottsdale Cycling Festival is the Tour de Scottsdale, a 70-mile ride billed as a race, which starts at 7 a.m. on Market Street in DC Ranch. Rather than being run like a USA Cycling race, this event has the mass appeal of a running event with all riders being timed with the aide of a semiconductor chip that each rider will carry. In addition to a bag of goodies, each rider who finishes also receives a medal.

The entry fee is not cheap. Registration cost $85 through August 29 but has now jumped to $100. On September 30, the registration fee takes another jump to $120.

To view the Tour de Scottsdale's homepage, click here.

Mountain Bike Movie at MadCap -- October 7

Although this is a newsletter for road bikies, we realize that some of our readers are occasionally tempted by the dark side of cycling and slip into the depravity of mountain biking. For those of you who would like to experience extreme mountain biking while sitting in a comfortable seat and munching expensive popcorn, the MadCap theater in Tempe presents the file "Ride the Divide" on Thursday, October 7. The movies is about what is purported to be the world's toughest mountain bike race, "which traverses over 2700 miles [from Canada to Mexico] along the Continental Divide in the Rocky Mountains." The MadCap Theater is located at 730 S. Mill Avenue in Tempe. To access the theater's Website, click here.

Breast Cancer Awareness Ride -- October 9

Trek Dealers across the United States and Canada will host family bike rides on October 9 to raise awareness of breast cancer research.  Riders and their families will have a choice of pedaling from 5 to 25 miles. The Phoenix-area ride is sponsored by Southwest Bicycles in Peoria and starts on October 9 at 10 a.m. at the shop, 8155 W. Bell Road #116. The fee is a quite reasonable $25, which will go toward fighting breast cancer. Riders are requested to arrive between 9 and 9:30 a.m. For more information or to register, please click here.

Tour de Fat -- October 9

This year's Tour de Fat will take place on October 9 in the Tempe Town Park. All proceeds benefit local cycling advocacy groups. The event includes a parade, a chance to buy a few beers, a show, and an area for for families with children with kids' bike checks, helmet decorations, melon-drop helmet demonstrations, and bike-powered blenders. For a rather sketchy description of the event, click here.

Cave Creek Bike Tour -- October 16 & 17

This is not the Cave Creek near Phoenix! This Cave Creek is in New Mexico. GABA Tucson presents the Cave Creek Bike Tour on October 16 and 17 with a 42-mile ride each day. This is reported to be a very scenic ride near the Arizona-New Mexico border close to I-10 that is suitable for riders who prefer a somewhat leisurely pace. The night of the 16th, riders will stay at the Southwestern Research Station in the Coronado National Forest in dormitory-style cabins. The cost of the ride is $125 for GABA and ABC members and $140 for others. In return, riders get a SAG stop each day, a light lunch on Saturday afternoon and dinner in the evening, Sunday breakfast, and lodging with bedding, towels, and warm showers. To visit the ride's Website, click here.

Memorial Ride for Safety XIII -- October 23

The Phoenix Metro Bicycle Club and the Coalition of Arizona Bicyclists will jointly promote the 13th annual Memorial Ride for Safety on October 23. There will be three ride distances, 100 kilometers, 35 miles, and an intermediate ride, which is yet to be announced. The ride starts and ends at AJ's at Pima and Pinnacle Peak Roads at 7:30 a.m. for the 100-kilometer ride and 8:00 a.m. for the other two routes. Registration opens at 7:00 a.m. The cost of the ride is $25 for members of PMBC, GABA, ABC, and CAzB and $30 for others who pre-register by October 11th. Tandems are $35. After October 11, a late fee will be charged.

In exchange for their entry fees, riders will receive a route map. two to three SAG stops, and a barbeque meal at the ride's finish. To visit the ride's Webpage, click here.

Tumacacori Century -- October 24

For those of you who have never heard of Tumacacori, it is the site of one of the many missions that the Italian priest Padre Eusebio Kino founded in the late 1600s in the Spanish territory that today includes Southern Arizona and the northern part of the Mexican State of Sonora. His best-known missions are San Xavier de Bac just south of Tucson and the mission at Magdalena de Kino about an hour's drive south of Nogales in Mexico where Father Kino died and where his skeleton is still on display. Tumacacori is located north Nogales, Arizona and is one of the better-preserved missions.

GABA's Tumacacori Century takes place on October 24 and starts at the Sahuarita Town Hall. Riders have the choice of 24 miles, a 64-mile metric century or a full 100-mile century ride. The long ride takes riders south to the Tumacacori National Monument from which the ride derives its name.

For those who register by October 20, the fee is $25 for members of GABA or ABC and $40 for others. After than date, the fee jumps to $40 for members and $50 for others. The fee covers three SAG stops, and food at the finish line. For more information, click here.

Tour de Tempe -- October 24

The 15th annual Tour de Tempe bike event will take place on October 24 from 7 to 11 a.m. in Kiwanis Park, 6111 S. All-American Way, Tempe. The event features a free, short bike ride on the new multi-use path along the Western Canal. The ride is free, and riders will be provided with a free breakfast and free snacks donated by the event's sponsors. The first 800 registrants will also receive a free T-shirt.  To connect to the event's Website, click here.

Heart of Arizona Century -- November 6

It's not too early to begin thinking about one of the toughest one-day cycling events in Arizona, the Heart of Arizona Century, which features two distance options: a 104-mile century ride and a 125-mile (200-kilometer) Brevet ride. Both rides start and end in Congress, Arizona near the foot of the infamous Yarnell Hill. Both rides follow the same basic route, but the longer Brevet adds on two out-and-back side trips to make up the extra distance. The century features almost 7,000 feet of vertical climbing, and the Brevet adds even more climbing to the ride.

From Congress, riders head west for six miles on Arizona State Route 71 and then turn right on Highway 93. This is the only touchy portion of the ride, because sections of this highway are narrow with high-speed traffic heading for Las Vegas, and the shoulder is often narrow and separated from the traffic lane by a particularly nasty rumble strip. I find it very helpful to wear a glasses-mounted mirror on this 11-mile stretch so that I can ride in the traffic lane when the coast is clear and jump the rumble strip to the narrow shoulder when traffic approaches from behind. After this stretch, the rest of the route is a dream -- if you are a masochist, that is.

At 33 miles into the ride, the route turns right onto state route 97, and traffic is never again a problem. The real fun begins at 45 miles into the ride, as the riders approach the dreaded 10-mile climb on state route 96 to Hillside, Arizona. I have seen riders get off their bikes and push on this stretch. It's not outlandishly steep, but at ten miles in length, it doesn't have to be. The climb also has multiple false summits. Just when you think you've reached the top of the climb, the road turns and continues upward.

After Hillside and its welcome SAG stop, there is a refreshing downhill, which is punctuated by jarring bumps in the road. From there, the terrain appears to be rolling, but the up-and-down road disguises the fact, that there is more up than down. Riders are once again climbing.

At SAG stop #4 in Kirkland Junction, the ride seems to be almost over with a little bit of a climb to Yarnell. However, appearances are deceptive. The stretch from Kirkland Junction is what those announcers on the Tour de France keep calling a "false flat". In other words, it's a long climb that doesn't look like a long climb. Even through the town of Yarnell itself, the road heads relentlessly upward.

Finally, at almost 95 miles into the ride, the descent comes. The descent of Yarnell Hill is thrilling and is a suitable reward for hours spent in the saddle pedaling uphill. Take it easy on the sharp turns and switchbacks, however. You don't want to crash now that the ride is almost over.

From the bottom of Yarnell Hill, it's a short and easy ride back to the finish line where the Bull Shifters will be cooking up hamburgers and hot dogs and serving ice-cold cans of soft drinks. As you pedaled up the final climb through the town of Yarnell, you probably vowed never to do this ride again, but as you sit around and exchange lies about your exploits with the other riders at the finish line, you will probably already be making plans to do next year's ride.

If you like an easy pedal though the country, this ride is not for you. However, if you want to spend a good part of a day testing your meddle against some of the worst climbs that the area northwest of Wickenburg has to offer, this ride is a must.

A word of caution about driving the Wickenburg bypass on the way home from the ride: Wickenburg is an infamous traffic-ticket trap as I unfortunately learned while driving back to Phoenixs from last year's ride. The favorite trick of the Wickenburg police is to circle the first roundabout in an unmarked tan SUV and speed up to drivers who merge into traffic in the roundabout and claim that they failed to yield. My advice is that you come to a dead stop and let any traffic in the roundabout proceed and keep an eye peeled for the brown SUV. The other advice is to reduce your speed before you pass any speed limit signs. Driving legally doesn't guarantee that you won't get a ticket, but the tactic is to make yourself less of an inviting target than the other motorists around you.

To view the ride's Website and to pre-register, click here.

McDowell Mountain Century -- November 13

The Arizona Bicycle Club (ABC) presents its annual McDowell Mountain Century Ride on November 13. The ride starts at Serano Park at 56th Street and Sweetwater with 100-, 62-, and 30-mile options. Registration opens at 6:30 a.m. with the riders off at 7:30 a.m. (Hint: Smart riders avoid the silly mass start and sneak off early to avoid the risk of accidents in the mob.) The route was still being refined as this was written, but the  60- and 100-mile versions usually include a ride down Nine-Mile Hill to Rio Verde, which reportedly now sports new bike lanes and should therefore be much safer than it used to be.

The cost of the ride is $35 for members of ABC, PMBC and GABA until November 5. After that date, registrants should add a $5 late registration fee. In exchange for the fee, riders will have SAG stops en route and a feed at the conclusion of the ride. For more information, click here.

About Arizona Road Cyclist News

Arizona Road Cyclist News is supposed to be sent out every two weeks by E-mail to its subscribers, although the schedule is often not met during the summer cycling season. Subscriptions are free of charge. Arizona Road Cyclist News is copyrighted. You may forward the entire copy by E-mail to anyone you wish. You may also copy and send individual articles as long as you cite Arizona Road Cyclist News as the source.

If someone has sent you this newsletter and you would like to subscribe, you may do so by going to the Website www.azroadcyclist.com. All E-mail addresses are held confidential. We do not share them with anyone, and at any time you may unsubscribe and thereby permanently erase your personal information from our servers.

We ask for your Zip code in order to get an idea of our subscriber distribution and not for any other purpose.
 

 

Arizona Road Cyclist News,  http://www.azroadcyclist.com


Jack Quinn, Editor