Road Rash and Slicks
I have been a little preoccupied lately and a little more prone to getting my frustrations out during my workout. Yesterday it had just rained and I went out for a little bike ride. I followed my 17-mile loop that goes over a couple of moderately challenging hills. I was concentrating on keeping a fast pace - in fact I passed a peloton.
As I said it had rained not too long before. At about the 2-mile mark there is a sharp corner that I usually take pretty aggressively. I did not think about the wet road. I thought only of how good it felt to bike hard and how I wanted to make the loop in record time.
Sure enough, the bike slid out from under me as I made the right turn. I took the fall mainly on my right hip, shown in the picture.
My tires were definitely a contributing factor. Last year I purchased Vittoria Rubino Pro Slick bike tires (see picture below) to use on my annual bike ride that I do to raise money to help people with MS. They were great for the event, but then again we had dry road for two days.
The Vittoria Rubino Pro Slick is a very enjoyable ride, and has proved as immune to puncture as other excellent Vittoria tires. Vittoria tires are my favorite.
The advantage of a slick over other bike tires is low rolling resistance. These tires have probably increased my speed, and I can definitely feel the difference between these and tires with tread. Yet the first time I rode them and I took a corner with a little sand on it, I could feel the give and hear the tire want to slide.
So yesterday when I took the sharp right on the wet road with my mind not quite where it should have been, I went down. I slid perhaps fifteen feet across the roadway on my hip, creating the damage shown. I was lucky there was no car behind me.
The peloton caught up with me and asked if I was okay. I said I was and limped off the road to walk it off. In a couple of minutes I was back on the bike and resumed my ride. I made my 17 miles in good time, went home and did my regimen of calisthenics. Then I took the photo.
I'll tell you one thing, showering with road rash is painful. I suggest you avoid road rash whenever you can.
One can draw two lessons from this episode. First, when biking, stay focused. Second, slick tires may not be the best choice for every day use.