Last night I had the opportunity to help monitor the last stage of The Tour of the Red River Gorge held in downtown Lexington.
My task was to blow the whistle everytime a cycler approached the intersection of N. Mill and Main Streets. I was busy blowing for more than 3 hours. The first two races were very mild compared to the mad dog racing for the last 90 minutes of the 17 and 18 year olds. Fortunately there were no crashes on my watch although from my vantage point it seemed inevitable there would be. The racers would approach my corner at about 40 miles an hour. It seemed they slowed down very litte. The 75 bikers were a blur and miraculously there were no accidents. At least on my corner.
I knew nothing about this race when I answered a need for volunteers sent via email by Rick Hatcher. Rick is the executive director of the the Non Profit Organization, Bluegrass State Games.
I was fortunate enough to have parents of riders willing to humor my inquisitive converstation. It seems this race was started sometime much earlier in eastern parts of the state. It is an attempt to copy much of what happens at Tour De France. There were earlier stages of the race in the Red River Gorge and other tough spots that included winding hills and steep terrain.
There were several families including fathers with their sons who stayed for the complete race. What a wholesome fun activity. I hope the event returns next year and is publized in such a way that more families can enjoy the festivities.
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