My Big Planned, Spontaneous Find (Just in the Nick of Time)

With My Inner Ralphie and My Inner Suze going at it, I was starting to think that a new bike was not going to be in the cards before Oceanside. I wanted a P2, but was riding a P.U. – my friend Stacey’s old bike that I got for a song in ’06. Last year, the bike rarely held the middle chain ring for more than a nanosecond. After the full Vineman Aquabike, I did not want to race on it again!

I had been looking for a 2010 P2 in a 48 cm frame. What was starting to feel like the proverbial needle in a haystack. I didn’t just want a bike. I wanted new triathlon shoes too. Then Todd pointed out that I could get a better helmet.

Feeling a tad discouraged, Todd suggested, “Well, maybe you should get a new bike after Oceanside. Let’s look for your shoes and a better helmet.” We went down to his favorite store, Rock n’ Road to see if they carried Sidis. No luck. Then the manager, placed the lightest helmet I’ve ever held in my hand – a Specialized Prevail. My Inner Ralphie took over. “I want it!” They didn’t have my size, sigh… but ordered me one right away.

On the way to the helmets, we passed a 2010 P1 and 2011 P2. We explained the predicament. I’m not a good candidate for a black bike. I have crappy vision and Todd wants me to be as visible as possible out there. One of the sales reps starting joking with him, “Stick a yellow slicker on her and get a 2011.” Then he said, “Hang on, I’ll go out to my car and get my laptop and find one for you.” It turned out the sales rep was a Cervelo sales rep. What are the odds?

My Inner Ralphie still had to wait for everything to fall into place. I had to order the Sidis (for my super narrow foot) online. They were held up in customs for two weeks. Then I had to coordinate the bike fit. The bike fitter had the flu. Poor Nicky. So for four weeks straight, every Monday date night/recovery day, we’d find an excuse to go to “the shop” and visit my bike, stored way up high on layaway.

I remember the first time I saw Chrissie Wellington on a P2 at Kona in 2007, My Inner Ralphie tugged on my shoulder. It was pretty surreal to finally ride it in the parking lot behind Rock ‘n Road after a super-thorough bike fit (more on that later). Nicky asked, “Do you feel powerful?” as I rode past her and Todd. “Yeah!” I said bubbling over with happiness.