The meaningless sprint
It was a “training race” but, really, no one treated it as anything but a race. With a teammate in the break we eased up, but two guys chased and another rider and I got caught out. And the group began to disappear.
We traded pulls, and he eased up on the hills to keep us together — to his detriment in the end. I edged him at the line, a meaningless sprint, nominally for 17th place but really for self-respect.
He smiled and with a mix of humor and respect, said “there’s always a guy on a straight tube titanium bike just killing it.” You can tell as much or more about someone by how they act after a race as during it.
He thanked me, the race officials and was just grateful to wear himself out on a Sunday afternoon. Cycling needs more guys like that.