Monday, January 24, 2011

Get to know Isabelle Drake!

Isabelle is the oldest racer on the team, but she is not a typical retired nurse at all.

The racers on the team were given 15 interview questions ranging from serious to silly. They are free to choice which ones they wanted to answer:

Bicyclists had been fighting for the rights to share the roads with other vehicles ever since the era of horse-drawn carriages--bicycles made some horses nervous. It is a never-ending battle, but what do you imagine will be the attitude toward bicycles if personal middle-class motorized vehicles are reduced to look very much like quadcycles in order to be able to effectively transport somebody using natural energy such as solar energy?

Smaller vehicles on the road would hopefully translate to greater understanding of how it is for a cyclist out there. Many people change when they get behind the wheel exhibiting behavior they would not normally do when not in their vehicle. The more vulnerable drivers feel would possibly create more of a commraderie with cyclists instead of the adversarial one that is present with so many drivers. Of course there is idiotic behavior with both cyclists and drivers.

What is the most bizarre thing you ever saw while out on a ride?

On my solo Furnace Creek 508 in 2008 I was heading up towards the Sheephole climb when I saw 4 riders in front of me. I could not change my distance from them. I noticed something very strange about them. They all were wearing capes like Darth Vader from Star Wars. Also their bikes had no wheels ... just the frames. They effortlessly stayed in front of me. I realized I was hallucinating from sleep deprivation.

Have you stopped and done any good deeds as a cyclist?

Many times I have stopped to help change a tire or give some random rider a tube of CO2 cartridge. What goes around comes around as so many people have helped me.

When riding in the "zone" do you feel like you are riding: a horse? dragon? broomstick? motorcycle? or just a bicycle? (any other answers are fine)

Just a bicycle.

If there is a 4-inch long plain brown snail crawling in your bicycle path, do you...steer around it? worry about slipping on the goo? stop to look at it and maybe take pictures? put it in jersey pocket as a pet? or move it to a safer place? (any other answers are fine)

I try to avoid running over any debris all the time. When I see small living creatures I avoid them if possible.

What is your opinion of painted bike lanes in some cities?

I am accustomed to painted bike lanes. I think it makes it safer down here in Southern California. However I was hit by a car in Atascadero as I rode over the painted line in the bike lane.

What do you usually tell (or want to tell) the bad-tempered drivers yelling at you to ride on the sidewalk?

I get harassed quite a bit because I live in a very populated area. Very seldom do I saw anything as I feel I am so vulnerable. I do think of some really nasty things to say but try not to stay in that state of mind long as it is a distraction.

If you were able to ride on any type of surface, anywhere on the earth, where would you love to ride? Why?

The tundra in Alaska. I backpacked through there when I was 17 and it is an amazing feeling to walk upon it.

Is there any kind of cycling part, material, or equipment that is not on the market that you dream of being available?

A seat that is like riding on air with no possibility of any saddle sores.

What things do you tend to think about while riding a century?

My mind goes so many places. I like to let the wheels do the thinking (John Lee Ellis phrase).

If Lee decides to grow a complete flower garden on top of his bikevan, what will you think of (or do about) that?

If Lee grows a garden on top of the bikevan I will request that he be tested for drugs ... or he may just be sleep deprived :-)

If any animals will surely be easy to transport, care, and even help with the crewing, what kind of animal will you like as a member of the crew team? Why?

A horse. I love horses and have been riding since I was a child. A horse cantering next to me breathing in and out would inspire and comfort me.

What kind of "party" will you like at RAAM's finish line?

One with a few shots of Don Julio Anejo.

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