and I apologize for the rant but every time I ride a particular trail in St. Louis there is always one idiot on Grant's Trail. The only time there wasn't an idiot was when it was 105 degrees out. Maybe I was the idiot for riding in that heat.
Tonight was supposed to be a leisurely ride since I'm going to switch my long run to tomorrow and do a double brick this weekend of significant distance. It was a decent pace until I turned around. Then I caught up to these two guys, one was drafting off the other. I assumed they were together and I was wrong. I got within 50 feet and the drafter pulls out in front. I pass the draftee and a few seconds later I got into the slipstream of the drafter and quickly swung around him.
This guy decides to get on my wheel. I figured he might since I saw him drafting the other guy. I slowly kept picking up the pace to see if he would back off but he didn't. After about a mile we finally hit a light, I grab my water bottle and then I hear "Is it alright if I draft off you?"
WTF!?!?! Seriously? We're on a busy multi-use trail, I have no clue who you are and you want to draft off me? Just because I look experienced doesn't mean I'm comfortable with just anyone drafting. How do I know if you have any idea how to draft? For that matter, if someone looks experienced they will probably be smart enough to not be okay with you drafting. I guess at least he finally asked but really?
I said "Not really, I don't know you. If you want to draft tonight go to Carondelet Park." (Carondelet Park has Tuesday Night Crits with races of several ability levels.) He didn't say anything but I took off when we got a cross signal and he was moving as well. He didn't last very long...not sure why he felt the need to try to get in front of me...since I averaged 29 for the next mile.
What is wrong with people? Did you not get enough drafting today because the Tour de France has a rest day? If you want to draft there are a TON of group rides every night and most mornings in the area. Drafting on a busy trail is dangerous especially if you don't know what you're doing and if you're asking me to draft on this particular trail I'm going to assume you don't know what you're doing. Sometimes there is a lot of braking before a pass is possible due to people coming the other way. You also shouldn't be drafting off unsuspecting people as you might scare the crap out of them or they might brake suddenly and you could easily cause an accident. I'm not interested in using hand signals or telling someone what I'm doing when I wanted to ride "alone".
Some guy did this to the nurse a few weeks ago on the same trail for a long time. She rides 15-16 mph. If you have the ability to draft well you should be riding faster than this.
Furthermore, why would you go to a trail BY YOURSELF to find people to draft off? Go find a group ride you morons.