Starting at zero-dark-thirty, or 4:15AM Friday morning to be exact, nearly two dozen Charlotte area cyclists rolled out of town and across the nearly 220 miles of asphalt between here and Charleston, SC. There, they’ll meet 40,000 of their closest friends for Saturday’s Cooper River Bridge Run. It’s a little something called the “Double Down”.
For the unchurched, the “Double Down” is a roughly 220 mile ride Friday (4/5/13) capped with a Saturday 10K road race spanning the architectural marvel that is the Cooper River Bridge. Piece of cake, right? Or at least as cakey as 12-plus hours of cycling over all sorts of Carolina backroads and then humping that bridge along the 6.2 miles from Mount Pleasant to Charleston can be.
No, this is not a charity event and these guys aren’t professional cyclists. They’re bankers, bakers, candlestick makers (OK, probably not), small business owners and regular guys who all love to ride and are willing to take on the challenge, the scenery and the experience that is the “Double Down”. And the worst best part? More than half of the folks who rode out tomorrow have doubled down before. Proof positive that it’s survivable. Crazy, perhaps, but indeed survivable.
What the? Who’s idea was this, anyway? Glad you asked. Blame former shop owner Ilan Paltrow for this one. What started as a one man attempt at covering the distance in 2006 has now grown into a full-blown – yet unofficial – event that’s now in it’s seventh iteration. No entry fees, no t-shirts, no sag wagon. Just a bunch of folks on bikes turning a routine 10K into something completely epic. Perfect!
Ed., If you’re reading this on 4/5/13 follow their posts on BicycleSport’s Facebook page, or #bicyclesport or #doubledown on twitter!