Trans Iowa V4 winner John Gorilla and Lincolnite Matt Gersib
Got to ride with John Gorilla today! The former Trans Iowa winner was in town with his wife for a wedding in Omaha. That was a pleasant surprise. John looks really strong right now! Look out!
Speaking of Trans Iowa, the Grand Daddy of all gravel grinders is less than a week away. Trans Iowa V6 is set to go off Saturday April 24th at 4 AM. Three hundred and fourteen miles of Iowa gravel goodness. This will be my fourth attempt. I've come up short twice and finished a shortened V4.
My main goal this year is finishing. By the looks of the weather forecast (yeah, I know...it's over a week away) it's gonna be a wet one. That will definitely make it interesting.
As in years past, as the days tick away and event approaches I always seem to ask myself why do I do such events and what the hell did I get myself in to. I know I'll enjoy the ride/people/slice of Americana, but the thought of spending that much time in the saddle can be a bit intimidating.
SASM with an Atlas ICBM parked in front
So looking for a little inspiration to help me get through TI V6, I went up to the Strategic Air and Space Museum to see Colonel Glenn Frazier. Colonel Frazier is a survivor of the Bataan Death March during WWII in the Philippines. His story was chronicled in the Ken Burns documentary The War. Colonel Frazier was speaking at the SASM and also signing copies of his book, Hell's Guest. I won't go too far into the specifics of his story because I don't want to be a spoiler, but Glenn survived 6 days and 7 nights of continuous marching, known as the Bataan Death March, without any food or water in the heat of the Philippines.
Colonel Frazier's talk was great. He spoke about his hasty entry into the military, the hopeless fight against the Imperial Japanese Army during the beginning of WWII, his eventual capture by the Japanese and also of his harrowing experience as a POW for three and a half years. He was close to death on numerous occasions and said that he was able to stay alive because he didn't give up. He also said that those who resigned to die usually did in a short period of time.
Yep, don't give up.