Wafer up

You may think that the full-length Belgian Waffle Ride is the only game in town on April 26, 2015. That’s what I thought, even though I noticed at the bottom of the sign-up form that there was an option for something called the Belgian Wafer Ride.

“Wafer Ride? Really? What kind of namby-pamby bullshit is that? I’d be embarrassed to even admit I’d read about it.” So I went ahead and did what REAL HARDMEN and REAL HARDWOMEN do; I signed up for the full BWR, the breakfast equivalent of a Denny’s Grand Slam plus China King’s $5.00 all-you-can-eat buffet topped off with two entrees at the Heart Attack Grill.

And I felt like a real tough guy. Something about tapping those computer keys, clicking that mouse, running that credit card, and pushing back from the desk with a smug smile made me feel like Eddy+Roger+Tom+Fabian all rolled into one. Take that, wankers!

This, however, was back in February, and a few days ago the smugness wore off as I realized that all my mouse pointing and keyboard tapping had not been accompanied by training or long riding or even practicing on dirty roads. And I started thinking about what the last three years have irrefutably proven: I’m not tough enough for the BWR.

My three finishes were as follows:

2012: So devastated that I abandoned my three years of sobriety and plunged into the abyss of a 3-year drinking binge.

2013: So devastated that I missed the following week of work.

2014: So devastated that I sold my bike.

That’s when I started thinking a bit harder about the Wafer Ride. Sure, its name insinuates that you’re too weak, too lazy, too slow, too soft, and too un-Belgian to do the actual 140-mile BWR beatdown. But you know what? It’s true! And in addition to the truth setting you free, the Wafer Ride caters to all my physical and character failings, and is actually a much better fit for your training schedule if you’re a road racer who doesn’t normally target MSR, Ghent-Wevelgem, Tour of Flanders, and Paris-Roubaix as the high points of your spring season.

If you happen to be an average masters schmo or schmo-ess, a 76-mile ride with 7,000 feet of climbing, 20 miles of dirt roads, and the undulating terrain of North County San Diego is beatdown enough for a day, and you really don’t have to train extra to do it or even survive it. Adding to the beauty of the Wafer Ride, it doesn’t interfere with your racing program, you can keep taking the same doses of test and EPO, it won’t ruin you for the following month, and best of all you’ll be back at the bunkhouse slamming Lost Abbey beer and Sam Ames’s famous post-ride sausages long before the real hard people (i.e. the idiots) have even thought about dismounting for the day.

Oh–and you’ll start at a humane hour, you’ll finish before sundown, get home at a reasonable hour, be able to sit at your desk on Monday without drooling blood, and will still have logged your toughest, most grueling 76 miles of the year. The sharpening effect of the Wafer Ride will translate into race fitness rather than leaving you a mass of broken ego and ground up flesh.

Best of all? There are plenty of spots left. Register here. I know which version I’m doing in 2016.



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29 thoughts on “Wafer up”

  1. I’m thinking there should be a tattooist at the finish so we can all get BWR 140/73 ink. Mainly as a reminder not to be as stupid next year.

  2. I’ll bet one of my old pairs of bike shoes that you’ll sign up for the full beat down next year too wanky
    ’cause you can’t fix stupid 😉

  3. I’d totally be there… except the return of the Sequoia Classic is that same day up in Visalia. And I’m a flat crit kinda guy, so hills make me fake cry.

  4. Plus, waiting in the S/F area (drunk tank) for the BWR finishers absolutely ENSURES there will be plenty of free kwine (and beer) for slaking that thirst.

    1. Whereas the late-finishing corpses will be reduced to begging and licking the dregs out of empty plastic cups.

      1. Dean Patterson

        Are you sure you aren’t related to H.L. Mencken? You could be, you know.

  5. Sir, you fail to recognize that I am horribly frugal. Therefore, I read the registration page as giving me 2x the aid stations for only 25% more cost. Brilliant!

  6. As I look at confirmed riders, I notice that there are ~7.5 times as many Waffle men as Wafer men, but for the women, it is nearly equal, demonstrating that men are ~7.5 times as foolish than women.

    1. You must be in sales! Who wouldn’t sign up for a harder beat down than BWR. (He says after having considered the Gravel Gauntlet and promised to do it next year. There’s no helping the stupid.)

      1. Scenery is 100x nicer in the Gauntlet Series. And I love San Diego Co! But the hyperbole which is attached to BWR is marketing. For the Gravel Gauntlet the suffering is exponential. As are the mechanicals (1/4 field abandoned the first ride with destroyed RDs), the flats (guys riding 35-40mm tires and flatting every few hundred feet), the descents (broken collarbones, broken hopes). Guys finishing the Menso ride had to be helped off their bikes at the line (just like the little Pros after above category finishes). So, I’m in for the Wafer and it’s going to feel like a ride along PCH!

        Oh, the smile factor is about equal for both.

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