We started out this morning a bit earlier than yesterday and that was good. I had been riding more aggressively on Day 2 than I should have and for that I now had a sore Achilles tendon. It hurt a bit, but nothing I couldn’t handle for now. This morning was a bit warmer so I was able to only have my arm warmers on as we rolled out to Quadbuster. Of course, when I got to my bike I had a written warning for “failure to stop at a stop sign” that didn’t happen. The safety vehicle could not have seen if I stopped or not because of a hedge row. I was pretty upset about it for the day but then I realized they hit over 700 people with warnings that night. The ride has a very hard job in keeping safety a priority so that we can continue to ride through these communities. With that large of a number of people running that stop sign, and I know people behind me did, I can understand my number getting taken down mistakenly. Once again this year they make us ride an out of the way route to get to the first rest stop at the bottom of Quadbuster. It really wouldn’t be so bad except that there was once again a headwind that was gnarly to say the least. At rest stop 1 my ankle was really sore so I got the medical staff to put some Bengay on it. That didn’t really help, and I never thought it would since it’s was a tendon injury, so I made sure to take more ibuprofen to kill any swelling I might have. I took off for Quadbuster with Tia and Chris. As would become evident throughout the rest of the ride they took off when the hill really started because I was slowed down by my ankle. I made it to the top of Quadbuster in my granny gear, once again without stopping. I may not be a fast hill climber, but I’ll get there. We stopped and took a few pictures and then cheered on other riders making their way up the hill. After Quadbuster is a nice downhill that carries you through some easy flats to rest stop 2. This year it was still cloudy when we reached rs 2 so it was a bit more enjoyable. There isn’t much at that rest stop so we got on the road pretty quickly. At this point my ankle was feeling better so I was able to press on with Tia, Chris, Thomas, and Steve. We got about 2/3 of the way to the lunch stop and hit a headwind that made me slow way down. The lunch stop on Day 3 is a small town called Bradley. They have a grill running and cook hamburgers and hot dogs for sale to the riders. The money they raise goes to fund their schools so I certainly don’t mind buying one and dropping the change in a donation jar. It was a fantastic double cheeseburger that helped lead to a great post-lunch nap in the shade. That 10 minutes of shut-eye was one of the best experiences of the whole ride. After a nap and then getting more water Thomas, Chris, Steve and I headed out of Bradley. Last year it was so hot I didn’t think I was going to make it out of that stretch of road. This year was much cooler and I we had no problem cruising on the road and getting to the rest stop at the mission. Chris and Thomas wanted coffee so we went back down the road and let them get some evil bean juice. While we were waiting it was great to just stand there and enjoy the wind and clear sky of the afternoon. Taking off the boys dropped me again (yes, ankle) so I just rode on through some of the prettiest country side on the whole ride. It was nice to ride alone for a bit and just think about what a great time I was having. I arrived at camp shortly after the guys and we all went and showered and then skipped the chow hall, we went across the street to have BBQ ribs. There were great onion rings, ribs, and baked potatoes and then a really good sleep.