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T.A. Century 2007

Another year, another gorgeous day for the Transportation Alternatives New York City Century ride!

Here's our montage-o-rama of this year's version which featured 6,000 riders riding distances ranging from 15 to 100 miles. The fabulous routes - which are dominated by greenways, waterfront riding and low-traffic streets - wow even the most experienced cyclists and show how attainable even some of the farthest reaches of Brooklyn, Queens, and The Bronx are by bike...if you have the right route.

<blockquote class="_text"> [music] </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_1_text"> <cite class="speaker_1" >Speaker:</cite> [0:02] I'm having an orange at the T A century. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_2_text"> <cite class="speaker_2" >Speaker:</cite> [0:04] Just getting started. Race is on. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_3_text"> <cite class="speaker_3" >Speaker:</cite> [0:07] You doing 100? Let's go. [music] </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_4_text"> <cite class="speaker_4" >Speaker:</cite> [0:25] Single file, single file. Stay single. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_5_text"> <cite class="speaker_5" >Speaker:</cite> [0:28] This is a great day. This is really, really nice ride and it's a great turn out. Good riders. Really, really good riders in this thing. [music] </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_6_text"> <cite class="speaker_6" >Clarence Eckerson Jr.:</cite> [0:41] Helping people? </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_7_text"> <cite class="speaker_7" >Speaker:</cite> [0:42] I'm helping people. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_6_text"> <cite class="speaker_6" >Clarence Eckerson Jr.:</cite> [0:43] Are you helping people? </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_8_text"> <cite class="speaker_8" >Speaker:</cite> [0:44] Absolutely. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_6_text"> <cite class="speaker_6" >Clarence Eckerson Jr.:</cite> [0:45] And are you being helped? </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_9_text"> <cite class="speaker_9" >Speaker:</cite> [0:47] Very much so, thank you. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_10_text"> <cite class="speaker_10" >Speaker:</cite> [0:48] Oh hey, Clarence. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_11_text"> <cite class="speaker_11" >Speakers:</cite> [0:50] Hi, Clarence. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_10_text"> <cite class="speaker_10" >Speaker:</cite> [0:51] I finally got to ride. After all of these years, they finally let me ride. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_12_text"> <cite class="speaker_12" >Speaker:</cite> [0:55] I love this ride. [music] </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_13_text"> <cite class="speaker_13" >Speaker:</cite> [1:04] I'm having a great time. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_14_text"> <cite class="speaker_14" >Speaker:</cite> [1:06] It's the best way to spend a beautiful Sunday. You'll see a whole part of the city you haven't seen and you'll have a really good time, and you can take it at your own pace. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_15_text"> <cite class="speaker_15" >Speaker:</cite> [1:15] Beautiful day, beautiful ride. Couldn't ask for better conditions. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_16_text"> <cite class="speaker_16" >Speaker:</cite> [1:18] Oh, we're having a kick-ass day. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_18_text"> <cite class="speaker_18" >Speaker:</cite> [1:21] The hummus is really quality over there. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_19_text"> <cite class="speaker_19" >Speaker:</cite> [1:23] Bananas. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_20_text"> <cite class="speaker_20" >Speaker:</cite> [1:26] I have a spatula full of peanut butter. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_21_text"> <cite class="speaker_21" >Speaker:</cite> [1:28] They're all gone. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_20_text"> <cite class="speaker_20" > Speaker:</cite> [1:29] You'd better be careful. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_22_text"> <cite class="speaker_22" >Aaron Naparstek:</cite> [1:30] Nice ride, nice ride. We just picked it up, so we've been on it for a good mile and a half now. It's killing us. We're dying. </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_23_text"> <cite class="speaker_23" >Speaker:</cite> [1:39] It's so cool to see everybody get together. That's very important. [music] </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_24_text"> <cite class="speaker_24" >Clarence Eckerson Jr.:</cite> [2:55] What's your favorite part of the century? </blockquote> <blockquote class="speaker_25_text"> <cite class="speaker_25" >Speaker:</cite> [2:57] Oh God. The ending. The finish line. [women cheer] </p><p>[music] [3:03] </p><p>[3:10] </blockquote> <br/><br/>
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  • ecm

    Looks like folks had a fun ride this year and that the weather held up once again. The luck of the sun is with T.A.!

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  • T & R

    Best ride in the city. Thanks for the video folks!

  • Carl

    My 2nd NYC Century and definitely my last. No fault of the organizers though, but it's the most unrelaxing Century I know of. The entire time you have to keep alert as to where you are and where you have to turn. There are too few long stretches where you can just sit back and ride. I did the 150 mile ride from Penn Station to Montauk this past May and that seemed easier than all the turns involved in the NYC Century.

  • Ben Tovar

    Wow! I can't disagree more with Carl, I had a fabulous time seeing the city and all its wonder. This is NYC and the tour is advertised as an urban adventure. In fact it is the only urban Century in the country. I'll be there next year for sure!

  • mike

    Uhmm, Carl? It's an urban century, and advertised as such. What did you expect in New York City?

    As usual, I had a great time on Sunday.

  • Charis Agapetos

    I too will disagree w/ Carl. This was my 5th NYC Century, & I'm wondering how he managed to find it unrelaxing. It's the easiest century in the Tri-state area. I've done the ride to Montauk 3 times, & although there are longer stretches where you don't have to worry about navigating, there are also parts where it gets a bit boring. I find the NYC route to be a lot of fun, & you get to see so much of this city, & realize thast it is green & beautiful! The NYC route is well marked on the street, & although at times you may have to stop & consult the cue sheet, there are also long stretches where you don't, like the waterfront in Brooklyn & Queens, & all the rides through the parks.
    My concern is that the rest stops for the 75 & 100 mile routes were not properly stacked, & I have confidence in the organizers that this will be taken care of next year.

  • Tom Graves

    How about adding the distance to the next turn with each turn marker? It could remove some tension (and missed turns) if you know that the next turn is .1 mile or 5 miles away. The street markers know how far it is, and they're down there with the spray can anyway... Trying to read the turnsheet while riding is dangerous.

  • Dan Schmitt

    Rockin & wickedly fun spin. It was a great day and fabulous event. To all those who complained after the overwhelming support from terrific volunteers I have two things to say: 1) chill and 2) Let's wait and see you do better next year. Many thanks to the organizers, volunteers and the video guys.... See you in 2008... Dan from Balto..

  • Stacey Bran

    I LOVED the ride! My boyfriend and I drove up from Washington, DC for this event, and it was well-worth the long drive. What a great way to see the city - ALL of the city! Yes, I had to stay alert and pay attention to uneven roads, potholes, construction areas, crazy pedestrians, and lunatic taxis, but that's what New York is all about. Such a fun ride!!! To Carl, who thought it the ride was too tough and urban: no offense, but really, what did you expect? If you want rolling hills and cow farms, go for a ride in the country. For the rest of us, we'll continue to enjoy the excitement and challenge that cycling in New York has to offer. Thanks to all the organizers for making this is great day!

  • TH

    I would agree with Carl and that this was not exactly what we expected. There were only a few relaxing portions of the ride, like Central Park at dawn, Times Square and some parts of Brooklyn and Queens. The Bronx loop was unappealing to say the least. We missed about 10 turns because the green paint was so faint and too small to see at speeds, plus reading a 5-page list of directions while riding through broken glass and potholes in the bike lane is a bad idea. The food was great, and the staff was very friendly, but why long lines for water on an 85 degree day? We had some fun, and the organizers did a great job preparing for the day, but we will probably consider another Century next year.

  • Mike DeRosa

    My 1st long ride & I loved it. Great job organizing and the volunteers were invaluable. I wouldn't have tried it at my age without the great reputation that you guys have. I'm even in the video! Seeya next year.

  • PH

    First, let me say that I LOVE this ride. It's the best way to see the City, I see parts of New York I've never seen before, people are wonderful, not-competitive...just a glorious day all the way around, despite the traffic and broken glass, and honking cabs and all the rest. It just adds to the challenge, right? This was my second year in a row and I do have to say, however, that last year's event seemed a bit better organized to me. Is that my imagination? The route was far better planned, the food was better and more plentiful (this year, at two of the rest stops I came to, there was almost no food left by the time I got there!! My friend almost passed out from hunger along the route. Not cool.) Plus, there was a stretch in Brooklyn where it seemed like we were doubling back along the same route "to avoid the hills" I was told by one of the Marshalls. Surely there are other routes to take to avoid the strenuous patches without having to cover the same ground twice. Well, enough complaining....I still had a great time. Personally, I like a hill or two thrown in for good measure. And, if the organizers could place the green markers on the roads BEFORE the intersections and turns, instead of AFTER the intersections and turns, it would really help to keep us from getting lost!! Thanks a million for a fun event. See you all next year!!

  • Gail Coover

    What a great way to see the city! I'm from Madison, WI which has terrific biking. This wasn't a fast paced open road experience, but the route was easy to follow and people were friendly and helpful. Thanks TA

  • Carina Deere Gilbert

    Amazing! My friends and I came in from Kahnawake Quebec, Canada (near Montreal) and we thought it was a great experience. I can't speak for all but most of us are planning on returning next year. Great job organizing the ride.

  • LM

    I agree with Carl...Fun overall but too much traffic and poorly marked. I've done plenty of urban rides and this one was definitely the least enjoyable.

  • Bennett

    Totally agree with Carl. One of the most poorly marked and hazardous routes I've ever traveled. I've done the 100-mile route of the MS tour every year and have NEVER gotten lost. On this ride, I got lost along with lots of other riders, three different times. Once, I was sent in the wrong direction by a marshall!!

  • T & R

    Interesting, some people enjoyed, a few did not. I will say this ride is AMAZING. And the people who complain don't come back, the people that love it bring more people, most of which enjoy it. Although there could be a few improvements this ride is the ultimate NYC experience. The ride grows each other, the organizers must be doing something right.

  • Johnny Mac from Toronto

    This is by far one of the best rides I've ever done. You have an amazing city, I came from TO just to do this! I'm so glad I did, I'm bringing my pals next year, Carl is a bit whacked I think...
    I'd be proud to be part of a cycling community that puts on an event as fantastic and beyond compare as this one!!

  • Carlos H

    Great ride and great weather. It is my second ride and I managed close to 60 miles this time. Great views of the Brooklyin Bridge and the Verrazano. An I got a free helmet to boot (Thanks Trek)

    Minor minuses:
    Two of our marshalls led us the wrong way for about 1/2 a mile in Brooklyn (The blind leading the blind?)

    The email features for the video is not working properly


  • The Czaja Family

    My husband, our 14 year old son and 12 year old daughter have done this race before. The sights are amazing, the people are so friendly and it's a great "family" day together. We will definately be back next year. You guys did a great job. Nothing in life is perfect. It's definately a ride that you have to pay attention to your surroundings, but it also lets you appreciate your surroundings. See you next year!

  • Tom T

    Loved the ride! You obviously can't please all the people all of the time. This is the 3rd year my daughter, now 16, and I have done it. What a way to see the city with all its sights and sounds. She asked ME if we could do it again this year. We're from Vermont and it is an exciting change from where we ride (cows and hills, of course). No problems with directions. What water lines? Americans are WAY to spoiled. Thanks to all the volunteers... We'll be back for sure!
    Tom T.

  • MR

    This was my first time for the NYC Century and I did the 55 miler. I'm usually mountain biking and this was my first year back in road biking after many years. The scenery was great, especially the shoreline and bridges, the starting route between Central park and the river, Broadway, etc. The painted lines should be in a brighter color next time, maybe flourescent blue or red or something like that. If you used a stencil with an arrow you could even do a small logo or initials like NYCC and then just overlay it with fresh paint next year. But I caught them in time and only missed one turn. Only tough part was coming back through Brooklyn from the shoreline rest stop at the pier, lots of congestion by that time of day.
    I was really impressed with the courtesy most drivers had when approaching cyclists in parallel along busy streets.
    Howeverm, I think some cyclists who may not be used to cycling defensively in the city could use some education about how to avoid getting honked at. It's just not the same as riding on country or suburban roads where you can just cruise through intersections in the middle of the day without having to be concerned about crossing traffic. I observed some cyclists who obviously didn't know how to maneuver city streets safely--weaving between lines of cars and buses at traffic lights, running red lights at obviously busy intersections without really looking, drawing horns from cars when it really could have been avoided without losing much momentum. (there's always a few in every crowd I suppose, but it impacts the reputation of the group as a whole and the goals of these organizations who are trying very hard to promote cycling on the streets) Overall, I was very impressed by the route, the great people who ran it and participated, and I will be back next year--probably for the 75 or 100 miler.

  • http://1speeder.com/ Cliff

    This was my 4th consecutive year riding the Century as a 3-time cancer patient on a singlespeed bike. Every year I have just enough time to get into shape after a tough chemo protocol (I've done four so far) to do this ride, which is the highlight my year on the bike. My last treatment in Oct '06 was a bone marrow transplant, so this year's ride was especially important. Can't wait for next year's ride.

  • http://www.asmithphotography.com Angela

    I agree wonderful idea, but definatly could use some tweaking.