Posted by Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor) on August 17th, 2011 at 1:46 pm
Over 19,000 people took part in Sunday’s Bridge Pedal ride. Unfortunately for some of them a routing mishap put a damper on an otherwise fun day.
Almost immediately following my call for input about the ride, people chimed in with tales of disappointment. It turns out many people were told they had missed a time cut-off at the Steel Bridge which meant they couldn’t complete the full 10-bridge ride.
“Hundreds of us 10 bridge riders were disappointed we got directed the wrong way,” read one comment. “We met two sets of friends who missed the St. Johns turn and felt cheated. I suspect that they were too late to make the time cutoff, but didn’t know it, so thought they’d simply missed a turn,” read another.
Ride creator Rick Bauman says he has now learned that many riders were incorrectly told that they could not proceed across the Steel Bridge after 9:30 am. He reviewed the situation and figured out that a 9:30 cut-off was enforced by a course official as a hard cut-off, when Bauman intended it to be just an estimated time.
Here’s more of an explanation from Bauman:
“There are a number of time certain events, e.g. the start times, closure of access to the Fremont Bridge, etc… The estimated time for the last 8/10 bridge riders reaching the 8/10 and 6 bridge ride splits is one such estimate. Particularly in years when we have a routing changes, as we did this year, these timelines are very much estimates since we cannot predict with any specificity how long it will take to get people started or for them to bike certain sections of the course.”
Unfortunately a course marshal at the MAX Crossing near the Rose Quarter enforced the 9:30 am estimate as a hard time limit, “Thereby turning back hundreds of riders,” says Bauman.
The only “hard and fast timeline” Bauman says riders should have faced was reaching the Fremont Bridge by 11:30 am, which, “Except for some stragglers coming back from the St. Johns Bridge,” everybody made. “The riders should not have be re-directed at 9:30 am.”
Bauman says that people turned away at the Steel Bridge will be eligible for a refund offer and can contact the event to via email at info[at]bridgepedal[dot]com.