Weekend cycling enthusiasts are turning Rye streets into their own version of a velodrome: they speed, hog lanes, tear through traffic lights and do whatever else they please.
Every Saturday and Sunday morning as few as 20 and as many as 60 riders take over Rye streets as they finish "Gimbel's Race"- a more than 30 year-old outing that starts at Cross County Mall in Yonkers and ends, inconveniently enough, at the Rye/Mamaroneck border. The riders swarm together through town between 11 a.m. and noon blocking traffic on Theodore Fremd, Old Post Road and Boston Post Road.
Blogger Jay Sears unearthed the history and route of the riders on his blog MyRye.com a couple of years ago, but the pedallers are still going strong.
Rye Patch reader Jim Amico has certainly had enough of the rude riders. "These animals nearly killed me in the Purdy/Theo crosswalk at exactly 11 a.m. this morning!" he wrote in an email last Saturday to Steve Cadenhead of the Rye City Shared Roadways committee and members of the local press.
Amico, a cyclist himself, wants someone to make sure the bike riders are obeying traffic laws and to prevent someone from getting hurt. "If it were a car turning with me in the crosswalk it would stop, the driver wouldn't yell out his window as he does 30 miles per hour "lookout" and just keep coming, which is exactly what these animals did! Don't they have to yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk just as a car does? I had to RUN out of the crosswalk to keep from being killed!"
Have you seen the cyclists? Are they a menace on wheels? What is the best way for Rye residents and the "Gimbel Racers" to co-exist?