Joe’s Bald Spot

A couple years ago I put new Continental Gatorskin tires on my road bike, like many of my riding buddies have done. They’ve last pretty well. One of my previous pair died an early death with some sidewall damage. But I kept the remaining one as a spare (a front tire), although I never had to use it.

Last year sometime on a club ride we were coming back from a ride southwest of town when a mail delivery car stopped in front of me and I locked up my rear brake, skidding a little before coming to a stop. All seemed well. But Joe Anderson, who was ahead on the ride, commented afterwards that that tire would wear out sooner.

That was in the back of my mind last week. I don’t really keep track of how many miles are on my tires or other equipment or when I last changed or serviced them. So I thought maybe I should examine my tires more closely than usual.

Here’s what I found on my rear tire:

Joe’s bald spot! He was totally right. I felt lucky that I hadn’t already had a blow-out. Fortunately I had that old spare, which I immediately swapped in before going out that evening. I had already been thinking that I should probably put on new tires before RAIN. Now I know I will.