Monday, September 26, 2011

(title goes here)

I was watching a little pre-game browns (best part of racing on sunday's is missing football atmo) coverage yesterday morning in front of the "muni lot" which is pretty close to where Wendy Park cyclocross was last weekend. To be honest, I would have thought Wendy Park was a month ago. I guess it was just last week.

I seem to have developed that nack for deleting memory of races I don't like. Especially since I haven't complained about it on here yet. Either way, Wendy went crappy again this year, just not as bad as last (Oh yeah, just to clear that title of the link up, it was sarcasm last year when I said "crash heard around the world" because no one seemed to realize I was gone from the race! This is what happens when you suck) This year I still flatted, blew up, crashed, and didn't finish all in like 4 laps. It was chaos. Moving on.

The past Saturday was the Stark-Kent cross race. I had a bunch of time to dial in my bikes but for some reason I didn't have the course very dialed. I kept forgetting when the loopy-loop 180°s were, and which direction they went. I guess that is what happens when I try hard. My legs also weren't cooperating too nicely.

I had a great start shooting along the outside from the 3rd row to be in the top 10 out of the first corner. I should probably just start on the front row, start easier, go into the first corner 10th, and save some energy but my way is more dramatic. Anyway, I soon found myself helping Johnny get back up the leaders. I kind of blew up closing a gap that had opened after Tony had an untimely crash. I readied myself for the 2 minute power climb but kind of blew up on it each of the first two laps, loosing some major places. Eventually I got my second wind on the third lap and started picking a few people off and battling some others trying to move up. Almost like a real race for me!

Sometime in the middle of the road race, Tony, Chris Metzler, and I hooked up. I don't think any of us were happy with how the race was going so we pretty much stayed glued to each other no matter what section. Not waiting for each other, but also not attacking each other. We worked semi-well together to close a bit on Ray, but really more to gain time on Eric Lesco. The gaps were huuuuuuge with all the pedaling sections and we were soon in no man's land. Power-to-Weight-Ratio-Metz led up the power climb but couldn't shake Tony or I. I was waiting for Tony to attack into the last turns but I couldn't wait any longer (ADD kicking in sometimes helps) so I attacked and 'won' the sprint for 12th or some lowly placing.

I was glad I kept punishing myself even though I wasn't going at my best and at least scrapped something of a result out of a less-than-perfect day.
Also, since John is too P-R-O to update his blog now, he beat PaulfreakingMartin on Saturday. ON A GRASS CRITERUIM COURSE NO LESS! My hero!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

jokes on me, chris mayhew

Today was a fun day. I was a little hesitant after last year's death march up that climb, along with the recent heavy rains, but, the course truly was much better this time around. The mud consistency was about 7/10 for the first B race, but by our race, the sun had shone and the tackiness had been applied, so it was pretty fast. I did a few laps on a few different tires and ended up running my trusty formerly white file treads. It was so tacky and they were shedding perfect and gripping well, too, I knew it was the right choice.

I got a so-so start basically starting in the second row and riding my brains out, passing only a few in the process, but getting on the right wheel eventually. After a lap, I saw the second group approaching and decided to recover for a second, take a handup (water, actually) from my mom and wait for some poor souls to draft off of. I quickly found myself with CamJam. He was willing (or I made him?!) to drag my overweight carcass across the pavement while I caught my breath. I must have got my second wind here (2nd lap) and quickly jumped him on an uphill no less and bridged up to NatO Zicarrdi (back from the dead) I passed NatO and was now getting reports I was up to 6th place!!!! Awesome, first mortal I thought!!!!

But, as all tragedies end, I was rolling it well when I started to hear the thunder come. I remember going past the pits saying, "well next lap get your bike with some tread on your tires." Then it started pouring right after I went past the pits. I didn't have much traction then. Then soon after, about fifty meters from the pit, I superman'ed over a turn.. big time. CamJAM and NatO, along with three others quickly passed me. I guess my gap wasn't too big, and spending ten seconds wiggling on the ground doesn't help.

I quickly jogged into the one entrance/exit pit, swung back around, swapped bikes and tried to catch Cameron. The lightning and thunder started coming quick along with the downpour now and the race officials were giving one to go.

I was mentally pretty done so I just kept the gap at a steady ten seconds to Cameron but didn't have the energy to crush myself to close it. Better safe than sorry..either way, 11th place so I can't complain toooo toooo much (but I will!!) It just sucks thinking, "what could have been"

Ok here is the picture from Mehul of me coming across to Paul at the mud pit. I can't stand not stealing it. Also, Brent Evans is falling in the backround. I would make fun of him but the way he warms up on the trainer he might just rip my head off if I say anything. Oh yes, the Chris Mayhew joke for the title. He came up to me at the start of Stark/Kent cross race two years ago and said file treads are worthless, why would anyone waste their money on those (I'LL TELL YOU WHY, BECAUSE PAUL FREAKING CURLEY WINS NATIONALS ON THEM EVERY YEAR THAT'S WHY!!!) At the time, I only had one set of tubulars (unPro) so I cried a little at the start but then I had the best race ever, before it started hailing/downpouring (kind of like today!?!?) and I lost all traction. Well, today I might have finished 6th *also known as 1rst mortal* had I switched to grippy tires half a lap earlier. So moral of the story, listen to your elder Chris Mayhew. Or just look cool and run white tires then have a boss excuse why you got passed by five people on one half lap.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

more media from the weekend

I make a brief mash up to the totem pole around 35 seconds in, then around 3:20 I get my full ten seconds trying to bridge back up to 9th place. Man, it's no wonder my shoulders hurt so much Sunday, check out that sweet body english! I liked Gregg's perspective slightly better in the earlier races, but anytime we can get a video out of a cross race its awesome! Gregg got a few more nice photos of me and the gang but I probably shouldn't steal those considering apparently I got Julie in trouble on facebook after I showed her how to screen print pictures, whoops... Anyway here is a link, and another, and the whole set HERE. Speaking of Julie, she got a nice sequence of me going through the woods:
Here is some slight proof I still race mountain bikes (and I still go hard at the start of races): And the results for more proof.

Monday, September 5, 2011

manatalk weekend

As I may have mentioned, our team put on the first race of the cyclotrons (spelchecked cyclocross) season this past Saturday. The lead up was pretty stressful especially considering we were crossing the way out of the park (road) and needed tons of volunteers to stop those insane mountain bike drivers.

In the end, everything worked out quite well. I ended up announcing the C Race, B-1 Race (calling all Cat 3/4 35+ and 45+ men to the line....) and the start of the B-2 Race before handing off the mic to my dad for the end of the B-2 and the A race. It was pretty fun helping out Rody, who seriously had his hand full this weekend (and most others too!)
Before I knew it, Johnny was telling me to go get my jumpsuit on and get ready for the race. I managed to get everything ready (bike to pits *first find bike, switch and pump up tyres, etc etc) and get in 1.5 laps in about 40 minutes. The field was really stacked with not only more people from last year's edition, but also new faster people (any time you add Paul to a field....) Either way my goal was pretty much start slow, don't blow up, and finish on the lead lap after sitting in the sun all day and riding too hard the past few days.
Well, I executed the plan well and didn't die out in the 96°f and 96% humidity. I was taking feeds at least once a lap from my mom and Nate and had like three pounds of ice in my skinsuit (socks, too) I ended up battling two separate Competitive Gear guys for 9th place. I kept it steady and was able to split the difference rolling in for 10th. I never went outside my limit which is not usually the way I race (blow up, recover, blow up harder, recover, maybe finish) I probably would have finished 12th/13th but Weeks flatted in the just wrong place, the real deal Tony broke his wheel when I was on it, and Scott gouged his leg in half (Flecher also cracked from not eating this week so there is 14th place) Either way a top 10 is a top 10 with everyone there (well, almost)
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Phew, I think I need to make Sunday's version a bit more condensed if I want anyone to finish this in less than an hour of reading. Well, as per usual, if it rains- it pours at the Manatoc XC race. Luckily, it only rained most of the day Sunday (and not much during the week), so the trails weren't total trash during the race.

We sport juniors had a pretty lengthy discussion about whether to just all race expert today or stick to sport. I would have been up for expert, if they let me do just 2 laps :) So 90% of the juniors did the sport U18 race while one loner (eric) started with the expert (only to pull out after two laps)

I had a good start and was towing around JBLODG while he complained about how slick the bridges were. Eventually, we got to what I call the equalizer of the course. There are two singletrack hills most have to walk when it gets wet, one everyone has too (according to the guy in the lawnchair at the start of it) So the one that is semi-ridable when wet, I was able to keep the tires stuck and power up it while Jason was walking.

I kept the gas on for the rest of the first lap getting by one or two more experts and probably all but 3 more sporto's- 19-30 group started in front of us yougins. Then I handed my half-full bottle to Juan, went to grab my other full one, and saw it on the ground. I probably looked like such an idiot dropping all my water off! I should have realized stopping for 10 seconds would probably help me infinitely the second lap, but, being a dope, I didn't stop.

The rain picked up and I just started opening my mouth letting the acid rain shower over me. It probably had the same effect on my stomach as my bottle of Nuun I left on the ground. Just not as expensive and lighter!

Anyway, the acid rain filled with me some electrolytes or something because I felt even better the second lap, even though it was probably slower since it was pissing rain. I managed to catch 2 more experts and the final three sports giving me the overall win! *I saw big dawg weeks (yes he did sport) coming up from the 31-40 ag but he broke his chain with two miles to go, still running he won 31-40 sport!!! I guess all his running practice on saturday paid off!! Either way, matt *possibly* would have beaten me for the overall sport king crown but I'll take these unlucky days for matt as lucky ones for me.