Tuesday, November 29, 2005

I hate Mondays!!

It never fails, I don't know why but it always seems like something happens on Monday. Yesterday was going good, I got out of work on time and was on my way home. I was following a semi on the frontage road when he stopped. Nothing big, they always stop to wait for traffic. I stopped and was fidgeting with some papers in the passenger seat. When I looked up I seen he was BACKING UP!! I grabbed reverse but not soon enough WHAM! I could tell he didn't know I was even back there. I steered to get the car off to the side of the truck. Finally the driver noticed I was there and stopped. By that point the hood was bent, the lights and grill was smashed, and my radiator was kinked. We got out and the driver apologized. We pulled into the parking lot that he was trying to get into and exchanged insurance. Actually he gave me his info because he was at fault. I checked out the car and figured I would try to drive home. I got about half way before things got hot FAST! The water hit 260 degrees and the oil was up to 320 degrees! I shut off the engine and glided to stop. After about 45 minutes of phone calls and waiting for a wrecker I got home. This morning I rode to the YMCA for some early morning lifting. Then I headed across town to Enterprise. Naturally they didn't have a small car so instead they rented me a 15 passenger van. Did I mention that today we are supposed to get rain, ice, and snow all mixed with 30-40 mph winds. This could possibly be the WORSE day ever to be driving one of these babes. I am going back tonight to try and get a smaller car.
Haven't heard from the body shop yet, but from talking to the guy last night it is going to be around $3000...I wonder how much the car is even worth?

Monday, November 21, 2005

Wisconsin State Championship Cyclo Cross

This weekend I tried something new, cyclo cross. The bike turned out to be lighter than I was expecting, SWEET! I set it up with a 42 front chain ring, a 25-12 road cassette, and Chris King/Mavic 517 wheels. I practiced all weekend dismounting and remounting. After a couple miss-attempts I don't know if I will ever get a fathers day card - OUCH! Anyway I figured I would just do the race and see how it turns out.

Cathy is wearing way too many warm cloths to be at a bike race!

Our dog could be a model.

I had a good start and we were riding off the front for about 1.5 laps.

When I was watching the "C" race this barrier didn't look too big, I thought I should be able to bunny hop that...YEAH RIGHT! When I got up to it I could hardly jump over it!

I felt really good through the barriers, I thought there was going to be more than sections of running. Note to self, check speed before dismounting, I was trying to close a gap mid race and jumped off my bike at about 20 mph, I almost ate grass in a big way!

In all the race was a lot of fun. I got dropped by the lead group of 3 about 15 minutes into the race. Another group of two caught me but didn't want to work, they just sat on my wheel. I attacked hard to get them out of my draft and then rode in no-mans-land most the race. I figured if I was going to be pushing wind I might as well not do if for the group. I was running 4th pretty comfortable until the last two laps. I was corning hard in an off camber section and burped some air out of the tire. It started leaking pretty good after that, the 5th and 6th place guys caught me and were able to out corner me. When I finished I was almost on the rim. I was still happy to get 6th considering I was riding a MT.BIKE!

Cory also had a great race, he borrowed the 9.8 because it was about 25 lbs. lighter than his Gary Fisher. He was in the C race and was running 2nd the entire time. On the last lap a group of 3 were working hard and caught him. He was still able to hang on to 5th at the line.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Every bike needs Bling

So I decided to build the 9.8 up for the 'cross race this weekend. I had most of the parts needed to build it as a 1x9, except for a fork.
I called the shop and they had acouple to choose from. It was an easy decision as soon as Bob pulled out this baby!!! When I got home I proptly put it on the scale to find out, much to my surprise, it came in a touch UNDER 2lbs. (900 grams to be exact) Hopefully I will get everything put together tonight and be able to work the bugs out on friday before Sunday's race.
I rode to the YMCA last night, even though it was only about 1 mile away I just about froze to death! I caught a side wind on one of the bridges and thought I was going to loose it. Sounds like it is supposed to warm up a little this weekend otherwise I think I will be breaking out the snow-pants.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Where to start

Wow, so much has been going on since my last post I haven't even had time to update this! So last saturday (I'm sorry it's been a while) we got a call from the shop and they told us that our bikes were in and ready!! We promptly went and picked them up, put some pedals on and went for a ride. We just hit the bike trail and worked on getting everything adjusted right and feeling good. Cathy really likes her pink bike and the TCR is a HUGE upgrade from the OCR.
The rest of the weekend we pretty much just worked on the house. I wonder if breathing saw dust is bad? I have probably inhaled the equivalent of an 8' 2x4.
Training has been indoors this week. Put 2 hours on the trainer last night while watching the CMA awards. I think basically if you have ever sang or even listened too a country song they give you an award. Maybe cycling should follow the same thinking.
Best Crash
Best Crash on a normally easy trail
Fastest Tire change
Most accurately adjusted seat
Most dog poo found in your shoes
Best swan dive into a creek
The WORS awards ceremony could possibly never end!!
This morning before work I started piecing together the 9.8 for the 'cross race this weekend. I spent most of the time I had digging around and trying to find what I had to work with. It isn't going to be pretty but it will be CHEAP. So far I have 1 XT shifter/brake combo (rear), for the front a Shimano Deore with an Avid Ultimate brake lever. I have a 9 speed road cassette laying around so I think I am going to use that, sounds like the course more fast than steep so close gearing should help out. The only thing I am missing is a rigid fork, I have an old manitou that I will have to use if I can't find anything. I'll get some shots of it up here when it is finished.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

So Many Leaves!!!

When I got home yestarday Cathy had already started racking the front yard. I think the gusty winds finished off the trees all at once. She said when she got home, there was pile so big she had to push it away to get in the door!! When we finally got all the leaves raked up we had a pile big enough you could have crash landed a plane into it! I don't really know what we were supposed to do with them, so we piled them up in the street. Personally I think I am just going to light a match one night and let them burn.
Tonight we are heading up to Madison to do some rock climbing. That is alway fun, but I am going to be soooo sore tomorrow, OUCH!!

Training has begun

Ice Man was the offical end of the season for us. On monday I started my training for next year. Cory had tons of success with the Carmichael Training System last year so I decided to give it a shot. So far things are pretty easy going, getting into the gym, getting longer rides on the bike, ect.
We bought a cyclops trainer from a friend for Cathy so we are going to pick that up this weekend. We also put our order in for the road bikes. Cathy is getting a pink 2200 and I am getting an Aluminum TCR 1.

Both bikes were in stock so hopefully the shop will have them before the snow flys.

In other news Maxxis has their new tires up. The CrossMarks look pretty sweet I think I am going to try a pair this year. I have heard a lot about this new LUST technology they are using on the Tubeless, sounds like they are onto a lightweight tubeless tire. I don't know, with as much luck as I have had with Stans-no-tubes, I have a hard time putting on a heavy tubeless tire when a regular tubed tire set up with Stans works just as good. That is going to be something I am going to research this winter. I will keep everyone posted.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Ice Man

So friday we Cathy, Larry, and Christina stopped by work to pick me up. The truck was loaded to the max and we were off for a 7 hour drive around the big lake. We got into Traverse City and got checked into registration. On the way up we talked about going for a ride to stretch out the legs but it was cold and raining so we decided to sleep instead.
Saturday morning we got up and went for a 50 minute warm-up before breakfast. We got back to the hotel ate the complementary breakfast of waffles, orange juice, and muffins. I went out and rode for another 20 minutes to let that all settle into place. Then it was off to the races. We got to the starting area about just after 9am. This race is different from other point to point races, like Chequamegon, in that they start in waves. I was in the first wave at 9:30am. We took off and I moved to the front. The course was super sandy. Because of the rain and early morning dew the sand was really sticky and would fly off everyone's tires and into my eyes. A couple miles in Cole and two other guys went off the front. I was sitting in the chase group trying to keep them in check. Then I found a sweet line down and hill and attacked. I chased for over a mile and was closing the gap. The two guys seen me coming and attacked, I could tell I was going to blow up if I kept chasing so I sat up and let the chase group pick me up. I was really feeling good then out of no where at mile 11 my stomach starts turning. I sat up again and dropped to the back of the pack. I got my heart rate down and tried to work through this with out having to stop. About a half mile later my body had enough. I was getting sick before I could even stop. I pulled over and unloaded my guts for just over 5 minutes! When that was over I got on the bike and tried to bring it back to speed. I was able to get on with a group and just had to ride it in. I tried going hard but I must have left my legs in that pile of breakfast on the side of the trail. I knew that I would be in trouble if I didn't have some food in me. Clif to the rescue! They came out with this new Clif Bloks these things are incredible!!! You just open the packet and stick the bag in your jersey. I was able to nibble on them throughout the race. These definitely saved me and allowed me to finish!
So yeah, I made it in 7th in my age, 139 overall. I was hopping and felt like I could have done a lot better, but it was fun anyway. Cathy ripped through the course and got to stand 2nd spot at the awards ceremony. She got a sweet Rock Shox Jersey. Larry also rode to a 2nd place finish and Christina turned an impressive 8th in the Pro/Expert women!
It was a lot of fun, first time Michaels Cycles was at the Ice Man and I think we represented pretty well, all four of us on the stage! All the final results are posted here.

Friday, November 04, 2005

All loaded

I don't think we could have squeezed any more out of yesterday. It started early and ended late at work. We are doing inventory so we are on 10.5 hours. I got home just in time to switch vehicles and head off to volleyball with Cathy. She played really good, it was fun to watch. When they finished their 3 games I jumped in and played in street clothes. I felt a little out of place but it was a lot of fun. That lasted longer than we planned and we didn't get home and started packing until after 10pm. After some rearranging I was able to get all 4 bikes to fit on the roof of the truck. I through some tools together that I am hoping I won't need and then off to bed by 12:30am! 20.5 hours of going non-stop, this would be perfect training for some 24 hour events. Either way, I had to go into work for a few hours this morning. Cathy and the crew is going to pick me up around noon and we will officially be off.
I am really excited and it looks like it is going to be decent weather. I will have a full race review and lots of pics when we get back.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Need to move some hardware

I haven't had a chance to post all this stuff for sale yet. I thought I would give the readers first dibs on it. Otherwise all this is going on MTBR next week. I don't want to do the e-bay thing but I need to clean out the basement so if it comes down to that....

You have heard me go on and on about the NRS it is a great bike and is super clean. If I can move this I am going to try out the new Anthem. Oh yeah, it is a size Large (20.5")

This is my last year's bike. I built it up and raced it for one season. Note I bought it used and has some damage on the right seat stay. It has been repaired and is solid. If you're interested I can send more detailed pictures. This is a 19.5" frame.

Lastly I won this frame last weekend at the WORS award banquet. I would keep it and build it up but don't have a fork, and could use the money more. It is a 4 inch travel with a SWEET fox shock. The frame is a size Large.

If anyone is interested drop me an e-mail or post a comment and I will get ahold of you. I have a ton of extra parts laying around also, so if you are interested in a frame, maybe we can work something out to get it partly built up.

Motorcycle vs. Bicycle

Last night Cathy and I met up with Christina and put in some time at the NorthEast park. It really burns me how much crap cyclists have to put up with, only to see our trails, that we had to get permission to build and maintian get all chewed up and nearly destroyed by motorcycles, in a non-motorized park! Anyway, dispite having to deal will torn up trails, and deep ruts in the corners it was a good ride. We hit the new sledding hill for some hill repeats. I was amazed how well Cathy was climbing, I was pushing hard and she was right on my wheel. AWESOME!!!
When we finished up we headed back to Christina's she took off one of her roof trays for this weekend, somehow I have to get 4 bikes to fit on our roof, when 3 bike are already a tight fit. That is a project for tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Cathy's new ride

Feast your eyes on this beauty:

Cathy has been wanting to get a road bike for some time now. We have been sharing my Giant OCR1 but it didn't really fit either of us. We were able to sell it and put the money to a new bike. Last night We stopped by the shop and had Cathy get fitted for the right size. We ended up with a 51 WSD with a little longer stem. We were riding some Trek 1000 WSD which are decent bikes, but need had to order the 2200 WSD Hopefully we can get out for a couple rides before the snow flys. Cathy is really excited so that is cool.
I need to get into the shop some time and get fitted for one of these babies. OH YEAH!