America's #1 Balance Bike Destination

America's #1 Balance Bike Destination
America's #1 Balance Bike Destination

Thursday, June 30, 2011

2011 Exeter 40+ Criterium Results

100+ entrants and we beat all but one of them.
Pretty cool to point out that we're the only team with two guys in the top 10, and the top 5 for that matter.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

2011 Hamburg Criterium 35+

Super high quality photos of this event can be found HERE. I will be buying a few myself.
My form was not super- though I have to admit I had a lot of fun. It was a .7 mile flat rectangular course- my favorite kind.
Only 20 guys signed up- mostly locals from NY and PA. The small field meant that there was really no where to sit-in and rest, not for very long anyway. It was single file 80% of the time. I rode the front of the race every lap, never outside the top 5. If not for a ton of defensive racing, there would have been a successful break on lap one. This tiring exercise continued for 20 laps and then finally two guys got away- a couple of laps apart.. I think everyone expected me to cover that those too and just looked at each other.. but the reality is that they were probably just the two strongest and most daring guys in the race. Game over. Five laps later, I came out of the final corner 2nd wheel (or maybe everyone else made sure I was there, who knows..), expecting at the very least to hold it to the line for 4th, but as luck would have it, a split second's hesitation to come around into the wind cost me 3 more places. I didn't have the power left to hold these guys off all the way to the line. To top it off, they reduced the prizes to top 6 because of the low turnout, making my 7th feel even less satisfying. Such is bike racing.
The Pro race was scheduled for 6:15 and I did not feel like waiting 3-1/2 hours for that so they kept my $15 as a donation. Promised my son I'd take him to Family Swim at the Y. Done and done.
A bad day of racing is better than a good day at work, but this was not a bad day. I really enjoyed myself, I raced honorably and I didn't crash. It's all good.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Another Wednesday another Ninigret

I always try to warn dear wife when I plan to have a big ride to Ninigret and back. It pretty much means I will be gone from 5pm until 9pm. Even with the hall pass to do this yesterday, I found myself fumbling to get ready in time and ended up leaving with exactly 90 minutes in which to ride exactly 30 miles.. south.. into a headwind. A few times I really convinced myself that I wouldn't make it, but once I was past route 138, up and over that little rise on route 2, I started to really make up lost time. With about 2-3 miles left to reach route 1, I found myself a carrot- two triathletes on their TT bikes. It motivated me to press the pedals harder and I said hi to them as I passed, huffing and straining under the weight of my backpack. Got to the park at exactly 6:27, in plenty of time to hand them my pre-filled waiver and a $10 check hastily made out to "cash".
The race was hard! Strung out single file most laps, lots of attacks lots of primes. I took a few flyers to test the legs. The first was a quick bridge across to a lone Arc rider. Once together we rotated for a couple of laps- taking 1/2 lap pulls. but the field came around and that was that. Later on I saw a gap to a break of about 10 that looked do-able. I accelerated HARD and for about a minute I was cranking about 550 watts, hoping/expecting to see a tail of riders ready to come around and finish the break off.. but no one was there and I ended up falling short of the break by about 20 seconds more of that pace effort. Didn't have it and had to rest. By the time we hit 2 to go I was into mile 57 for the day. After I had freshened up at the back for a few laps I started looking for "the move" with 1.5 laps to go. The break up ahead was shattered- we picked up most of them and two guys were now alone surfing the field. (David K ended up beating his opponent for the win) Anyway I came up the wide open left side and saw Gary A on his hot pink Specialized just as he started hitting it hard. We got a small gap, he flicks his elbow, I come through hard and decide to go all-in but after about 15 seconds I'm really hurting. There's a little over a lap left and when I pull off the field is charging past. I actually sat up for a few seconds and let everyone go past me and basically let myself get dropped. But the bell was now ringing and I'll be damned if I'm gonna DNF at this point. I decide to ride myself back up to the tail-gunner position and finish the last lap. No sprint left in me though..
Mounted the headlight and set off north on Route 1 to meet the family at a friend's house in Narragansett. A pretty good ride of 76 miles completed. A big Wednesday like this is always the perfect tune up for my weekend racing. Now two days rest, some light spinning and I'll probably get on the floor and hump my Trigger Point cylinder a couple of times. Thanks for reading.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Race Report Code of Ethics

As many times as I've been the offender.. I do try very hard to refrain from boring you to fucking tears. Nothing makes me want to stab myself in both eyes using freshly sharpened No 2 pencils quite as much as an endless stream of run-on one sentence paragraphs which explain in needless detail how poorly the narrator performed in spite of the previous two weeks of sloppy and deficient attempts at structured training that were hopefully going to result in some accidental success.

Forthwith, I am enacting a Code of Ethics which establishes proper race report etiquette.
1. If it wasn't a Win, write 1/2 as much as you would if it was a Win.
2. If it wasn't a top 10, write 1/4 as much.
3. If it doesn't include 3 or more laps solo off the front and/or the heroic winning of 2 or more primes, write 1/8 as much.
4. If you got your ass dropped and/or lapped, but you persisted and finished anyway, write 1/10 as much*
* If No 4 is the result of crashing horribly and suffering painful lacerations, contusions, sprains, strains, or breaks, skip to No 5.. Otherwise, stick with No 4.
5. If you crashed, got up, straightened your bars, collected your bottles, re-installed your dropped chain, continued racing, and finished the race, see No 2.

Saturday, June 04, 2011

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

5-31-11 Scituate Time Trial- New PB Yay!

I rode to the time trial in the perfect conditions on Tuesday afternoon. Light winds, sunny, dry, a gorgeous day all around. After careful depilation of the legs to avoid shaving off my road rash, I donned my new "Grape Crush" skinsuit, packed my backpack with some essentials and filled a couple bottles with 1/2 Coke and 1/2 H20. Heading out, I had a few feelings of doubt, and resolved to accept the fact that it would not be my best result at this 14.3 miles around the Scituate Reservoir. My hand was (and still is) swollen and achy right behind the knuckles. Earlier in the day I snipped the stitches and removed them. I actually pulled one of them the wrong way and lodged the quadruple knot deep into the scab- and then had to fish it out with the pointy end of my Swiss Army knife. Ouch. I popped a couple Advil, a B vitamin and a multi vitamin and set out toward Crazy Corners. The one aero advantage I took with me (besides the skinsuit- if that even counts) is my Louis Garneau aero helmet. I had used it once before and it really didn't make a difference. Today though, I was racing with an injured hand and nursing road rash, so I justified that the helmet would make me Even-Steven. One other difference- I had my 1600 gram Easton race wheels instead of my heavy Powertap wheel. Overall about a one pound difference, but mostly at the hub, not a rotational weight difference. One other ommission- no Power wheel means no power data. I haven't had any of that since I fell down at Wells..
Long story short, this TT hurts like a bastard. The climbs are short but challenging A couple are deceiving- you think you're done but then realize that you still haven't crested. The 2nd climb and the 5th climb are the hardest. My approach is to do the whole thing in the big ring, gain big time on the climbs. I pay dearly for this after cresting because it's tough to get back to top speed on the descents with legs that have been redlining for the past 2-3 minutes. I make up for this by getting into the most miniature tuck as I possibly can on the steeper descents (except for the last one- you really have to power down the backside of that one and ideally spin out the 53x11- it's not a steep descent so it needs some input) For whatever reason, maybe a local triathlon on the weekend, a lot of the big engines passed on this weeks TT. There weren't any leg breakers doing it and so it looked as though I could fall ass-backwards into the fastest time. This motivated me because if I was to have the fastest time, it needed to be a respectable time. As it turned out, my hand did not slow me down. The helmet made a difference. The wheels saved me lots of seconds. The diluted Coke was a good choice for hydration- it always agrees with me. My previous attempt was 38:56 (3 weeks prior). This week's result was 38:06. Woo-hoo! Good enough to stand as the 2011 season-to-date record, fwiw. I'm sure it will be smashed next week, but who cares? I'm way faster than my peak form in 2010, and it's only May. Cool.
Now if only I can get Providence Bike to correct the results so that my last name is correct!
Next time you are looking for a challenging Tuesday afternoon workout, head out to the Scituate Time Trial sponsored by Providence Bicycle. It's free and the first rider rolls off at 6:00. All abilities welcome.
Thanks for reading.