Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Cross out the Old Year

The boys and I went out to watch the "Cross out the Old Year" race today. I had hoped to race but it was not to be. I'll just say that we are nearing the end Christmas Break for the kids and after today, I'm not going to be sad.

On to the races..... Caught the end of the 3/4 race but spent most of the time on the playground with the kids playing tag and venturing into the woods. Wish I could say more about the race but by time I started paying attention the riders were so spread out I couldn't tell who was leading.

Here's the start of the 1,2,3,4 race. Not too many riders but it was fun to watch for the first few laps. Wish I was at the end of the next straight to get a few pictures of Brad and Shadd hand checking each other going into the turn.

First time over the barriers and up the hill. Right after this Cam tried to ride the hill and stalled out. Shadd and Cam bumped and they both ended up running up the hill.

Love this shot! Eli and I climbed up the jungle gym to get this shot of Brad running the sand.

Bill working hard during the race. Rumor has it that he's going to Masters Worlds.

Check this thing out! The boys called it a spiderweb and it's all they wanted to do. Wish we could get one at their school.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Back from Nebraska

Headed back to Lincoln for Christmas. Packing the van was a challenge as usual. Try making room for bags and misc junk for a family of 4 for a week long stay. Then add a bike and a bag for gear, 2 good sized Labs, then hide Christmas presents from the boys, this is what you get. This why I can get a pop up tent, 5 bikes, 5 extra sets of wheels, and luggage for 4 riders in there. It's true, just ask Dean.

Got in a few rides while I was there. The first one was when there was a few inches of snow on the ground. The trails were awesome and Coach and I had a great time. Then it got warm and melted everything. Next time out on the same trials we rode the edges as the center of the trail was solid ice. MA, Coach, and I still got in 2 hrs at 27 degrees, not too bad.

Christmas with the boys was a riot as usual. Too many cool toys to list but these made me laugh. Night vision goggles, cheap plastic, but they do actually work. Caught them sitting on the couch looking like the tech geeks from the movie Sixteen Candles.

Did a UNL Campus tour with they boys. Nancy got to show the kids the building where she taught, I got to show them the fountains near campus that I used to ride my MTB into. Passed on showing them the O street bar scene that led to the fountain incident. Those were the days.

Ride in the snow. Coach and I discussing the skill the Lincoln guys have at riding the trough.
I don't know what else to call it. The trail is so worn in that it's like a 10 inch wide ditch that's 6 inches deep. For you KC crew it's like the trail at Minor that's down by the river. At Minor it's a short section, in Lincoln it lasts 7 miles. The guys in Lincoln can ride this stuff at warp speed and never get off line, amazing.

Sounds like Chris is having a great time in Belgium. Go to to see more.

I don't see this as a great idea, I don't care how much mud you have on your bike!

Wow, a Brad Cole sighting at Boss Cross 3. Wish I had the time to get out there but I just had too much going on after a late return to KC Saturday night. Looking a Roger's pictures it looks like it was a mudder. I heard stories of Brad running and Shadd riding many sections of the course. Brutal no matter how you did it.
Heck, I had to wash the cars late Sunday and decided to finishe cleaning the mud off my wheels from Nationals.
I've got the kids this week but Wednesday's cross race is a possibility. Wonder how many people will make it?

Monday, December 22, 2008

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

Just wanted to take a minute to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

Man it's cold!

It's really cold out there right now, I mean frostbite cold. That's not to say that you can't ride, in fact, quite a few people have been out riding. I got out with a group of guys the other day and even though it was in the teens I was overdressed. Now that the kids are on winter break I won't be on the bike anyway. Maybe it will warm up after New Years. By the way......the hours of sunlight per day is getting longer, yeaaaaaaaa....

Not too much to do on the repair side in the shop these days, it's just that time of the year. It's nice when something like this shows up and you have the time to really have fun. You don't see many Ti bikes anymore. The red pedals are my test ride pedals. Hard to forget to take those off when you are done!

Eli and his train. No Christmas would be complete without the train circling the Christmas tree. Notice that there are no breakable ornaments near the bottom of the tree. That's what you do when you have two Labs with strong tails that like to look out the windows.

Here's dogzilla about to kick the train off the tracks for the millionth time. Check out the tail, it's just about to sweep off another ornament!

So Steve has his pies...... we do cookies. No fancy oven here so I'm more than likely to burn a few but it's all good, frost them up and know body will know.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

GO Chris

I saw the announcement that Chris Wallace has been selected to represent the USA at Cross Worlds. How cool is that! Chris is a really nice kid and it's been fun watching him progress as a rider. Too bad he's all ready faster than I am!

Worked on Chris's bikes yesterday to get them ready to head for Belgium. I'm glad to be able to play a part in his quest for success in Europe. I've got to say thanks to Scott and the owners for allowing me to work on the bikes without charging Chris. Nice way to contribute to the cause.
What a difference a few days make. I'm pretty fried on bike riding and sick to boot, but I may have to pull out the skate ski's and head out to the school across the street. Maybe tomorrow, today it's Holiday(not Christmas, got to be PC) parties at school with the boys.
I saw on Scotty D's blog there is a schedule with UCI races. Pretty interesting stuff out there. Night Cross races........ love 'em, brings me back to my old motocross days when we raced anywhere with lights, from the Astrodome to rodeo grounds.
I can't believe there are still 4 more cross races. I guess that would work out if they eventually move Nationals to January like the rest of the world. Since the US is the only country to have December Nationals I bet the UCI makes USA Cycling toe the line eventually. Still no official location for next year, hmmmmmm makes you wonder.

Monday, December 15, 2008

KCCX 2008 Cross Nationals: Done, just in the nick of time..

The KCCX, KC Cross Nationals is over. We were blessed with good weather for most of the event and even though it got cold for some of the last day it was not as bad as last year. Today is a different story, it's cold and it would of been miserable to try and race in weather we have now. Anyway, I spent 7 days out at Tiffany Springs Park helping out in one way or another and now I'm just pooped.

Ok, back to the event.

Thursday: My B race, good and bad, see post below.

Friday: Masters 45-49 race. Got a great start but once I hit the first turn I quickly found out that my legs were blown from Thursday's race. I had no power and just hung on for 19th. Bit of a bummer but it's a learning experience. This is my 3rd full season of cross and 2nd Cross Nationals. It took me a few years to land on a NORBA podium so I'll stick it out and see what I can do.

Saturday/Sunday: Spent the day Saturday working the pit for friends or just hanging out. Saturday Troy and I got out on the course during the break. One hour of rubbing elbows with the pros was a gas. The course was awesome so we had fun railing the corners and just generally having a good time. Sunday I got out to the course and helped out and then hung out and watched the races. Oh was crazy how one gust of wind dropped the temps 10-15 degrees. Brrrrrrrrr.

Bill S. putting some body english on it to blast through the corner. Look at that berm! You don't see that very often in cross races.

This is me in the B race. This section was not rideable Thursday but was fine on Friday.
With my running skills anything is faster so I was looking forward to staying on the bike.

Jeremy Powers in the chicane before the pits. It was fun watching the pros stream through here.

This was a fast off camber turn that was pretty dicey early in the week but by the time the Elite race rolled around the berms were huge and the riders were flying.

So that's it, it's over! I'm really looking forward to next years Nationals. For the first time I won't be working and can focus on racing and having a good time. I can't wait!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

KCCX 2008 Cross Nationals: Day 1

All of the B races go today. I guess it gives racers and the promoters a chance to check things out before the races for the stars and stripes jerseys start. This year I thought I would give the 40+B race a try as a prep for my big race. I was more than a bit nervous as I didn't want to be blown for tomorrows race. I started with the plan that if I wasn't in position for the podium I would pull the plug and save my energy. The race started and I got the lead and felt good. I had a decent lead when the cramps started on the 2nd lap. Soon is was decision time, do I continue and tear up my legs or bag it. I decided to stick it out and in hind site I made the wrong decision. Even though I hung on for 3rd by legs are so tight my back keeps seizing up. Right now I'm 50/50 on weather I'll be able to race tomorrow. I race at 3pm a lot can happen by then.

KCCX Day 1: The day of the killer B's.

At least I made a good decision and only made a mess of one bike and one set of wheels. The course started out muddy/greasy in the morning but my our 3pm race most of the course dried up and was tacky. Looks good for the rest of the weekend. See ya out there.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

KCCX 2008 Cross Nationals: Ready, Set, GO!!!!!!

After a SRAM clinic at the shop this morning I had to install a SRAM Rival group on Chris W's bike. I'm more and more impressed with the SRAM road groups the more I work and ride them. I can't wait for next year to try it out.

Now for Cross Nationals. I got there and the crew was hard at work installing signs, banners, and making final adjustments to the course.

There it is, the finish line. The tent was filling up with vendors and yes, the beer garden is ready.

Course condition update: This is what it looked like at 4:00pm. I heard there was a light covering early in the morning but most of it melted off and soaked in by the afternoon. Hard to tell whats going to happen tomorrow. Probably rock hard and fast for the early races and really soft for the later races.

Had to take a picture of this while I was driving home. I don't think I have ever been watching when one of my cars hit the 100,000 mark. Cars are cheap but the van is still running good. What to do? I do know I won't buy anything until spring when the salt and ice is off the roads.

Tomorrow I'm off for race day #1 with the 40+B race. It's a warm up race for Friday's National Champ race for for the 45-49 crew so I'm not too sure how hard I want to go. I guess I'll let conditions and the legs tell me what to do.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

KCCX 2008 Cross Nationals: Course Prep day 3

Got out to the course pretty early today and the crew had all ready put up the fencing around the wheel pit and were getting ready for the road. Working with machine like efficiency we put down the rest of the fence and were off to other projects in no time. Tomorrow it's banner day and final course adjustments.

Course conditions: At 10:00am the ground had soaked up the rain that had fallen overnight and was looking good. Shortly after 10:00 the snow started to fall and was collecting on the grass. We left by noon and it was still snowing. Josh and Ted were there and were going to ride a lap to test out the course. I'll have check their blogs to see if they have any updates on course conditions.

CHECK THIS OUT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Cyclocross Nationals Party
Trek Bicycle Store of Kansas City
10412 Shawnee Mission Pkwy
Shawnee, KS 66203
Friday December 12th
Free Food and Drinks

Don't miss the party at the shop, word has it that the Wells brothers, Steve Tilford and some other superstuds may show up. If nothing else there's free beer and munchies!

Monday, December 8, 2008

KCCX 2008 Cross Nationals: Course Prep day 2

Got out to the venue today to see the big tents going up. I've never seen it done so it was pretty amazing to see how quick these guys can build it.

The little tents went up as well. A few of us helped Bill A. put up the one in the background. I'm super excited about that one because I 'll be able to use it as a base for the event. I kept hearing something about "that guy from South Dakota is going to have to dress outside" over and over again. Brrrrrrrr. Sorry Dan!

The big top is up! Most of it is on pavement so no swamp in the tent like last year.

All the course needs now is tape. That's on tomorrows plate as well as all of the metal fencing. Might be a bit challenging in the snow/rain but we'll get'er done.

Just so people don't think I'm totally obsessed with Nationals. I did manage to get in some family time this weekend. Bought a Christmas Tree, and got it decorated as well. Heck, I even managed to get lights up outside the house.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

KCCX 2008 Cross Nationals: The prep starts

Today was the first day of course prep out at the Nationals venue. Quite a few riders showed up, I'd guess around 75 or so. So while the crew started setting the course and making a few changes, the riders tested them out. Two changes from the Boss Cross race, one removed a spot where there was two way traffic that could of become dangerous. The other is going to make a tough course even tougher. The top section has been extended and includes more barriers, and a double up and down run up. Right now you run up the hill over the barriers, remount and ride halfway down the hill before you have a off camber turn and ride back up the to the top of the hill. From there you drop back down the hill to the old course. It was tough to ride today, probably a run if it gets wet, muddy, ect.......

Nice weather today, hope it holds for the week. Right now the ground is a mixture of hard and soft areas. In case you were wondering about the start, 1K of pavement going into a wide grassy up hill turn. Sorry no pictures of that.

Quite a crew out today, no real play race to speak of. I did a couple of hot laps and tried out different tire pressures. The course is a little rough so it's going to be tough to figure out. In any case I'm sure conditions won't be anything close to today next week.
Wow, 3 days to race day! If you're looking for me in the next 3 days I'll be out at the course pounding stakes, stringing tape, and doing whatever else they tell me to do. Can't wait, I love the whole thing, helping with the event, racing, what fun!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Jingle Cross Crash on u-tube

Just when I thought I missed myself on one of the dozens of video from Jingle Cross this one shows up. Troy found this one and it actually has Steve crashing as well as my plunge down the hill. And yes, that is third place blazing past me as I wallow in the mud. Good times I tell you............

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Jingle Cross 2008

Jingle Cross 2008 is in the books and I've got to say I'm glad it's over. Don't get me wrong, it's a great race and I always have a great time. But I was super stressed about reinjuring my shoulder and my overall fitness. I also have a real love/hate relationship with the course. I usually finish well and overall the course layout is great, but there is a ton of running and that hurts. It's all good until you have to go up, and up, and up. As you can see in the first picture Saturday's run up goes all the way to the top where those tiny people are standing. Then you get on your bike and continue to the top. Saturday I got a great start and was leading until Chris Wallace ran by me half way up the hill with a 2 laps to go. It must of looked like I had stopped to tie my shoe when he went by because he was gone by the top. Darn kids anyway..... In any case I was happy with 2nd, no bobbles to hurt the shoulder, just really tired legs from 2 weeks off the bike.

So Sunday we woke up to this......BRRRRRRRRRRR. At least we had the tents up to hide from the snow and keep dry.

Now if you were in the first 2 races the snow packed in the bike but it was just snow. After that it became mud, sloppy wet mud.

By time the 2-3 race went off the course looked like this all over. Sort of like last years Nationals without the ice underneath the mud. Troy and I got great starts and he let me get into the main line before he did to go into the first turn 1-2. After that the kaos began. While leading I crashed on a off camber hillside and slid down the hill on my butt. Got up in 3rd place and moved up to 2nd by the mud slide(see picture above). I got to the top of the slide with one slight problem. Still couldn't get clipped in after running up the hill(I thought I sort of/kind of)had one foot in. I also found out that carbon wheels loaded with mud do not brake so well. (yesterday I found that the cable slipped and I really didn't have a rear brake at all) So I start down the hill and I 'm really gaining speed, brakes are not working, not wanting to chance falling on my bad shoulder I tried to slide out up the hill side. It worked but now I'm sliding down the hill on my back dragging my bike behind me. I swear I was picking up speed on the way down. So I get back on my bike but I can barely hang on to the bars because of the mud on my gloves. I tried to wipe them off om my skinsuit but I had so much mud on me that it only made it worse. By the 2nd lap I had cleaned off my gloves enough that I could shift and actually rode a clean lap without crashing. I made up some time on second and third place riders and nearly caught them. 3rd lap, here we go again, I got clipped in this time but with no brakes I went for a major slide down the hill, but again I hung onto the bike so I didn't have to go back for it. I was still in 4th by time we started the 4th and final lap. By then all I cared about was riding clean and not falling. My gloves were soaking wet and my hands were frozen so I could barley shift but I managed not to fall and finished 4th.

Nate from Lincoln was behind me for 5th and teammate Troy was right
there for 6th. Chris Wallace rode a great race again and finished 2nd. Overall I'm pretty pleased with the results. I didn't lose too much fitness with the shoulder injury and I managed to get through the weekend with out re injuring myself. Controlled crashing has it's benefits, but I can't get over the memory of sliding down 3/4 of the hill on my back dragging my bike behind me. There are quite a few utube videos out there but sadly none of me. I wish I could see what it looked like but you can imagine it after you see some of the videos.

Here's the beginning of the climb on Sunday. At the point where you see the red snow fencing you had to get off and run two switchbacks, then get back on and ride to the top, all while trying to get the grass and mud out of your shoes so you can clip back in by the downhill.

It was that cold Sunday, it snowed all day. Even out in the grassy field it got muddy and slick.

So now it's Tuesday, cleaned the bikes yesterday( it took hours), had to replace a BB in one bike and recable the other, but now I'm ready to go. Bummer the Lawrence race got cancelled. Debating about a day at the Bubba Cross/MO State Champs instead.

After my white knuckle, black ice drive home from Iowa City I'm not very excited to hit the road. But today is only Tuesday, maybe by the weekend.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Jingle Cross Day 1

Quick results from Jingle Cross Day 1.

2 - 3
1st Chris Wallace
2nd Tom Price
3rd Troy Krause
7th Matt Tillinghast
12th Jesse Peterson
19th Ryan Legg
20th Nate Woodman

4th Dan Hansen
33rd Craig Schmitt

Good conditions on day 1, a little bit of ice in a few of corners, pretty muddy on the run up, but overall pretty nice. A bit of snow /rain/ice predicted for tomorrow should make it interesting. I don't have any results from the Elite race, the KC crew was looking good but the race got so spread out I couldn't keep track of what place people were in.

More tomorrow.

Thursday, November 27, 2008


When you are in first grade this is what you get at Thanksgiving. You dress up as a pilgrim or Native American and have a feast. And what a feast, Turkey wrap, carrots, cheese, orange slices, and popcorn. Pretty amusing watching them pick at the food while eyeballing the pumpkin cake.

So here's the real deal. Mom made a feast for the four of us that's going to last as leftovers for weeks. Good thing I did a bunch of yard work today, I'm stuffed!

Of course Thanksgiving would not be complete without a toast. Jonas is going with milk, I'm going with a clear liquid that goes well with lime.

As is our tradition the dogs got a few scraps while carving the turkey. You just have to watch the fingers until they calm down.

Tomorrow it's off to Iowa City and Jingle Cross. Should be fun!