Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Green Monster!!!!!

Yea, you thought this post was going to
be about Halloween but this thing is scary enough. The "Green Monster" run up at the Louisville USGP was huge. Our normal barriers are bad enough but I don't think I could get my knee to bend far enough to run this thing, those steps are huge.

I have to say that building a over/under bridge for a cross course would be super cool. Maybe one of these days..............

Monday, October 27, 2008

Spooky Cross Weekend review

I made the trip to DesMoines last weekend for 2 days of Spooky Cross. With 2 days of rain leading up to the races I was a bit worried about course conditions but by race time there was very little mud. The promoters did an awesome job laying out courses that had tons of unique features. There was some road, trail, bean field, climbs(both short and long), and of course barriers both in the open and on the climbs.
The first picture is of the bean field straight that was mud on day 1 and rutted and soft on day 2.

Troy searching for a good line in the bean field. Day 1 was tough because of the mud, day 2 was tough because it was soft, rutted, and into a 40mph wind. Sure glad we dropped into the woods shortly after the beans.

First lap up the climb/Run-up in Saturday's 1,2,3 race. It was steep at the bottom, then they put 1x4's on the hill to make it harder.
On Sunday the climb had boards on a short steep climb followed by a longer climb that was a slow slog in a 42x25.

Here I am with Iowa fast guy Brian Eppen. He won both days 1,23 race. Saturday I stuck with him for most of the race but ended up 2ND. By Sunday I was getting tired and all I could do was hang on for 3rd.

Overall the races went well, 1st in the Masters 40+ both days(Troy 3rd both days, Craig 6Th Sat). Lincoln Rider Darin Schlake was 2ND in the masters both days and made me ride way too hard to save much for the 1,2,3 races. The rest of the Lincoln Industries crew had good rides all weekend as well. The whole crew was in the top 10 both days.

Once again I've got to give credit to the promoters, the courses, the crowd, the overall vibe was awesome. The amount of work and thought that went into the courses was amazing. They have good prizes and plenty of good food, beer for everybody. I'll go back and I hope to bring a number of KC folks with me.

Then there was this................I guess I'm ready for Hooligan Hill during the Lincoln Cross Weekend after seeing this guy. I was offered beer, Slim Jim's, and bucks on the climbs both days but racing was too tight to partake. Man, what a rowdy bunch, it was loud at the tops of the climbs!

I dare you to take that buck! I think the devil is eyeballing a few for himself.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Spooky Cross

Yep, this weekend I'm going to try something different, cross in Iowa. A few of the guys from up north are heading for DesMoines for Spooky Cross so I figured why not. No matter where you race this weekend it's going to be muddy so bring out the buckets and boots. I guess this is what they call real cross weather.

As for the picture, Jonas is a crazed clown this year and his costume is fairly spooky. We went to family fun night at school last week and he enjoyed scaring all of the girls from his classes. Pretty amusing.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Boulevard Cup

From what I've heard around town it sounds like there was a good turnout at both races this weekend. I saw these picture's by Kyle Reynolds on Localcycling. Nice shot of the Masters race going off. This one is fun to watch on a weekly basis as the racing is tight.

Then there's Nate Woodman bunnie hopping the barriers. Nate can bunnie hop just about anything and is a crowd pleaser for sure (especially when he occasionally misses).

Then there was my weekend.........Family issues, a week of sick kids, ect., get the idea. What a difference a week makes, last weekend I felt great, this weekend....not so much. All of the above kept me from racing Saturday but I decided to give it a go Sunday. I got a good start and slotted in where I wanted to be but after a lap I knew it was not to be. I pulled the plug early and decided to ride hard enough to get a workout but not hard enough to wear myself down. I'm not sick.......yet, but I'm the only one in the house that has not had it yet. Anyway, I think this picture of me was taken just after I downed a beer and I'm getting goofy all ready. I rarely drink and I'm sure the last time I downed a full glass of beer was over 20 years ago. I do have to admit that the lap after I drank the beer was probably the fastest lap I rode all day!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Halloween is all most here, are you ready?

We Are!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

and now I'm about to scream! My face looked like Eli's mask when he started to look sick. Oh noooooooooooooooo!!!! Eli's been fighting a fever and cough all night. Pretty similar to Big brothers illness the last two weeks so I'm sure I'll be home with a sick one tomorrow. So much for riding this week.
Looks like I'll either be sick or well rested come this weekends races. Only time will tell.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Chris Cross

I have to say that Sunday morning came quite early after racing Saturday night in Topeka. I think everybody at the house thought the same thing, it's a long transfer between stages. Left Topeka around 10pm, arrive home in KC around 11pm, eat dinner and get to bed around 1am. Up at 7am Sunday and started making Belgian Waffles for the crew to get ready for Chris Cross. We decided to get there a bit early to check out the course and do some pre-riding. I'm glad we did as this course in notorious for having gravel in the turns.

The race starts with a paved section that leads into a quick 180 into the woods. I didn't get the best start but made a bunch of spots up by out braking some guys into the hairpin. I think I was in the top 5 going through the woods and tried to hang onto the Shadd and Joe express. Halfway through the first lap Shadd got a gap and soon after Joe jumped away and tried to catch Shadd. Mark and I chased and were holding the gap close until Shadd noticed that Joe was alone. It wasn't long before the TREK boys were together and it was 2 against 2 with Brian Jensen alone not far behind.

Mark and I worked together for a few laps and here we are rolling through the ditch. After a few laps Mark fell off the pace and I managed to put in a fast lap with about 4 laps to go and put some time on Brian. Disaster struck as I lost the front wheel in a gravel filled turn starting 3 laps to go. After I collected my glasses and straighten my bars I got going but Brian soon caught me. On the last lap I managed to use some MTB skills in the gravel/woods section and get a little gap on Brian. I knew he would make up time on me on the road sections so I was determined to make it stick .
This is where it gets crazy, Shadd has a mechanical issue and is just rolling down the hill. Joe is waiting and all the time I'm catching them. I come past the wheel pit and Smitty's yelling at me that Shadd has a mechanical. I look up the road to see them really close. Shadd did manage to get his bike up and running in plenty of time to roll to 1st place with Joe in 2nd. I was running for my life to stay away from Brian and he got close, but I stayed away for 3rd.

So another cross in the weekend in the books, great courses, well run events. Everybody who ventured down from Nebraska had a great time and plan on coming back for more. As for me, I've got to remember that you can't win races lying on the ground. Then again, if you don't fall once in a while you aren't trying hard enough. I think I'll try for something in the middle.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

HPT Grand Prix

I got an early start Saturday and headed out to Topeka for the HPT GP. When I arrived there were SCCA car races going on at the road course but what I was really interested in was the drag strip. My dad drove dragsters for the first 12 or so years of my life so I spent most of my weekends at the track. One of these days I'll get out there for the Nationals.

So after a fair amount of time geeking out at the cars going by I decided to get down to the bike racing part of the evening. In the picture you can see the lit dirt track where the course was set up. It's just about race time and Matt and Troy are about ready to go. The course was set up inside the oval dirt track with a little bit outside behind the grandstands. Pretty fun course, long high speed straights with a bumpy, tight infield section. I got a good start and made the front group and after a few laps it ended up as a group of 4 with Bill and Adam going in and out of the group. Most of the race I was fine with the pace except when we hit the 2 back straight sections. Here Bryan and Joe would put the hammer down and I'd get gapped but get back on before we hit this funky off camber turn leading to some stairs out of the race track. This turn would prove to be my down fall as with 3 laps to go I bobbled and lost contact with the group. I was struggling to close the gap when Jeff Winkler fell losing contact with the group as well. Now we were both were chasing but with 1 to go Jeff attacked and got away from me and that's how we finished. The order ended up, Joe, Brian, Jeff, and Me. Not too shabby considering how the week went.

We had a few of the Lincoln crew here for the weekend and we all had a pretty good showing Saturday night, Troy 7th, Matt 10th, Ryan 14th.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Critters and Pumpkin carving

Continuing on my animal themed posts I've got this guy today. I was riding out at Shawnee Mission Park when I thought I saw a big rock in the trail. Just as I was about to bunny hop it the crazy thing stuck it's head and legs out and tried to take off. Nothing like a moving target but you know how turtles are, not too quick! I think he was talking to his squirrel friends and was planning to take down a cyclist. That's my conspiracy theory and I'm sticking to it!

Halloween is just around the corner and I guess the wifely one decided I needed to get some inspiration. She sent this photo to me but if I drank that much to I'd look like the bottom pumpkin before I carved anything.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

New week, Crazy squirrels

Let's see.......It's been a few days since my last post so you know I've been busy. Unfortunately Jonas continues to be sick enough to say home from school. He's become quite a shop rat. Problem here is that I can't ride when he's with me and most of my training miles are extended commutes to work. Here's Jonas in a typical pose when stuck at the shop, either in front of the tv or at the computer.

So while I was wrenching yesterday what should I end up working on but my old GT cross bike. It was the 1st cross bike I got back in Cleveland in the GT days. I loved that paint job, in fact, I still do!

Beware of these little guys! I'm not sure if it's mating season or these little guys are too busy gathering nuts to notice that there are things moving around them. I do know that Jonas ran over one's tail as it ran between our wheels last week and yesterday one smashed into my front wheel and about took me down. I think he was waiting for just the right moment when I sat up and took my hands off the bars to make his attempt. carnage for either party.

Man it's dark at 2am! It's also totally dead out, not 1 car passed me on the ride home from the shop. Can't complain but it just seems weird that in a town the size of KC I can ride 7 miles without passing or being passed by a car. Sure is fun riding at night but it really sucks getting up in the morning.

Woa!!!!!! I think I scared myself! The flash was a bit bright and after I blinded myself I about plowed in to a car. Note to careful while taking photo's at 15 night!

Cross this weekend under the lights!!!!!!


Sunday, October 5, 2008

A week in review

Last week was a blur, I mean there was so much going on that I'm amazed that everything I was involved in came off without much damage.

Monday I rolled into the shop to find this:

What a bummer, another victim of the roof top bike rack. This bike was not as expensive as the last one but it was just a few days old! Ouch! Fairly busy day for me at the shop and just did a bike commute for recovery.

Tue: Another day at the shop. Got my work done early and got out for a good ride. Got home in time to shower up and get the kids off to get hair cuts and dinner.


Post cut dinner at Red Robin. Burgers were pretty good and Jonas thought he could wedge down this monster burger. He a did pretty good job but hurt himself in the process, I thought he was going to puke.

Wed: we woke up to find Jonas actually ready to puke, but from the Flu, not the food. This is every parents nightmare....which parent is going to call in sick and say home with the sick child. For us it's not much of a challenge at this time of the year. I called in sick but that's why I do what I do for work.

Thursday: more of the same for Jonas, I've got him with me all day so there will me no riding for me. On the positive's time for Scott's stag party. All I'm going to say about this one is that we had a great time and whoever came up with the idea to go to the Jazz district had a strike of genius. There was no folk dancing to be seen but just the mention of the Jagermeister girls ought to draw a reaction from a few people.

Friday: Jonas is better but still can't go to school, no riding for Tom, much frustration. Rehersal dinner for Scott and Tanya, good food, good friends, I feel much better.

Saturday: Troy and I get out for a bike path blast, 38 miles later the legs are tired and it's time to get ready for a wedding. I don't know where to begin so I'm just going to say that everything was perfect for the whole wedding/reception. We had a great time, thanks for letting us be a part of your special day guys!

Sunday: I think the wife and I have a wedding hangover today! I didn't even drink but I just feel dead today. Got out for a short ride but just didn't have it in me to get out to cross practice.

Now it's time to hit the reset button, Jonas is getting better and with no special events on the horizon it's time to get on the bike!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

I saw this a few blocks from the shop, cross at your own risk! Little bit of voodoo in Shawnee with those dolls skewered on the poles.

Pic of me from last weekends race. I can tell it's later in the race because the chain is still on. I'm still a bit sore in the back and knee from last weekend. Good thing I'll be out on the dance floor with the wife at Scott's wedding instead of racing in Omaha.

I heard there might be a practice cross race this weekend at Wyandotte. Does anybody know what's up?