Monday, March 28, 2011

The Road Season Begins

It's been a busy couple of weeks, with all of the training and racing going on I figured why not throw a puppy into the mix. You see, we planned on getting a puppy but not quite this soon. But the opportunity came to get a 3 month old chocolate lab pup from Wayside Waifs we decided to get her. It's not the perfect time to get a puppy but like kids, if you wait until the time is right you will never have kids. So with the shop getting busy, a new puppy, kids soccer, and attempting to train, it's was time to go racing. Last week we started off the season with the Hell's Kitchen Road Race. It was both good and bad for the team. Some of the guys rode great and some did not. Unfortunately I was in the group of guys that had bad legs on race day. I know that I don't recover as well as I used to so 130 mile the day before a race is not a good thing.
This week we were off to the NWA Classic Road Race near Fayetteville AR. Early weather predictions were for warm temps and light winds. The morning of the race the weather was quite different, mid 30's and an increasing wind. Most of the team spent quite a bit of time trying to figure out what clothes to wear to stay warm but not overheat.

It was really nice to get the team van last week at camp. The whole crew can fit in there pretty easy and it's nice to be able to get your kit on in a warm place. The NWA race was a pretty crazy trip. Up at 3:30am to get over to the meeting place, load the van, and roll out at 4:30am. Race start time was 10am and we arrived with plenty of time to get ready to race. I even rode around a bit to attempt to warm up a bit but that was tough with the cold temps.

So the race starts and right off the bat a BMC guy lights it up and we all struggle to get going so early in the race. The race course itself is a little over 20 miles and in a rectangle shape. Naturally, the long sides of the course had a fairly strong cross wind so we were lined up in the gutter or on the center line all day. On the first lap there was a small break and we put a few guys on the front to keep them close. It worked and the break cam back but soon after on 2nd lap 3 more guys rolled away and quickly got some time on the field. The Mercy team had 4 guys on the front and started to pull the break back but no other team wanted to help to bring the break back. After 15 miles of pulling into the wind our guys were burnt out and the break rode away from the field. About half way through the 3rd and final lap the attacks started but none stayed away until we hit the bigger of two climbs on the course. A group got away with one of our guys in it. I ended up in the 3rd group on the road but was cramping badly and trying to hang onto the end of the group. The run in to the finish was a barn burner as all of the groups were chasing the group in front of them. Austin continues impress with some strong riding during the race and a 7th place finish in the end.  The rest of the team finished in the top 20 so overall it was a pretty good race. Personally the race was an improvement over the previous weeks race as I felt better
but my legs are still just not right. Hopefully warmer weather will help and maybe.....a little more sleep as well.
Brad stuck around home in Ft Collins CO, and got in a race out there. I looked all over and couldn't find results anywhere. oh well.....he looks good.
After crushing at the Hell's Kitchen Road Race Joe headed out to California for the San Dimas Stage Race. He had a great race and ended up with the leaders jersey in the U-24 race.

Joe's team has great kit's! I grabbed a few pictures from PodiumInsight. Lyne travels to all the big domestic races so if you want to see pic's and write ups check her out.

I got my wheels ready for the weekends race with the help of Carly.

It was tough work for her. Time for a nap!

It's going to be another crazy race weekend this week. Mathgeek has quarter end at work so I have the keep track of the kids. Add in a new puppy and a road trip with the kids is out of the question. Looks like antoher late night drive to the race and then a sprint back.

I've got to go to bed, since I 'm falling asleep as I write this it should be an interesting read tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Really Coach, my dog are my Garmin!

Yes, it's true, my dog did eat my Garmin bike computer. This story really starts at the beginning of camp last week. As soon as we got there my back wheel started popping and by the end of the Friday ride it was driving me crazy. A quick spin of a the axle told me that the bearings were shot. Bummer!!!! This is my PowerTap wheel so no more power reading for the weekend. Saris is a great company to work with so the wheel will come back from being repaired really quick. As for the's a total loss, no repairs for that one. The funny thing is, the screen is blown, there are tooth marks on the sides, but the darn thing still works fine.  Oh well, things happen when you have a 3 month old puppy in the house.

Met up with Bama at the Swope park trails today. It's been a long time since I've been out on the MTB but it didn't take long to get used to it again. The trails were in perfect condition and tons of fun. I got in a couple of laps and then met up with Bama and a buddy of his for another lap. Not long after we got started on our last lap Bama smacked a rock with his back wheel and put a dent in it. So much for that new bike feel, this was his 2nd time out on the bike and 2 crashes have given it that broken in feeling.

Here is an actual Bama sighting in it natural, relaxed setting. This kid can sleep with any of the teenagers that I've known in the pat few years. 

Wow, I've got to get to bed while the puppy is sleeping. This sleep deprivation thing is killing Mathgeek and I.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Mercy Training Camp Day 1-2

I really had plans to do a write up on Training Camp but I am way to tired at the moment. So it's going to have to wait for Monday since we are racing tomorrow and then driving home.
A shot from Fridays photo session at the fitness center.

We met with some of the staff at the Hospital.

Brad was still adjusting his bike before Saturdays ride.

Saturday we rode with the Mercy Cycling Club riders. We ended up with a huge ride and it was good to chat with the club riders.

Hanging out at the top of  the climb.

Mercy Health Centers are working to help people eat better and we aim to help them. 

Bama was getting his rest before we even got to camp.
This is a rather crappy video of the group ride with the club. This was what was left after the majority of riders were taking a shorter route back to town.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Back on a TREK, it's been a while!

I'm pretty excited about this bike! It seems like it's been a long time since I've been on a Madone. The reality is that I did ride one a few years ago but the bike has changes so much since then. I was messing around cleaning up my work bench today and found a old sticker from my first year on a carbon TREK. I wish I had a picture of the old 5500 in Saturn Silver from 1994(maybe?). I think that was one the first years that TREK made full carbon frames. It's interesting to compare those frames to the present day Madones. It says something for the TREK's OCLV process in the fact that I see old TREK carbon bikes from that era all the time at the shop. They roll into the shop all the time for tune ups or updated parts. Pretty cool to see and it's one of the reasons I enjoy working on bikes, you see a little bit of history every day. Hopefully it makes up for all the Huffy's you see every day as well!

So here's my sticker, I think that was from 1994 or 1995. I've got some pretty amusing pictures of me in the full Rocket Boy kit at some of the NORBA Nationals around that time.
Yea!!! The new Mercy kits are in! I love red and there is plent of red in these kits. In fact, even the bikes are red. Later this week we have a short camp in Fort Smith, AK to do a little meet and greet with the Mercy Hospital crew, photo shoot, and get a few rides in with the whole team. The last day of camp is going to be Sunday and we will do the Hell's Kitchen Road Race. Since Brad and Fuzzy are in town early we are going to get a few days of training in KC before we leave for camp. Geez...... I'm feeling tired all ready.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Is it time to MTB yet?

I was checking out the blogosphere when I found this on the Dirt Dobber's blog. Pretty sweet video of a guy on a MTB ripping a decent through all kinds of terrain. Chris said it was pretty motivating and I'd have to agree. Reminds me.......Chris if you still need help with your tubies let me know. I promise I'll get back to you this time.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Spring Break

What a change from last year, last year at this time we were hanging out in Playa del Carmen, Mexico and drinking Corona's on the beach. This year we had Corona's in the kitchen watching it start to snow. That's a bit of a bummer but at least the weather is supposed to get better in the next few days. I guess it's just as well, that's my limit on beer anyway.
JoBro got his first injury of Spring Break on the first day. Nothing lasting, just a bruise from a over aggressive Lazer tag game. It's going to be tough to keep the boys busy this week with the weather kind of iffy.
I won't even get into riding this weekend. I'll just say that it was pretty slow and painful. I did see some pretty cool graffiti as I was rolling along near downtown. There are some amazing artists around that just decided to work in a little different medium.
I finally got a frame for my poster that Smitty gave me from Gravel Worlds. I think you can get updates for this years event here. As far as I can see there isn't a field limit but registration is open so get in while you can. Well, time to go. I'm working nights this week since I have to be home with the boys so I better get some sleep. At least I went in early today so I'm ahead right now. My guess is that it's going to slow down later this week since it's snowing at the moment.

Friday, March 11, 2011

New Scooter

Well, gas isn't getting any cheaper soon, if ever again, so we decided to get something that would get a little better mileage, like 125mpg better! Pretty cool ride for running local errands and yea, it might just work for motorpacing as well.
Last weekend Curly had his buddies over for his birthday party. I think I'm still a little sleep deprived from that night even a week later.
Hmmmm...... Birthday dinner at the Cheesecake Factory!

That's about it for this week, not much to report on the riding front, bunch of family stuff and a busy work schedule has changed my riding dynamics. This weekend should be pretty good for training and maybe even a race on Sunday. I guess I should check for typing errors in my post. That last post was a doosy as far a misspelling and grammar errors. You can tell how tired I was when I typed my post by how many errors I made in my post. I'll have to work on that one.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Poor Bubba, James Stewart has to be the fastest, most talented dude on a dirt bike in years but with the speed comes some wicked crashes. I watched the race the section that he crashed on really wasn't that hard. He was doing going incredibly fast through one section and gaining tons of time on everybody else and of course, if he screwed up, it was gonna hurt. That part, the crashing, is the part of racing motocross that I don't miss.
Joe won a race down in Texas last weekend for his new team, Elbowz Racing. Pretty cool to see him riding well all ready this year. It's going to be fun to see how he does against the big guns next weekend when he travels to California for Redlands.
The training camp for the Mercy Cycling crew is coming up next week but I don't think we will see the sights that the Cal Giant crew had at their camp. I guess that's the difference between the forests of Arkansas and the Redwood forests of California. I'm not complaining, I'll take the different terrain and a little warmer weather any day.

Hmmmm, rainy day tomorrow, maybe I'll actually have time to build up my now bike.........

Friday, March 4, 2011

Cleaning out the camera

Today is Curly's birthday! Tonight was the easy night with a little family celebration after a birthday dinner at the Cheesecake factory. Tomorrow is the party with the sleepover and a late, late, night.

It's time to finally get the wheels in order for the Mercy Team. Today all the cross tires came off and next I'll check the bearings and start gluing up the road tires.

Now that's a whole bucket of dirty cassettes!

Hmmmmm, what to do with a bunch of 1 season old tires.......

Earlier this week I got out for a unplanned early ride. I managed to forget my key to the shop and since nobody was scheduled to show up for hours I figured I might as well ride. I got to this hill and found a few spots of ice that made it kind of tough to get up the hill.

You don't see too many covered bridges on Kansas City. I found this one when I was out looking for another hill to add to the Wed hill ride. I found one that would be easy to add and is right on the route.

No racing this weekend. Time to spend a little time with the family and after tomorrow nights festivities I'm sure I'd be worthless by Sunday afternoon anyway.