Feeling good…..

•June 7, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Well, coming off of an exciting weekend racing everywhere except my home state of Virginia, I didn’t get to do a lot of training in this week. A little intimidated by it, and the crazy temperatures expected with heat indexes expected in the triple digits, I got ready for another weekend filled of racing. The first would be on Saturday, at the Little Creek Amphibious Base right here in Norfolk. This race was a long course (.9 miles) around some sweet naval hovercraft with a vicious head/cross wind on the back stretch. Early in the race a break started; I don’t remember who it was, but what I do remember was Mickey Turner and Tim Pope jumping to bridge, and all I could think was I need to be with those guys. so I made it, and next thing I know I’m in a 6 man break with a 20+ second gap. We stayed that way until about 3 to go when Mickey and Hugh Brown decided to pick up the pace. Immediately two guys get shelled, and now there is a gap between myself and the front three (Mickey, Tim Pope, and Hugh Brown), and now they’ve caught the field. I look back and the two shelled guys are on my wheel, and I decide that rather than work, I’ll let these slackers pull me through the headwind to the final stretch, where I rode pass them for 4th. Congrats to the guys in the top 3, and thanks to the other two for pulling me to the finish. Thanks to Tri-power for putting on the race. It was awesome.

The next race was put on by our team, Celerity Cycling, at Langley Speedway in Hampton. Arriving to the course at 7am to help set up, the team set in for the long haul. The temp was 80 degrees at 7am, and was getting hotter by the minute. When it was the Cat 4’s time to race at 10:10 it was every bit of 90 degrees. The race started out with, low and behold, Mickey Turner cranking the speed up for the first two laps, and then it settled in. Wik jumped first and had a fat Frog’s guy bridge to him. They stayed away for close to three laps before being caught. Immediately Dan jumped, and had Hugh Brown go with him. They stayed away for about five laps before Hugh fell off, not unexpected after his awesome performance yesterday. As we came out of turn three the field hit a head wind and bunched up as they slowed. i shot to the outside, and with everything I had bridged the 12 second gap up to Dan. Some words of encouragement and we’re off. We managed to stay away for the rest of the race. Noah Clevinger bridged up to us with 5 to go, and we stayed that way to the finish. We finished with Dan in 1st, myself 2nd, and Noah 3rd. I want to thank everyone who came out, and participated, for having a safe day, and making the best of the heat. Everyone was great. Can’t wait to host our next one on August 1st at the ODU campus.

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More racing than one could hope for

•June 1, 2010 • 2 Comments

Well, this weekend was an eventful one to say the least. Dan N. and myself were a little let down that even though it was a three day weekend there were no omniums to compete in, so we did what any cyclist would naturally do; we created our own. Welcome to the Mid-Atlantic Memorial Day Omnium. The first race was what Velo News calls one of the ten hardest single day races in the country, The Tour of Tucker County in West Virginia. The fun stuff started before the race did, with a fifteen minute descent to the start/finish in a neutral roll out, the group had a rude awakening. One inexperienced cyclist even exploded a carbon wheel due to breaking to hard, and blowing it up. the official said his break pad was melted to the wheel. The race started out jovial, everyone making jokes, and talking to each other. This ended quickly as we hit our first climb, 7 miles of a 3% – 12% gradient and covering over 1000 vertical feet. About half way into this is when my day went south, and my left calf started to cramp. The group left me, as I massaged the cramp out, and I continued on the race/ ride alone for the remainder. Not being the only person shed off the main group, I managed to get into a groove, and pass several people in route to what I knew would be a “swift kick to the gut” type of finish. I hit the base of the final climb. A 7 mile monster, with the finish line at the top of it. This climb had gradient’s from 5% all the way to 12%+. One guy said there was even spots where he saw 20%. the total elevation change was over 1800 ft. I finished with a time of 2:15:00, 47th out of 75. Dan did a little better with a time of 1:53:40 for 12th place.

As soon as we saw our times we were changed, packed, and on the road again, with a quick stop for chocolate milk, diet coke, and snickers bars, heading the seven hours to Fayetteville, NC for race #2 in the Mid-Atlantic Memorial Day Omnium, the Dragon’s Tale Individual Time Trial. We got to our hotel around 12:15 at night, and by the time we checked in, unpacked the bikes, and got comfortable our heads were hitting the pillows around 1:00am. We were then up at 6:30am and out the door by 7am to get breakfast and head to the course. Dan out to defend his USAcycling #1 Cat 4 Time Trialist in the country, and me to have fun. I don’t do time trials; I’m slowly warming up to them, doing better everytime I compete in one. This time I went out with the idea that I was just doing a solo ride, and that I wasn’t trying to compete. This made it much easier to ride, due to no nervousness. I clamped on the aero bars, compliments of Wick, and went for a ride. I had recently loaded up on electrolytes and water, to prevent the cramping that plagued me the day before, and found that this might have been a bad idea. As I came upon the first right hand turn on course I stopped pedaling, and dove into it. As I came out of it I went to burp and ended up throwing up all of my fluids…… awesome. I continued on the rest of the course without much excitement. I passed four people, and almost caught the fifth. He crossed 15 seconds ahead of me. One person also passed me, but I was less angry about that when I found out he was a Cat 2 from Batley Harley Davidson. In the end I finished the 22 mile course with a time of 53:17. Good enough for 34th out of 78 overall, and 8th in the Cat 4. Dan crushed it; coming not only in first in the Cat 4, but he also beat all of the Cat 3, and came in fourth in the Pro 1/2 category.

We packed everything up…. again, and journeyed back to the hotel. After eating a quick lunch, naps ensued. I woke up sometime later, with Pulp Fiction on the TV, and was happy and refreshed. Dan asked if I wanted to get dinner, and realizing it was 9pm thought that to be a wise decision. We stuffed our faces at Carrabas and headed back to the hotel to wipe down bikes, and go back to sleep. We woke up the next morning and ate breakfast at IHOP, and then headed to the historic district of Fayetteville for the Patriot’s Crit. Our race wasn’t until almost 3pm, so we got to partake in some spectating, while one of the locals decided to lecture us on police discrimination (another story altogether). Steve Monk also made the journey down to race. Our field was only 19 people deep, and the race started off great with all three of us missing our clip in. We chased the group down who decided a 32 mph first lap was a great idea. With this being our third race in as many days my legs were feeling it, and I thought that I might be done pretty soon. The pace slowed down, and we were able to recover little bit. One guy went off the front early, and when the group didn’t react I jumped to bridge the gap. I made it up to him, and we alternated back and forth for 5 laps or so, before I looked back, and saw the group closing back on us. I sat up and let them consume me to save my energy. We also caught the other guy too. With five to go, another guy made a jump and went off the front. Props to Dan for chasing this guy down, and to the winner, I forget his name, as he worked his ass off as well, and earned his first place. I ended sprinting for 3rd, and Dan, exhausted, coasted across in 9th.

I want to thank all the cyclists, as well as the promoters of the races, Fat Tire Cycles and Cross Creek Cycling Club, for participating, albeit unknowingly, in the 2010 Mid-Atlantic Memorial Day Omnium. Dan finished the omnium in first, and myself, 2nd. Oh well, better luck next year. This coming weekend is full of local events, with Saturday being the Amphibious Assault Crit at Little Creek, and Sunday being the Brooks Systems Crit at Langley Speedway, hosted by none other than us. Hope to see everyone out there.

Fox 2 St. Louis News

•May 31, 2010 • 3 Comments

Been in Kansas City for a few days. The others are all out touring my home town of Independence, Mo. So I decided to stay back home and update the blog a bit and try to get you all caught up to speed.

This is an interview did in St. Louis. We had a good time with it. They had asked a ton of great questions and I wished they would have aired more of it, but I pretty happy with the way it turned out. We don’t look like that big of goobers.

I’ll see if I can’t fish up some of the other media from other local news outlets we’ve been in, while I get you all back up to date. But for now, I hope you enjoy.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

A.D.D. and me

•May 24, 2010 • 1 Comment

Well, another exciting weekend of racing is over with. This is one that I have to say I wish I could do over, and I know that a few other people, (cough) Jerry Hadley (cough), would too. The race was the Sleepy Hole Crit in Suffolk. The entire morning threatened us with chances of rain and thunderstorms, but instead we just got a pleasant overcast and humid atmosphere until the last race, the master 30+ (congrats on 2nd Dan). The race started as any other does. Everyone clips in and we go in circles. People attacking and being pulled back in. I have to say, and I won’t mention names, but it is a little ridiculous that two of the attacks were pulled back in by there own teamates. That’s an issue that they have to deal with, but it gets annoying when you have a teamate in that break as well. I am going to go ahead and say that my legs were not feeling it either due to some rough training miles this previous week, and the only reason I bridged the one gap I did was due to some pressure from a teamate of mine along with some name calling. To the A.D.D. part now; the last time I looked at the lap board it said 5 to go, and then I zoned out. I heard the bell ring, and for some reason thought it was a prime with three to go. Yeah, I know; I’m an idiot. The bell was actually to signal the bell lap. My plan to just sit mid-pack for that prime and then move to the front for the sprint didn’t exactly go so well. Congrats, once again, to Mickey Turner on yet another win in his, Jimmy Johnson-ish season he is having. This coming weekend should be exciting with the Tour of Tucker County in West Virginia on Saturday. http://www.yougotdropped.com will be happy about that one, as it is advertised as the hardest single day amatuer race in the country. The following day is a ITT in Fayetteville, NC followed by a Crit on Monday. See you guys out there, and be safe. I have a feeling the motorists are getting pretty tired of Bike Month as the end appoaches.

Flash Foreword

•May 24, 2010 • 2 Comments

I’m skipping ahead here, to our current day. I’ll try and get someone to still write something for Louisville, but I feel this needs to be back up to current times. It better that you know what is happening with us and it there will be nothing lost over time.

This trip has rough for me. My legs and stamina has never felt better, but it has been tough. I’ve put another nick in my frame. After finally getting back on the road from a long, but amazing stay in Louisville, I’m back to tearing up my baby.

This is the final straw for me. My goal now is to try and make it to Denver without putting any new additions to my bike. I just can’t afford to break my it. But that seems to be the road I’m headed down.

I’ve taken a serious chunk fro my chainstay from the whole derailleur event. Now after an “odd” event I’ve removed more from the same chainstay. When I say “odd”, I mean my chain popped off to the inside from the large chainring while I ran into a gas station to refill my water. How does something like that happen?

That all happened pretty early and set my morning off. I was in deep thought about it all. Do I ride it out to the end and farther trash my frame, until end my race season for the year? Do I quit this journey I’ve started and leave back home? Do I return back to a job where I get under paid and over worked and no sign of promotion? This and more ran through my head all morning.

It wasn’t until a car full of little kids start waving and smiling at us as they passed, to change my line of thinking. I thought to myself, does me doing this trip help the children. Will they be inspired by seeing me riding to get into cycling themselves? Will I make an impact to change they’re lives to be healthy and active? Will them seeing me stay with them and hope to one day do the same? It gave me hope. And just writing this I recalled Operation Smile. I hope today’s events will make me better at spreading the word and raising money to change a child or two lives somewhere in the world.

Most of the rest of the day was good for me. I felt strong, at least stronger than my companions. I felt glad to have a warm day, I love the heat and think I do better than most in it. I just have to remind myself to hydrate, which I did.

I’m a little disappointed in myself for us not getting into Illinois today and not reaching a record for milage. But we were also lead astray and number of times. We ran into a couple of weekend tourist that were dead set on us traveling along side them. Not only did they take us down a longer path but they slowed us down to 10-15 mph.

Then later Justin had us cyclocrossing through the woods. He told us this road was good even after we started seeing “No Outlet” signs and “Dead End” painted on the road. When asked, he told me he thought the GPS was wrong and that there was away across the river there, or “creek” as he called it. So we backtracked when we could have just not turned around and just listened to the GPS from the start. It makes me wonder about the other times we’ve had problems if it was because he strayed from the route the GPS tells him.

Near the end of the day I got a few more flats and I finally realize the cause. I feel dumb that it took so long to find the problem. It’s not the tires, after throwing a brand new gatorskin on I ruled that out. My wheelset was so cheap, they’ve been my issue this whole time. Hope to make it to a bike shop and see if an extra piece of rim tape will fix it. Until then I’ve lined the rim with electrical tape. These wheels have been are thorn in my side. Knew that whatever wheels I took across would pretty much be junk and couldn’t justify spending several hundred on something I was going to trash. Lesson learned.

With that all, the heat, and the late start, we still almost managed to reach 140 miles today. We’ve got a long day ahead of us tomorrow. The plan is to get to St. Louis tomorrow night. The GPS has it at about 160 miles away. Which we should be able to do with a full day, a time zone change, and riding under the city lights if needed. Then we can recover a bit from pushing it there. Pray we don’t get lost or that my bike explode.

Nashville honkytonk fun

•May 22, 2010 • 2 Comments

The first full day of Nashville starts with rain and we soon find out that is going to be that way on and off the whole visit. Ally and Sandy drove us to downtown from the hotel. Dropping us off near the Country hall of fame so we decided to go there first. Dan easliy the one most excited about it since Adam and I don’t listen to it. After setting one foot into the museum we relized that we knew and herd alot of the people in the hall of fame and the museum was well done. Even if we had not reconized any one in there all the stuff was great to look at, like the Pontiac that had atleast five guns within reach any where you would sit and squirels that were arranged as if they were playing in a band. Once we left the gift shop Dan relized that he did not have his camera anymore. Luckly it was left right next to the pearl snaps shirts that we were trying on earlier.

Walking around all the country stuff made us hungry so we went to Jack’s Bar-B Q on Broadway. Food was great and it was nice to see a variety of sauce even better to see Kansas City style Barbeque. Then we were off to a vister center. Since the gps was broken (none of the buttons worked on it) we used Adam’s iphone which sent us to a vister center a couple blocks away in the rain only to find out on the door that this one is not open on weekends and the only one that is open was less than a block away from where we ate. More walking in the rain, but did not matter to much we all had on our rain coats and flip flops. The people at the vistitor center were very helpful, helping us with busses to take and other attractions in the city we should go see. After buying day passes and walking to the bus stop we take one to Lane Motor Museum. Getting on the bus we didn’t even have to use our passes which upset us alittle bit since we just wasted money on something we didn’t even use. Though the entertainment on the bus I was able dismiss the money spent. One guy on there was talking to us we thought was a local but turned out that he rode from Louisiana on a whim by bicycle. Once at the Lane museum we reliezed that these were some of the smallest cars we have ever seen. They even had a few bicycles one with out a motor and two with. Though I am not sure it you can count a big fan on the back of a standard bicycle a motor, at the very least it is unsafe. While we were there we tried to pick out one that would be our favorite but reliezed that there were just to many unique and bizare cars to pick just one. Then it was back to the bus to go downtown to experience some live music that starts at 10am til 3am everyday. Once downtown we were ready to eat again and with us stopping every three hours to eat our bodies still that we need to eat and who are we to argue with that. We found a place called Demos a nice place, great sercive and fair prices. Dan was told that tootsies on broadway was a good place for what we headed back for and really Nashville in the first place music. The band that was there was great. They played cover songs the whole time we were there with no break members would take breaks from time to time but some one was always playing and singing.

We called it a night early stepping outside to find a taxi Dan tried to get a deal offering a set amount of money just to take us back to the hotel. The drive refused saying that he couldn’t so we dicieded to walk back. Stopping at Mike’s ice cream for a snack spending the money that we offered the driver on ice cream cones for our four mile walk. Good choice on food not so good on walking but it was fun and that was first full day in Nashville.

Update on miles and other stuff

•May 22, 2010 • 1 Comment

Day 1: 125 miles, 17.2mph avg, 33.2mph max. Stopped seaveral times to fix racks. No Flats.

Day 2: 120 miles, 13mph avg, 37.2mph max.

Day 3: 110 miles, 12.5mph avg, 42.4mph max.

Day 4: 97 miles, 12.5mpg avg, 41.2mph max. Adam managed to break his derailer hanger and rear derailer going over a bump at a bottom of a hill near VA-NC boarder.

Day 5: Stayed in Galax, VA waiting for parts. No riding

Day 6: 51 miles, 39 mph max. Dan snapped a chain then his tube and tire blew up. Adam had to fix his rack and a flat.

Day 7: 127 miles, 16.4mph avg, 39mph max. Adam had two flats. Saw  our first car accident of the trip from a table where we were eating.

Day 8: 109 miles, 15.7mph avg, 38.2mph max. Adam had two flats and Dan also had one flat. Second car accident this time behind us and in the other lane (not our fault).

Day 9: 144 miles. One flat from Dan and two from Adam. Managed to get lost (with a gps and an iphone). Adam also lost his sunglasses while we were cyclocrossing.

Day 10: Nashville, TN. No riding.

Day 11: Nashville, TN. Little riding around city no mileage recorded.

Day 12: 94 miles, 17mph avg, 35mph max.

Day 13: 85.7 miles, 16.4mph avg, 40mph max. Adam with 3 flats that day.

Day 14: Louisville, KY. No Riding.

Day 15: Louisville, KY. No Riding.

Day 16: Louisville, KY. No Riding.