Saturday, October 30, 2010

Ready for Snow

Got out for a spin today but I've got to say that I am tired of hosing dirt out of the chamois after the rides! Looking forward to xc ski season.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Close Enough

Close call today. Bear and I were riding to a trailhead on the road. The shoulder we were on was wide enough for a drunk soccer mom to drive her Escalade down sideways. Bear was on the right and me to his left just right of the middle of the shoulder. I hate riding on the white line or anywhere near it. There was a lot of traffic and before I knew it a guy in a Prius was way over the white line and barely missed my bars. He was further on the shoulder than the actual lane.

How close?

Too effing close. I put my hands up and yelled "Watch Out!" but the car kept on going totally oblivious that things could have been a lot different.

There was a motorcycle cop passing at the same time and saw me waving my arms and I pointed at the car. He just kept going. Could have been bad if I was an inch to the left of where I was. My guardian angels have been working hard the past few days for sure. %@#$ I hate riding around cars.

Clean shoes after hosing post race

Much better here.

"These are the days we live for" - Bear

Monday, October 25, 2010

Post Race Cleaning

Figured out why I felt dragging but didn't have a rear brake the last lap of yesterday's race. Got a lot of dirt cleaned out today though.

Now I'm wondering why I was removed from the Jefferson State Mountain Bike Team's FB page.

Wet and Wild Weekend of Racing

It has not rained substantially in quite some time but the weather decided to unleash this past weekend. Up first was the Northern California Championships. The event? Super D. The La Grange Classic is an xc course I started racing back when I was a junior. Over the years the race has slowly grown to include an endurance event, downhill, and Super D. The Super D course is 8.4 miles and starts off with a steep rocky sketchy downhill. From there it heads deeper into the woods where a plethora of singletrack awaits. It's a lung burner and the fastest time for this course is around 26 minutes.

Bear and I headed up (Nick went too but drove himself) and were watching the weather. It wasn't raining on the drive up or when we were loading up in the shuttle to head to the top. I had plate #1 (only because I registered first) and was cued to go. As the countdown began the skies opened up and the rain hammered the ground. The rain and mud quickly impaired vision through the glasses and almost prompted me to take them off...but I figured that it would be quite muddy on the lower section and I didn't feel like having dirt scrubbing my eyes. The course became slick and I started blowing turns. As I progressed down the course the roots, rocks, and corners were either traction galore or super slick. Entering into a steep left hander I got my two wheel drift on (not on purpose) and even though I wanted to go left, the bike was heading right...towards a tree. I locked it up and did my best to avoid the tree. Mission accomplished but I was stopped. Got going again and rode hard towards the finish. There were a lot of wood bridges that had me slow down in hopes of not slipping off and shooting off the trail. Finally rolled through the finish gasping for air. It would be a while before I knew how I ended up. Not a clean run but I made it down without any crashes.

Bear finished and we spun the legs out. After all the racers finished we all had a similar run. Missed turns, close calls,  but at least no crashes. Nick won the junior race by a huge 10 minute margin. Bear finished third in the 30-39 and I finished 1st in 30-39. We changed out of our wet clothes and headed out in search of food.

Hardware for the day

Post race milkshake

Post race milkshake toast

The second part of the weekend had me scrambling to finish up another phase in a design project. I had been scrambling all week to get things finished before the races but was cutting it close. We were planning to leave at noon and I finished up at 11:45am. Whew. Stressful indeed. We headed down South to Marja's. When we got there we spent some time changing a headlight in her Prius. Needless to say it was way more involved than it needed to be. Wonder why companies to make parts that are easy to change. Anyways, if you need some tips on changing your own Prius headlight let me know because we have some now that don't require angry hammering.

Brad came over and took us out for burgers near R15. We hung out and shot the breeze for a while as well as hitting up REI and Best Buy for some browsing. Tomorrow Bear and I would two man team relay the TBF 50 mile mountain bike race.

The next morning Brad and Marja made some super delicious oatmeal pancakes. The weather was fairly decent just sprinkling. The forecast called for 60% chance of rain. When we got to the race venue it was dumping. We registered and I was soaked even before I finished getting dressed. I was running behind and got to the line. I kept getting in the wrong wave because they changed them from the initial posting. There were about 120 starters which seemed pretty good since the weather was horrible. The solo racers started first and our group started after all the solo waves which was four minutes later.

Here I am wondering if I'm in the right starting wave
Finally our race started. Our plan was that I would do the first two laps and Bear the last two laps of the race. With the weather being cold and rainy I figured that if we switched off every lap it would be difficult to stay warm. I rode in second and the guy in 1st was pinning it. I sat in just to see what would happen. We started getting into the solo fields and I took the lead and wanted to get past as many solo riders as possible to get Bear into good position. It was tough to pin in past racers in the singletrack and then have to slow to a crawl and get stuck behind 4-5 racers and then attempt to pass them when I could. On a steep rocky climb a racer picked a line to the right and I went left. Before I knew it he came back left and took out my front wheel smashing me onto the rocks. Got back up and kept pedaling. I burned some matches passing as many as I could and it finally thinned out near the end of the lap and we were already into the top 10 overall.

There were some long flat sections of the course that put the hurt on me. I lost a lot of time there because I was alone and there was a group of three racers working together behind me. Second place team caught up with me on the flats and attacked when I took a sip of water. He took the lead into the second lap and his teammate went out while I continued and got a water hand up from Bear. I had to slow up and was easily dropped. There was something stuck in my rear disc caliper that made a horrible sound but I kept going. I held on and kept picking off solo riders but felt disappointed that I couldn't hold the wheel of the other team. Things were quite spread out by this time and the other team went up by five minutes half way through the race. I came in and Bear headed out for the final two laps of the race.

What happened next was sheer awesomeness on my good friend and teammates part. Bear rode his way back up into contention and then duked it out on the final lap with the other team. After repeated attacks he got away and led us to the overall win and the win in the team competition! The other team was not friendly at all (even before the race) but we found out we were in different age groups so they won their race as well. In our category we finished 9 minutes ahead of 2nd place. Our teammate Chris also finished 2nd in the solo division.

Bear trying to get into wet clean clothes

Post race brewski

It was wet

The parking lot had standing water

Post race we waited for awards and then headed back to Marja's to shower and get into dry clothes. Then we hit up some food and headed home.

Double double with some milkshake action

Big thanks to Marja and Brad for hosting us, my teammate Bear for tearing it up, Seven Cycles, Clif Bar, and our families and friends!

Saturday, October 23, 2010


Got to stay away from the shady ladies. Different view than the race. More to come soon!

Monday, October 18, 2010


Thanks to my friends at Clif Bar for sending samples of the new goodies!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Super Pro Sketchy

This is the pro women's field....imagine these gals on singletrack

New Developments in Oxygen

All this time I've been downing CO2 cans....I should have known.

Via Ryan Trebon

....and this one...well, oxygen doesn't cure stupid

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

At Ends and New Beginnings

Caught a little something that has put me under the weather for the past few days. Fever has me all hot and bothered. I'm sure many have been through this where they get sick but still need to push through and get things done. Lately it's been 12 to 14 hours of design work a day.

In the midst of crazy dreams, confusion, and a general feeling of not knowing where I am, the oldest has been learning on the 12's with training wheels. She's only been on the new bike seven times and she's got the coaster brake thing down and loves to skid. She'll take off from a complete stop and scream "Eeeeerch!" and says she's peeling out.

The other day we rode by an empty lot and she turned off into the dirt. She skidded to a stop to look back at me and said "Daddy, I just gotta get onto the dirt and rocks."

Maybe its in the genes

The Story of XTR Part 4

Sunday, October 10, 2010

New Duds

Thanks to the Ring leader for sending the Seven team clothing!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Another Day, Another ACOD

Bear and I have been logging a lot of ACOD rides. We lucked out on food today as the Western Star Hall was open for breakfast. We got to meet a lot of nice guys that like to eat food and crack jokes. $7 all you can stand biscuits and gravy, eggs, sausage, and pancakes. Yeah, so maybe I ingested more calories than we burned combined this morning but it was mighty tasty. 

Blurry vision

Never get tired of seeing the sun rise

NPS is smoothing out fire roads that were already smooth

Wonder if they will pave everything

That's sausage

So tasty