Friday, March 31, 2006


......Mr. & Mrs. Velo Vanderhoot. Trippy. Almost sounds like a bike company. Or a book. Hmmmm......a book........hmmmmm.

Man, it's been a long day - my brain is on sleep mode already. Apologies.

Man, I hope this isn't an April Fools joke.....

.....two of our favorites got engaged! And geezo, talk about a Power Cycling Couple! VB and Olaf, together forever! So, now, are you guys gonna have any kinda bikie stuff goin' on at the wedding??? Like, you wouldn't do something silly like get married at a crit or something, would you??? A cross race??? Nah. Silly.

Sorry - just the way my brain works sometimes......uh, well......most of the time. I'm Geeky Galore.

I'm really happy for you two - X Bunny is right - it's kinda like winning the lottery. I feel very lucky to have found's just magical. And I can see it in you two as well - I mean, geesh, we all can see it here in blogworld. Schmoopies everywhere!

Awesome - Congratulations! cute....... made a joke!

Man, gotta love April Fools - especially with the cycling crowd. The absolute BEST April Fools joke EVER played on me was by Bicycling magazine back in the early 1980s when I was a Junior. They had this funky April issue with all the latest and greatest cycling gear and gimmicks to come out. But I was looking at it going, "What in the hell??? How in the world can you actually go faster on 12 inch wheels on the track? I don't get it." I mean, I was just flat out lost - no idea any of those pictures or gimmicks were an April Fools prank.

Here's the worst part - I show up for a team ride the following day just telling everyone around me....including my schoolmates.....about all this trippy new stuff coming out for cyclists. "You guys hear about the 12-inch wheels? Oh man, let me tell you - we're gonna be FAST out there with those suckers!"

Man, what a bonehead. Thanks to Mike McN. back in the day for lettin' me in on who the fool was..........

Well, back to the rat race......

....or cat race...or, well, whatever - gotta go to work.

And then, of course, there's this one......

......something about counting eggs before they hatch.

And then there's that silly......

.....Tour du Pont crash....or was it the Tour de Trump.....have to check my videos to remember.

Saw this vid last year - what a bozo.

Is this karma talking or what??? This kid in the back seat of a car is trying to door a rider - but, ooops....things go a little haywire.

Great news! It's gonna rain again! Yippee!!

I was talking to local cycling sensation Michael Cordova last night. This guy is just an amazing rider - smart, tenacious, very fit. We were talking briefly about the weather and all the rain we've been having. He said he was so tired of riding indoors 'cause of the rain, he was gonna get his rain gear on this morning no matter what and go out riding........just couldn't stand being inside anymore.

And it made me wonder - what would these guys in the pic above think about rain riding:

"Rain riding? Whatd'ya mean?? Ya just go out and ride."

I like your thinking MC!

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Final post for the night......

....I'm getting blurry-eyed. Okay, last night after I finally dozed off, I had this crazy dream. Of course, being the bike geek.....or just plain geek.....that I am, the dream was of......cycling. What else??

But this one was strange. I had a dream that I was racing my very first Cyclocroterium Race.....being held around the Chico State University campus. Now, I know what you're asking - "Rodney, what in the hell is a Cyclocroterium???" Well, let me tell you what my dream thought it was:

A criterium course, on your road bike, with obstacles you had to get off your bike to clear - all kinds of junk....logs, road hazards, rail guards, road-stoppies, bicycles, garbage cans, people in the way, cars, just everything. So, it was sorta like cyclocross......on the road. And I couldn't figure out why in the world I was dreaming this........and then it dawned on me: The Cyclocroterium is my bicycle commute to work and back. Genius. Just genius. So, anyway, if you're up for it - participate in your local Cyclocroterium any and every day you wish. We'll have an official event soon!

Good luck to everyone racing Ronde this weekend!

I think Daniel put it in a good way at last year's race - he said, "If you race this one correctly, you shouldn't have to touch your brakes once during the entire race." Damn straight Dude.

--Top pic is the right-hand turn of the Ronde course.

--Next pic is just after the finish....heading to the slight downhill section.

--Next pic is the slight uphill section.

--And finally, the bottom pic is the finish line at the top of the hill.

Place was damn windy last year too......especially later in the day. Just hope it stays dry.

Uh, is this accurate for that race???

How in the world do I get the Jackknife up that big purple hump???

So, I was thinking of using this bike......

......for the upcoming Wente Road Race. But somehow, I think my teammates and fellow racers would laugh at me hysterically. But you see, that's the plan.....they laugh hysterically, I escape in a solo break while they're trying to catch their breath.....and I win! See - Easy Sneezy.

Yeah, I know - it's late - I need to go to bed. Interesting bike though.

Oh my God..... gotta check out PAB's blog on his haircut today.......I am laughing too hard to type.

Dude, is it at least aero????

Have you ever done that exercise.......

.....on your bike where you have a cadence of 100 and you're in a 53x19......and then you switch to the 17, but try to keep your cadence at a 100.......then to the 16.....then the 15........then the 14.......then the 13.......and finally(unless you're one of those Masters 1/2/3 animals who use 11 tooth cogs), your 12......and holding it for as long as you can. Trying to keep it at 100 RPMs the entire time, for as long as you can. Man, I'm tellin' ya, those don't feel very nice. My legs started talking to me in a big way. And then I have to ask myself - what in the world were you doing????

Um, hmmmm......uh......Pain Caving it??? Sure. What the heck.

--Fremont Criterium 2005.....Cat. 5s.

X Bunny...... got it right. I gotta practice those corners 40,000+ times myself.

You know......

......I think I like that Devil's ride.

No, you don't need to know Italian to check it out.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Just another random pic......

....of another random "Criterion". Golden State Criterium 2005 - 4/5 race......aka Crashfest 05. Gotta watch that last turn on the last lap.....the stupid curb tends to get in the way sometimes.

If I remember correctly, Bubba Melcher took almost every prime in the Masters 1/2/3 race here. Felt sorry for that Trek Madone 5.9 his was riding - looked like 212 pounds of muscle just mangling that silly piece of carbon every time he went for a prime.

Man, can't sleep some kind of gut rot goin' on. Maybe some Peets will help!

Um, yes, hello........uh.....

......I'll take one of each, with a side order of 1983 Super Record if ya got it.

Lusty. Definitely lusty.

Did you ever get to meet this guy Olaf? Was he cool??? Never met him, but his frames are beautiful! Well, at least to me they're beautiful. Put a little Campagnolo on 'em and ride everywhere.....or hang it on the wall for an art piece. But again, Lori ain't too keen on that idea.

I've decided that if I ever get stinkin' rich......which is highly unlikely......I'm just gonna go ahead and build a bike shop in the backyard(Ron - great idea man....can't wait to see the bike house!). That way, I can store my gallery pieces(aka - bicycles) in their own place of honor.....without Lori laughing hysterically at me! Well....hmmmm......I guess I'd be laughed at anyway for telling her I'm building a bicycle shop in the backyard.

Geeky Galore.

Rest In Peace you guys..... was fun while you were around.

And how come Knickman starts coaching, then decides not to respond to e-mails anymore?? Is the Dude okay???

Yes, another genius photo......

....not as bad as some of the others, but not really focused either. In any case, that's our own Angele (to the right) taking the pack into the pain cave at the 2006 Land Park Crit. Great job out there!!

What's up with "criterium" anyway??? Why do people all around us think we're saying "criterion" when we talk about these fun little races???

"Yeah, we're racing the Land Park Criterium this weekend."
"The Lamb Park Criterion? What's that?"
"Um, no - it's the Land Park in, Cry-Tear-EEEEUUUMMMM. It's a bicycle race. And it's in Land Park, not Lamb Park."
"Wait. 'Criterium' is not a word - I think what you mean to say is 'criterion'. That's what you mean."
"Oh yes, sorry for disrupting your world. Yes, you are correct. It is 'criterion'. My mistake. We are racing the Land Park Criterion this weekend."
"That's better. See you learn something new everyday!"

Ironically goofy.

So, um, like, what were you doin' 73 years ago???

Cyclocrossing, of course!

Yeah, who says Cross season has to end??!! I mean, geezo, we have the perfect weather for it. Makes me wanna break out this old Trek I have in the shed out back - the thing is in dire need of some TLC......but my vision has always been to transform that old piece of lovely steel into a blazing cross machine. Well, maybe not 'bout......lazy.....yeah, lazy cross machine! And it's purple! Just sittin' there.......waiting to be crossed, I mean, ridden again.....lazily through the mud. Fun.

Which reminds me - didn't that Peter Reid dude(Ironman Stud) say the best bike training he ever did in his life were the 7.5 hours of cyclocross riding he did every week???

Hmmmm. 7.5 hours of cyclocross. Hmmmmm. You thinkin' what I'm thinkin'????

Guinea Pig.

Brother Maynard aka Nome Agusta......

......puttin' the hammer down on the hill at Nevada City last year. I swear, the last couple of laps of that race, Nome was climbing like a fiend!!! Just flying! It was like he was just toying with his fellow racers. Fun to watch, but I was sorta glad I wasn't in there. Not that I don't wanna be out there racing this particular race again......but I had just eaten a giant burrito and really didn't wanna see it again all over the road.

Yeah, it's rainin' yet again.......

.....but hopefully it will stop soon. But, the weather report said it won't. Oh well.

Last night I had one of those fast-twitchy workouts that make your lungs burn. In fact, my lungs still feel it this morning. Ouch. I don't think my fast-twitchies like me much either......well, not that there's a ton of 'em......but the ones that are there are wondering what in the world happened.

Gotta love it.

Oh - the pic - West Sac Criterium from between rain showers.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006


It's rainin' again! And it looks like that levee across the street from our house has more and more water in it. Yeah!

Now, where'd I leave that muddy rust-encrusted beater bike????

Monday, March 27, 2006

dude, i know the feeling......

someTimes tHe biggest motivating factor in UndeRtaking a MAjor eNdeavor is to take a breather.

Why in the world am I putting a picture......

.....of Mack Chew on my blog??? Heck if I know - just thought it was a cool picture of a cool racer. And what is up with this team - are they all 3s or whatsthedeal???

Nice bike.

Have you ever had those moments......

.....when you wonder if the bicycle you're riding is, well, not quite up to par with what you want it to do? I know many of us have the complete opposite problem - we buy a bicycle that is WAY more than we would ever need......but it's nice to have it anyway - just for the sake of it, or bragging rights, or mental enhancement, or whatever. But how many of us have also experienced the former? Probably most of us - especially as we get more and more involved in the sport of cycling. I know that many times I am curious as to what kind of differences a so-called "better" bicycle might do to my cycling - Will it help? How much more efficient and effective is it? Will I ride it more? Will it do what I ask of it without complaints?? How much personality will it have?? Will I really love it in the year or years to come? And will it enchance my riding overall?? These are questions I ask myself as I look at new bicycles everyday. I just wonder sometimes - more out of obsessive curiosity than anything.

The same thing is going on with my job right now - yeah, I know, it ain't got nothin' to do with the bike stuff. But it still makes me wonder. I was presented with an opportunity to have what many would consider a "better" job. But would it really be better??? Or am I just nervous to make the switch?? Maybe I'm better off just sticking with my old trusty, uh.....job.

The predictable handling, the comfortable ride, the strange little quirks that give it personality, the trusty look it gives me prior to a long ride......or an interval session(yeah, my bike looks at me......I'm if you didn't already know that!).

Which brings me to the solution most of us would take........why do you have to decide??? Get the new one and keep the both of 'em! Of course! Keep the old one and the new one.

Geesh.....why didn't I think of that to begin with???! Can't have too many bicycles!

Now, about the job..........

Okay, now, for this criterium......

......we're gonna do 15 Rounds.....not laps. Good luck!

So, although these bicycle frames.......

.....have a tendency to break in half during crashes(ex. - Sebastian Lang in the Tour of California), I still wished I had one to ride up Table Mountain yesterday......just to see how it would ride up that little hill. But didn't - ended up riding my old trusty Trek. Yeah, the same Trek with the missing chainring bolts.

What a fun day in the saddle yesterday - good climbing, good company, did some sprint work with Daniel and AM, got in some miles and had the opportunity to work on my cycling tan! It was a good day to analyze what I needed to work on in my riding too - and develop some new Guinea Pig ideas(hmmmmm......wonder how it would be to ride with only two chainring bolts for a week??? GP it and find out).

Most of all, it was just fun. And although the last 20 miles heading into a head/crosswind kinda sucked, it was great to be outside for a big chunk of the day.

Things I learned yesterday:

--Daniel is fit. 101 miles yesterday - and he could have ridden another 50. And his sprint is back in action - he is fast!

--Annemarie can climb like a mountain goat - and her new Trek is hella sweet!!! It's gonna be crazy to see what happens when she actually trains/rides more.

--You can't dump Bill's spirit on a bike - to the very end, he was the driving motivating force out there.....and a great dude to have on a ride.

--Dave W. is a completely different rider than he was 4 months ago.......and is living proof of the most basic principles of cycling....that if you ride, you tend to get better.

Yep, fun day - already miss the weekend.

Now, were you paying attention???

Okay, so I feel like a bonehead. Just this past week, Brother Maynard was talking about a little problem he had with his chainring bolts on his TT rig. I thought it was pretty hilarious. However, about 60 miles into our 80-mile ride yesterday, I noticed some very odd play in my small chainring......and the shifting for most of the day had been atrociously bad. Thought it might be cable slippage or something. Got off the bike, looked at the chainrings, and had 3 missing bolts......with the other two bolts ready to pop out at any moment. Yep, brilliant mechanic that I am, I just tightened the other two and rode the rest of the way home.


Sunday, March 26, 2006


........nothing says fun like 70-mile rides in the wind. Gotta just luv the wind(or at least tell yourself that so you don't go totally insane).

Okay, hold on.......'re gonna do what with a whatnow??? Trippy man. Hey, Dave Stoller would ride it!

This video is......

.......Tragic. Tommy Simpson's last few meters on the Mont Ventoux:

The story of Tommy Simpson is probably the most told one in cycling. Tom Simpson was the greatest British cyclist of his age. He was the first to wear the yellow jersey in the 1962 Tour de France and the first Briton to win the World Championship Road Race (1965).

On Friday July 13 1967 there was the stage from Marseille (>40 deg) to the Carpentras. On the Mont Ventoux Tom had to catch the lead group after a tortuous stage held in caldron-like temperatures. He collapsed on the barren slopes just 1.5km before the top.

"Put me back on my bike," he gasped. A few yards further, he fell again. He appeared to be suffering from sunstroke but his situation was actually far more serious. Dr Dumas, the official Tour Doctor, was quickly on the scene and administered oxygen and artificial resuscitation. A helicopter carried the comatose cyclist to the hospital in Avignon where he died at 5.40 PM.

He died on that stage after consuming a cocktail of amphetamines designed to allow him to push his body through that extra effort. Unfortunately they may have ruined his ability to handle the heat and been responsible for his death. Barry Hoban was 'allowed' to win the 14th stage, which was to be the first of his eight stage wins, and the team vowed to carry on the race. It was the saddest year in cycling history, but the Tour was to go on, and new chapters written by British riders.

Years after Barry married Tom's widow Helen. The memorial of Tom Simpson, just 1.3 km to the summit, has been placed on 19... On July 13th 1997 Tommy's daughters Jane and Joanne, who succeeded cycling the Mt. Ventoux, placed a small plate on the memorial which says:

There is no mountain too high.

Being a Type I diabetical myself.....

.....I thought this article was awesome! Racing RAAM on a team sounds way more fun than solo. That solo stuff is just craziness. And that team hooked up with some killer stuff!

Saturday, March 25, 2006

And 2 other notes from the Guinea Pig......

......Training Program(aka GPTP).

First: Squash is not the best game(yes, the game - not the food) to play for cycling. Although high energy and requiring extreme quickness around the court, that little ball kills when it hits you in the head or legs or anywhere. And the following day, you feel like a slug on the bike. So, just wanted to share that little piece of knowledge with you.

Second: If you wanna be slow, train slow. If you wanna be fast, it helps to go fast at least a little bit on the bike each week/month. Again, this goes hand-in-hand with the "bike slug" concept of training. Wanna feel like a slug - train like a slug. Brilliant! (Yes, I know - all you LSDers are gonna be bitchin' at me - but hey, try it out and see what happens!).

Next up for review: How does commuting to work in a 39x25 twice per day aid in recovery and caffeine detoxification??? Stay tuned to find out!

Heard some local dudes put some hurt......

......on the Elite 3s race last week at the Zamora Road Race. Mike Andreas on the left and Aren Timmel in the pic above. Those that did the Forest Ranch Time Trial last year may remember Aren as the winner of that race. His time: 38 and some change. In other words, yes, he can record is 36 and some change......I believe still held by Albert Dall).

Oh yeah, I should probably mention too that they both race as professional mountain bike racers. Yeah, that always helps.

Good luck to everyone racing this weekend!!!


I hear Larry N. is back 'n the saddle again.........

Okay, so although it may not sound like it.........

......I'm actually a big fan of cycling least the ones who are qualified. I mean, they're great - they give you needed advice, they can help speed up the learning process, and the training schedules/ideas that they recommend really do work.

But what cracks me up sometimes is when you spend $100 or more per month for a coach and your training looks like this:

Monday: Coach wanted me to do 1 hour easy in Zone 1. Actual - I went out and did 3 hours in Zone 3 and 4 with plenty of climbing with Olaf and PAB.

Tuesday: Coach said to do 1.5 hours with 6 20-second sprints. Actual - Rode 3 hours, did two sprints, but wanted to do the tempo ride with the did that instead.

Wednesday: Coach recommended a 4 hour endurance ride, mostly zone 2, some extended seated climbing on gradual climbs. Actual - Rode 3 hours, including 70 minutes of Zone 4 and 5 riding with a pack, and two hell hill intervals, 60 seconds each.

Thursday: Coach wanted me to do 1 hour in Zone 1 to recover from the week. Actual - Day off, too much stuff going on at work to ride.

Friday: Coach recommended a 1.5-hour ride with 4 30-second jumps to open up the legs for race day tomorrow. Actual - Burke and Chris wanted to go out and do a 3.5 hour hill ride, so I obliged - lots of fun, but a little tired tonight.

Saturday: Business Park Criterium - 50 minutes Criterium race in Business Park, Incorporated. Actual - Felt great during the warm-up and race, but no snap for the finishing sprint. Sketchy riders everywhere - tried to stay near the front to stay out of danger most of the race. Almost got taken down in last turn by Loopyhead from Loopyhead racing team. Managed to hold on for 10th. Did a 5-minute cool-down ride.

Sunday: Out-In-The-Middle-Of-Nowhere Road Race - 65 miles, 3,000 feet of total climbing. Actual - Felt tight in the warm-up, and a little sluggish during the race. After about 20 miles in the race, I started feeling better. Climbed okay, but with ten miles to go, I really felt a bit hammered. Ended up 18th on the day - stayed with lead pack the whole day and even chased down a couple of breaks by the Wheelsuckers Anonymous team. Did a 2-minute cool-down ride at the end.


Okay, so now, my question is this - Why did you spend $100+ per month, plus the set-up fees, to do your own thing/schedule??? Was that the same reason you spent $400 on a new crankset to shave off 30 grams from your bicycle, even though you need to lose 5 pounds of body fat???

Hey man, whatever floats your boat.

Okay Steve......

.......I know that Olaf can give you more specifics about this road/time trial in Reno. The only thing I know about it is some story about Greg LeMond holding the course record to this day(is that still true Olaf????). Man, you should give it a shot......sounds like fun! The announcement:

As I write this the sun has managed to peek out between the clouds for a brief minute or two. If the forecast holds up and this has passed by tomorrow then the Geiger Time Trial will still be on. I will check the course early tomorrow morning (8 ish) and hopefully I can get an email out to the list. As long as the road isn't icy we will have an event at least up to the lookout.

As much as I would like to start the event near the old (across from 7 Eleven) start point we will be starting the event at the corner of Geiger Grade and Kivett Ln (the Market on the right side of the road) for safety reasons.

The parking lot used during the weeknight twilights will more than likely be occupied so please park on the side streets (Kivett Ln, Rim Rock, Chamy Dr). Please do not block any driveway. Please Do Not Park or Congregate in the Market Parking Lot. I will be registering people near the start area. There will be a vehicle to take clothing up to the finish.

First Rider will be off at 10 am and riders will be spaced at 30 second intervals. Order of start will be from Category C, then B, then A.

Helmets are mandatory as always.


Last weekend, I saw a rider........ whom I haven't seen since he won the Category 3 race at the Nevada City Classic a couple of years ago. His name is Jonz Norine and he races for these guys up in Redding, California. When Jonz won the Nevada City Classic, he did it in pure NCC style.....solo breakaway to take the race. And it was like he came out of nowhere - I don't think many people knew who he was. I had the opportunity to chat with Jonz after the race and he is one helluva nice guy - just very low-key, humble and just super nice. The top picture is of Jonz going on to win the Nevada City race.

Last Saturday, I saw him again - this time, racing the Masters 35+ 1/2/3 race at Land Park. Here he is in the blue(bottom picture), to the right of OV during the crit. Not sure how he did, but he still looks hella fit.

I don't know what it is about those Redding guys, but man, they are fast! It must be the terrain or something. I heard that Chris Horner trained in Redding in preparation for the World Time Trial Championships a couple years back - doing some ungodly amount of miles everyday(I think it was 600+ per week). I guess when you have terrain that beautiful, it's easy to get in the miles. Course, we have that here I don't know what my excuse is.......uh, the weather??? Sure, why not.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Not that it matters.......

.....but did anyone get confirmation that this is, indeed, the RAAM Masters rider???

So, I remember racing against this one guy.......

......back when we were both Juniors. His name was Don Myrah. And here's what I remember of him - never once did I ever see his face DURING a race........I was usually seeing his number slowly disappear into the distance ahead. Little did I know at the time that he would become some MTB stud. But he did. And at that time - those Ritcheys(in the pic above) were my favorite bikes - I just thought they were works of art! Still do. Hella sexy.

And speaking of those MTB studs........another thought going through our heads back in the day was:

"Who is that little punk Davis Bike Club kid kicking all of our butts at races - doesn't he know he's littler than us?????"

True Inspiration........

I work in Administration for an assisted living facility for the elderly. I love my job, even though the pay pretty much sux. However, there are more rewards from the job than just cash, and the experiences I've had there will last a lifetime.

We have one resident living there who is 91 years old. She is one of the nicest residents we have....and also one of the healthiest! In short, she is a true inspiration to me. And here's one of the many reasons why: Everyday of the year - every single day - she walks 3 hours. 1 hour every morning when she gets up out of bed, 1 hour after breakfast and 1 hour after lunch. And we're not talking slow strolls here - we're talking speed walking. She's quick!

I've learned more from her about training/exercise than I ever could from a coach. I talk to her daily about her exercise "routine", how she copes with weather or mental blocks, and how she does it every single day. After every walk, I like to get the low-down on how her "training session" was......and the conditions outside. She refuses to let weather be a factor - if it's raining too hard outside for her walk, she does laps within our facility - up to 30 laps per day. I've seen the benefits the exercise has on her - both mental and physical. She follows a great diet too - no junk. Her mood is always fantastic - she is happy, laughing, talking, outgoing, alert and very "with it"......and she is very healthy. She is living, breathing proof of what exercise and diet can do for a body.

I always joke with my co-workers that if I was on her training schedule(for the bike), I'd win Nationals! Of course, that's silly......but you never know!

In short, she is my inspiration......and I feel very lucky to have the opportunity to know her.

(Sorry - can't release her name - just her story.)

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Am I imagining things.......

......or is that Bob on the cover of the Vellum Cycles website???(off to the right).

OH - and one last item before I go into sleepyland and bikedreamoria - me and that Geno fella been talkin' tonight.......and though I can't give ya no specifics or nothin', I can tell you this:

If you've ever wanted to Time Trial up Honey Run best be trainin' now.


Hey Kareem......

.....I was just thinkin' today that we have to go do the 53x12s up Humboldt Road soon. Like, say, 3 laps or more.....depending upon how we're feeling. Don't ask me why I had the need for such pain.....just sounded like fun!

Here's a Vellum taking a pre-race rest.......

.....and man, let me tell you, I am hearing more good things about these frames. And they're gettin' in my head as being sorta a weird kinda way. Of course, it could be the Campy talkin'.

Joe - that is just hardcore Dude - a Campy tattoo. Gnarly!! Still can't believe you got one.

Man, I wanna go out ridin' right now......

......but gotta go to a First Aid class to get my cert re-upped. Oh well, I guess it's a good thing - never know when you might need it for a race/ride accident/fiasco. Maybe rollers again tonight, but the weather is just too awesome right now. Of course, it'll probably rain tomorrow.

Table Mountain this weekend though - gonna be a fun one!

More team luv.......'s Shari puttin' the hammer down on her breakmates during the Land Park Crit on Saturday. She was jammin'!

I won't tell if you don't Shari. I still think you and Geno deserve rider of the day awards.

And then there is Joey O. Oh man, if I could have channeled any kind of energy to him on those last couple of laps, I would have - I was tense just watching. He had a 1 in 4 shot in taking that race, but Bubba hammered.......and OV took the sprint.

Another random picture of that race......

.....held last Saturday. This is Michael C. from the Chico Corsa team......controlling the race and keeping an eye on things, as usual. And my prediction would have been this - if he had entered the Zamora race, it would've been victory #2 on the season for him......and his 4th top 2 in 4 races for 2006. Way to go MC!!!

Man, Brother Maynard has gotten me thinking.......

....more and more about BMX. Not the bikes - just the tracks.

Hey, doesn't the above pic look like a good core workout??? May have to GP that one. Or not.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

And you gotta love those teammates.......

.....who give ya s**t every time you mess up the most basic principle of cycling training.

Thanks DH for the reminder of how many people it takes to pick up someone from the airport. I'm a slug......I admit it.

Another pre-race strategy session....... what was said out there OV and PAB????

Too cool.

Showin' the team some luv.......

.....yeah, I know, it's blurry.....but remember, I'm a photographer I meant to do that.

Yeah, right.

Anyway, you can't really tell, but I do believe this is Chris Baker out on his solo breakaway during the Masters 35+ 1/2/3 race at the Land Park Crit on Saturday. Although, I could be wrong. I'll tell you one thing though - that dude is hella quick. It's gonna be fun to watch the team this year.

3,307 unread cycling e-mails.........

.......oy, it's gonna be a long night. No worries though - the weather is great and the workday is a short one today. Yep, love those hump days. Isn't the 50 tonight???

I love those pre-race strategy sessions...... well as those post-race analysis sessions. They're just too much fun - and it's great hearing how the race went for others......sometimes you feel like you've raced a completely different race than your teammate/friend. Here, Angele and Shari are talking about the Land Park Crit - these two riders rule!!! And they are hella fun to have as teammates. Okay AM - you gotta join the team now.

Prior to the Zamora race, Gianni was talking to Daniel and I about what could happen out there. And here's the cool part - that dude's prediction was spot-on. About a mile into the race, I found myself up towards the front of the pack just re-thinking about what Gianni said about the race during our warm-up. I found myself just keeping an eye on the front, waiting for the split. I didn't really expect to be there - but I was, and I was hoping to implement the plan of action.

In the end, it wasn't meant to be this time around. But it was great to be out there anyway.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Here I am talking to my friend Bill......

.....and anyone who has read this silly blog for any length of time knows how much I admire Bill's vascular legs. I mean, geesh, the dude's legs look like he rides for a Tour team!

Here, in the pic above, he's trying to give me some post-race advice:

"Now Rodney, it's a good idea to stay off the road when a friggin' truck is coming. Also, you might wanna ride more before your next race - those legs certainly don't look tan enough or vascular enough to be bike racer legs. And finally, what's up with those red clown shoes??? Dude, you gotta get some other cycling shoes - for dorkiness sakes, get rid of those ugly things! And what's up with the Christmas ribbon for handlebar tape??"

Ah, the fun of it all. What a great time and a great weekend. Wish they could all be that fun.

As for Bill, man, let me tell you - that guy is trainin'. I mean, he's puttin' some miles down......look out this spring and's gonna be fun ridin' with him.

And then there's Annemarie - decides to race the Zamora Road Race on....get training....zilch, nada, nothing - no training - just showed up and raced it in the Womens 1/2/3/4 Road Race at Zamora. And she did good......and guess what? She did it on an all-steel road bike! Old school, man.....that's just mental hardcore.

This whole cycling thing has just become such a rad experience again. When I quit riding way back when, I was completely burned out on the sport. Anyone who knows true burnout knows how bad it can be - you hear the stories about guys needing months off of the bicycle to recuperate and get mentally back in the game. I needed a bit longer. I was just tired of it at the time.

And here's where things get sort of different for me - I spent my teenage years riding, racing and doing training analysis. Talk to me about training, and chances are, not only do I know about it, I've Guinea Pigged it and found interesting outcomes......not all good. At the time, I became so obsessed with training and regimentation in riding/racing, I felt like things & life were just becoming way too structured. When I first started riding, I had a completely open mind to it all - I rode anywhere, any time, any weather - I just rode my bike. There was no "training"......we were just having fun. All speedwork in training came together through completely random fartlek work(through whatnow???)

But now, I am having fun all over again. This is such an awesome sport we're all involved in. And I look forward to riding with you all this year. You guys rock!!!!! Thank you!

Which reminds me......

.......I gotta go grocery shopping tonight.

Monday, March 20, 2006

How many of you Chico guys......

.....remember Peter Allen??? I know Charlie and Ed remember him. Well, here he is - still racing after all these years(he's the dude in the lead, with the AMD kit on). And he still looks like a monster on the bike(taken at Saturday's race in Sacto). I remember when he first started riding - he was just this big muscle dude back in the early 80s wanting to race bicycles. He'd be out training and saying things to himself like, "No pain, no gain!" Kinda wacko in a way......but cool too! "We're gonna go up and ride Mt. Lassen all day tomorrow - allllll dayyyyy llllllooooong." Have fun man. He was one of those hardcore guys.....those Cascade Racing Team guys. GP training.....oh yeah, they Bob Rolled it all the time. And were they any good???

Well, here's an interesting statistic for the locals:

Our 10-mile time trial course out on River Road. How many of you guys can break 22 minutes out there??? How many can break 23 minutes???, do the time trial on a 22-pound steel bicycle, no aero equipment or aero helmet or aero bicycle or aero-anything, with toe clips and 32-spoke wheels......and not a single gram of carbon or titanium anywhere on the bicycle. Your biggest gear = 54x12. Now, time yourself over the course. This was Cascade Racing - and all of their guys could do it in sub-25 minute times....but the majority of the team could do it in sub-24 minute times....and the top dogs were doing it in sub-23 minutes times.....and their toppest dog did it in sub-22 minute times.....week in, week out. Hardcore to the bone.

Yeah, as you can probably tell - it's retro-grouch night!!!

In reality, I thank God almost everyday for carbon fiber.......and my health.....and aero stuff!!

One thing going through my head.......

......on Sunday during the race, was the classic book called "Cycle Racing: Training to Win" by famed cycling author Les Woodland. This was the very first book I read on cycling training - I had the opportunity to check it out of the Chico State University library at the age of 12 and I read it over and over and over again the couple of weeks I had it.

Recently, being the cycling bookhound that I am, I got another copy of it and was able to read it again....and again.....and again. And it blows me away in its Caldwellian style(how you like that one OV??? Oh man, get this - found out a few weeks ago that I got Caldwell's autograph at a race when I was like 14 or 15 - he autographed a race guide I had from a stage race he was riding in.....just found it in one of my cycling boxes.....weird).

Anyway, this book was ahead of its time - it was written in 1975/1976. The most profound idea in the book are the 5 Ss of cycling - Stamina, Strength, Speed, Skill....and the false S of Psychology. Why is it so profound??? Because you gain all of the Ss through one training technique.......riding your bicycle. That is friggin' deep Dude. Woodland, you are a master.

In reality though, he was talking about training ideas that people in the States just did not even fathom at that time. So, that made it an interesting read here in 2006.

Why am I writing this on my blog??? Heck, I don't know - just thought it sounded cool! And sorta retro-grouchy too!

Here's Steve...... can almost see him in the EMC kit......mentoring the Masters 35+ 4/5 field at the Land Park Criterium on Saturday.

Oh, yeah, I already know - I suk at taking pictures.

Jelly Belly Jeff......

.....after winning one of his 2 races on Saturday(he's the dude - no, not in the Jelly Belly kit - in the white jersey). Way to go Jeff!!

Zamora Cramp Race.....

.....not sure what the deal is, but I have read more reports and talked to more people about cramping at the Zamora Road Race yesterday. Not sure why everyone was cramping, but maybe it was muscling into the wind??? Don't know.

Okay, this one is for you Dr. X.......

.......Rodney's Race Report from Zamora.

Race: Elite 4s
Teammates: Johnny and Daniel
Distance: 50 miles
Conditions: Tornadic

Short report:

Showed up. Raced. Got a hug. Went home.

Long report:

Okay, so, I haven't raced a sanctioned bicycle race in years and years and years. Sure, I grew up racing road bicycles and mountain bikes and cyclocross and Big Wheels(???), but haven't been out there for quite some time. I thought the Zamora Road Race would be a perfect first race back - it's out in the middle of nowhere, it's pretty flat, it was only 50 miles and I thought it would just be a good ice breaker race.

The first thing we noticed driving to the course from Chico was the wind. I tried to just stay mentally ahead of the game by realizing the fact that wind is just a condition we all have to ride in. I mean, who cares?? It's windy - it's windy for everyone. No big deal. Just race.

The weirdest part about this whole experience was that I didn't even feel an ounce of nervousness - not once. I have no clue why, no reasons for it - just wanted to show up and race, and have a good time.

We started off and I immediately became concerned because I thought Johnny had missed the start(I was wrong - I just didn't see him). Once we hit the headwind section, I felt great - I decided to cyclocross up the side of the road to stay in the top 15 riders. Once up there, I just planted myself in a nice protective cove of wind protection. No problems at all. We made the next right-hander on to those little bumps in the road, and I felt great - no problems staying with the group, felt protected from the wind, felt good, just stayed right behind Kurt Haskins from Chico Corsa and wouldn't let myself get off of his wheel.

Here's where I made my bonehead move of the race. On that right-hand turn at the bottom of the tiny rollers on the nice road(turning towards the KOM section), I was severly overgeared in the corner, trying desperately to go from 10mph(people slowed way down in the corner) up to 25mph in a 53x13. I immediately found myself caught doing Power Starts and the legs turned to rubber. BUNK!!!! Bunchabunk man - just sucked. Daniel flew by me yelling "Get on Rodney!!"

Well, I tried.....but couldn't quite hang on. OTB I went. So, I went into training mode and spent the race trying to memorize the course for next year. After 3 laps, I was toasted and ready for a nap, or a cup of Peets......or both. So, I opted for a hug instead of another couple of laps. Gotta watch that schmooopy can either ruin or help your training.....or both!

So, I'm back - and looking forward to racing more. Next up - probably Clobberopolis and definitely Wente.

Now, gotta work on those Tuesday sprints. Not sure about the veggie diet though - I like to eat BBQ too much.....and summer is right around the corner.

What the??!!

Okay, this is just rad.....the Safeway Team has their own handlebar tape. That is just gettin' trippy.....says Safeway all over it!

Oh yeah - to Anonymous......this isn't Bill or Alto Velo. Sorry. This is Rodney.

Anon had some choice words for the AVers.....not sure what the deal is with that one.

I've decided that I would rather.......

......race a bicycle in the wind than go to work on a rainy day Monday. May sound weird, but like the old saying goes, "My worst day on the bike was better than my best day at work".

Yeah, right.

Here's a picture......

.....of a guy on the windy section of the Zamora Road Race. Hey man, I know the was one of those days where we all felt like we were kites. Or parachutes.

What kinda bike is that????

That is a winning bicycle. This is Olaf's bike - a Frayer. Anybody who doubts that steel is real......well......steel is indeed real. And it especially helps when it's custom-made.

And if you look real closely at this bicycle, you'll notice one thing about it - it's got a little bit of everything on it! Definitely has personality. But most importantly, its been ridden......a ton! Which now gives it the honorable distinction of Hella Cool Bike status.

Way to go out there OV.

Who 'dat???

'Dat is Jeff Galland! Jeff gets the Stud-of-the-Day award for Saturday. First off, he wins the Masters 35+ 4/5 race at the Land Park Criterium........and then for good measure, he enters the Elite 4 race and wins that one too! 2 wins in one day........I would have to say that it's coming close to Hella Stud status for Jeff.

OH - and for those of you in the Chico area.......Jeff is from Paradise, California and is a regular out on the Fast 50 rides. He is also known as "Jelly Belly Jeff" for his killer looking Jelly Belly kit he wears at the 50. Guess those Fast 50s work!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Stud of the Day.......

.......besides Olaf(2 races in 2 days = 2 wins - what more can you ask for??? The dude is not just a stud, he's a Hella Stud! Must be the socks.), has to go to our own Geno Gruber. I watched Geno in his race today at Zamora and at the end of lap one(10-mile laps) with those vicious winds, I saw him get gapped off the lead pack. When they made the turn into the headwind section, I knew it was all over for him - and I saw him get dropped.

So why is this guy a Stud of the Day??? Because Geno - aka Mr. I-can-time-trial-into-headwinds-with-ease-and-can-outclimb-Hinault-on-any-given-day - bridged the gap and ended up back on to the lead pack on lap 2(of 3)! I was like, HOLY.....the dude caught on again??? And he ended up finishing with them. Total stud move Geno. A solo breakaway in the Land Park Criterium.......and a headwind bridge up to a pack ahead of you at Zamora RR. Friggin' nice.

Okay AM........ down, many more to go. You did great out there........and look how hard you trained for that Zamora race???? Imagine if you trained even harder for the next race??? Insane.

Like I said, you have something that many others only wish they had.........NT. Now's the time to open that can and see what will happen.

Crit practice tomorrow???

And hey, nothing beats a post-race hug.......

.......from your Honey.

Aaaahhhhh......The sweet smell of....... breaking.

Yep, it's official - I'm out racing bicycles yet again. I've come to the conclusion that, although I've tried in the past, I'm not suppose to fight this urge or obsession with bicycles. For whatever reason, back when I was 12 years old, I was meant to see that Schwinn catalog(the reason I became obsessed with bicycles in the first place).

And so, after all these years of not racing, I was in the Zamora Road Race today......aka Bariani Road Race. It was fun, exciting, windy(damn!!), and a great well as a re-learning experience. It was great seeing everyone out there too - too many great people to list.

However, a HUGE thank you goes out to three people in particular today - My wife Lori; My teammate Daniel; and our Team Mom Peggy. Without those three, I probably woulda just brought my camera along instead of my bike today.

And although my result was about what I expected, it reaffirms to me that the Guinea Pig Training Technique to does not work for everyone. But the fun factor.......dude, it is hella fun out there. Can't wait to race again!

Saturday, March 18, 2006

And, so, here we are.......

.....the night before my first race after years and years of not racing, and I feel......well.....great! Time to get back in action again.

Okay, now for the BIG guns...... is Geno pointing at a future cycling star.......his name: Michael Cordova. Cat. 5 going on Cat. 2. That guy today looked like he was just toying with the 5s.....snagging a prime, active the whole race, and ended up 2nd. He was smart, aggressive and he had the skills it takes to move forward in the sport - he's gonna be a fun one to watch. Remember the name - Michael Cordova.

Geno and I are in the same boat. We have had long long layoffs from the bike racing. He and I raced together as Juniors way back in the stone age. To see him race again after all these years - today at the Landpark Criterium - I was probably more nervous than him. I've got some great pictures of him I'll post later too - AWESOME solo breakaway today Geno!!!

Chico most definitely has a racing team again.......and man, it's great to see.....they're gonna be good.