Monday, October 30, 2006
Thursday, October 26, 2006
Call me goofy.....
Definition of CrossCore........
.......you know, where you're hardcore for the Cyclo-Cross??? Local Cross Stud - Jelly Belly Jeff pictured above(Yes, he really raced for Jelly Belly at one point in time) - has been burnin' up the cyclocross races lately on the Sacramento circuit. How does he do it.....besides being a kick butt rider??? The Dude built a cyclocross course in his backyard!!!! And although I haven't seen it.....yet.....I hear it's a pretty good workout.....6 minute laps......and some crazy story about sticker bushes or thorns or some goofy thing like that. Can't wait to check it out. Hopefully have some pics soon too!
OH - The pics above - Those are from the 2006 Jack & Jill Time Trial held earlier this month. What a great day!
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
"Do you think that's appropriate?"
You know, if there is one word I hate more than any other at my work, it would have to be that stupid "A" word.........Appropriate. I hate that word. And I can't really tell you why, except for the fact that it feels so........limiting. What's appropriate??? Is it appropriate that I wear my cycling socks to work everyday - even with my dress clothes??? Probably not.....but so what?? They're my feet....they're my sox. So there.
And I imagine that some probably feel the same way about cycling or specifics within cycling. Is it "appropriate" to ride a road bike off-road??? Is it "appropriate" to go downhill on a 42x16 fixed gear bicycle??? Is it "appropriate" to go out riding in the pouring down rain.......at night???? Is it "appropriate" to ride a 53cm frame when you normally ride a 58cm frame(standard......non-sloping)??? Is it "appropriate" to ride road when you love MTB.....or vice versa.......or go unicycling......or recumbent pedaling......or giving a Spinning class a shot......or climbing a hill in a 56x11.......or wear your Sidi Dragons on a road bike.......or wear your Ergo 1 Signoris in an Alley Cat race????
What is "appropriate"??? Man, I hate that word. I hear it so often at work, it makes me puke. I just can't stand it. And the one thing I don't want to ever have happen is to have that stupid "A" word infiltrate into my cycling life. That would just suk.
"Okay Rodney - you're in a race and some bozo swipes your front wheel with a bonehead move and you go down. Is that appropriate??!!"
Nah - that's just lame.
Sunday, October 22, 2006
Had the opportunity yesterday......
......to watch the movie called PRO. I was pretty impressed with it, for the most part. I mean, geezo, how often do you get to see a documentary of US domestic bicycle racing??? Pretty cool. Out of all of it, I think I was the most impressed with Chris Horner. (Is Monday really his 35th birthday???). The guy just seemed to have it together for this race.....but just couldn't make it happen at the very end. I like his tenacity though - definitely inspirational to me - did you guys see that attack the last time up Manayunk??? Crazy!! And you know, I haven't always been a fan of the Horner. Back in his Prime Alliance days, I thought the guy was sort of a dork. But, then.....I don't know.....he matured or something. And now, well, I'm a fan.
Good luck in 2007 Chris - and kick butt in Cross too!
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
The Wonderful World of........
Let me get this straight.....
And before I head out to go to work today......
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
Jimmy Walker and Cycling Pro......
Back in the day, I think it was one of my first criteriums as a kid(1981, 82 or 83??), Jimmy Walker was there watching the race - the Chico Criterium. At the time, he was a stud triathlete - as in, one of the best. I knew who he was, appreciated his accomplishments in triathlon, but had never really talked to the guy.
I was still learning the ropes about racing and training. I learned quite a bit from the members of the Chico Velo Cycling Club, and reading anything and everything cycling-related I could get my hands on(including French cycling magazines - hey, I didn't know French at the time, but those pictures in the magazines spoke a thousand words!).
Anyway, I was in this criterium as a Junior racer. We started off, and the darndest thing happened - I could not, for the life of me, get my foot into the toe clip! I kept trying to swing that pedal around and slide my foot in.........but just couldn't do it. I felt like a dork! It became a situation where you just aren't thinking correctly - I HAD to get my foot in that clip before I did anything else!! Before I knew it though, I was dropped. Half-lap into the race, I was by myself looking at the field take off ahead. Luckily, they slowed eventually....and I caught back on. Man, what stress.
It was Jimmy Walker who talked to me after the race. He saw what happened at the start and told me the following in a very compassionate way: "Practice your starts at every stop sign. Come to a complete stop, put your foot down on the ground, then start as if you are starting a race. Get it to a point where you can get your foot in(and out) quickly, easily, effectively. Do it at every single stop sign you come to - all of them!"
I practiced this - religiously. A month later, I was in the Vallejo Criterium racing with the Juniors(including the now-Masters stud Chris Wire......and I think Scott McKinley may have been there too). I was lined up on the start line - in front, right in the middle. As soon as that starting whistle went off, I pedaled like mad!!! Then, after the first turn, clipped my foot into the toe clip, tightened up the toe strap just before turn 2..........and I was out in front! Not dropped, not in the middle of the pack, not stumbling with my toe clips and cleats as the pack took off ahead. Nope - I was out in front that whole first lap. And although it was meaningless to everyone else, to me.......well.......it was victory!!!! LOL.
So, a big thank you goes out to Jimmy Walker. Sometimes the simplest advice yields some of the coolest results. Thanks Jimmy!
Monday, October 16, 2006
Bike lust comes in many shapes and sizes......
I was in one of our local shops the other day......just looking around, as usual. Hey, I like to look around.....and dream. I didn't really need anything - I just had to get my weekly fix of bike shop addiction.
Anyway, I strolled around the store.....looked at most of the bikes - singlespeed commuters, mountain bikes, road bikes, beginner bikes, cruiser bikes......just all kinds of bicycles. Along the way, I noticed this bike(pic above) on a rack at eye level......on sale.....just waiting. I looked at it for a couple of minutes, observing the unusual material(steel!!), the color, the components, the shape.....just everything. Then I moved on - I mean, I had to check out the latest and greatest too!
The next day, I woke up, drank my teeth-staining Peets, sat down for breakfast.......and all I could think about was that silly bike pictured above! What the???? Why???? What was it about that particular bicycle that stuck in my brain - was it the steel? The price? The component package? The color??? The fact that it's a 2005 model that needs a good home???? What was it??
I just don't know. It's bike lust at its weirdest. For whatever reason, I'll always have a "thing" for that bike......although I'll probably never own it. And next week, when I hit another bike shop to look around, I'm sure the old bike lust will hit again too!
I know - it's sad.
Anyway, good to be back blogging again - hope you're all doing great and having some great autumn rides - and cyclocross!!!! I'll see you all out on the road and dirt soon!