Friday, August 15, 2008

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Cancellara delivers

This guy is having a dream season. Wins when no one expects it and wins when he is the clear favorite. Going home with a bronze and a gold? Not a bad trip for him. Now if he could just get a better nickname. Nice podium for CSC. Leiphemer gets a little love.....
Here a dejected Stefan Schumacher contemplates his life next year riding for rock racing.....

Kristin Armstrong represents for the US grabbing Gold in the woman'S TT.

I guess when you go all out in a TT, you should look like this at the end.

Other racing?
How bummed is Kloden to be racing in the rain in the Tour de L'Ain? 2.1 UCI rating. Ouch. Gerdemann's success can't feel too good either.
Tour of Utah starts today which will feature a nice Rock Racing vs Garmin-Chipotle show down. Too bad GC is counting on Tommy D. There is some kind of sad Darth Vader/Luke Skywalker thing with a Tyler vs Tommy D battle.
As the season winds down, there should still be some intense racing as too many guys will be srcambling for contracts so Eneco Tour, Tour of Ireland, and Deutschland Tour should be good for those not invited to the Vuelta.

Finally in other racing news Gilbert snagged a win in the dernycriterium Wilrijk. That's right a crit where you motorpace behing a derny??? That is gnarly. Some random pictures here.

Random cycling rumour, another Tom D at Garmin? This Belgian site says its int he works. Wait and see, but that could be an interesting move.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Mt Agementicus

Always wanted to try a time trial, but never had the chance. Mt.Agamenticus looked interesting when it popped up on bikereg many months ago.
First time trial, so why not try something uphill with a long dirt section? Course description is "7.4 miles, featuring 3.5 miles of smooth, mostly flat pavement, 1.4 miles on a FAST hard-packed dirt road, to a paved finish on the top of Mount ‘A’. Mount ‘A’ features a 0.7-mile climb with an average gradient of 10%, with sections at 12%-14%." Perfect.

My legs have been shit for a couple weeks, so I was not expecting a fun time, but the legs felt good when I woke up for a change and we go there super early(sorry). Driving up through some serious Stephen King fog made the morning a little ominous and kept the high points obscured. Got in a good warm up and I was actually getting pretty stoked. It was nice to realize you didn't have to worry about anyone else's Cat 5 antics fucking up the program. The flipside was how strange it was to be alone with no group around you. It was like doing a long terrible interval with only the fear of getting caught by the guy who started 30 seconds back to keep you company.

The dirt section was a lot like Deerfield only wider. You hit it going pretty fast and then it went up hill. There were a lot more little lumps and rollers than I expected before the main event.
Turning left onto the final climb, it was pretty clear you were cannonballing into the pain cave. Some steep switchbacks, some drooling, and it was done.
Unoffical time was 27:32, slower than I wanted, but I felt good with how I rode so no complaints. I clocked a max HR of 204 and an average of 190 so I was definitely going full gas. Well one complaint, Smuttynose sponsored the ride, so how about one measly keg at the finish? Dropping down fromt the top and back over the dirt road with a belly full of beer would have been a trip worth taking. Billy and Nick killed it. Ride back to the car was more Deerfield flashbacks. In the blink of an eye we were at a cookout eating way more than we burned off. Beers and steak tips. Repeat and roll out back to Boston. It was a 12 hour day door to door for 27 minutes of racing, but somehow well worth it.
Definitely will come back and do this again next year.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Summer of my Mechanical Discontent

This year has sent me to the bike shop more than I could have imagined and well past the point where it was fun. It all started months ago with a crash at Wells Ave that spelled the end of my Fondriest. The emotional scars of this still sting, but such is life.
I rushed out and got a new frame. Not Italian, but not bad either(kids are going to college, I will be on a tight budget for the next few years). Smooth sailing from here? Nope, doored on Memorial Day weekend causing even more drama and exploding bike parts.

Well, got all that fixed. Should be cruising from here since I just dumped all the money I had saved for a cross bike into repairs. Now I can sit back and enjoy this new stiffer fork right? Nope.

Decided to swap out the bars and stem for something newer that was more in keeping with my bikefit. So this is the final "before" picture of Frankenbike. Notice 10 degree rise stem giving it the super-century look. This will be taken care of shortly, but I had to document this less than perfect stage in Frankenbike's development.

Got the new stem and bars on in glacial fashion and am ready to ride out the summer like this.....

But you know it couldn't be that easy. The final mechanical meltdown with Frankenbike will be documented shortly in a chapter called "Frankencrank". Stay tuned.

Last minute addition... Hold the presses. Just to make sure I stay busy, my computer has developed an audible geiger counter like noise and seems to be draining batteries in days. Great.................