Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Trials Riders

One of my favorite parts of the NORBA National at Mount Snow is the
usual pack of trials riders. The leg destroying climbs and mind melting
single track leave you in a different place, making it nice to hunker
down and watch riders do things on two wheels that are simply amazing.
Often the difference between those who do well in a race and those who
don't depends on how smooth one can be in the nasty parts of the
course. Pure bike handling skills.That is what impresses me about the guys who are really good, they are as smooth as a hot knife through buttah. Its not who can throw themselves off the largest rock, its all very calculated and graceful.

We've been watching the new Kranked 6 movie at work. A lot. I'm always forced to stop dead in my tracks and watch Ryan Leech. He is amazing. (Turn your speakers on if you watch the viedos.)

That was the Ryan Leech of a few years ago...he's taken it to another level.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Quit Playing Games With My Heart

I'm wearing my Camo Shorts again. Its really hard to dress for this stuff. I'm overly hot or frozen to the bone. Heather always makes fun of me because I'm an addict when it comes to checking the radar for rain and the thermometer. A man's gotta know what kind of high performance base layer he's going to wear.
With two familys to spread the time over, I found myself at not one but two Thanksgiving dinners. Heather's mom's is always nice, but the wide-open spaces of Grandma's house will alway hold a part of my heart.

My Cousin has a golf kart tricked out with a jacked suspension and off roadin' wheels. I'm pretty sure I showed him some stuff I shouldn't have...hopefully he won't get the kart taken away by Christmas because I've got some great ideas for pimping his ride. If I can't put spinners on my lady's Ecco, homeboy is getting hooked up.
I took the last week mostly off and the lights that were burning dimly in the twilight of the season have suddenly become bright. Game on. Funny how the body works like that.
Its a hard time of year to find your drive and have motivation in racing and training. Its the holidays and I want to over eat like every good American, the weather is finicky and I've been going since January. Also, I've begun working towards next season, setting everything up and formulating my goals. The excitement is killing me and I'm ready to to get going on the next set of objectives.

Such is life. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Good bye my old friend

The Indian summer is over. It was only last week that I was kickin' it in my camo shorts. Cold rides are here to stay. Bummer.

Haven't been doing any racing at all. Been doing lots of eating, getting ready for the big day. My form has seemed to go south with the birds as has my drive to race. I've done plenty of 2 and 3 hour drives for 40 minuets inside the tornado of pain and I think it is starting to get to me a little. There are about 5 more races on the calendar but I think I'm going to do one more and Nationals. I'm pretty sure that a tune-up race and the mental demands of Nationals will be more than enough to cure whatever urge I can muster up. Who really knows though, sometimes I'm like a light switch, and all systems are going again.

C-dale is all done. The pictures aren't loading all nice like, so we'll see how it looks on your end. Sram's new stuff is da bomb dot com. The shifting is positive, smooth and natural. The click of the shifter when your shifting sounds amazing too. Much better than the clunk of Campy and cheep sounding wine that comes out of Shimano.

Andy is tightening something on his bike. But how sweet is that jersey? Very sweet.
Happy Birthday big guy!

A big thanks goes out to Brent from Northwave for sponsoring me for the remainder of the Cross season and my up coming road and mountain bike campaigns. I feel honored to be given the opportunity to represent such a large company and sport some classy Italian shoes. Northwave's 2007 product line looks killer and I can't wait to break in my new kicks.

Have a great Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 13, 2006

This is just a test.

I really like removing old bar tape. It shows you where you started. A little snippet of what life was . The line of dirt that shows you where you've been and all the good rides you've had. I got to go back home for the weekend. Mainly for more wedding stuff, but I was able to squeeze in a few good rides too.
Gotta love the fall time.
On a clear day you can see 50+ miles over my right shoulder. At night you can map out the towns just by the lights.

I'm testing a new toy. Its pretty sweet. I spent much of my rides finding my max and blowing myself up in the pure pursuit of science. I'm not at liberty to say what the new toy is because I've got a few different angles to work in getting this testing a permanent fixture on my handlebars. But I will say, for those in the know, the sixth sister on Gifford School House road is 17% and I put out 458 watts going up her.

Time to go train.....for Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

the ramble

The blog is smelling a little stale and my legs are feeling great.....must be Thursday.
Not much to report. Training. Working. Thinking about riding. Reading about riding. Working on other peoples bikes so they can go riding. Training. LOTS of eating. The usual things.
I should be telling you about how well I did on Sunday, but with my mom looking on, I made love to the ground and erased my fantastic race. So, we move on, keep the good thoughts flowing and forget about what might have been.
I'm getting shafted in the fight for getting credit for the UCI points that I should have, but I'm starting not to care because I'm having so much fun.
I have been seeing a steady weekly improvement as I figure out how to race and my fitness gains. On the way home from the race on Saturday I actually thought to myself "I should start base in December." This is what happens when you feel like there is "no chain" on the bike. A few miles down the road I thought it'd be better to take the three weeks off after cross nats. Winter is a hard time to ride.
I went Mountain biking with Andy the other day. The ye'ol mtb has been hanging on the wall for a good month and a half. I kinda forgot how to ride off roads. It took a good 20 min before I was riding like I know I should. At one point there was a big rock-craggy thing that is pretty hard to get up on a great day. Andy was leading and slowed up as I (for some reason) thought that If I hit it with a ton of speed I'd magically get over. When my front tire planted firmly against the rock, my brain went blank and I hit the ground. Laughing of course.

One of my favorite Mtb's just was slapped with a one year suspension for missing a doping test. They usually have people standing on the finish line and grab the athletes picked for the random tests, but they didn't at this race. He's got to be one of the cleanest guys on knobby's and speaks out against the juice often. I doubt he'll read this, but Sager, I believe. You rock and roll.

It sucks that they can't catch the real dopers and stick it to the guys who are in the sport just for the love it.

Going back to New Paltz this weekend. I'm uber excited to ride my old dirt. Widowmaker, here I come.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Verge New England Series: Chainbiter 8.0

It starts to feel a little more like 'cross season when you wake up, check the weather and see that it's 30 degrees outside.

'Cross season is also nice because I see so many people that I know. It makes warm-ups less stressful to be shooting the shit with people that I trade the paint with. I hear even more people yelling "go Jay" or "yea ATA!" I have no clue who some of you are, but its nice. Helps keeping me turning those legs over.
The start was the usual affair of me holding on for dear life. When I heard the dirt under my tires I started making moves and finding that when you force yourself into gaps that aren't really there, it suddenly opens up and you can snatch it off the market.
After a lap or so everything got gaped out and the business of hurt started for the day.
Going all out and trying to catch whoever had blown up and holding off the chasing dogs that were behind. Note to self, when the new jerseys are done, I gotta get a med. not a small.
When I passed a guy who was selected to the U23 mountain bike worlds team it gave me a bit more juice. Just not enough to fend off the hard charging leaders. Its a pretty hard pill to swallow when you see 184 beats per min on your heart rate monitor and the leaders are still closing in on you. Its a good reminder of who they are. Who you are and what it is your hear to do.

Devil wasn't willing to make a deal with me (I was praying for just one more lap.) I was passed and pulled with a few to go, but was "finished" with a lap down. Some how I finished 4th in the U23 race.
No clue where the podium was, but you can be assured, I'm not saving anything today.

Photo credits go to my man Christoph. Thanks for cheering me on and snaping the good shots.