Monday, December 07, 2009

Snow Day


Well, the skies cracked open the first snowfall of the season this morning. There is maybe a quarter inch dusting on the ground, just enough to coat the roads and make me have to dust off the car. Fun stuff. I checked the forecast and it looks like we might get a couple more days of snow this week. Makes me wish I was back in the desert. Adios.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Quick Update


28 Degrees in Cincinnati today. I've had three different groups try to get me to ride today, not feeling it, though. Might get out on the cross bike or the mtb later this afternoon. Didn't get into the race this weekend due to missing registration, but I was thinking about skipping it anyway and calling it a season. Time to reset the batteries and figure out the plan for 2010. Adios.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Deep Thoughts About...Deep Thoughts.

So I was going through the blog today trying to find a classic picture, and realized that this thing is almost four years old. I've thought about killing it many times, and am glad that I haven't. I know that this stuff isn't Hemmingway, and I don't have the followers of this guy, but it is fun to write and get a few comments every once-in-a-while. Besides, most classic artists aren't recognized for there work until they're dead, so if I can keep things going or another fifty years or so, maybe I'll be famous too! Right.

Cross race this afternoon in Indianapolis: Elite Masters 35+ for me today. Should be a fun one, and hopefully dry, let's hope I fare a little better then the last time out. Adios.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Quick Update

"This update fueled by Penfolds Koonunga Hill Shiraz Cabernet"

The last couple weeks have been pretty busy. I finally got assigned to a project at work, which is great 'cause now my days have a purpose, which is nice. Can't comment on what it is due to security concerns, but I can say that we are using some cool technologies such as Lombardi Teamworks and Adobe Flex, and I am pretty psyched to be involved with the whole process. I typically spend half my day watching my team implement code, and try to absorb as much as I can in the process.

Not much riding these days due to the increasing work hours, coupled with decreasing light and decreasing temperatures. I have been doing a bunch of Yoga, and luckily haven't paid for any of it! Seems like most of the studios out here give you a free class if it is your first time there, so I've been jumping from studio to studio and riding the free train for a little while now. Unfortunately, that will probably end soon and I'll have to pony up for an admission fee soon. Oh well, such is life...

Cross race this Sunday in Indianapolis. It is the Indiana State Championships and I have signed up for the Masters 1,2,3 35+ race. I am officially old, 9-5 desk job, and racing masters! WTF!!!??? Traveling out there with a friend of mine who is also racing 35+, should be a good time. Adios.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

OVCX Gun Club Cross, Quick Race Report.


Rough day today. Lined up with the Elite men at the OVCX race in Miamiville, OH. Course was 50% roadie, 40% mtb, and 10% xc runner. It was really muddy out there when I road the course on Wed, but most of that had dried and settled in to some seriously sloppy, thick stuff by the start of the race today. I'm still trying to get the mud figured out, after having spent the last ten years riding in sunny Tucson. I think that the time out there has made me forget my mountain biking roots, 'cause right now I am struggling big time cornering in the mud. Either I'm not getting it, or my tires just aren't right, but something need to change soon. My current setup of Bontrager Jones at around 35-38 psi feels like riding on ice in the corners. Might switch to a set of Michelin Muds for the rest of the season...Or just train more...Or do both.

So the race went something like this: Fast start, sliding all over the place, lost position, regained position, lost position again, passed a couple guys, started to feel good, felt bad, slid some more, felt worse, dropped out with 3 to go. Not good. Adios.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Louisville, KY, USGP Weekend Recap

Over the weekend I made the short trip south to Louisville, KY for round 3 & 4 of the United States Grand Prix of Cyclocross. I have dabbled a bit with cross over the years at the local level in Michigan and Arizona, but have never been to a cross event of the size and scale of the USGP. The UCI Cyclocross Festival in Cincinnati a couple weeks back was a good introduction to big-time cross racing, but the USGP series brought the level up a notch.

Almost all of my cyclocross experience has been on a mountain bike, with some success. I experimented with a true cross bike a couple years back, but never really felt comfortable on it. This year I've decided to try it again and picked up a sweet ride from a good friend of mine. The debut ride was at the Masters 35+ race in Cincinnati, and I snapped my chain after crashing on the second lap. Ditto on day 2. Not a good start. Thinking back, I've realized that I have never finished a race on a cross bike, as mechanicals have always came up. Gotta fix that quick.

Bit of a tangent there, so back to the weekend. Bike is working sweet now, I put a new chain on and got in a decent week of training to break it in. Lined up in the last row of the Elite Masters 35+ and figured I'd ease into it and just try to pick guys off as the race went on. Off goes the gun and here we go. Race was brutal, the ground was so soft it felt like you were pedaling in wet cement. I moved up to about the halfway point of the fifty man field, but that was about as far as I would get. Suffered like mad and finished in 27th. I swear my bike must have been ten to fifteen pounds heavier at the end from all the mud caked onto it.

The course had dried out a bit by Sunday, but there were still some big mud holes scattered about. A reroute added a wickedly muddy stair section that came immediately following a nasty, off-camber 180 degree turn. Started back row again, but my strategy today was to hit it hard off the start and try to hold on. Made it up to around 20th, but no further. Ended up finishing 22nd and felt like I had a knife in my lower back on the last two laps. Forgot how hard cross racing can be. Adios.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

UCI Harbin Park Pro Men Cyclocross

Footage of the pro men's cross race at Harbin Park in Cincinnati, OH Oct 11, 2009.

UCI Harbin Park Post Race with Powers, Wicks, Wells, and Matter

Monday, September 21, 2009

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Ohio Riding

Did a cool ride on Tuesday, here is the route:



Adios.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Fun Times on the Mountain

Woke up early today and did the Eclipse team ride on Mt. Lemmon. A big group of around 30 riders started out from Le Buzz at 6:30. Once we hit the climb the pace picked up and after a couple miles there was only a handful of guys left. Riding strong were Scott Blanchard, Richard Bioca, and Ross Lamb. Not to toot my own horn, but I was giving the climb a good go myself. I think three weeks of training, no class, and some nice supplementation with Athlete Octane has started to pay some dividends in my fitness.

Around 4 miles into the climb, Steven from Sweden decided to turn the screw on all of us and proceeded to ride the group off his wheel. I had never seen him before and found out later that he was a former mountain biker working as an engineer for Ventana Medical. All I know is the dude is strong.

I ended up riding to Geology Vista, cruised down the hill, and ran into PT and double D at the base of the climb. Flipped it and rode back to Molino Basin with those guys, which made for a fun day on the mountain. Came home after 4+ hours on the bike and took my sweetheart for some delicious Pulled Pork from El Paso BBQ. Whoever said you can't train on BBQ? Adios.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Arizona State Road Race Recap

Even when you don't have the legs to compete for the win, the beauty of the state road race course on HWY 188 in Globe, AZ makes the ride worthwhile. It is not often that riders race 87 miles with such scenery around them. The course leaves Globe and follows an out-and-back course, heading North for 43.5 miles, much of that spent with Roosevelt Lake bordering the course. Great pavement, perfect temps, and minimal traffic (but you have to be out early, lots of boats late morning/early afternoon) make this a great ride whether you are pinning on a number or not.

As for the race, there were several animators throughout the day: Jake Rubelt, Brian Lemke, and one other rider who made the early move about five miles in and didn't come back to the field until halfway up the final climb. Definitely a suicide move, but you have to give them credit for trying. The Waste Management Team for driving the pace on the front once we hit the valley. These guys were on the front of the race for probably 2/3's of it, trying to keep the break in check for their climber, Stevie Cullinan. And finally, to Eric Salstrand, for pulling out the win for the Bicycle Haus Team out of Scottsdale, AZ.

As for my day, I was happy to make it to the valley with the group. Didn't do a thing until after the turnaround, when I tried to jump into the mix during a flurry of attacks that went down over about a five mile stretch. Nothing stuck until Nick Schrieber and Tim Carolan managed to bridge to the break over a small roller about 15 miles from the base of the main climb. I waited a little to long before trying to bridge myself, and ended up in no mans land with Sean Mazich of Waste Management. The two of us were able to open up a pretty large gap to the field, which gave us a little bit of a buffer once the climbing started. Didn't matter all that much in the end, as the front of the field swallowed us up about two miles into the climb. After that I just tried to limit my losses and made it over the climb with a rider from the Bicycle Haus team. We picked up Kyle Colavito on the way in to the finish and came in together. All things considered, I thought it was a pretty fun day. Adios.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Training, TRAINING, Training........Now Find Me a Job!

It has been a great week on the bike here in the desert. Temps in the morning have been in the 70's with just enough cloud cover to keep the sun away for a couple extra hours. Here is a quick synopsis of my week so far:

Tuesday: Hit the morning ride. Felt a little better then last week, and was able to pull at the front for a bit. Had some gas in the tank, just not the right amount of Octane. Not yet anyway. Frank Barnes of Summit Velo was first over Gates Pass, with Kevin Clegg coming in second. Frank seems like he is getting pretty fast these days; I'm curious how he'll do in the State Road Race on Sunday. On the way into town I ran into PT and Dan, so I flipped it and rode another three hours with them. Shortly after flipping it, I had the misfortune of watching my polar bottle eject from the cage and get run over by a truck. Bummer. Good day on the bike, though.

Wednesday: Nice ride today on the Big Square loop west of town. Brownies at the store, lots of talk of snappers, and some power sprints coming into town. Felt pretty good all day. Rode with PT, Double D, and the Black Cloud. The miles are always fun with those guys.

Thursday: Sierrita Mountain Road with PT and Double D. We picked up a Border Patrol officer named after a famous drink on the way out of town, who kept us entertained with stories of the illegals most of the way. Nice steady two finger tempo was the order of the day, followed by some delicious smoothies after the ride. I was happy because I was feeling better today then I did on Tuesday, so I'm thinking that I finally might be getting the proper amount of Octane in the mix. Thanks Snake.

Other then riding, I've been spending most of my time filling out job applications and trying to get a career started. That has been a little slow going so far, but there are starting to be a few good leads so hopefully something happens within the next month or so. I don't want to jinx myself by getting overly excited so I'll stop there. Thanks for reading this if you've gotten this far, it's been a long one. Oh, and by the way...GO WINGS!!!!! Adios.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Shootout

Did my first post-graduation Shootout today. The group seemed to take a while to really get going, with the pace steady most of the way out until we went over the bridge. The tempo went up signifigantly as a small break attacked over the bridge, with a serious chase ensuing from those who didn't make the split. The pack was strung out and gaps began to form as we crested the last of the hills before the mailboxes. I was suffering, but was able to regroup and make all the splits to end up in the front group of about 30. The break had been caught somewhere in the hills, leaving those in front to fight it out for the sprint and Shootout glory. Nick Schreiber crushed everybody and won by several bike lengths over a small group of around ten. I saved my legs and just followed wheels to the top of hill, coming in around 7th or 8th and happy that I made it. Flipped it there and rode home solo on Mission Road in near perfect weather conditions. Amazing that it is still in the 80's in Tucson this late in May. Adios.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Hillsboro Day 1

Long day today. Started with a 4:30am wake up call after a restless 4.5 hours of sleep. I headed over to campus to meet up with the University of Arizona Cycling Team to drive over to the 20km time trial just outside of Las Cruces, NM. Fast forward 5 hours (including the one hour time change) in the car and we had arrived at out destination. The 50 degree temps that greeted us as we exited the car were a shock to the system after the month of 70's that Tucson has been experiencing as of late.

After about a 30 minute warm-up, I headed over to the start. Jon Scholnick was my 30 second man, so I figured that it would only be a matter of time before he caught me. The course was mostly flat, with some low grade rolling terrain and lots of wind. I started a little slow, taking my time to get into a nice rhythm. Jon caught me after about 5km which gave me some motivation to push a little harder. In the end it was a decent effort, good training, and I hope to be able to build on this ride in the weeks to come.

We finally made it to the hotel around 3:30 after a little post-TT ride. Everyone headed out for some authentic Las Cruces Mexican food followed by a impromptu pull-up contest. A couple beers back at the hotel and an early night followed. Tomorrow is the road race in Hillsboro, which is about 50 miles from the hotel, so it is going to be an early night for me and I am going to hit the pillow as soon as I finish this sentence. Adios.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Nice First Day of Spring Break

Spent the day today doing a leisurely 20 mile bike ride around town, hit up Time Market for an Americano and a Magic Bar, spent about an hour hanging out with Linnea, then played a quick nine holes at Dell Urich. Got paired up on the tee box with a couple of junior golfers, one was 8 and the other was in 6th grade. Turns out that the 6th grader was the number one ranked golfer in Tucson for his age bracket. Needless to say, I got worked. That's ok, though, I still had fun. And I can always look back on that 300 yard bomb on the 6th hole. Now if only I could do something about those 30 footers? Adios.

Spring Break 2009


Woo Hoo, another spring break is upon us. At my ripe old age I am starting to feel a bit like Rodney Dangerfield in Back to School when the yearly tradition comes around. This year I will be celebrating by driving over to Hillsboro, NM early Saturday morning for my first collegiate race, the Hillsboro Omnium. I'll be racing Collegiate "A", which will be combined with the Pro 1,2 so it should make for some pretty fast racing. I think it is kind of funny that I raced masters last weekend and am racing collegiate this weekend. Still waiting for the day that I can race all three events together, I wonder if that has ever been done before? Adios.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Raffle, Raffle, Raffle... Win A Great Prize!!!!!!!!!

Check out the following link to win a one night stay and a round of golf for two at the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort & Spa. All proceeds benefit the University of Arizona Cycling Club. Tell your friends. Adios.

www.uacyclingraffle.blogspot.com

TBC Wrap Up

Well, I put the cap onto a bit of a crappy weekend by missing my start time and never making it back into the group today, so I pulled out of the race after three laps. Legs were pretty well fucked anyway after yesterdays cramping, but it would have been nice to get some racing laps today. Rode home and was back in bed at 8:30, right about the time the rest of the guys were probably just winding down from the field sprint. Back to the drawing board, I guess. Adios.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

TBC Stage 2 Road Race....Bad Legs = Bad Cramps

3 laps, 20 mile course, lots of attacks. No breaks stuck for more then a couple miles at a time. I started getting little twinges in my left leg about 35 miles into the race. Sat in the bunch for the entire last lap trying to work them out, and thought that I had accomplished that. It was looking like a field sprint when we made the turn onto La Canada for the final 4 miles of the race. Then it happened. First a twinge in my left quad, followed by a twinge in my right. I tried desperately to rub them out. More twinges, spasms, extreme pain. Went from pedaling smooth circles and thinking of who to follow in the sprint to pedaling awkward squares and falling off the back. Actually had to take my feet out of the pedals and stop on the side of the road for a couple minutes. Not good. Felt like Erik Long on the Mogollon. Long story short, lost 5:53 in the final two miles of a 60 mile event. Oh well, I guess that's why they call it training. Adios.

Friday, March 06, 2009

TBC Stage 1 Time Trial

Well, I just got back a little while ago from my first race in a long time. I'm racing the Tucson Bike Classic in the old mans category this weekend (35+). Today was the time trial through McCain Loop out in the desert west of Tucson. Always a hard ride. I decided to go Eddie Merckx style and road without any areo equipment, since I really don't think my fitness would have been good enough for a decent result, not to mention that my TT position when clipping areo bars onto my normal bike is terrible. Got a good workout out of the ride, and clocked 9:10 according to my unscientific calculations. If I had to guess, I would say that I probably will split the field of 40 with that time.

Tomorrow is a road race down in Sahaurita. 60 miles of rolling terrain. Right now my only goal is to make it through the first lap, see how I feel and evaluate from there.

Currently listening to the latest U2 album, "No Line on the Horizon." I've only heard it a couple times at this point, so I'm not totally sold on it yet. So far there are several outstanding songs, a couple that are so-so, and one that really sucks, but the verdict is still out on if it will be a good album or not. I really need a few more listens to make that decision. That being said, nothing that U2 has put out over the past 15 years (basically since Zooropa) has come close to touching the quality of their earlier work. I'd pay big bucks to be able to go back in time and see them on the Joshua Tree tour. Adios.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Why Do Trader Joes Cashiers Insist on making Small Talk?

I understand that this is a requirement of the job, but lately it has been getting to be a little excessive. I am to the point that I purposely avoid certain lines because I know that the clerk that is running the register is especially gabby. Yesterday, the handicapped gentleman in line in front of me had to listen to his clerk ramble on about his ADD and love for whiskey, among other things. Like this guy cared about this. I put on the stone face and he didn't talk much to me, thank God. It is great to be nice to people and all, but sometimes you have to know when not to cross the line. Just my two cents. Adios.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Worked

Just got back from a four hour training ride on Lemmon with J-Rod. Got worked a bit on the way back to town, but that's ok, cause today was the first day that I have felt remotely healthy in the past three weeks. Between the upper back, lower back, and picking up a bit of a cold, it has been a pretty crappy run. Cross your fingers that things are on the way up from now on. Adios.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

This is my Blog

Read it. Adios.