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.