30 October, 2007

Home turf

But first, a drive up to Taylors Falls to take part in the Red Barn CX. I really enjoy this race. Good course, lots of people, good times. The only problem is that they always run out of beer before I get a chance to get any. Lame...
The race itself went pretty well. With almost all the top dogs present I raced exactly where I was last weekend. Which was again rounding out the top 10. Hopefully I can put some good training in these next few weeks and move up for the State CX.

I love mid-air pictures...

Sunday it was Sean and my race. We learned last year how to set the course right, and with a good amount of help did it all in 1.75 hours. Thanks to those who helped out, made my life much better. I even got the pinwheel on the first try this year. Took all of 20 minutes instead of 2 hours.
Race day brought a decent number of people, down a bit from last year sadly. That was partly due to the large turnout at the Red Barn CX. I guess people are just lazy, oh well. I was really annoyed about the fact that there was some grumbling going on about problems with the B/womens A race and how there was confusion with laps and placing and all. We held the first separate womens race of the year, advertised it well, and guess what, 3 people showed up. If I hear complaining about it again I'll give them my thoughts...Thanks to those who did come out, it was still a good race.
As I hoped Herr Swanson showed up,
and kicked all of our asses. Again.

My own race went alright. I was quite tired from a late night of...race preparation...
I still managed to pull off 5th. But there were a bunch of guys missing unfortunately.
Jump into the arctic.
You try to figure it out...
Up, up and away

Thanks to all who came out and helped. It made Sean's and my life so much better. And made the race better too.
Also thanks to all those who took pictures (I think most of these are from Jim Wellbrock) Check out skinnyski.com where there are about 50000000000 more. Coverage is important!

26 October, 2007

It is nice out.

I'm to lazy to write about it so the Doughboy did.

22 October, 2007

Not bad

I am starting to feel a bit faster for whatever reason.
It was the Hub race today. The course was changed up, it was much much better than last year. A good mix of hard, recovery, technical and fast places. The only bad part was the barrier set up. 180 deg. turn, barrier, barrier on a 180 deg. turn, then straight then another barrier.
I have come to accept my slow starting, I just can't put it all down right away I guess. As long as I am no more than 1/3 of the race back I can usually make it up by the end of the first lap. That happened today. I rode with 4 others for 2 laps, then got dropped on a descent because I was being to cautious. I then rode the rest of the race all by my lonesome. By the end a large gap in front of me, and a huge gap behind me. Good TT practice I guess.
The course had a nice long steep climb, perfect for riding. At the top is where all the people hung out, it was really fun to ride through a tunnel of people yelling and ringing bells. Makes you feel important.

My saddle height looks way to low, but I am having trouble figuring out if it is or not...
Up up and away
All alone

21 October, 2007

Evolutionary racing

In Darwin.
Finally a day without rain and some sun, without temps above 80. A good day for racing. The course was, alright. Basically up, up and up, then down down, run a bit, then go fast. During the warm up I was not a fan of the course, but by the end I approved.
I was off to an awful start, near the back of the pack the first time up, then as usual, I slowly made my way up. I rode with a guy from the Hub for a most of the race, then got away on the steep part of the climb with 1.5 laps to go. Overall a fairly good race, the only problem was that my front wheel came unglued. I figured out the reason for all the tires coming unglued, and now that I glued both front and rear myself, it should not happen any more. During the race the tire made a very annoying squeak which I think both hurt and helped my result since no one wanted to be around the noise.

After hanging out a bit at the race Casper the ghost and wife Linda invited the Doughboy and I to Vietnamese food in Minneapolis due to the fact that Daniel is stronger than metal and broke his chain, and since he had put Sean's bike in the pit it was fair game. ha! And also since they are really nice people.
Anyway we had a bit of a drive. I think Daniel thought he was driving a
because the subaru had troubles keeping up. Either that or him being a ghost and all made him invisible to cop cars. Either way after not so long, we ate good food. Thanks guys for that. After dinner Sean and I got dropped like it were a bike race.

20 October, 2007

Sean's future job

No costume required!

19 October, 2007

Last weekend

was muddy. Looks like it will be this week as well....

18 October, 2007

I am sick of this...

All it ever does anymore is
And it looks like it will continue.
We need more
Then I will be happier.
Thanks to NOAA for the nice pictures.

Despite that, I had a good ride with lots of intervals today. It was also Bon App├ętit's (school food service) 20th birthday today. That means they tried extra hard on the food. I hear for its birthday next year they are going to serve beer and wine with dinner. Maybe I should come back for that...

17 October, 2007


15 October, 2007

Death cramps and mud baths

Sean and I went south through the endless fields of corn to race some bikes near Des Moines. I had a hard time deciding whether to brave the weather or not by going to the arctic (Duluth) or going south to try and win some cash.
We got down yonder just earlier enough to get a few laps of the course in before it got dark, a whole whopping 45 minutes of easy riding.
It rained a bit that night, but by the time we raced at 3:45 it was pretty dry. There were a few places with really sticky mud, but nothing dirty.
I had always thought MN races were small, but Iowa A races are tiny. 15 people the first day, I knew a couple of guys were fast, including Patty who came down from MN to try and win some money as well. Soon the race was off, the first laps went great, there were 4 of us, JJ (promoter), Epin (won the Olaf race last year), Patty, and myself out front. We were even rotating pulls for a bit. Then all of a sudden it felt like someone put the breaks on. Just like that, things went from good to shitty. Needless to say I got gapped and could not get back on, I had to slow way down. A lap later I started getting death cramps, not bad, but enough to effect performance. This was the first time it has ever happened in a cross race. I slowed down even more and was just tried to push through it. The guy who was in 5th at that point caught me, I was able to bring it back up at that point and stick to his wheel, then eventually I started feeling better. I pulled a bit, then on the last lap I felt good again and put the hammer down opening up a big gap and finishing 4th.
To bad for the cramps though, I was having a blast up front and think I could have stayed there.

Saturday night and Sunday it rained and rained. By race time the course was one big pile of mud. The muddiest I have raced in. Only 10 people this time, with both Patty and Epin gone JJ was my competition. Sean had a good first 3/4 of a lap and was right there with us, then he disappeared. By that time there were 3 of us out front, JJ, Troy (was 5th Sat.) and me. The mud was very slow going, and was hard to plow through. We stayed together until nearly the end of the 2nd to last lap. Somehow JJ got away and went way away. I chased but could not catch him and managed a 2nd place.
I did end up getting some cash this weekend, which I needed really badly...
Hopefully I can find some pictures soon.

Now it is back to Olaf, where most people are gone for fall break. And the weather is really crappy. I guess I have to do homework.

11 October, 2007

And then there was cold.

Sunday a tropical mid 80's. Monday 50. Just like that the weather changed. But hey no rain while riding bikes!
It has been a good week of training so far. A bunch of intervals and 3 plus hour rides. Good times.
Time to rest up for the weekend.
Des Moines or Duluth?

I don't think they will be naming roads like this anytime soon...

08 October, 2007

A bit better

Yesterday was the Lake Rebecca CX race. The weather, as most of you know has been unseasonably hot. Yesterday when I looked at the temp after the race was 84. Too hot for cross.
The course was not technical at all, and pretty fast.
Due to the fact that Saturdays race was canceled (or at least I think due to it) there was quite a turnout for the day at the races, for sure the biggest A race thus far.
There was a crash at the end of the B race, so once all of us had lined up to start on time, we got sent out for a lap so they could get a car in to get people out. Nothing wrong with that, except some people like to race those laps, thus I was even further back on the line then I was before. Being that the race started on a narrow rode (most people can go fast there) and soon went to trail. A bad starting position was not good at all.
Eventually we were off, nothing but good racing for the first few laps. Then on the 3 or 4th lap I was mounting to go up a hill and I somehow caught my chainring with part of my shoe and broke the strap. The group I was with then gapped me and I tried and tried to catch back on. Not that the shoe made too much of a difference after the fact, the initial confusion is what hurt me. Oh well. There are some more chances left.
Over all though it was a decent race, I felt pretty good, at times I should have pushed it more. Just have to do that next time.

I have a replacement on the way, hopefully I get it by Friday.

04 October, 2007

Midweek fun

Yesterday it was raining, again, and as of Monday night my bike had all new cables and housing, I was in no mood to go make everything not work again. So Sean and I went running. We did what the ski team calls "the campus tour" Which is hitting up 3 of the bigger hills on campus 3 times each with going hard in between. It hurts a bit.
Anyways, the sun was finally out today, and I was itching to ride. As soon as I was done with class I was off. On my way to Faribault I did a whole bunch of 30 second sprints. Got to Faribault, had Ben look over my bike to see what else was wrong. Got a new cassette and a tooth on one of the chain rings bent back into place, the front derailleur dropped, and the rear derailleur hanger bent. My bike is basically running better then it did new. Finally.
After that it was off to meet the wanna be Ole. I found him 5 min. into a 15 min interval. Finished that up with him.
Then cruised on past the site of the crash from last week, I stayed rubber side down this time.

None of this crap today.
Then more interval, where I got a big enough gap on him that he could not even smell the farts I left along the way.
It was then back to Olaf where 10 start sprints were done, I have never been a fast starter. It seems to work out most of the time, but it would be nice to get a bit faster. Sean starts fast, I usually just hung onto his wheel, only twice on the longer ones, did I get by him.
All in all it was a good 4 hours 1 minute and 35 seconds.
Some interesting info courtesy of powertap...
Max speed: 3754.35 kph
Max Watts: 107,456 Watts

Damn, I guess I am getting faster/stronger.