Tuesday, September 09, 2008

So for the Tahoe Sierra report.

Dejay and I made our way to the Sierras to learn the course and rest up a full week early. Which was good because it took forever to get there, with pulling the trailer on the super curvy and steep roads that were littered with cows that were trying to block the road(so we wouldn't find bigfoot).
Eventually we made it and we able to ride about 85 miles of the course, and get a good idea of what was to come.  The area was beautiful, great views, big mountains and deep canyons(we stopped on the way out for 20 minutes because the van brakes were smoking).  Unfortunately for the 270 riders that registered for the event the promoter had to change course and it ended up being 100 miles of fire road(a few feet were kinda narrow), it was a little boring but it was over quicker even with about 14,000' of climbing, most of it rideable.  Along with being amazingly beautiful the area was so isolated I really had time to focus and get ready for the race.  

We went back into town on Tuesday to get the supplies we needed to make it through the weekend(we thought). lots of food, propane movies and did our last bit of internet/email action before we went back to the woods. We didn’t realize we were out of shot bloks and only had two tubes.

All the usual suspects showed up for the start plus a few others, Harlan Price, the trek crew(Chris Eatough, Jeff Schalk, and Jeremiah Bishiop), Evan plews, Tinker, Josh Tostado, Mark Santubane,  and single speeders Dez, Conrad, Tom, Rich, Dejay of course, Yuri and a few other fast ones that I didn't get to meet.  For some reason this was the slowest start of any race in the series(that I have done), even those with a controlled start! it was super mellow for a little more than a mile,  then the pace started to increase to where I'm sure some people were dropped but not many. At one point while after the pace picked up someone said something to the effect of what is that singlespeeder doing up here in the front, I usually ignore things like that and let my riding show them. But Jeremiah bishop chimed in and said something like “that's Fuzzy he's got the super cadence”.  The short track and marathon national champion saying something like that about will always give you a little boost. Maybe that’s why when we hit the bottom of the first climb the whole field went back to taking it easy, and before I knew it I was a few hundred yards or more in front of everyone else. After I realized that I had a gap I did my best to settle into a groove and ride my race, but it was kind of exciting being off the front of that group.

Two miles into the climb the big eight bridged the gap and we(Harlan, Chris, Jeff, Jeremiah, Tinker, Mark, Josh, Evan and I)rode together for another two miles. A mile or so before the top Harlan threw in a little surge and I decided I didn’t want to go any harder and kept my pace going, and would settle for 9th place overall again(the third time in a row…). I thought I could never catch these guys. But I kept my pace high to make sure no others would catch me. I had Jim Hewitt not to far back on the first climb and a few others were close I’m sure.

In the long run, it was probably best that I let them go, at least my lungs thought so. It was so dusty, being a minute behind the lead group on the first descent it was even thick in a few corners. Then for about 5 miles the dust was gone and I could breath again, I was now at about mile 18 and been on my own for 11 miles when the dust began to get thick again, I thought to myself, am I catching the leaders? But it was just Jeff, who had suffered a bad crash and was limping his way back to the start/finish.
this is how bad the dust was...
I’ll take it, I’m going for eighth now just a bit more motivation to keep the pace high. I was up and over the next climb and on my way down to the bottom of the second long climb when I passed Tinker on the side with a flat or something, I was now up to seventh place. Go, Go, Go!!! This could be my best finish ever with this deep of a field.
23 miles down, and sitting in 7th place, there was a long way to go, and a lot of false flat fire roads with some big climbs toward the end. I kept repeating my mantra, ate my Cytomax gels(vanilla) kept hydrated and talked to myself a bunch for the next 5+ hours as I never saw another racer. I crossed the finish line in 7h 45m 54s about 44 minutes behind Jeremiah and Chris who tied. Some how Josh T. missed a turn and I slipped up to 6th overall, but only five minutes ahead of Dez the second place singlespeeder.

This was my second win of the series and with my two second place finishes I won the NUE singlespeed Category and am the 2008 national SS champion.

Just a quick thanks to Cytomax for getting me gels and drink so fast and making sure I was prepared for the race. To Niner, Dt Swiss, Stan’s no tubes, Ergon, Kenda, Chris King, Shoair and all my other sponsors that keep me and my bikes rolling so fast!
This one was for you all.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Tahoe Sierra 100 race report!

Coming soon. To tired of driving, and played with Ian all day today. I will get the story out tomorrow(Tuesday). For a quick update check out Harlan's recap at this place.  
Don't go to Rich "the weenie" Dillen's site, he has no real report yet either. nor is he good at telling the past(that kid is an Eagle scout, and he is at least 12). 

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Tahoe Sierra 100

The last race in the NUE series is this Saturday. It seems like it is mostly or all fire road so it might be a little boring but the views from the parts of the course are great!!! The best of the year. There is also a ton of climbing, I like that! the venue is hours from anywhere, it takes about an hour and a half to get anywhere with cell phone reception, so this will be my last post before the race. Keep your fingers crossed for me. I'm going in tied with Chris M. and one to 4 points ahead of Dejay.  In order to win the series I need to finish better than 7th and with in one place of Dejay... 

Singlespeed worlds 2008

Just a quick report(a bit late)...

The weekend started a little slow, but once it got going it went way too fast!!!
Saturday about 5:30 Curtis announced that the contest to decide where SSWC09 will be, will start a 6:30 at the bowling alley. If you wanted to be involved needed to get up on stage and introduce themselves. What the hell, I try and win one for New Zealand, I'd like to go there!!! As I know the folks from NZ(not the Australians) would like to host it. The first round was Bowling, the top two move on... Getting the win would have been tough but beating third and fourth was pretty easy!!!
Next was head to head at Ms. Pacman, unfortunately Durango was too good, even withFlash photography in the face he still beat me. I may have not won the right to host next year, but the NZers gave me a cool jersey, thanks guys....

The race was tough three laps each with about 1600 feet of climbing. I did well in the la mans start, Good enough to get a picture in the NY times... I think I was in third starting the bike, until all the guys in Borat bathing suits passed me. Almost at the end of the first lap I was sitting in 7th place when I flatted and had to put in air a couple times. realizing it wouldn't last I had to stop and put in a tube.  I must have dropped back to 40th place or so before I got it fixed. the next two lap was time to move, and after it was all said and done I made it back to 20th overall out of 425+. I'll take it with a flat. Here are some cool pictures....More pictures from Carson Blume (there is one of me middle row on the far right...)

Where did that month go? And where have I been?

Since my last post we (Kristina, Ian, Dejay and I) spent a few nice relaxing days in northern Michigan on a lake doing some sailing and some serious fudge eating before heading to Wisconsin for the 24 hour nationals where we added Rebbecca to the caravan. This was my first race this year that I have just watched(and supported), it was a great change. No mad craziness before the race, no watching what I eat or any of my other pre race quirks. Just a few beers and hanging out with Kristina and Ian.

After 24 nationals we (Kristina, Ian, Dejay, Rebbecca and I) took off to ride part of the Maah Daah Hey trail in North Dakota. We spent three days there riding different sections of the trail. The parts of the trail I rode were OK, but I found the spur trails were much more fun! Some day I will go back and ride the whole 96 mile trail over a few days and do all the spur trails. I guess this is one to put on the list of trails to do...just avoid the wet days!!! It’s about the worst mud I have ridden in.

Next stop Missoula, Pick up Andrew, do a quick spin with the whole family the hit the road again.

Now we (Kristina, Ian, Dejay, Rebbecca, Andrew and I) are on the way to Bend, Oregon. I love this place in the three days we had so much fun! Three days of riding(from town), 4+ hours per day and a ton of single track, then finish it off with one of the breweries and a float down the river. I going back soon! After Bend we made a quick stop to ride the Mackenzie river trail on our way back to my (old)home town Arcata, CA.

Same old Arcata, clod and foggy with a couple of whacked out people welcoming us to town. The short story...Some old dude in his tighty whiteys with a big flash light yelling at us for parking in the closest spot to my house as I could get. Up early for my favorite home town ride Tish Tang, got some poison oak but with a little help from friends it got better pretty quick(Thanks Geoff!) It was great to see everyone while we were there. I hope to see you all soon(except the underwear guy). I think I will be back in October for La Grange.

Last stop for the big crew Single Speed Worlds in Napa!