Friday, September 29, 2006


Rode the Rig in this morning in the rain- seem to track well and is riding great- thanks Carl!

Saw this this morning and just about pissed my pants- good stuff



by the way- what's the weekend plan for a ride? I'm good for tonight, tomorrow am or tomorrow night

Thursday, September 28, 2006


The Rig is in working order once again. Big shout out to Carl at the Red Jersey the shop as he took goo care of me. It's always fun to see your frame locked into a bench vise with a guy putting a foot up on the bench and pulling with all his might. But he got the damn this straight- I was impressed.

While I was there I picked up a 38t chain ring for the cross bike- so I'll try running a 38x17 and see how that works. I've been running a 34x17 and was spinning it out. Had intended to go with a 40 but Carl didn't have one in stock- time will tell!

On the random side of things- found this rant while cruising a couple blogs and it cracked me up! rant

Played golf last night with my grandmother- had a ball, I even hit par on two holes! We'll have to see if I go another 12 or so years before playing again. Tonight is the finals of the fall trail running series- A1 should be up there to wipe me off the course again.

Let's go for a ride!


Wednesday, September 27, 2006

DEA's Fat Tire Fest wrap up

The mountain bike race season is wrapped up and now it’s on to CX season. The last race was at Bear Notch Ski Touring, and for some reason I just don’t have good luck there. I love the course, the terrain is great- but for some reason I just have bad mojo there. This was to be my first race on the new Rig, and it may have been its last. On the warm up lap with JJ I managed to go over the bars in a rather aggressive manner and slam the bike into a big piece of granite.

I picked myself up and went to remount and realized the rear wheel wasn’t moving. I figured I had either knocked the wheel out of true or it had slid in the dropout. Neither of which was true, I had bent the rear triangle. Super.

I remounted the wheel a bit cockeyed and got back to the start finish area and began trying to bend the frame back to a usable place. I still had some wheel rub but I could live with it, I got the rear brake to work and not drag too much and headed to the start. The race went fine but I was bummed about the bike and was sure that my slowness had to do with the bike not rolling well (which wasn’t the case). This was a TT format so it was good for moral to catch a few folks on each lap. I knew JJ was a minute and a half ahead of me so he was my target. I finally caught him before the final lap and we rode together for a bit and then he took a digger and I got a touch ahead of him. I was quite sure he was on my wheel up the second climb and I started to punch it a bit as he sounded like we wanted to go faster, finally when I was tapped out “he” passed me- it ended up it was Murph who had been on my wheel pushing me and JJ had dropped off the pace a touch. I tried to jump on Murph’s wheel and I was able to hang with him for about the next minute before I blew a line on a corner and did a bit of bushwhacking. Murph was now gone and I picked up on my own pace. All was good, only about a quarter mile left and I managed to drop my chain. Ok, I’m on a SS, that’s not supposed to happen! Total brain cramp, what do I do! Can’t get it back on, getting passed, there goes JJ- now I’m really mad. Finally I took off the rear wheel to reset the chain and then struggle to get the damn wheel back it due to the bent rear triangle. Of course this all took about a minute but at the time I was pretty sure I had messed with this thing for about 10. Jump back on and crossed the finish line with a not so hot time.

For the series I placed 2nd, 1st, 1st, 4th in the sport division. I had hoped to place at the top of the podium in the last race but it just wasn’t in the legs- I would have had to go significantly faster. Either way it looks like I’ll move to expert in this series next season- time to really get it handed to me!

Today is most likely a bike free day, unless there is interest in a night ride????- but I’m going to go play golf with my Grandmother- should be interesting as I haven’t played a round of golf in well over 12 years.

DEA out

ps- saw JJ riding in this morning, felt envy as I was stuck driving. For further humor- today it's golf tomorrow is the final race for the fall trail running series where A1 will kick my ass once again- he truly is a freak!

Chilly mornings

Decided to ride in this morning. Checked the temp before getting dressed and it was 34 degrees. Wow, fall is definately here. Leaving my house there is a pretty good hill you roll down and you generally hit mid thirties. Sorta forgot what windchill was. I was frozen inside of 5 minutes of riding. Was a nice clear and crisp ride once I warmed up. Won't be long before there is ice on the puddles. No one was able to join me so it was a solo trip. Legs felt much better than saturday. Maybe I need to find wednesday morning race circuit.


Monday, September 25, 2006

MTB Race Season comes to a close, Cross is up next

Saturday was the last race on my schedule for the season on my Mt Bike. The Fat Tire Festival at Bear Notch put on by The Red Jersey. What can you say, they always put on nice events, unfortunately they can't control the weather. It rained, and rained and then it was wet.

The night before I went to bed after checking the radar thinking that the rain was going to hold off until after 1pm. It had been dry most of the week so conditions were dry and so I figured I would continue my Singlespeed experiment and race it on Saturday. One issue I have is the tire I am running are Kenda Kahn's which are basically heavy duty slicks. Not too much good in the slop. So when I woke up and the rain had already started the SS was back on the shelf and the Yeti was back in the game.

It was a bit odd getting back on a 26 inch bike after riding the SS 29er for a couple weeks. I got used to it soon enough and was happy to have the better traction the tires it has. We had the random bib draw and I was about the 18th ride to start the TT format. Due to the weather the crown was not as large as I had expected, but of course all the better riders showed.

I began my first of my 4 laps at what I felt was a descent pace. I quickly picked off a couple of riders and was feeling pretty good. After my first lap I tried to push a little harder and found that while I was not red lining I didn't feel much power in the legs. That continued to be the story for my race. It was OK but I was not really hammering. Maybe staying out drinking later than NK is not such a good thing the night before a race??? About half way through the third lap, DEA caught me. I knew at that moment that my suspicions about my legs was confirmed. He had made up the 90 secs I had on him from the start. I was pretty bummed at that point but didn't have the ability to do anything about it. I basically went to damage control hoping not to let too many others pass me. We rode the rest of the lap and about half the last lap together. (DEA was riding his SS on its maiden race)

The race has 2 water crossings on each lap. Right before the first there was this little spot that was rocky and rooty and just off camber enough that I had been running it the entire race. Each time I came to it I was looking for a line as I ran up it. Finally on the last lap, with DEA behind me, I tell him I have not ridden it the entire race and he says ditto for him. For some reason I decide to give it a go. My front wheel hit where I thought it should and instantly turned 90 degrees. The bike went right over the bars came up and I got a very nice Ergon tattoo in my ribs. That did not feel so good. I couldn't breath, but I did manage to tell DEA that what I just did was pretty stupid. I don't think he disagreed.

After getting my wind back I continued on and DEA promptly started to put some distance on me. At this point I had no legs nor any lungs, except a partially collapsed one, at least it felt that way. I was almost done with the lap when a really fast dude went past me. I tried to get on his wheel but soon realized I was not steering so good and it was better to finish at my own pace. A few seconds later I came upon DEA working on his Rig. He'd thrown a chain. Time for a new BB??? I made it across the last water crossing and to the finish. I was wet, a little bloody, pretty spent and very sore.

As results were posted I ended up taking second place in my division. Not as bad as I had figured, but not happy with it either. Computer difficulties prevented the compilation of the series overall points so we'll have to wait and see how they come out. Considering I only was able to make 2 of the 4 events it will be interesting.

Now that the MTB season is coming to a close its time for some great night riding and some good weekend rides. Still putting the Conway/TWAF Death March together, anyone up for a little 50-60 miler???


Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Where were my legs?

JJ and I rode in to work today via the redstone trail and the powerline. We spun our legs off getting to Sears on the pavement- which was entertaining, but once on the dirt it got to be a touch more fun.

JJ is now the powerhouse of the group. I was killing myself trying to stay on his wheel and the bastard was talking while I was sucking O2 from as far away as Berlin (I could tell 'cuz it tasted funny)- oh well. As much as I want to say his tire/wheel set up is faster (it is) it's not fast enough to be kickly my ass the way he was this morning. Oh well.

So did my usual cruz around the world of cycling blogs this morning- good stuff out there. It's almost like a good riding loop- you learn a little something every time out and at the same time it's relaxing and reminds you of why you love this sport. So who do I read? here you go:
Team Dicky
fat marc
Jeff Kerkove

Of course I usually also check velo and cyclingnews for any racing updates, but lately all it's been is about doping. Dopers Suck- gotta love those socks, I need to pick up a pair.

This weeked we have the finals for the Importech Summer Race Series. Looks like I've got a shot at taking the series in the Sport division, which is cool- but also means I'm moving to Expert next year- say good bye to the podium!

After that it'll be cross season with the highlight being Porky Gulch in November, hope to see you there!


Monday, September 18, 2006

Weekend on the SS

So I've been anb owner of an SS 29er for a week now. My impressions so far are that it makes you work harder. It does make you ride faster though. On the saturday AM ride DEA and I were with a group of almost 10 folks and we were the only ones on SS's. It was a fun ride and it was interesting to see the differences in the riders running geared rigs and us on the SS's. We were at teh front most of the time and on climbs put large gaps on the rest of the groups. It might be a combination of factors including the SS, fitness as well as competativeness between DEA and I. But at the top of the one long climb we were wating close to 5 minutes or more for the group to reconnect. One thing I have to get used to, is riding a fully ridgid bike. After almost 25 miles of riding saturday, I was pretty tired, not my legs as much as my core & back. Have to hit the gym and get in better shape for longer rides. Overall I am liking the SS experiment so far.


DEA's week recap

Another weekend has ended, oh well. Amazing how fast they go by. Got some painting and work around the house done, but I made sure to also get in some riding as well!

Ended up doing a fun group ride on Saturday morning with JJ and a crew from his neighborhood. It was a good group, mellow pace and we spent about 2 hours just cruising the Davis Hill area. Then we managed to loose one of our riders so I went one way while Getch went another and the rest of the crew stayed put in case Jen showed up. It was kinda interesting as the first two hours had been a nice mellow pace, but now that we were on search mode the pace was more like race pace. I cleared the loops that I had been searching and then found the group, still no Jen- so we figured she took a wrong turn and was now ahead of us and at her car- so off we went back to the trail head. We got to where her car was and still no sign- so off to JJ’s house to grab the phone with her number and then a new search plan was hatched. I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t nervous at this point, plenty of time had passed for her to have made her way out of the woods and we were operating on the thought that she knew the trails pretty well- so it was either she was in a heap or sitting with a busted bike. I put the hammer down and raced back to the top of the trail system when JJ called to say that Jen had called and was OK but lost and a little sketched out. She didn’t really give any good indicator as to where she was but JJ told her to sit tight and we’d come in from different sides. I clipped back in and started riding hard again. Is it bad that I was having a ball riding hard while enjoying the benefits of a good adrenaline surge? I was riding the same loop we did in the morning but at a greatly elevated pace. It wasn’t long before I came around a corner and saw Jen’s dog Maggie and then Jen wasn’t two much further away. She looked relieved to see me, I called JJ and told them where we were and they began riding in from the northern entrance to Two Bridge and we came in from the south and met in the middle. It was at this point that my legs decided they had had enough and I was struggling a bit to get back home. All in all a good ride.

Then Sunday I took the cross bike out and did some skills work, I still am VERY rough on my remount, and I have to say there is a part of me that is convinced that I’m going to snap a seat post- which isn’t a pleasant thought!

Going back in time- I was up in Camden Maine much of last week, got in some good riding at the Camden Snow Bowl. They have what could become a great mountain bike trail system with some unreal views from the summit. Don’t be surprised if you see a 24 hour mountain bike race crop up at the CSB in the coming years.

On the way back I stopped into Bath Cycle and Ski (, met Darcy the store manager and got a full on tour of the shop. It was pretty cool. Bought a Surly 20t for the Rig and a set of the Time Atac platform pedals (which I now am a huge fan of- a bit heavier but for a SS a great choice). When I got home we loaded up the kids and headed to Great Glen fro the weekly trail running series- I am slow as death when it comes to running!

That’s my recap- about 8 hours or so for the week, not a Jay training level but not to bad for a busy week.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Two Down- Three to Go

JJ got his new toy, so now NK, A1, PJ are all next!

And to think I thought I was chasing him this morning- damn- oh well. By the way on our ride last night JJ was scary fast- there wasn't any talking as I was sucking lung in a big time way.

I have a feeling TWAF 29'er SS'ers are going to be scary strong next year- (insert evil laugh)

Ok boys it's that time of year to leave your lights on charge so we can go out on a regular basis at night. Now the big question- will JJ get a new high end light before A1 gets a 29er SS? Hmmmmmm


I got bit

So for the past couple weeks (almost sounds like a long time) I have been resistant to the idea of a Singlespeed or a 29er for that matter, let a lone a SS 29er. Well I was able to score one at a pretty good price and am now the owner of a Redline Monocog 29er.

Picked it up at a clandestine meeting with a guy at the Wal-Mart parking lot. Went to the store for some baby wipes and came home with another bike. Once I got it home my wife called DEA properly blaming him for my latest purchase. He and I planned a night ride last night and it was a blast. Now the Mono is fully ridged and so its quite a change from my Yeti, but it was a fun and pretty fast ride. I rode it into work this AM hoping to meet up with DEA but it was not in the cards. I could see his tracks on the trail but there was no catching him. One thing I know is the 20 tooth cog on the back is nice for singletrack, but on the Pave it's hard to ride faster than about 15 mph. Maybe a 19 or 18 is in the cards.

JJ on his SS

Thursday, September 07, 2006

a winter challenge

I don't know how many of you remember Dave Mark, the original owner of the Red Jersey cyclery- but he's now out in Colorado running a place called Hahn's Peak- and he's involved in this race:
  • 3rd Annual North Routt Coureur des Bois

  • A XC ski version of the Jay Challenge mountain bike race. I'd be willing to be we could get some deals on lodging- anyone wanna go?


    Wednesday, September 06, 2006

    I have pants...

    So DEA was right, we planned a ride to work this morning. He on his SS and me on my multi-speed. When we began our ride we were on the pave`. I did put a bit of a gap on DEA but not intentionally, but maybe subliminally letting him know that he SS does have its drawbacks. While it might be a light rig and fun, it does only have one speed. How fast can you peddle? I backaed off about a mile later and we rode the powerlines and sticks & stones. I decided to attempt to get a feel for the SS and guessed on a similar gear to what DEA was running and kept it there. Not sure why but as we rolled off the trails I was huffing and puffing, I hope he was too. As I was peddling along I was thinking that I brought all my clothes for work except pants. I was pretty sure I had a pair there so as to not be in spandex all day. But then I began to question whether I had any or not. Could make for an interesting day. Nothing like meeting clients in a tie and spandex. Well lucky for me I did, or maybe lucky for my co-workers and clients, I have pants.

    the invisible nK

    ah, this time of year is typically my favorite. rugby season is getting ready to gear up into full violence mode, i can sense impending snowfall, and it's finally not 89 degrees out every day. life is good!

    ...or so it would seem... because this year i feel that i've been cheating on my mistress with my wife, as it were, as i've been spending so much time away from rugby over the past months that now that i've returned to her i've left my bike (said mistress) by the wayside. and she's an angry mistress indeed.

    i'm going to have to start figuring out a way to get out on the pedals more often than once a week - it's just not enough to keep me satisfied right now - but to do that i know it means getting up at 6:30, and that means leaving The Pretty Girl alone... and that's hard to do.

    A1, DEA, JJ, stop snickering. you're married, which means all romance is dead. some of us still have spark in our lives. PJ, you're a freak, so i know you've still got some lead in your pencil...

    so, yes, as DEA pointed out rugby season begins saturday. i'll try to get some shots to, like sven said, illustrate why my bike is in a constant state of damage.


    Powerlines and such

    JJ and I had an ESSC meeting last night and the grand plan to ride into work was hatched. Calling it a grand plan might be a bit of overkill as I pretty much ride to work four of five days each week, but to have someone to ride in with was an exciting prospect!

    We met up at the intersection of 302 and Mill Street, for the first time in all the years that JJ and I have been riding together I don’t think I’ve ever been there first, it almost caused a moment of panic, even though my wait was a grand total of 10 to 15 seconds. We began cruising along 302 and I quickly found I couldn’t spin fast enough to keep up with JJ, I watched as he pulled away until there was enough of a gap that I’d guess driving didn’t think we were riding together (maybe that was JJ’s intention).

    Getting spanked so badly on the road had me shaking my head a bit, quickly calling into question the intelligence of the idea of doing Jay on a singlespeed, but we soon got to Sears where we were able to duck into the singletrack and then I began to feel much better.

    Pretty much we rode the Restone section over to the powerlines and then rode sticks and stones. I was feeling ok, but still am learning how to corner the Rig. More then a few times I thought I had my line and told myself I wouldn’t hit the breaks only to panic at the last moment and lock up the front and rear when I realized I had over cooked it. It would take about 20 seconds to get my rhythm back, usually just in time to over cook another turn. I skipped every stunt on the course, I’ll have to work on that!

    Got to work a few minutes late, oooops, but at least now I’m awake and feeling alive while most of the office is still working on caffeinating their way to usefulness.

    That was our morning. Hopefully A1 is feeling better, and Nk is in full rugby mode- we’ll have to snap a couple pics at his next match- it’ll give you a much better understanding of why he rides the way he rides and why so much of his shit breaks!

    Get out and ride


    Monday, September 04, 2006

    Ernesto's rain

    It's been a good few days of riding, but my body is starting to itch for an epic ride- any thoughts? As JJ mentioned we had a run ride on Friday morning, and then I went home and continued working on our pump track/skills course. This started out as a little loop for the kids, but has began to take on a life of its own. Currently all that is done is that loop itself is cleared and ridable, we have two banked turns built, one up and over on a good sized rock, and a 20' log that has cleats on one end and then just narrows down to a 4" wide section at the end. Still to be added will be at least on double and one triple whoop section, and maybe a couple other singles. So is this really for the kids or is it for me??? Hmm

    Yesterday the remnants of Ernesto (not Sologoat, but the storm) visited the Valley. My legs and body were feeling kinda crummy and in need of getting outside and I hadn't ridden the Cross Check since converting it over to a SS cross rig, so I grabbed it and headed out for a ride. The day reminded me of the day JJ and I rode a century in the pouring rain earlier in the year. The difference was I was only heading out for an hour today not a six hour ride!

    I headed over to Pine Tree and cruised around on some of the mellow single track. The bike was riding really well. I'm trying running my tires with 50psi or less on the cross bike and that made a HUGE difference on how the bike handled and gripped. You'd think I would have made that connection in the past but for what ever reason I took more of a road rider mentality and ran my tires pretty firm- live and learn!

    I ended up a JJ's house as I needed to adjust my saddle height, plus I was soaking wet and wanted to see if he would show any interest in going out. He proved once again to be much smarter then I am!

    I headed home and did some dismount and remount drills in the back field. I still can't do a smooth flying remount, instead I do this bizarre double skip before jumping on- need to work on that!

    Hopefully TWAF will pull together for a good ride this week in the dark, maybe a couple hours over in Cedar Creek???


    Friday, September 01, 2006

    A nice morning for a ride

    Had a nice 6:30am ride this morning. DEA, myself, Jen and another friend Tim me up to ride the new and improved Sticks and Stones and then ride Peaked Mtn trails. We warmed up doing a lap around Sticks & Stones and DEA and I finished and waited for the others to arrive. After about 5 minutes we were getting concerned that a calamity befell one of our mates. At the point where we were about to go searching Tim rolled out of the woods. He was in pain. He had dumped it and thrown himself upon a stump. Hopefully he doesn't lose a kidney or spleen. Regardless his day was over early. We then went looking for Jen and found her in a few as she was backtracking looking for Tim as well. After this the three of us headed up Peaked. DEA was on his SS 29er and was quite impressive climbing on it. Watching him has made me wonder if I am man enough to join the SS world. We finished the traverse and had a nice ride. A good way to start a Friday and kick off a holiday weekend. Happy Labor Day to all.