Sunday, September 28, 2008

Thank God I didn't have to sprint by Dianne at the finish

Yes I'm still overdue on some stories from last week, but I'll get to that in an upcoming epic post. Today's events however demand immediate postage... There was no way I could trek to freaking Canada or wherever the Verge race was this weekend so I stayed home like lots of others to race at Bedford. Give it to the Quad guys... they put on a fun race last year and today did not disappoint either. Well my son had a football game this morning (ugly... don't ask) so I could only make it to the 3/4 U35 race at 12:30. I'll point out that I think Bedford may have been earlier last year and it was my first race back post-surgery. I got lapped by Lynne Besette. The weather this weekend ensured that it would be epic. Seeing the riders on course when I got there proved it. I got one lap in and found that it wasn't all that terribly technical if you don't mind mud. There was a power climb only because it was covered in a few inches of wheel sucking mud and a longish run only because it was faster to run than try to ride through the mud. The loop was short though so it was gonna be interesting.

Whistle blows and I got an ok start after almost crashing with Lil Stevie who nearly nutted himself after slipping out of a pedal. Unfortunately I then proceeded to ride like one of those hyper little chimps who had just drank a case of Red Bull. I was a mess as far as bike handling went even though I felt fairly strong. So we get maybe 1/3 of the way into the loop and there's this short little mud bog. Well in a pack it was carnage so I tied up with a guy to my right and basically threw him outside the tape while me and my bike landed on his bike. At the same time, I looked and my saddle was snagged on my shorts. It seemed like it was just one of those things like where it catches the chamois and sort of just pulls it forwards, but in the panic of being on top of two bikes I couldn't tell. Well I got up, remounted, and as soon as the muddy rooster tail started I could feel my ass cheek getting sprayed. I'm thinking "Dammit, friggin skin suits are expensive... and now I'm way in the back... and this sucks" but I plodded on and now I was riding angry. As I'm going though, it feels like a fairly large portion of the left cheek is getting covered in mud and I'm not so very comfortable with my short filling with mud and trying to ride. But I soldiered on and was picking guys off. Maybe 2 or 3 laps in, I'm noticing commentary and horrified laughs all around the course and I found Bauer near the pits. We had this exchange:

Me: Dude, how bad is my ass showing?
Rob: Oh, real bad! And I got pictures!

So now I'm pretty sure I'm effectively mooning everyone I pass. But I'm passing lots of guys and my bike is hanging in there despite the conditions. So I kept riding my ass off (pun intended). The highlights of the heckling from there:

- My buddy Ciaran yelling to me that he loved my ass (I worry about that dude sometimes)
- The random girl Ciaran was chatting with yelling "nice booty"
- JimmE and Sweenster waving dollar bills at me every time I rode by the pits
- There were also rumors of people calling me Ass Man (great episode of Seinfeld BTW)

Fortunately, the payoff for everyone who was there having to go home and bleach their eyeballs was that I brought home a big 5th place finish (according to the first set of results posted even though Ciaran counted me at 6th) which (in either case) means points for me in a race I wouldn't have expected them... yeah me.

Now I think I have to go do another round of scrubbing some dirt out of some places...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


If my head wasn't spinning I'd be sitting here banging out long-winded stories of swanky parties, long rides through seaside farms, and the ultimate in tragic bike sagas... but instead I'll just have to drop this teaser on you and keep you waiting...

Monday, September 15, 2008

CX Amesbury Style

Sort of quick race report from yesterday:

Had to do the 3/4's because it was the only race I could make it to without ditching my son's football game again (1 TD, many tackles, 5 positions played). Wasn't sure what would happen with the course in the rain especially with last years roots, but I took off the file-tread tires Saturday night and switched to the Vittorias anyways (for the record, this is probably a near wash since the Vittorias are way more narrow and the tread is questionable anyways). Course was pretty different than last year with the skate park section along the embankment run in the opposite direction and less roots (hooray). Saw some people, warmed up, lined up (front row baby), riders set... go! Hmmm, that's funny, I was sure I had 2 pedals on my bike... oh wait, it must be around here somewhere... wow these guys are fast... Hey that's funny guys stealing my pedal like that... hey look more fast guys... Oh, there's that sneaky pedal... DAMMIT! Couple that little adventure in start land with somehow dropping my chain after the first runup and I got a nice solid view of the Colin-esque DFL start (ok, maybe wasn't quite DFL, but really close). The chase was on and chase I did. I felt ok, but was pretty pegged the whole time. In a highly comical twist, the combo of the runup followed by a rooty section (hooray for rides in Delaney and Stow Town Forest) meant I was making up huge chunks on groups through that section. I was getting smoked on the couple of straightaways and I rode the short steeps on the banking fine (except once when I botched it). In the end I think I was 16th and I just nipped Yash who seemed to have everything possible go wrong, but was still smiling afterwards. I want to see the results for some names of who was ahead and behind before I decide if I'm satisfied. There were definitely fast guys in there, just didn't immediately recognize which ones. Maybe if someone out there was compiling all these results and calculating some sort of point system so you could see how you did against others that would be awesome... when it got updated at least (stupid real jobs interfering with more important things like cross)...

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Dear Dan

Here's that picture you asked for. I don't think the BMX world needs to worry about me joining them:

Friday, September 12, 2008

Oh by the way...

Maybe we could get USCF to start issuing everyone a set of rollers when they get their cat 5 license and as part of the 5 to 4 upgrade you have to demonstrate that you can ride them. I still kinda suck on them (as opposed to BB who is reported to be able to ride them no handed while pedaling with one foot), but I was comfortable enough staying in my little 16" wide happy place while hammering in the 12 last night. Can you imagine the carnage if (insert name of squirly cat 5 or 4 (or 3) rider here) tried this? Oh the humanity. Rollers are good. Try them... just make sure there's nothing sharp nearby for a while.

Quick check in

It occurred to me that it's been way too long since I checked in so I figured I'd throw down some mindless commentary to entertain the both of you. I had this whole thing in my head where I was going to describe what a typical day is like for me lately, but 1) you probably don't really care, and 2) just thinking about it makes me tired. Suffice it to say that I was completing a workout on my rollers last night at 10:30 p.m. because that's the first chance I got to do it. And yes, it's about 6:45 a.m. and I'm at work an hour away from where I live. You do the math on how much sleep I got... your prize for the right answer will be an empty XL coffee cup from DnD (which I'm about to empty).

Amesbury CX Sunday. The only one I can make it to is the 3/4's so hopefully I can minimize the beating I take. If I'm doing stupid shit like getting my intervals in on rollers at 10 p.m. I better be able to. Now if someone could just nudge me at the start line just before they blow the whistle to wake me up I'd appreciate it...

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

A quiet anniversary

This past weekend marked the unofficial anniversary of when I started running 20 years ago. Not knowing the exact date I started my Freshman year of high school, I've always just gone with Labor Day weekend. At one point this year I had thought about doing some big running related thing to commemorate this milestone, but somewhere along the way I lost interest and it came and went with only my relaxed jaunt around the Chalz Friday as time spent doing the left/right/left thing. Instead we'll have to go with just discovered photo evidence from a couple months back showing that the old man's still got it:

This was 3 laps into my 5:03 1600m effort... I think I disguised the pain face fairly well.