Monday, December 17, 2012

Kringle Kross

What a great final day of cross racing for 2012!  In my opinion, the Kringle Kross course was the best of the year.  The course was really hard, it had a little of everything, AND the Waffle Cross crew did a great job creating a festive atmosphere by decorating parts of the course.  Did anyone else feel like their legs were going to fall off after the gradual climb immediately after the stairs run-up?  I was cryin’ for my momma there every lap.

Santa slimmed down and jumped into the Masters 35+ race
In my final cyclocross race of the season, I finally managed to suck a little bit less.  Woohoo!  Sure, my legs were screaming at me at times and I was drooling on my top tube, but I rode the tricky sandy corners well and stayed smooth the whole time.

Kringle Kross Highlights:

  • Cousin Eddy on the mic all day (National Lampoon Christmas Vacation reference)
  • Santa racing the Masters 35+
  • Yukon Cornelius with Peppermint Schnapps hand-ups for the brave
  • Huge donation table for Toys for Tots.  Bike racers are RAD!
  • Bob’s Red Mill waffles!
  • Costumed riders everywhere
  • Christmas decorations around the course and podium. Nice touch!

I definitely finished the cross season on a high note and I thoroughly enjoyed my first Boise cross season.  Now that I know what to expect out of a full cross season, I cannot wait for next year.  I am coming for you Zuber! Ha! 

Grabbing some brake before the 90-degree corner at the bottom

Santa had to grab his "B" bike, powered by Rudolph on the bars


Even some of the vehicles were decorated

Rooster the Rhodesian looking very festive

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

One To Go!

Kringle Kross is this Saturday, Dec 15th and it is the last local cross race of the season. I have mixed feelings about cross season being almost over. I have truly enjoyed the cross scene here in Boise and for some sick reason I enjoy getting my ass kicked in the "A" races each week.

Eagle Island, Race #3. Photo by Reed Cycle

Since posting last (I know, its been a while), I have raced twice: Eagle Island, Race #3 and the SICX Idaho State Championships at Sandy Point.

The Eagle Island, Race #3 was my first time at this venue and it was yet another awesome course. The run-up with logs was a highlight and it was rideable if you chose your line carefully and stayed on the gas.

The State Champs at Sandy Point was brutally awesome. Sandy Point is definitely a classic cross venue and would be worthy of hosting a national-caliber race. Tim Phillips and the SICX crew took the flyover to another level for the State Champs with fresh paint and steep stairs.

The SICX Flyover

My race at the State Champs was exactly not what I was hoping for. After a good warmup, I finally got off to a decent start and was in a good position going into the first tricky right-hander when another racer crashed in front of me, forcing me to stop, and the entire field went by me in an instant. Doh! This course had everything; twisty grassy, two sand pits, flyover with stairs, and a mini-barrier to give you a bunny-hop option. I did manage to have a good mid-race battle with Rick but he was too strong in the end...again.

Check out the great video from the Idaho State CX Champs:

Idaho State Championships from Jesse kroll on Vimeo.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Turkey Cross Weekend

Despite a minor setback, Turkey Cross weekend was a blast. Cross season has been super-fun so far and I am continually impressed with the race organization and race venues here in Boise. I believe there were 96 racers in attendance Saturday so I am not the only one feeling the cross stoke.

Rewind to 11:59 AM on Saturday morning. I was staged at the start with my fellow 35+ Masters Racers and ready for the one hour of glorious suffering that was about to commence. The Men’s Cat I/IIs would go first, and then the Men’s Cat IIIs and then a 30” stagger before the Masters. Finally the race official turned us loose and I actually had a descent start for a change. We powered up the pavement and jockeyed for position before having to slow down to enter the first tricky turn on the grass which forced the field into a single line of riders. I was sitting comfortably in the middle and we were all wheel-to-wheel as we ripped through the opening twisty grass section…until I went down. It was a silly fall. I simply lost my front wheel in a 180 degree grassy right-hander and I went down on my right side in an instant. I heard the “snap” when I hit the ground and when I scrambled up quickly to remount and continue I noticed a piece of my right shifter fall out and land on the ground. Yep, I broke another SRAM Red shifter. Un-Friggin’-Believable. My race was over in 4’.

I have crashed twice this season, both on grassy corners, and I have broken two SRAM Red Shifters (a left and a right):
Should a slow-motion crash on soft grass do this much damage? I realize that I crashed, and when you crash you stand to break things, but really?

The broken lever and the piece that fell out onto the grass. Oops.

Did SRAM shave too much material out of the shifter body in their quest to be the lightest?

The lever body looks like Swiss Cheese on the inside

Did SRAM get a bad batch of molded plastic shift bodies (because they sure seem brittle)?

Does the outward angle of their lever design promote breakage because it is the first piece of the bike to hit the ground?

You can see how the end of the shift lever would be the first thing to hit the ground in a fall to the side

Is it simply bad luck?

For Sunday’s race, I mounted a pair of Vittoria XG TNT tires on my Scott Scale29 and I was back in business. The Scale29 makes a great substitute cross bike… what I am trying to say is that my result on Sunday had nothing to do with the bike and everything to do with the engine. My fellow 35+ racers are fast and they are rude. Yes, I said rude. I say they are rude due to the way they rode off and left me to ride alone in no-man’s land for much of the race. That is just not polite at all.

The weekend still had a couple of highlights. One highlight was hanging with Gabe and watching him take 3rd in the Men’s Cat III races each day. Fiddee Cent made the trip from snowy Jackson, WY to get his “cross” on and get a little taste of Boise. Gabe’s weekend totals: Two Cat III podiums, a delicious burger & beers at BitterCreek Ale House, a short mountain bike ride Sunday afternoon, and a huge breakfast burrito at Big City Coffee…I’d say Gabe had a pretty darn good Boise weekend.

Fiddee Cent might be the only gansta' in the world to ride tubulars and use embrocation

The other highlight was watching my little buddy “H” finish the kid’s race on Sunday despite going down in the first corner and shedding a few tears before remounting and finishing strong like a true hard-man of cycling. Nice work Henry!

Henry and I discussing race strategy during his warmup

This weekend is Eagle Island Cyclocross, Race #3. Hup Hup!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Cyclocross-ically Challenged

I see myself going so much faster in a cyclocross my mind. What the hell am I doing in a sport that rewards those with a naturally high VO2 Max and plenty of fast-twitch fibers in their body? Each week I line up and hope that I can overcome these genetic shortfalls through sheer will and stubbornness… but I continue to get absolutely killed. Yet, for some sick reason, I am addicted to cyclocross.

I really am trying to suck less. Photo by Cory Bolen

I love the different parks, the social nature of a cross race, and geeking out over tire pressure. I love those few minutes at the beginning of the race when I am wheel-to-wheel with my fellow 35+ racers and jockeying for position into the first few corners. In those first few minutes hope is still alive. But even after the fast guys have snapped the elastic and are making the race at the front, there are still battles to be won or lost further back in the field.

Last Friday I tweeted that “I am going try very hard to suck a little less at cyclocross tomorrow”. However, I did not miraculously transform into Sven Nys and surprise the field on Saturday at the SICX race in Nampa, ID. I rode smooth, ran the barriers well, thought about each tricky corner, and absolutely rode as hard as I could for an hour. While I don’t think I sucked, I was not fast. My engine feels like a U-Haul rental truck that has an accelerator governor installed. I “want” to go faster. I simply can’t right now. But it is not over. (Insert Dr. Evil laugh here)

The Byrds Team is a force at any Boise cross race. Photo by Reed Cycle

Mark Schafer airs it out over the barriers. Photo by Reed Cycle

The SICX Flyover is a huge hit. Photo by Reed Cycle

Next up is a double-header with Turkey Cross presented by the Idaho Waffle Cross Series! Mmmm, waffles.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Waffle Cross

I was thinking about that delicious Bob’s Red Mill waffle halfway through my first lap. The smell from the waffle tent was pulling me in like a Death Star tractor beam as I picked up my race number and signed my waiver but I had to resist temptation until after my race was over. Idaho Waffle Cross had me at hello.

Fall colors, cyclocross racing, and waffles!

Saturday was my first Waffle Cross race and my first time at the Eagle Bike Park venue so I was looking forward to experiencing yet another new-to-me event in Boise. After one easy practice lap I knew I loved this course. In fact, I would say that Saturday’s Waffle Cross course was one my favorite cross courses that I have raced anywhere. However, my love for the course did not translate into a good result. I got crushed...again. But for the first 25’ of the race, I felt like I was “racing” and not just riding around during a cross race and this is a small improvement over last weekend. Hopefully I can continue to race myself into some semblance of cyclocross shape before cross season is over in early December.

Let’s get back to the course and the event. The two run-ups were awesomely brutal and the low double barriers rewarded those with the skillz to bunny-hop them. The low barriers also punished those who got tired and let their skillz lapse late in the race. There was plenty of grass with hills, swooping corners, and off-camber sections to keep you honest and suck the power out of your legs as well. The Waffle Cross crew did a great job with the event and created a fun and festive scene for racers and spectators. It is nice to spend $20 on a race entry fee and feel like you got a good value for that $20 at the end of the day. I am definitely in for both days of Turkey Cross on November 10-11.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Moose Cross from the racer’s side of the tape

Now that the dust has settled (literally) from the 5th Annual Moose Cross Cyclocross Festival, the crew in Victor, ID deserves huge THANKS for putting on another great event. The core crew at Victor Velo, along with volunteer efforts from the Fitzgerald's Bicycles Team and others in the community, rallied to put on an incredible standalone event headquartered at Victor’s Ice Arena.

Before moving to Boise, I was on the organizer’s side of the course tape for the first four years of this event so it was really fun to experience Moose Cross as a racer for a change. At various times throughout the weekend I tried to pitch in where I could but Victor Velo truly had everything under control. JayP did let me help him setup the “Grassy Knoll” on Friday afternoon so I got my fix of course design this year.

Some might ask, “I can race cross close to home so why would I travel all the way to Victor, ID?” In my opinion, the number one reason is that Victor Velo genuinely cares about putting on a quality event and wants every racer to enjoy their Moose Cross experience.

The fact that 120+ (unofficial number) racers turned out again, despite several competing regional events, made me smile. Moose Cross racers were rewarded with the following:

  • Two Days of racing in the shadow of the Tetons
  • Custom Moose Cross socks to every paid racer on Saturday
  • Kate’s Real Food bar to every paid racer on Saturday
  • A HUGE Raffle
  • Free Kid’s races
  • Free Live Music immediately following Saturday’s Men’s Elite race
  • Fat Bike keg-pull competition
  • Food Vendors
  • Beer
  • Great prizes for top-three in each category
  • Free waffles Sunday morning sponsored by The Bunnery
  • Peeto on the mic calling all of the action
  • Fitzgerald’s Bicycles sponsored repair tent
  • New computer-based timing system with animated race results playback (so cool!)
All proceeds from Moose Cross benefit Victor Velo, an Idaho Non-Profit.

I know first-hand how much time & energy it takes to pull off organizing Moose Cross weekend. As a traveling racer this year, I want to say thanks again to everyone who made it happen!

The start of Saturday's Masters race

I got eliminated in the first round of the keg-pull. I think there was some secret training going on prior to the event.

PS – As far as my racing is concerned, let’s just say that I am trying to race my way into cyclocross shape and I am getting crushed in the process. Oofta.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Moose Cross is almost here!

Grab your bike, your lucky skinsuit, a favorite puffy jacket, and a cowbell, and come to Victor, ID this weekend for the 5th annual Moose Cross Cyclocross Festival!

Come for the racing, stay for the party!  The Alta Boys will be rocking Saturday's post-race party at the ice rink.

I can't wait to see our Teton Valley & Jackson friends as well as the friends that I typically see every year at Moose Cross. On a personal note, I have to admit that I am pretty excited to experience Moose Cross from the racer's side this year. I plan on helping the crew any way I can once I get to Victor but I definitely plan on racing both days. Woot!

Hup Hup!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

SICX #1 - Can I get Do-Over?

I saw things happening very differently in my mind when I thought about today's race prior to today.

For "life" reasons I won't go into right now, my head wasn't on straight when I arrived and I never got into the racing groove. I had a short warm-up and then lacked the "anger" to attack the course as you should in cross. On my second lap, I slid out on my left side on an off-camber grassy corner and broke my shift lever. It was a slow-motion fall that should have had zero consequence other than bruising my ego. After that, I had no front shifting or brake for the remainder of the race...not that it would have mattered.

The day wasn't a total loss. I got to hang with little H for a while. Henry was rocking his barrier technique prior to the Boldly Spoken Kid's race.

Is the new SRAM Red too fragile for cross racing? One crash on grass shouldn't destroy a shift lever should it?

I did manage to ride the sand each lap...but I am not so sure that running it wouldn't have been faster.

Lucky Peak State Park is a gorgeous venue for cyclocross.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Time Cross It Up

Woohoo, I have a cyclocross bike again! My stone-cold homie Brandon at Fitzgerald Bicycles was kind enough to order this sweet Raleigh RXC Pro Disc frame so I could build it up with parts of my choosing. The complete Raleigh RXC Pro Disc is very nice but it comes with ee-lectronical shifting and I wanted to run mechanical SRAM Red.

Tomorrow is my first cx race of the year and I am feeling very rusty. I did a little practicing this past Wed night with the Boise Cross crew and it was very evident that I have a lot to work on.
Regardless, I am looking forward to racing tomorrow and feeling my heart pounding in the back of my molars!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Please Take FIVE Minutes to Comment on the Yellowstone Winter Use Plan

Edit: The Yellowstone Draft Winter Use Plan comment period ends 10/9/12

Fatbikes are not currently allowed on groomed Yellowstone & Grand Teton National Park roads in the winter. The National Park Service already grooms these roads for snow coach and snowmobile use. Why shouldn't cyclists be able to use an existing resource? Wouldn't it be cool to see Yellowstone in the winter from the saddle of your fatbike?

Yellowstone National Park has been trying to finalize its Winter Use Plan for what seems like forever. The upside to their inability to adopt a final plan is that we, the non-motorized user group, gets one more shot at voicing our desire to have increased access to the parks in the Winter.

Please click the link below and send in a short comment letter. Feel free to use the excellent letter written by Scott Fitzgerald as a template.

CLICK HERE to comment please.

Scott's comment letter:

To Whom it May Concern,

I am writing to express my desire to see Fat Bicycles, Bicycles specifically designed for travel on groomed Winter roads, allowed in Yellowstone National Park during the Winter months. Currently, there is a significant lack of Non-Motorized alternatives by which to visit the park in the Winter. "Fat Bikes" are one of the fastest growing segments of the bicycle industry with sales doubling every year - far outpacing any forecasts (approximately 5000 units sold nationally in 2011). Although these numbers are still a drop in the bucket compared to Winter motorized sales, the rate of growth is to be noticed.

Fat Bikes are growing in popularity for a number of reasons: 1. They are safe and stable so people of all ages feel comfortable on them 2. They are simple and easy to ride with a very small learning curve 3. They are affordable compared to other Winter transportation alternatives. 4. They are fun!

I strongly feel that our National Parks should be encouraging more non-motorized use - why wouldn't you? If the numbers are not there yet to justify the addition of a new user group does that mean that the mode of transportation should be totally ignored? Why wouldn't the park take the lead and encourage more non-motorized use to drive the user numbers?

In the past, issues of safety have been brought up in regards to Fat Bikes. This is completely unfounded. Fat Bikes are every bit as stable as cross county skis and take up less room on the roads. With 60 million cyclists in the Untied States, there is also a greater percentage of visitors to the Park who know how to ride a bike compared to using cross country skis.

To be clear, this is no longer a new user group. Land Managers around the Country have embraced Fat Bikes, developed standards of etiquette, and have successfully managed Fat Bikes along side Snowmobiles. It is time for Yellowstone National Park to take this issue seriously and open up the Park to Fat Bicycles in the Winter.

I also would like to submit support for expanded cross country skiing opportunities and the development of a yurt system to be used by non-motorized users.

Thank you for your consideration of my comments.

Scott Fitzgerald

Thanks in advance for your time.

Monday, October 1, 2012


It has been nearly a month since my last Blog post because “life” simply required a timeout from racing, training, and blogging.  I am not complaining though.  M and I have now been in Boise for six months and we simply love it.  In fact, we love it so much that we pulled the trigger on a home in the North End and spent the last few weeks packing, moving, and then settling into our new-to-us home.  Yeah, we plan on being here for a while.  Yesterday was the first “normal” day we have had in a month and it was awesome.  I don’t recommend moving twice in six months but in this case it was well worth it.  

I am looking forward to racing some cross, night rides, and enjoying our first fall in Boise.  Yesterday’s ride from the house was a great way to reboot the system. 

Climbing "Hard Guy"
Corrals - Hard Guy - Mahalo - Dry Creek descent. Nice!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

2012 Park City Point to Point, Part 2

My friends often tease me for my tendency to build spreadsheets before big races and for my tendency to pace conservatively.  Basically, I am a planner.  Execution is one of my strengths and I rely on it to make up for the lack of VO2 max I was dealt.  As I was climbing the Team Big Bear singletrack to the top of Deer Valley I was constantly analyzing whether I was going too hard and whether I should slow down or speed up.  I was wondering whether the pain I felt in my quads was normal for this point in the race.  Should I really be breathing this hard and should my HR be this high?  Jens Voit is famous for his “Shut up Legs” quote.  Moving forward, my new mantra is going to be “Shut up Brain”. 

Note to self:  Turn the diagnostic machine off and race your bike.  This is easier said than done for me.

I do think that for me to have a “breakout” race, I am going to have to self-analyze less and race more.  I read an interesting article before the PCPP and there was a quote that stuck in my mind:

"The human body is so complex you can't reduce it to single numbers," says Noakes."Kenyans don't know what their VO2 max is. They train to win; they train to beat the person next to them."

This is an interesting thing to contemplate.

Ok, back to the bike race.  I am a fan of the route that we took this year to get to the top of Deer Valley this year and I hope it remains a fixture in the race.  I am not 100% sure that I know all of the trail names but I think we took Team Big Bear to Flagstaff to Deer Camp (?) to Bow Hunter.  When I got to the beginning Bow Hunter, I got a little snap back in my pedal stroke.  I love that trail for its primitive nature and its remoteness.  I also love it because I know that after completing it, we will be going downhill for a while.  Woot!

Speaking of downhill, the upside to all of the thunderstorms prior to the race was “hero dirt” on most of the course.  I went into this race thinking that we would be riding a very dusty and loose course but we ended up with incredible conditions.  Even newly cut trails like Boulder were riding great.  The Park City trails can handle moisture very well.

I would say that the crux of the race is the climb up Drift Rd to The Steps to Apex and around the Shadow Lake Loop to an elevation of 9,200’.  I was mentally ready for this section and I kept my foot on the gas the whole time knowing that I would have a 25’ descent to recover before the Park City aid station.  As I rounded Shadow Lake I could feel my mojo rising and I was ready to rip the shit out of the CMG singletrack…so I did.  The dirt was a perfect level of tackiness and the grass lining the singletrack was not overly tall which allowed us to see far enough ahead to absolutely “send it”.

 And then I made a wrong turn.  The CMG singletrack crossed a steep service road and for some reason my eyes thought the orange arrow pointed down and not across so I veered left and took this steep-ass road down to a ski lift where it was immediately obvious that I was off course.  My Garmin would have also told me this but I was going 30 mph on a steep gravel surface so I couldn't look down at the Garmin.  At the time, the wrong turn felt devastatingly catastrophic and temporarily took the wind out of my sails.  After the fact, when I look at the actual total time & distance in Topofusion it actually only cost me 7’, 250’ of extra climbing, and a HR spike of 171 to get back on course. 

Note to self:  Shit happens in a race.  Get over it immediately and get back to racing.

Needless to say, my stop at the Park City aid station was a little shorter than originally planned because I wanted to make up for lost time.  I grabbed a new pack pre-filled with Carbo Rocket Kiwi Lime, a flask of EFS Gel, and a Honey Stinger waffle and I was out of there to tackle the Spiro climb.  Oofta…that climb was steeper than I remembered.

Near the top of Spiro, I came upon my buddies, and friendly rivals, Paul Nash and Hamilton Smith.  Hami had torn his sidewall and Paul had stopped to help him MacGyver (verb) a tire boot out of a wrapper in his jersey pocket.  They were putting the rear wheel back on just as I rolled up so we were riding together shortly.  I was in the lead and riding with my homies was a nice boost.  We rallied the rocky Mid Mountain trail and passed several riders along the way.  I didn’t even notice that the skies had turned gray and it began to rain again as I was on a mission to get this thing done.  At some point Paul and I lost Hami and we rode wheel to wheel along the Mid Mountain Trail towards the Canyons.  Paul decided that he needed a Coke at the Guardsman aid station but I kept moving forward…ok, maybe I even stepped it up a notch in an effort to stay ahead of Paul ‘til the end.  There, I said it.

The Ambush climb (what a perfect name for that trail and its position at the end of a very hard race) didn’t disappoint and seemed longer than ever but I was able to stay on the gas and I even passed the legendary Kenny Jones on the climb.  This was noteworthy to me only because Kenny has passed me more times than I can count over the years.  As if to maintain the theme of the day, the final descent on Holly’s also had a few surprises in the form of newly-built rock features (rough speed bumps) just to keep us on our toes.  I managed not to endo on any of them.  At roughly 4:13 PM I rolled onto the grass at the Canyons to a big crowd, music, and a great finish line scene.  It wasn’t exactly the race that I had hoped for but I put down a solid effort and I think I got the most out of what my body had to give on this day.

Sweet Finishers hats from Smartwool
I will absolutely be back in 2013.   

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

2012 Park City Point to Point, Part 1

Race Morning
Is someone running a washing machine at 4:45 AM on the 5th floor at the Canyons on a Saturday morning?  What else could that sound be?  When I opened the curtains and the saw that the sound was accompanied by flashes of light I immediately got a big lump in the pit of my stomach with the realization that we could be starting this race in a storm.  Fuck.  The parking lot lights illuminated the sheets of rain that were blowing across the property.

Take a deep breath and stick to the routine:  Make coffee.  Eat rice and eggs with parmesan cheese.  Do a short session on the foam roller & stretch.  Try to poop. 

When I looked outside again at 5:45 AM it was raining harder. Fuck.

I was walking out the door with my pre-race bag over my shoulder and my two drop coolers in my hands when my phone “pings” with a new text message from Amanda Carey:  “Update from Shannon, race delayed 1 hour”.  All of a sudden I felt calm and I liked the idea of having a little more time to assess the conditions and mentally get ready for a potential slog-fest.

As I drove into the Round Valley parking lot, Jay Burke was in his truck telling racers that we are definitely delayed and possibly racing tomorrow. Tomorrow?  I like the sound of that…or do I?  Shit, I don’t know how I feel about any of this.  I really wanted to race the entire course under sunny skies but that wasn’t in the cards any longer.
It is 6:35 AM and I am sitting in the truck, in the dark, in a hard rain, and I am checking Twitter, Facebook, and the PCPP website for updates.
All of this uncertainty has put my GI system into overdrive and I had to scramble for a rain jacket and make a mad dash across the parking lot to the porta-john.  Thank you Jay Burke for having porta-johns at the start line. 
The next ten minutes were a blur.  There was a quick meeting, then a vote on whether to race a shortened course Saturday or a full course Sunday, more discussion, and then finally confirmation that we were racing a shortened (by 12 miles) course at 8 AM. 

I immediately put on too many clothes because my brain was still replaying images of the apocalyptic storm from 5 AM that morning.  All of a sudden it was 7:50 AM and I still had to warm up.  In one of my better decisions of the day, I stripped down to shorts, jersey, and arm warmers just before start and stuffed my tiny Montbell wind shell into my center jersey pocket where it would live all day.  

Photo by Cotton Sox Photography

The Race

I distinctly remember having the following thoughts during the first hour of the race:

How fast can I go without paying the price later? Not this fast you dummy… ok, maybe this fast. (which in reality was 98.5% of the speed I was going to begin with)  

You aren’t drinking enough.

Get your HR down… but don’t slow down.

My hands are numb and I can’t feel my waffle in my jersey pocket.  I really want that damn waffle.

Wow, these trails are incredible right now.  This is fun. This is awesome.  I am ripping.  I am the greatest mountain biker in the world...oh wait, there are a lot of people in front of me.  Strike that last statement.

There goes KC Holley, passing me in yet another race. 

As we entered the Deer Valley property, the course sent us up a steep service road climb that is used in the ICUP Deer Valley Pedalfest races.  I was steadily grinding my way up this climb, just trying to keep from tipping over sideways, and Mark llinares goes flying by me like he just started his race.  “That was rude of him”, I say to myself as he passes about a dozen riders in the next 200 yards.  I want to climb like Marco when I grow up.

Overall, my race was going pretty well at this point.  I was riding right on the edge of my sustainable pace and I wasn’t having any issues with the mud.  Due to my Raynaud’s, my hands had been numb from the start but that was manageable now that I have 10-spd gripshift on my bike.  Without the gripshift, I doubt I would have been able to shift at all.     

I rolled into the Silver Lake aid station in 1:59:00 and immediately found my drop cooler to swap my pack and grab more calories.  I also ditched my sunglasses since they were fogged up and not doing me any good anyway.  My split time of 1:59:00 “felt” like I was on track given that the course had been shortened by about an hour and I had originally planned on 3 hours to arrive at Aid #1.  

The hardest part of this race was still ahead of me.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

SOLD: Salsa Selma Ti Singlespeed

SOLD - AS OF 8-29-12 @ 3:10 pm

Frame:  Salsa Selma Ti, Large - Link to Salsa's Selma Ti webpage
Fork:  Fox F29 100 RLC 1 1/8" to 1 1/2" Tapered, 15mm thru-axle
Rear Wheel:  DT Swiss 240 SS Hub / Stans 355 Rim, 32H / DT Swiss Comp Spokes
Front Wheel:  DT Swiss 240 15mm Hub / Stans 355 Rim, 32H / DT Swiss Comp Spokes
Brakes:  Magura Marta SL with white Magura 2.2 Hoses
Headset:  Cane Creek 110
Bottom Bracket:  Chris King
Handlebar:  Enve Composites Flat Bar, 700mm wide
Stem:  Thomson X2, 100mm
Seatpost:  Thomson Masterpiece 27.2 Setback
Saddle:  Terry Fly Carbon
Crankset:  Shimano XTR M970, 175mm with Blackspire 32T ring
Cog:  Niner 21T (will also include Niner 19T & 20T cogs)
Grips:  ESI Chunky, white
Tires:  Maxxis Ikon EXO (setup tubeless)
Bottle Cages:  King Ti