Monday, July 31, 2006

Sometimes You Win, Soemtimes You Lose

What a weekend. So we went down to Tijuana, you know to see one of these shows... and.. wait... wait... Seattle?

So we went up to Seattle hoping for a big track race, and pretty much what we got was a local Friday night training race with a bunch of Portlanders and Canadians. (Two of the finest species of track racers in all of creation). Seriously. They had pretty decent money, but what's the point if you're going to run a 26 person Keirin tourney with one round to the finals and no reps? Especially when the Masters get a couple rounds including reps. What? How does that work? Either way, it wasn't super successful on the racing end. Didn't make it to the finals in the keirin, Lost to Zac in the semis of the sprints and ended up 5th, screwed the pooch in the team sprint and dropped steveo off about 10 mph slower than we started, then ended up somewhere around 8th in the miss and out. Made enough money to cover my gas, food and beer garden tab, so I guess you can't complain much about that.

Beer garden. The yardstick of civilization. Fat Tire showed up with kegs and kegs, setting up shop in a fenced off portion of the grandstands to everyone's delight. Spectators enjoyed it and sprinters loved it. I finished my racing around 8 or so, but endurance events were scheduled until about 11. What is one to do? The Canadians were clearly having a great time, so I joined them instead of sitting in the infield pouting. I successfully held on to my 2006 Points Race Heckling Championship jersey despite Matt Chater's amazing display of Vanilla Ice manuevers and a pretty aweome running man. I guess the Fat Tire people were pretty happy with the fact that we cleared a couple hundred bucks worth of beer in two hours, so they gifted us with sweet FT pint glasses. Full of beer. With extra beer on the side. Good times.

Vancouver Crit the next day went pretty well, all things considered. Mr. TooVanilla himself turned up in full double white Nike wristband splendor. I'm not gonna lie. That guy's not slow. Team Evan Elken showed up to put the hurt on everyone. I was there mostly to look great. Big group took off super early which included the Great White Vanilla, Team Evan, Da Conda Curry, the eldest Bosson, Kirk, Aaron Negative Tuckerman and a few others. Aparently Richard and I were elected Group Police, and spent the rest of the day chasing would-be breaks. After the group got thier lap, things were looking good until the bell rang for a 50 dollar prime. Da Conda was huffing and puffing a little ways off the front and Shannon was feeling ambitious, so he summoned the power of the donkey and lit it with a half lap to go. Unfortunately he was riding a Trek, so he didn't quite get Curry, and I burned my one final match by completely unnessesarily dragging the group back up to Mr. Skerrit (who was probably about to sit up anyway).

Kirk ended up second behind Team Elken, and was awarded a giant blow-up fake bottle of Wild Turkey, which I promptly destroyed.

Miami Vice anyone? Talladega Nights on Friday? Beerfest The Movie coming soon? Awesome. AWE. some.


Thursday, July 27, 2006

floyd schmoyd

Nevermind. Floyd's not the man.

Probably not anyway. I guess time and the B sample will tell, but a bit odd that he would get popped on the day of his inhuman victory in the Alps, eh?


Tuesday, July 25, 2006


It's about a million degrees outside on Sunday, so instead of spending my day off in the AC slurping on some chilled frappa-latte thing, I spent it at the track (naturally). State champs for the Sprints and Keirin means go time.

I've been doing 200s in a pretty small gear so far this year, so hey, it's the end of July and time to put the big boy gear on. So on it goes and up on the track I go and it feels pretty fast until I get into corner 4 where it feels REALLY fast and suddenly I have this wierd sensation that I'm about to drag my elbow on the apron, do the bike throw at the line and I beat my PR for this season by 4 tenths. Sweet. 11.61. As far as I'm concerned, I can go home now, my weekend is complete. I'm psyched.

Sprint rounds follow, Beardsley tries to kilo me and I have to pull something out of my toes to get him by the line, then I do the one thing I knew I shouldn't do when racing Zac Copeland (I let him lead it out). Hence I lose with my tail between my legs, race Eugene for third and get it, and it's on to the keirin.

The Keirin final is pretty stacked. Tim Luther, Zac, McMuscles, Casey Deck, Eugene and myself. BANG the gun goes off, I grab the motor (which is actually Mikkel on his track bike, as our decrepid Moto Guzzi has died for the 50th time this year), Mikkel winds it up to real keirin pace (which is about 10mph faster than the motor could ever go), he drops us off, I pick it up a bit and as I look back with 2 to go I see a tim/zac/mcmuscles team sprint starting to wind up on the blue band. Que? No way. Tim flies by me and pulls up to let Zac and McMuscles go through with a lap and a half to go, but I do the big jump, squeeze between Zac and Stephen, and chaos ensues. There's yelling and squealing of tires, I black out untill I'm coming around Zac in the last corner and he's pulling a sweet drift on me all the way past the blue line, but I stay on the gas, get a sweet dive off the bank, kiss everyone goodbye and sail home to a bike length's win.

Casey Deck fought the power and squeezed through the mess behind Zac and I battling up the bank and made a huge push for what he thought was second, but the camera thought was third.

All in all, boo-yah. My first Senior elite championship. On to FSA and LA.


Thursday, July 20, 2006


I said it a few months ago and I'll say it again, Flyod's the man.

Photo of the day is from Cyclingnews, Mark Gunter, and Kui Song picking the worst possible place to go down.

Miraculously this guy is not hurt that bad. Check out the series of photos here.


Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The Exploder

While discussing very important (and relevant) business issues today at our mutual place of employment, Solomon and I decided that the best name for anything is The Exploder. Seriously.

Just kidding. But seriously. A tire called The Exploder? Awesome. An intimate undergarment called The Exploder? Priceless. What if you had a candy called Exploders? Can you imagine what that stuff would do to you?

Quote of the day (once again, courtesy of the red-headed stepchild): "we should have a wrench-fight."

Honestly I think that I could take Solomon in a wrench-fight, but how does that pop into someone's head at 4:32 on a Wednesday at work at the bike shop?
Also. What if you could spend an entire day totally invincible and impervious to pain for one day? Tall building parachuteless base-jumping. Real Frogger. Wrench-fight in the setting sun.

Skeleton on wheels.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Most Awesome Thing Ever

Yesterday was a pretty average day at the shop. Couple of hybrids, couple of kids bikes, then BAM. Two of the sweetest bikes ever fall right into my lap. First was the Alma. I'm not a big mountain biker, but this thing's hot. Orbea Alma 29er. Full carbon frame, X-lite wheels, carbon post, carbon bars, carbon brake levers, carbon cranks. 24 lbs for a medium 29er. Crazy. The other 29ers we've had in here are 28 lbs minimum. Not so sure about the integrated "fender" on the downtube, but the shaping overall is pretty hot.

THEN. The most amazing bike ever rolled right through the front door. Remember in Napoleon Dynamite when Pedro gets the new bike? The one with the shocks? And the pegs? The one he catches sweet air on? The Sledghammer? Yeah. That's right. I saw a Huffy Sledgehammer. It had the exact same paintjob that the one in the movie did (black with NEON ORANGE SHOCKS). It was magical. I prayed the guy would buy a new bike and leave the Sledgehammer with us so I could shine 'er up and it could be my ultimate hipster bar bike. How amazing would that be? Everyone thinking they're all cool pulling up to stumpown on thier classic track bikes and I rock up on the sledgehammer? Who wants a roundhouse kick to the head when I'm riding this bad boy? Fuhgettaboutit.

Made my week.

You know what else is hot? Double toe straps on your track bike. I converted. Finally. Shoulda done it sooner. Seems like it really improves that over-the-top dead-spot in the pedal stroke. Overall, it does not suck. However, it does suck when your TEAMMATE right turns in front of you in the first half-lap of a sprint at 10 miles an hour and you topple over because you can't get out of them. But when you get back up and drag race it to the line and win without even flexing your left butt-cheek, they're worth it.

Seriously though, it wasn't that easy, but I was happy to finally win something. This season's been a bit average so far, and I finally felt like I could match Zac and McMuscles. Speaking of the big black sharkish guy himself, big props to McMuscles who pulled the only move I did not expect. Dude took off like a rocket out of the blocks, caught me sleeping and with a bigger last lap could've probably taken it. Fotunately for me I got on level terms with 2 to go, held the gap and with a half to go I was ready to do the big jump when he sat up and started chuckling. Good show. Luther's getting wicked fast, that guy's jump gets bigger every week. Awesome.

Anyway. Back to work. Back to the gym. Back on the bike. Back to something constructive.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

AVC (and the armed maniac somewhere outside)

AVC went as well as could be expected. I had very little speed so that left me with only my good looks and recklessness to keep me alive. I skipped embarrassment in the form of the kilo and started the weekend by qualifying 6th in the 200 with a 12.01. Not quite what I wanted but not last either. As I looked at the times I thought to myself "hey, at least since I didn't get last, that means I don't have to race Stephen Alfred in the first round!" Somehow I thought wrong. Alfred's a great guy, but he's one of the more demoralizing sprinters out there. The guy is a robot. He never changes expression on the bike, never looks like he's in trouble, always looks like he's about to eat you. Anyway. I went for it (early... way early) and didn't make it. The rest of the sprints were pretty average. I made a couple pretty sweet moves, but they only got me into 6th by the end of the day.

The Kierin... now that was fun. I love kierins... I think my new bike loves kierins too. Big thanks to Justin and everyone at Orbea for making sure my new track rig turned out exactly the way I wanted it. When I tell it to turn it's already turning, when I want it to go I have to hang on and pray. Good stuff when you're shooting a gap in the last corner underneath and between 4 guys that all outweigh you by a few pounds. I think I almost made my mom pass out a few times while she tried to watch the rounds.

Here's a sweet picture from the Oregonian. Me trying (unsucessfully) to dive under Alfred. Notice how Alfred's bicep is bigger than most of my body. He's big. And fast. And scary.

In other news, I saw about 20 cops scream by the shop while I was writing this, so I cruised down the block to take a gander. A pleasant blue-shirted guy with a big gun informed me that an "armed individual" is roaming around, but not to worry, they have about 20 square blocks posted with a car at every corner, so he won't get far.
Just stepped outside while writing that to see the news channel 8 chopper hovering maybe 50 feet directly over the shop.

So I'd avoid Sandy from 30'th to 40th for a while...


Thursday, July 06, 2006

Pre-pre-race update

Sounds like the Independence Day Grand Prix in the Springs was pretty much a bust. It's tough to run a big-money track race when it's raining out, so most events were cancelled or delayed until late in the night. If they have enough money to install a huge light system for night racing, they should be able to install a huge... you know... umbrella system. for rain racing. Come on, do I have to do everything myself?

PDX forecast for this weekend calls for no rain, mid-80s.

Two days to go and I finally have my entire bike ready. Yeah i know, the whole thing. I can hardly believe it myself. Big props to Orbea for making sure the boat from Spain didn't overrun by pirates or anything. I hear that's going around. Also big props to the proffessional mechanics at the bike gallery, specifically Thumbs Cardinal, who threw that glued, unstretched Continental on my front wheel like it was no big deal. I guess that's what a few years of fixing flats on hybrids with Armadillos will do for you. Bionic Thumbs.

Apparently Ping-Pong fell of the wagon with his Solomon diet already. His plan seemed to include racing Tabor and not eating anymore, but Tabor last night was Pong-less. Adam Curry was out there, however. He slayed himself to win a pair of Adidas shoes (lucky sample size nine), to keep him comfortable while watching movies next to Tuckerman in his Adidas hat when Norrene comes home from Nike. Couple of classy guys right there.

We'll have a Serotta Meivici in the shop soon, so if you have $13,000 kicking around somewhere you should come check it out. Or you should give it to me. I will give your money a good home.


Wednesday, July 05, 2006


AVC starts this weekend. Kinda nervous. This will be the first big test since my car vs. concrete adventure. I've been doing decent times in training, but they're nothing to write home about. It's go time.