Tuesday, September 22, 2009


It's 29F outside, so we're relaxing in front of the fireplace.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Monday, September 14, 2009

Stormy in Breck

CX#1, VeloCross

Yesterday was my first 'cross race of the 2009 season. They put on a race right adjacent to (and right through) the new Velodrome, part of Boulder Indoor Cycling. Course venue at first had me laughing, but after a couple re-con laps I quickly warmed up to it, as it had lots of switchbacks and tight corners, so some handling skills would help. The barrier was okay, short run-up, and a little jog up and over a set of stairs and into the Velodrome warehouse, then a tight 180 around a pole, over a little boardwalk, and out the loading dock down a wooden ramp onto the grass! The start sure enough had dragged out about 40+ riders, not at all surprising for the Boulder races. Absent were some fast dudes like Faia, the Moots guys, Pete Webber, Jeff Wardell, Clark Coyle (he was promoting the race), JJ Clark, Overstreet. But a few guns were there including Phenicie, Keller, Shuttleworth and others.

Course started with us lining up behind the Velodrome warehouse. I somehow managed a call-up though I didn't race on Sat in the Springs, and wasn't even in the top 20 BCR the year prior. Nonetheless, I was in the 2nd row of about 6-7 rows of guys about 6 people across. Having raced with Keller, of MudAndCowbells fame, I knew he'd get a great start. Sure enough, he easily nabbed the hole shot and had an instant 50yd gap on the rest of the field. I clipped in instantly and was in the perfect gear, shooting me up to a comfy top 5 position. After only about 100yds (though BCR rules state the need for a 200m starting straightaway), the course hairpinned right around some tape, and went into a bump 200yd section of grass. Then curved right again around the edge of the warehouse and onto the asphalt parking lot. Here we were going pretty fast and went into a sweeping left turn around some cones. Here I felt great but didn't want to lean the bike over too much, not having tested the tubular tires before. Soon we spit back out onto some dirt sections, a couple chicane turns through some trees and a couple short hops over some drainage pipes (though not nearly as fun as the hoppable ditch at Xilinx). We then went up a small rise and were riding some off camber grass that dipped around some trees, then saw us going nice and hot towards the only true barrier on the course. Here was a good high-speed dismount, followed by a sharp left turn over some railroad tracks. Then about 50yds and another dismount and run up over a small ditch and up about 15 feet on a hillside. Then geting back on the bike we hit the pavement again, rolled up to the warehouse, went along the outside of the Velodrome, then went down a steep little wooden ramp out the loading dock, then back on the grass.

Great start, small fade, a couple bobbles, but rode pretty well. The new SRAM stuff worked super well. After the first 5min the shifting was totally intuitive. I ran about 32psi in the Flexus tubulars, they felt so much smoother than my clinchers (which I would've had to run at 40+ to minimize flats). Happy with the new parts on the bike, happy with the first race effort. Looking forward to the rest of the 'cross season. The big question is whether or not I can stay motivated past mid-November. it is often difficult once the trails and bike paths up here get snowed in. We'll see though. Going to SF with Helen in early December. If the energy is there, it would be pretty fun to race the Bay Area Super Prestige series finale.

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Wyn's 4th birthday party

Alina's good friend Wyndam had his 4th birthday party this past Sunday. I missed most of it to check out a cross race in the am down in Boulder, but arrived late to see the little kids at Carter Park riding their bikes and just being kids. Helen snapped this pic earlier when all the kids had arrived at the pump track!