Saturday, November 22, 2008

I Heart Fall

Fall in Arizona is not quite what you northwesterners are used to, but we still have the same things: fall leaves, crisp rides, and cyclocross. The only difference is that we do it in dry, dusty conditions instead of rain ;)

Cyclocross racing is sweet when there's no mud...

Even an off-road triathlon is fun when you go to Phoenix and race in warm sun in October
(even though I can barely swim I got 2nd place overall!)

Finally I got my Pro DH upgrade...Sean will you build me a downhill bike?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Cross Crusade #8

Cross Crusade #8 (the championship) proved fairly muddy. And when I say fairly muddy, I mean really ridiculously muddy.Like three-foot high mud puddles (or for all I know, they could have just been gigantic cow patties). And all I had to show for it was a bit of splattered mud. I suppose its the experience of actually getting muddy that counts.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Cross Crusade Cyclocross Racing

Well, I tried out Cyclocross for the first time. I went to the third Cross Crusade race at Mt. Rainier High School in Washington.The result was...A BLAST. Cyclocross is crazy fun (not as fun as sitting on your saddle for a 40-mile Sea Otter race, though.) It was dry and fast, which did no represent Northwest Cyclocross racing very well (the dry part at least), but little did I know, I would soon experience the mud. I then went to the Cyclocross Championships at the Washington County Fairgrounds, which was essentially an old rodeo arena complete with barns and cattle guards. I rode through one side of a barn, out the other, and next thing I know I am in three feet of mud. Well, let's just say my body was pretty muddy and cranky by the end of the day (complete with riding thirty minutes back to school from where my ride dropped me off). My Voodoo Wazoo was even less happy. Aside from being smeared and plastered with mud, the drive train sounded like it wanted to start spitting bolts and chain pins out at me. I think its time to hop on a Soulcraft Cyclocross frame (with some new parts, of course)... I am planning to do the next few local Cyclocross races through OBRA, even though the Cross Crusade series is over. I can't wait until next year! I hope I can start getting some pictures of my own, but for now the ones other people people are taking will get the job done (Just joking, they take pretty sweet pictures).

Monday, November 3, 2008

CXSR #2 - Youth Community Park: November 1st, 2008

In true Belgian spirit and weather conditions, the RedNeck and I represented Soulcraft at Bike Monkey's second cyclo-cross race out of the CXSR series that had us smiling the whole time as we suffered like kids out in swampy marshes. Just getting out there was showing commitment enough, but it turned out to be great fun riding through mud at pegged heart rates. It certainly did not start out that way as the only motivator for getting my ass out there to join RedNeck's unquestionable commitment was my wife's accusations of being a total whimp.

I'll let the RedNeck write about how our race unfolded whereas for me, simply trying to stay upright the whole time while all others raced past by me was competition enough.

Encouragement from the spectators including our very own Yuri was well received as we had witnesses to attest to our madness through the mud-slicken and poison-oak riddled trails.

Always humbling to get lapped but this race was all about survival of the machine and the rider. Below is what happens when getting egged on by spectators to, "Get in there, face first"!

Check out Veronika's pics.

The thought of our beloved Director Sportivator siccing the legal team on (us?)me puckers me up&hunkers me down for another lesson in tecnology .The act of finding my way back to the team blog is a minor triumph.Plucking a photo from the ether& planting it here ,routine for many,is...exasperating.Enough of that,sswc08,the tribal thing,different from all other racing,was a blast.Thanks to Curtis,Dr.Sporty,and a host of others,this event went off with a minimum of downers,none of which were part of my experience there.The weather,course,spectrum of racers&spectators(referees!)and a cooling mist of beer everywhere made for an unforgettable day.I didn't even make the activities the night before.There were thousands of photos shot that day,and if you follow this of thing,you've seen them on flickr,mtbr,etc..Dr.Sporty took some team photos that should convey the mood of the day.For now,it's luddite at the key board. 29th overall,1st race on the fresh holy roller,see you in Durango ! I must have gone back to work after that 'cause I don't remember racing again 'till the14th annual DFLCX final in sept..Camron&Kathleen,coronated King-n-Queen,took home the coolest trophys I've ever seen.Next was the Lion of Fairfax,one of the hottest,bonyest CX's I've ever done.Road from home,won the masters class,Holy Rollerd home.Won a nice over sized sweater with the wrong logo.Back to a pattern of contemplating CX,then going back to sleep.Riding for free in the after noon.Biketober Fest,another great ride into town,not enough time to connect with everyone,to drunk /dark to ride home.More good times!Lastly but not least,it was up to Gianni country for the all day every thing.Drew blood that day!Check out the whole thing on RogerBartels1@comcast.Pictures,map,profile,the works.Or wait 'till I figure out how to deliver a photo here.G