Thursday, October 27, 2011

Cyclocrunk 2011 #3

So because of a 84 hour work week last week, I missed Cyclocrunk #2 - and I got sick.

None of that bode well for getting out there during Cyclocrunk #3....

Again, since the race was sanctioned and required a license, all of the 'freds' stayed home. That basically meant that there was no one for me to race against for the most part.

My buddy Bobby showed up. He is an incredibly strong runner and was my partner during the Wolfman Duathlon this year (we took 2nd in Men's team). I took him around the course to show him how it ran, and gave him some of the lowdown on how 'cross goes. With that, we were ready to ride.

I guess I was sorta ready to ride. I was absolutely whooped still from the previous week. With that, I was racing with the 'start slow and taper off' strategy.

The course was fast and dry, and because of a kickball league that infiltrated the park during the race, they cut the race to 30 mins. On the last lap, I saw my buddy Bobby ahead of me by about 200-300 yards and I decided to catch him. Amazingly enough, I caught him half way through the lap and extended it to the finish. Of that, I was kinda proud.

Hopefully, I'll feel healthier and have more legs and lungs for this weekend!

Monday, October 17, 2011

6 Hours of Herb Parsons 2011

This weekend, I hit my favorite MTB race of the year. I started racing MTB back in 1991 or so at Herb Parsons, so it was good to be racing there. I love the trail. I love seeing all my friends and I love the way the race is run.

So fast forward to a few days before the race, I kicked in a registration for a solo ride. I knew this would not yield me a potential placing, but that was Ok. This would not provide any chance for a place on the podium because at this race, they run age groups only. With that, I was racing against the likes of Hart Robinson and all the other fast guys in the area.

Based on my lap times from last year, I planned on running somewhere around 50 minute laps for the duration of the race. Good plan.

For pitting, I had my pit area set up with my cooler at one corner with water, gels and PB&J to eat on each lap. Turned out to be a pretty good plan as well.

After the LeMans start, it was all I could do to not latch on to the fast guy's wheels and hang with them. I know I can hang for 1 lap with some of them, but not for 6, so I stayed as patient  as possible and hung back. Eventually, I settled in on my Bill G's wheel and started rolling along well. That first lap was 47 minutes, which was a bit faster than I planned, so I slowed a bit for the second and hit a 50.

For my third, cramps started setting in so I downed some GuBrew in the pits and went back at it. Legs were feeling better pretty quickly.

Eventually, during lap 5, I must have burped a tire and ended up having to stop to pump it back up. That lap time was quite a bit slower than the previous as I had to stop for a while as I pumped up with that slow little pump.

Finally, a few miles from the finish, I heard Dennis G's cow bell ringing on his camelback and we rode in together to the finish.

6 laps
58 miles
4 PB&J's
2 flasks of Gu
Whole lotta fun!!!!!!!

Oh yeah.... I finished 11th out of 20 in my group. I also finished 1 place behind my buddy and sponsor, Chad (who I beat last year, so 2012 will have to be a matchup)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Cyclocrunk 2011 #1

After waiting for too long, cyclocross season is finally here. The first race of the year for me was Cyclocrunk. This is a USAC training race put on by some local friends. Its grown pretty big through the years and so this year it even had sanctioning (never did previously).

This race promised to be a fast one as it had not rained in a month. The ground was dry and hot. We expected some serious fast racing on what was esentially the previous course with a few modifications.

However, Mother Nature showed her hand about 2 hours before the race and dropped a downpour on us. Perfect for a cyclocross race!!!! The rain really hit us hard and the result was a lot of mucky areas, along with standing water everywhere and lots of peanut buttery mud to slip around on.

I managed to get an OK start and was in the first 10 or so into the first barrier. Unfortunately, I must have been racing with the 'Start slow and taper off' strategy. I managed to stay on the lead lap for approx 3 laps and then the Cat 2's came around hard and fast. That being said, I did lap a few people myself and held with a couple racers for a pretty good period before they finally pulled away on a straight.

As usual, I made up time on the barriers and lost time on the bike. Seems wierd to me as I'm a terrible runner. I guess I get on and off faster.

Now if I can just get some legs back for the rest of the season!

Monday, October 10, 2011

New Wheels For Kurt

My buddy Kurt has been increasing his skills, and rewarded himself for that with a nice set of wheels. Unfortunately, while the King hubs are tough as nails, the Mavic rims that were on the wheels are less than tough, and were not up to his abuse.....

So, he decided to have them rebuilt. The rebuild job came to my garage for lacing.

I started by tearing down the old wheelset and polishing up the hubs. Getting the cassette off was pretty tough as it was a lower end SRAM and had cut into the alu freehub body. Judicious tapping in the right direction with a brass hammer dislodged it and allowed me to wiggle it off. He'll be replacing it with a higher end cassette that has an alu spider.

The new hoops are Stans and really look good. He picked DTSwiss double butted black spokes along with black annodized nipples. I used spoke lube from Alchemy bicycle works on the threads and laced them up. Lacing went fine, and tensioning up and truing was quick as well. Overall, a very good wheelbuild.

They look to me like they will hold up really well and their tubeless capability will take some weight off his bike.