February 27, 2009

Spring Classics, LL, DZ, and stuff

The Spring Classics Like You Know 2009

So….The first unofficial newly named under-hyped “spring classic” is this weekend and I won’t be there, even though it’s like 15 meters from my house. Well, it isn’t that close, but close enough. Decidedly, I’ve already planned my pro race attendance calendar and the Omloop Het Nieuwsblad didn’t make the cut, even though I’d love to see the big-meanie Philipe Gilbert go out and tear it up again. I don’t know why he’s mean, he just looks like it when he’s suffering, he looks meaner than anyone else, maybe his publicist tells him to try and look meaner.

I’m looking forward to a nice weather spring classics season, last year’s weather was awful, topped off by a horrible Ronde Van Vlaanderen (Tour of Flanders.) The weather should at least be tolerable, it sucked bad last year, all year, including the awful winter we went through when my cycling and working life we’re thrown for a loop and I was actually forced to stay off the bike and do some real work…crappy crap.

My race attendance calendar looks like this..1st week of April, Ronde Van Vlaanderen, Ghent-Wevelgem, andParis-Roubaix. Before then I’ll walk my happy butt to see a smaller, but right out my front door race called the Le Samyn (4 March). It’s a local small classic that rolls right down my street and right through my pedal stomping grounds. Of course there’s the Vlaamse Pijl, Dwaars Door Vlaanderen, the E3 Prijs, De Brabantse Pijl, and the 3 Days of De Panne before the real Classics start. That’s all I have so far, I’ll look at the rest of the calendar and figure in other races later, I guess I’m not too well organized, unless you consider my “Manttic” (man attic) with its aspiration to look like a bike shop, Levi Leipheimer’s garage, and a Salvation Army style home theater.

Oh, did I mention I had to have back surgery? After being hit by a car, crashing on back to back days, and killing a cat by hitting it on a 50kmph downhill, my back had had enough and I needed some relief. I’ll be off the bike for three months, but should be ready to ride and race cross this next winter…I already have the start of my bike upstairs, The New Ride Don’t hate, the Zipps paired with toe clips really are the fastest thing going. The mirrors, I want to see what Sven Nys looks like when I pass him. And in case anyone needs bike parts, I have titanium screws and carbon spacers in my back.

The ToC wasn’t as boring as I expected, but I certainly wanted someone to attack Levi on the last stage and wholly expected one of the Schleck brothers to win the stage, those guys make climbing look fun. Levi is small, I mean he’s almost a midget, he has to stand on his tip toes to kiss his wife, isn’t that embarrassing? He rides a size 44 Trek Madone!? So what do the stage winners do with those obnoxious gifts they are given at the end of each stage? Why didn’t Levi throw that awful time trial stage victory statue into the crowd like he did the flowers? Because the statue was bigger than he was.

Poor DZ, Dave Zabriskie. It appears as though he had his house broken into and completely emptied while he was away taking 2nd at the ToC. Hopefully his winnings will cover his comic book character statues and his $6,000 watch. Did you know he had only 13 bikes…13. How does he not have like 50? If I was DZ I would have told the insurance company I had 50, all Carbon and all custom with Campy Super-Duper 12 speed electronic. Seriously, let’s hope the tools that emptied his place get caught and are forced to clean team water bottles for the next three years.

Finally, we’ve introduced a new international club into the mix with members from all around the world. I work for a NATO organization and have found several riders from everywhere, Estonia, Hungary, Germany, Italy, Denmark, Sweden, England, and the US. They’ve been here riding alone or with local clubs (I still ride with my local amateur club), but wanted an international club for recognition in the local communities. We’re still establishing our hierarchy and developing a team kit, but so far it appears as though we’ll be successful. With that said, if you know anyone who wants overseas recognition and is willing to support an international cycling club in Belgium, please let me know and I’ll gladly contact them with a sponsorship request. 53x11 has already said they’d help…I just need a fancy logo to put on our new kits.

Again, thanks to Evan for the opportunity to where the 53x11 kit, answer questions about the coffee and for allowing me to buy great coffee at great prices.

I’ll send a report next week as I have nothing else to do except read everyone else’s blogs and review new bike parts, etc, etc, etc, until my back recovers and I can ride, I mean work again.


Tall Guy on (off) a Little Bike

February 25, 2009

Forced Sprints!

Whew! I just got back from my first outdoor ride for the year. I've been riding my trainer nearly everyday for the past month, so when I saw that the temperature was supposed to hit 40+ degrees today, I knew that I was taking my bike outside! I went for a quick 10 miler close to home (LOTS OF HILLS!)... However, it seemed like I was pushing 120% on some of the climbs! It wasn't that I was overly hyped on the first ride of the season.. It was the two different dogs (a pitbull and a dalmatian) running after me at full speed!!

In the end, I got a very good workout for the day... Don't let the dalmatian's cuteness fool you!! They are FAST runners!

:) Enjoy the new season everyone!

February 13, 2009

New Season

I am so glad I am on such a cool team that believes in having fun first and enjoying the ride. I can't wait for my season to kick off next week with the IceBreaker TT in Everett, WA (9 mile course). I have a 10 mile TT the following week, then road races and hillclimbs scheduled through early September. I have been getting in as much saddlle time as possible and am happy with my test rides. I am ahead of the game and it so early in the year. A good feeling.
I look forward to hearing all about my teammates' rides and experiences. I too will share when I can.
I wish everyone a great 2009.
Be safe and have fun.
Ty (aka Saddledancer)

February 4, 2009

New Sponsors

Hey Team, Thanks for all the recent posts. It looks like everyone is riding well.
I have a newsletter ready to go out but for some reason it's not working. I'll get this resolved asap. I wanted to mention that Smith Optics have come on board to help us out a bit. All current team members will receive pro purchase prices online with their shades, goggles, helmets and such.  I have codes to give out. Just email me if you're interested.  We are also working with Trigger Point massage tools.  This is just a heads up and we hope to get the newsletter out asap. 



I found some photos of me in the Snotcycle race from this past weekend. It is clear that the photog's believe that my backside is my better side since two of the three are of it. In fact, with this first one if you zoom in on the schnoz in the upper right you may see the source of the race name.

Did anyone mention that it was cold?

Perhaps the camera lens was damaged after the front on shot?

At least the kit looks good!

February 2, 2009

2009 underway. . .

I am excited to join the 53x11 team this year and cant believe it is already February! Last month I got to participate in two races with my new kit and was pleasantly surprised at how many people came to talk to me about drive behind the coffee and bikes. Great stuff!

Two weeks ago I raced the Rio Bravo Rumble - A 10K trail run followed by a 16 mile mountain bike ride. It was a hard start to the new year with the run first but always a good indication of where the early year fitness is. A full report is over here if you are interested. Maybe I will see you out there next year?

My next race was the 12 Hours of Temecula race that I completed in a two person team. Basically, you follow a ~10 mile course and try to get in as many laps as possible in 12 hours. We were able to finish with 15 laps and it was a lot of fun. Cant wait until the next one!

Hope to see some of you out there at some races this year!