Sunday, March 28, 2010

Speedwagon Classic Pics

Thanks to Tom for some great shots. With pics like these its keeping the sponsors happy is a breeze! 

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Speedwagon Classic; The coolest race you've never done.

Today's 3rd? annual Speedwagon Classic Gran Fondo in Polson was nothing sort of spectacular. Matt Seeley puts on a perfect mix of great views, roads so hard you can't see the view, and an amazing post race party at Wayne's new house (inventor of the gravity dropper seatpost, all around cool guy with awesome family).

The race started to sunny skies and a nice neutral pace. Jeff Crouch soon brought us out of the duldrums with the infamous CAMELBACK ATTACK!  He was well up the road in an instant. However due to his camelback no one really paid much attention. Some more cat and mouse ensued over the next few K of asphalt, which was just about the only good pavement all day. The action kicked up another gear as we approached the first sector of gravel. Phil Ligget's voice started to speak louder in my ear. He was shouting at me, don't go into the gravel at the back! 10-4, Phil. I moved up as we hit the gravel and sure enough, the peloton was coming unzipped. A super strong Shaun Radley, Josh Tack, two Polson Wheelmen, Matt Seeley and I were clear before we knew it. When Matt saw this, he did his best Tom Boonen and put Shaun and the Polson Wheelmen in a very bad place. By the time I realized what was going on, Matt and Josh had a sizeable gap from the three of us. Ligget got on the horn again, "If you lose these guys, your F'd!" I had to put in a big dig, but caught on with Matt and Josh and we were off. I looked behind me, took stock of the chasers, and I knew i was in the winning break. Granted, we were maybe ten miles in, but I was so happy, I've never been in a winning break. It's something Phil 1.0 never figured out.

Alas, my happiness was short lived. My tire selection today was terrible. I watched Matt and Josh ride off as I bounced to a stop on a pinch flat. And then three more....and then i just walked...aah se la vie. I was finally picked up by the lead follow car and watched Matt ripped Josh's legs off on the nasty finishing climb. Suddenly my flats almost seemed like a gift, I'm sure it would have been a suffer filled day. After those two, I think Mike from Polson? came in 3rd, Alex Gallego 4th and props to Shaun for rollin in 5th. Also, way to go ladies for bangin' out 53 miles of garbage, those roads were nasty! We all met at Wayne and Kim's for an amazing spread, they were such gracious hosts! I felt guilty eating so much and riding half a race, oh well. Five hours tomorrow will keep the muffintops at bay.

PS I apologize for lack of multimedia, I wanted to bring my camera but the roads were so gnar I didn't think it was a great idea. Pics by Tom Robertson at

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Jumpstart your year

Early spring can be a tough time of year for the northern hemisphered endurance athlete. For most, the motivation is at its high point of the whole year. But, sadly, the weather is at a low. Some folks bundle up and brave the miserable elements, others attach their bike to some type of device that apparently allows you to ride it inside (although you don't actually go anywhere). I've tried both methods over the last five years with very little success, my performance usually lagging well into June. But after returning from an awesome trip to The Cycling House in Tucson, Arizona, I'm posing a question to all those who suffer through February miles, why fight the slop? Why freeze your extremities before your legs have endured a decent workout? Why spin mindlessly staring at a wall when you could be tapping out a good rhythm on the slopes of Mt. Lemmon? I'm proclaiming here today that happy legs are fast legs!

With expectations very high this year, my stay at TCH was just what I needed to get the wheels turning in 2010. Riding in a jersey and shorts was a real treat, even if everyone constantly made fun of my skin tone. Getting away from my daily grind was just as important as the actual miles. Waking up knowing that your only obligation for the day is to ride a bike is an awesome feeling. I returned home with the hunger of a pack of wolves! So if you get a chance, jumpstart your year with a friendly, warm trip down to TCH, you won't regret it! I'll leave you with a quote from a great philospher:

"The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago, the second best time is now"

Also a terrible picture of myself, if you can't make fun of yourself, someone else will:

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Rollin with the Ark

This week has been great here at TCH. I'm so grateful to be down here and to be riding with some great folk from the Ark Intervals multisport team outta Philly. We've been going on big rides and runs everyday. Today saw an epic battle of nations on the slopes of Mt. Lemmon. Ed from Toronto challenged Noah and the Americans. I didn't want to see a lone wolf go up against a superpower, and seeing as how I live 60 miles from Canada, I wore the red and white Hammer kit. The big day started with a 20 mile roll out to the base of mt. lemmon. From there things really started to heat up. I was pacing Ed up the early slopes and we had  Noah from USA! in a spot of trouble. Then Halp flew past us at a high rate of speed. I couldn't let the dreams of Canada slip away, I had to leave Ed as this could be the deciding break. Luckily, Brendan's coach had told him to ride at 150-160 beats up the grade, about all my early season legs were good for. After some meaningless chit chat for an hour, we made it to mile 14 where global warming had caused the road to be snowed in. We didn't stay there long, we wanted to see the real action between Canada and the USA! back down the hill.  Fist ones up were of course the girls team, Jen and Sharon were shredding lemmon on their tri bikes! A little further down the hill at mile 11.5, we found that Ed, the crafty kanuck, had employed two domestiques and was pulling away from Noah. Once Ed's henchman had done their work, he made his final push, taking back 30 seconds at the top. He may have won the stage, but as always, USA! took GC at the end of the day. We all had a great time and then enjoyed a lovely dinner of Red Snapper.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


more to come.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Sweet Sweet Whip...


Oh how I am torn when I get a new whip. So clean and beautiful...So perfectly dialed in and crisp. A rolling extension of myself. A new member of the family. A perfect baby that I'm going to kill this summer. Thats right, new whip, I'm going to ride the living shit out of you. By November, you will be like the old man and the sea. I'm going to do this because if I don't, the competition will. If i flat on the last lap, I will ride you home on the rim. If I have half a chance to pass, I will shift poorly under power while riding through the shrubs. Your hubs you ask, well they are going to be full of red sand at 3:00 am in Moab. Your amazing carbon lefty fork, well thats going to get bottomed out on Runaway Train a few too many times. But you don't mind, you know thats what your here to do. And I promise to always wash you down and give you some lube after. Thank you sweet whip, and hey, at least you don't belong to Doug!!!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

My Training Plan:

I know I'm always yappin about how I don't like rollin with clocks, HRMs, power meters, coaches, graphs or any rides that aren't fun, but that doesn't mean I don't have a plan of action. It's fairly simple really. If I feel like riding my bike, I ride my bike. If I don't, I don't. Not saying its perfect or that it will work for you but I'm more concerned with having fun riding trail than anything else. If i were to describe how an ideal season of biking goes, its like this sweet music video by Ok Go. Every ride builds upon the previous ride and the snowball keeps rollin all the way to the 24 Hours of Moab!

Way to go Johnny Montana! I remember getting my first road "win" at the TTTT, local glory is where its at!