Saturday, October 28, 2006


Today I raced 'Cross to showcase my tremendous post-MTB season form. Here I am enjoying an after-race recovery meal after laying the smack-down on all comers.
Sure, I'm fat and my fly's down and I smell like Budweiser.
That doesn't make me less of a champion.

Friday, October 27, 2006

"Short sleeved or long"

Today I recieved a new skinsuit.
You know you are a true XC addict when few aspects of the sport excite you like a skinsuit.
Do you sport a euro-mullet/faux-hawk a la Fabian Weggman or Lado Fumic?
Have you ever seriously considered it?
Have you ever been called a "Leg Shaving Dirt Nazi/Skinny-Tire Tree Hugger" or something like it?
Have you run out of fingers to count the times you've tried to explain WHY you shave your legs?
Maybe you've noticed how sleek a skinsuit looked on the back of your favorite rider. Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski. Adam Craig. Jeremiah Bishop.
If you have then maybe you can understand how excited I was when I got my first skinsuit. As soon as I realized what was in the mail that day I took it straight to my room and tried it on. I left it on for while even though I wasn't planning on riding. I called/emailed the friends I knew would appreciate it.
They were excited. Maybe you are getting excited too.
Hopefully you are starting to grasp by now how upsetting it would be if something were to happen to my skinsuit. Like if I were to crash in said skinsuit. In a cyclocross race. Two weeks ago.
As you can probably imagine, my dismay over ruining my skinsuit was almost as strong as my dismay over crashing in general, and 300+ dollars in doctors bills specifically.
I was feeling down. Some might say I was in a "Funk".
But then something happened. Something magical that cheered me up: I got an email from Jon Rourke, fearless leader of the Subaru/Gary Fisher Mountain Bike Team asking me, "short sleeved or long?" Apparently, making the impossible, possible on a daily basis, out on the road for weeks at a time, while playing Den Mother to a trailerfull of athletes from around the world is not enough. Nope. Not only did Jon and pro mechanics Matt and Brett help me with everything from feeds to Stan's when I arrived un-announced at their trailer for the east coast NORBA races, woefully unprepared, Jon ALSO went out of his way to send me one of the team skinsuits that I had coveted all year. And THEN, when I tore it up in a crash he says to me "short sleeved or long?"
There are so many guys like them that work behind the scenes, that you will probably never be aware of until they totally save your ass. Jon Posner (Trek) and John Dawson (SRAM) among others. Y'all are rock stars!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Castaic Lake/More Cowbell !!

I was at Castaic in my official capacity as Photographer/Cowbell enthusiast. Many thanks to Papo for the use of his cowbell. Alas, my skill as a photographer is no match for my prodigious talent on the cowbell and although I took many, many, photos only a few are worth posting. Quality/quantity, blah, blah, blah....

Papo has two good pics and wins the "most photogenic" award.

Phil has only one pic but the sun is behind him and it makes him look like a cowboy so he wins the "most badass" award.
It was frustrating not to be able to race but I had fun cheering on the team.

Ten stitches later...

I am now stocked up on Starbucks iced coffee and dvds and ready to hold as still as possible while I grow some skin. Shortly after this pic was taken I cut off the other leg of my PJs and came into possession of my first pair of Daisy Dukes. That's a lie.

The agony of victory, the thrill of defeat.

Disaster struck at almost the exact second that I won my first ever cyclocross race. These five pictures all take place in that exact second. If you look at my face you can see that I haven't even had time to realize how much the next 3 seconds are going to suck. Definately wasn't expecting this one. Good thing the finishing straight was on asphalt. Here are a couple of pics along with what I would've been thinking if I had had time for thoughts... Yep.

I am thinking: "Pedal!!!"

I am thinking: "Throw the bike.... NOW"

I am thinking: "Yes! I just won."

I am thinking: "There is a strange shoving sensation on the left side of my bar."

I am thinking: "!@#$%!"

East coaster.

Earlier this month I got to ride on the east coast. We rode in Bedford and Harrisonburg Virginia. It was cold. It was wet. It was the highlight of my month.
Harrisonburg has a really awesome mountain bike scene. Where we were riding there was an event that had trail building, mountain biking and trail running. All the riders were super friendly and we were made to feel right at home at their end of the day BBQ.
I am now seriously considering Harrisonburg (home of Jeremiah Bishop and Sue Haywood) in addition to Boulder, as places to live if I leave Cali.

Pouring hot tea and trying to stay warm. It was so cold there was serious conversation about how much warmth could be gotten by peeing on ones hands.

Here I am at the top of a pretty steep climb, with some skinny guy (Jeremiah Bishop)who keeps dropping me. It was all foggy and then you got to the top and there was a lush falls. Everything was incredibly lush and green compared to home.

In this pic: Walter, me, Jeremiah, Henry and Hunter Allen outside the Peaks Coaching Group office.

It was nice to be back! Directly after this picture was taken we all thawed out with showers and went out for some tasty mexican food.