Monday, March 28, 2011

Which One of These Things is Not Like the Other?

Why is it so much more fun to ride one bike than another? Both weekend rides brought Kim and I to French Creek. Same trails, two different bikes; and two completely different outcomes.

Saturday, Kim dabbled on a borrowed full suspension rig, while I played on my "race bike". In retrospect, the Ellsworth may not have been the best choice of steeds - but let's be honest, with access to a really nice bike to tool around on, how could you not partake? Well, the dually was all out sketchy and Kim's ride suffered dearly. While Kim was battling with the Truth, I had my own demon to slay. This demon has been harrassing me for a while now: My "race bike" doesn't feel especially racy, especially fast, or especially fun. It's been a thorn in my side and I just can't figure out where in Hell it comes from.

A couple years ago, I started riding a rigid steel singlespeed - all the time - and loved it. A couple months ago, I set up that rigid singlespeed as a 1x9 looking for a little extra push for the upcoming race season. The bike worked flawlessy, but something was missing. A couple weeks ago, I put an F29 on the bike thinking, I better get this figured out before race season. That was no good... the bike just seemed to flatline after that.

Sunday morning, Kim was obviously much more at home on her race bike, while I found myself having a blast on my rigid SS. Yesterday, I had a bit of a revelation. I felt great, my lines were clean and I was having *gasp* fun. It seems that I've found what the other bike is missing: soul.
So much for keeping up with the peleton at those wide open XC start lines this season.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tarmac, Metal and Gravel: Lunch Time Explorations Gone Awry

Last week I ventured out for my first lunch time road ride from the new office. I came up with a loop from the confines of my cubicle with a little help from the people whom are methodically taking over the world. I need to keep the loop under an hour, so I looked for the nearest climbs to make it as worthwhile as possible. My first loop at about 18 miles, came up a little short but it had some promising roads and some decent climbs.

I went out again today with intent to get the loop dialed only to find myself exploring disappointment. A single lane, open grate bridge at the bottom of a screamin' descent is enough to sketch me out of that road. A long un-road-bike-able gravel climb is enough to exclude another.

Oh well... I'll get it figured out in the next couple of rides. Nevertheless, its a great day to get on the bike so what are you waiting for?

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A reason to smile...

its almost race time...


Friday, March 11, 2011

Just Around the Corner: The 2011 Racing Season

This weekend is officially mid March 2011. To many of us 'mericans, it means that in just a few short days we all turn into whiskey swilling "Irishmen," complete with slurred accents and T-shirts that direct us to kiss each other. Ironically however, In Ireland it's pretty much just another rainy day.

For those of us at TBR (along with the rest of the competetive cyclists in the region) it means that the Start of the 2011 racing season and the Mid Atlantic Super Series are just around the corner. The other day, I planned out my race calendar. I'd be lying if I said that I'm not excited to start racin' again. With the months of foul weather and trail conditions, a few recent tastes of dirt have me raring to go. Clearing the cobwebs out will be tough at the MASS Team Relay and Baker's Dozen, but it sure will be a fun way to kick off the season.

Pre-season bonus points to whoever can tell me which TBR member is shown here, "clearing the cobwebs" in 2006:

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Were rollin' with Stan's this year...

Proud as hell to have the VBC on board to keep us hydrated this season!