Thursday, December 8, 2011

Missouri State championship

Probably one of my best days of racing ever. The race got going around lap 3 with Dan, Josh, John and myself breaking away from the field and everyone started beginning to make attacks. The game plan was to have the rockets father and daughter team work the bike changes and they did it to a tee. Dan Miller breaking another Di2 rear derailer and John Schottler getting wrapped up in tape left Josh and me battling it out. The typical result is him going by me and me getting dropped. Today wasn't quite the same, ya he went by but every attack he laid down I just dug a little deeper and stayed on. We both made some mistakes but by the end of the race Schottler didn't catch me and Josh finished 10ish seconds in front of me. Finished 2nd

Boss Cross #4

At least the rain was keeping the bike fairly clean. Finished 3rd on the day behind Andrew Coe and Josh Johnson.

Jingle cross

Day 3 of jingle cross, would of been nice to have a pit bike.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Sunday fun Day

My buddy Dominic which I've known since I was in preschool called and we made plans to head to the new Boss venue at the bmx park in Raytown, Mo. He hadn't seen a cross race before and no better day to watch, it was a beautiful fall 60 degree day. I loaded my bikes Sunday morning with a pair of cross bikes and the new Single speed 29er purchase #3 or #4 of the fall I can't remember. Ya I'm on trying to bring back the economy on my own, one bike at a time. Upon arriving the first thing i did while still driving up was roll down the window and yelled out to Jeff Yielding "go get him!". Dom laughed and i said, yell anything you want it's cool racers dig it that and it takes there mind off the pain for a few seconds.

I started to do a slow warm up lap just to get a feel for how my legs where going to get moving, not to bad surprising. Not much explosion out of the corners but who needs that for cross, or do you? The course had a tight techinical area that lead you on to the bmx track, which was awesome I might add. It was as hard as concrete a crazy 12' corner and a pump track, man it was something different and fun. Some guys had some serious issues with it though, hrough out the day several guys headed to the hospital with broken bones and stitches.

Teammate Andrew Coe and myself started to do are warm up continuing to loosen up and my legs were coming around. We couldn't hurt to notice that the KCCX crew was going to have all there local racers here today which makes for a fast pace race. I have been looking forward to racing those guys but they have been traveling most the early fall. I knew Andrew could gun it out with the best just fine and I'm more there for entertainment purposes. One of my favorite things to do is get the hole shot don't no why mainly just to see if I can. Today was no different the whistle blew and I was off with the hole shot. The plan, well actually I didn't have one, never do just go give it everything. Let me back up for a second though before we started out I noticed Shadd Smith had a bike cam, i told him make sure you get a some footage of my back side. So it worked out I got the hole shot and he was on my ass with the camera haha.

Man my legs came apart quick by lap two I was done or so I thought. I slowed down a touch for a lap to regroup and watch a herd of 5 guys come by. It didn't matter much I had to slow down but before long I was going hard again started pulling Bill Marshall and Britton back in. Britton was hurting after doing the single speed race and hanging with the big guns for several laps in the open race. I came by Britton and pulled up to Bill with 3 laps to go I had to make a plan. My legs still weren't great but I figured I could pull off one more attack but when should I do it . My best option would be in the techinical part of the course but it was really early in the lap which gave him plenty of time to catch me, so I planned for the sprint finish. Coming around the final corner we were on it but in lap traffic it ,didn't matter it was on and I put myself in great position. I was in the drops and laying the wood we bumped each other just a touch and buzzed through the finish line. I clipped him by a tire length. Best race I've been in all season, this is what cross is all about! Andrew finished 3rd and myself 6th.

Dom and I headed to Swope for some afternoon mountain biking.

Monday, October 31, 2011

The ride the race

So this passed weekend my buddy Mark Cole texted a line and asked if I wanted to ride some gravel. It was a tough call I had done the Tuesday night universe practice race and did a little bit of a smattering of riding including the Pirate ride on my new single speed (purchase number 2).

Not having ridden a single speed but a few times a couple years ago I didn't know much about them except to pedal pedal. The lights where on and we were a rolling, let the bushwhacking begin I don't think we touch a standard piece of trail all night. Things where going good except for the fact I had no idea how to set my front fork, i was bouncing all of over the place. I couldn't tell if I just did know how to ride this thing or i didn't have it set up right. I think it was the ladder of the two, about half way through the ride on a steep decent I ejected, launched over the bars and was picking myself off the ground before I knew it. With a dented head and cracked helmet I was a wreck. The brain healed after a couple days and I was ready for more. I headed to Swope Friday on the single speed for some good old fashion riding. I made a few tweaks to the bike and I was in love man this thing is sweet. I recommend everyone owning at least one especially for some fall goodness.

Back to the gravel, Mark was for sure I was going to bail and he awaited my morning retreat call but not this time, I buzzed him in route. As I pulled up with a surprise on is face we where ready to pull off. Being he lives in Spring Hill close to the gravel I figure I'll be making this journey often this winter since I'm a good 35 miles from any. He had planned us a route of 50ish miles out his front door. I reminded him I had a cross race on Sunday and didn't want to crush the ride just go out and spin. Well thats always is an interesting problem I have, I seem to do everything with max intensity. So climb after climb I pulled up and Mark pulled me down, he has some wicked arrow bars and we would cruise 25 to 30 mph on the flats and up to 40 on the descents. So as the miles buzzed by, he told me we were crushing is best time on this route. We finished up in about 2 1/2 hours which was plenty for my first gravel of the year. My legs were spent and I was glad to be down but was already wondering how my legs would feel on sunday..

Sunday, October 30, 2011

A bike week

So I got several new toys starting last week, well let's back up a bit to two weeks ago. I talked Jesse into doing a little trio of mountain bike riding instead of racing the Joules cross, I just wasn't in the mood. It was something Cameron Chambers and I sat out do do a couple years ago and the trails where a mess so we settled to a smattering of riding instead.

Back to the day Jesse and I sat out early to ride lake Perry, Clinton lake and the river trails to polish it off. Things where going good with the rock climbs of Perry and the constant creaking of my bottom bracket. I've gotten used to it over the years it seemed to need servicing so I'd got it down to a science except for when I'd forget to do it like this day. So the rythem of the sound kept a creaking as we kept a plowing there the rocks and leaves. Jesse was going good as he always does when it gets rough, he's a climbing machine. So one trail down it about 11:00 a little slower than planned since I suffered a flat as we where finishing up but with a industrial car plug and some CO's we made it back.

Perry lake was in the books and we headed to Clinton lake just a stone throws away in the STI. We pulled up and slipped are shoes on replenished are bottles and we where off. Typically we would roll out white the more technical trail then fly back blue. We did the reverse today, thinking the legs could use a little spinning before the power ups of white. It worked great things went well we spun right along, it's funny how tame Clinton feels after riding Perry. So next up was the river trails just across lawrence, Dana my wife and one of her girl friends planned on meeting ups there which they did. It was nice to cruise with them doing the 9 mile look to flush legs out before the ride home well not before eating some Mexican food.

Sunday was almost in the bag except for one little detail remember that annoying little bottom bracket. Ya so I decided I'd service that thing when I got home 15 minutes what could be a big deal. I popped the cranks, pulled the seals flushed the old greese and inserted in the new. Done right, wrong as I was putting things back together I noticed a nice crack in the suspension piece on the s-works. Not good, the BT Epic was a week away and no bike to ride. I dropped the frame by the Bike Source shop on Monday but knowing it wasn't looking good for the part to get in on time. What do do.. well Tuesday came and I made a rash decision head to Bike Source and see what they had that would be race ready. It's funny to me and a constant reminder that I'm short with short legs so guess what nothing in stock. But there was a medium s-works 29 hard tail in Denver. With some hesitation I said ship it! Arrival day Thursday, race Saturday sure I've never ridden a 29er and years since a hard tail let's saddle up for the first super lap race I've ever done on a new ride. Seems like a great idea or not but either way I wanted to race so thats what I did.

The race, well it faired okay I cramped up like a bad dog and limped my way to 22nd place. I've got a lot to learn on the longer races that aren't lap style where the nutrition is so close. The bike road great! Purchase one in the books

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Manions day 2

So it was really up in the air weather I was going to make it out or not. I had a morning project of drilling holes through a steal plate up on a ladder, as the hours passed and my arms where failing me I kept thinking man my upper body is toast how am I going to race. Well the project ended right at noon which gave me a couple hours before race time. No lunch no time I hot footed it home to jump in my car and head to the race. I arrived a little after 1:00 just in time to register and get a bit of a warm up, the legs where sluggish and the upper body roached but to the starting line we headed. The course today flowed better than the day before so things where going to be interesting with all the loose corners. The whistle and we are off as I stand and power away out my foot comes unclipped, not good and as I clip it in the other one pops out and my chain drops. I'm thinking are you kidding me really 20' off the starting line. To the back I go and watch the field ride off. I did get the chain on and mount up, nothing like starting 30 seconds back on the whole field. I started laying down some power and pulled my way back up to the tail end group and quickly made my way through the back half. By the end of the lap I think I was sitting maybe 8th or so and continued my mission of picking riders off. It takes a ton more energy to move around picking less than optimum lines in order to pass riders especially when you are going a ton fast. Eventually I made my way to 4th place and sitting on 3rd wheel with 2nd in my sites. With a mechanical 2nd through 4th are now wheel to wheel with 7 laps to go. Eventually Brian Jenson and myself dropped his teammate. I was sitting on Jenson's wheel for a couple laps and I could see he was a little stronger on the straights but I was cornering much stronger. So my plan was to make a move before the next set of twisties and get a gap to keep him off me before the next straight. The plan worked perfectly, I made the move and created the gap. On the straight he did reel me back in but I new there was some more turns on the horizon. I took the first one a little to hot gambling the rubber would stick, next I know I'm ejected and picking myself off the ground. I'm back on and my bars are twisted with not enough time to cover the lost groud I had to settle in to 3rd. Andrew road way with win, while Jenson took 2nd.

Manion Cx

So another double hitter weekend of Cross racing and the engine is coming around. With a lighter field this weekend and a tight and twistie off camber course I had high hopes of doing well. A hand full of fast guys including Andrew Coe and John Shottler lined up at the starting line. With not much deal the whistle blew and I took the hole shot. The 5 second lead off the gun was shorted lived with John weeding his way through the field and on to my heals as the first lap ended. As we came through the barn the coursed handed been marked correctly and i took off the wrong direction, shottler realized i was locking the brakes up and he made the right turned just in time and that was the last I saw him that guy is super strong. Andrew was charging strong and came by next. I settled in 3rd and couldn't pull him back in but did keep quite a gap on the rest of the field. This course defintely favorited some handling skills and a ton of start and stop power.

Herman CX

So the cross season is underway and I actually started the season a little earlier than I typically do. Not sure why it just worked out that way. I've got few more mountain bike races this season and I figured I lack putting myself in the torcher chamber on the mountain bike so mixing some cx races in would help it out. Herman cx is a two day event first night under the lights followed by Sunday afternoon. I never know what to expect in the early season but rest assure no matter how fit you are it's going to hurt. Being a mountain biker as my primary disipline the dirt crits are tough. The race started fast like all cx races not 50 ft off the starting line I was in a little bump and grind and watch the field fly by, I knew this wasn't good, I have enough trouble staying with the fast guys out there more importantly trying to catch them... ya right. After digging past 30 guys through out the first couple laps I settled for 9th in the open race. Day two started with a little breakfast and coffee followed by breaking down the campsite. I really enjoyed just chilling all morning moving around at a leasurely pace. So after a little warm up with Andrew Coe we headed to the starting line. Good news to my ears was a called up for me sense I was in the top 10 the night before. I'm a pretty fast starter so the front row suits me well. The course ran the same direction as the night before which is a little different than the standard one direction one day and flip it the next. So the bell and the sprint starts down the pavement I settled in wirlth the lead group around 5th as we twisted around the course I moved up to 4th for a bit but fell off the top 3 guys they where just moving faster than I could. So lap after lap I got to pull myself down the pavement, no fun. I did get caught by one guy and settle in at 5th after one of my teammates cramped up.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Bone Bender 2011

This past weekend was the first duo race for Garet and I of the year and it was time to kick it off right. Unfortunately for me Garet doesn't run who would figure with those long legs some sobb story about him blowing up before getting on his bike so I maned up and started the race. With the run up the hill to the bike I was off right behind John Shotler into the trail and we where racing. Kent McNeil and another guy weren't far behind. The trail was sweet and the course layout was one of the best I've raced. So as things where going well shredding right a long popping down a hill a few kids and a dad spectating a little close had me swerving off the trail and next thing I know a stick lodged in the drive train and I locked them up before the bike suffered damage. Off the bike and I ripped out the stick and hear a unpleasant sound of a tire losing air, dang it man. So instead of messing with it I wanted to see how far I could go so I jumped back on the bike and off I went. At around mile 3 of 10 all the corners are feeling really squirrely so I backed her down a bit to keep from having to fix the tire. As the miles clipped off I keep thing someone should be catching up soon and sure enough Chris Ploch came nipping at my heals with about 2 miles to go so I picked things up to keep him content enough not to pass. We rolled through the transition together chatting a bit about how he got super clogged up in a mess of people at the start and me trying not to run over kids. It all worked out as the laps kept rolling and Garet and I kept slowly increasing are lead and pulled out the Win. Go Ethos!!