Friday, September 28, 2012

TGIF

8am
Whats with all the bike on my car? Nothing really. I just like to haul bikes around once in a while. I just feel better knowing they are there. They enjoyed my HP visit with me this morn. The rental bikes are just happy to get out of the basement once in a while. So every once in awhile its a field trip.

Calm down. Not really. That would be weird and Im not weird.

I'll tell you whats weird.


10 days ago I purchased the new Killers "Battle Born" and its been playing nonstop in the store since. Over and over. Thats 90 hours uninterrupted. Let alone in the car or iPod. Now thats weird.
Back to the bikes. Here's the story.
This spring I approached several high end hotel\resorts in the area about offering a bike tour on their list of stuff to offer. All summer go's by and nothing. Until yesterday.
So today and tomorrow I am taking four people each day on a hour and a half tour of the area. My HP will be the centerpiece of the ride. So I get to rent bikes and get paid hourly to guide. And the rates are premium cuz the hotel is very high end.
I hope this is the beginning of this service. Nobody else does this. I hope it go's well. I have a fear that its going to be four old ladys with canes. Really, I have no idea on fitness levels so I gatta be able to improvise in a heatbeat.
Also going to try this with CC ski's this winter.....

So with that on the agenda the next two days bring me to another dilemma. Im not sure how well I can ride a bike.
Ribs really hurt still and Im sure it will be a while before that is gone. Had another restless nite. Every time I move in my sleep it hurts and I wake. About a million times a nite. Im sure the bike tour will be slow. I'll ride crosspinky.

Tomorrow I would really like to ride the Domane. Its getting close to being sold. Several individuals are thinking. Pretty soon someone will come in with money and its gone. For real, its been my fav road bike of all time and my replacement demo will be very much like it. I hope I can at least ride a little tomorrow.

But for the most part Im laying low till the ribs are good enough to MTB on them. Two week till the local race, the two more till Iceman. Thats still the plan.

Unless I change my mind.
Time to be a tour guide!

DLD




Thursday, September 27, 2012

MORE DOWN TIME

845am

Took a longer visit today. I stay here longer when I have things to think about. I measure my time in the HP by songs on my iPod. Today was a six song day. Yesterday was only two since I wanted to ride before the store opened. And again, am using my phone exclusively for pictures. I love that Google+ automatically uploads my pics. I take them on the beach and when I get to the store they are up on the site and ready.
Back to yesterdays MTB ride....
The scope of yesterdays digger did not hit me till later in the day. Ribs, shoulder, knee and wrist. Once again, I am off the bike. Upsetting since I just got back on after being sick for almost a week. Ive got the wrist wrapped and the knee is pretty good. Shoulder is just sore. Ribs on the other hand will keep me off the bike for some time. Had to sleep on my back last nite and I hate that so my nite was long. Small movement hurts. I really never had bruised (or broke for all I know) ribs before and know what others have felt with this.
No deep breaths. Hurts to cough. Once again Im laying low.
Ive noticed my weight went up the last two weeks. Im sure the next week or so wont help me in the respect either. Less movement equals less food burned. Need to eat less during these times.

Still on my racing calender is our local MTB race here in town. In the past I have brought several tents to the event and vended stuff. This year, my available help is down along with the means to haul stuff out to the park so I might just ditch that and race it instead. I'll make that decision last minute the week before.

Then, there's Iceman. I am on the fence here. Still have not found a place to stay. Not really looking either. Staying a bit out of town is not a big deal as my wife always provides my shuttle service where ever I need to go and that just makes things easy. So Im not concerned yet. I have time.

First I need to get back on the bike.

DLD


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

LEFT A MARK

1015AM

I sure love this time of year. The trees are starting to turn and that means its game on until the leaves fall. The store does not open till 11am now that its on winter hours and I need to take advantage of this as best I can.
Yesterday it was cross bike, today its MTB.
A awesome crisp fall morning. Sun shining. Perfect morning for a ride in the woods.
Thats is, until I hit the dirt hard. Chest first. Going pretty fast. Happened so fast I did not even get my hands out to break the fall. I hate when that happens.
As I laid there trying to breath my first thought was am I going to make the store to open it as Im there alone today.
I take inventory. Nothing broke. Knee swelling but I can walk. I limp to the store....
Knee seems OK but ribs are sore when I breath. My thumb hurts to type. Knee swelled and cut. Just another day on the MTB.
I have done this a million times but as I get older it seems to hurt just a little bit more. Instead of one spot that hurts you come out with three.
Life go's on. But there's more.
The screen on my new Motorola computer has a huge scratch on it. Like all the way a cross.  Nice. There's 200 bucks out the window. Im sure it hit the ground when the bike cartwheeled.

The store is for sure out of summer mode. Door traffic is half of a month ago. My job now is to draw down the inventory to winter levels. And cut all expenses. Today Im here all day alone and that will be the norm till April of 13'. I do have some part time help putting in a few nites during the week so I dont go crazy. Also will have most Saturdays off.

Its the time of year that gets a bit boring. Biking is on the way down and cross country ski's are not ready. Oct and Nov are usually the two slowest months (unless we get no snow like last winter). But there is always some project to work on.
Awesome stuff like accounting. Exciting!

Anyway, Im going to try and get outside as much as I can in the next month and you should too. Do it for real.

DLD

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

I FORGOT

930am

Its nuts. I forgot to post this morn. What the hell?
Maybe cuz I actually got in a bike ride. First one in a week.
Was happy to do my cross loop over to the park.
Really had nothing on my mind for once.
That was nice.

DLD

Monday, September 24, 2012

MONDAY THE 24TH

845am

So here it is Monday morn and Im just now pulling out of my sickness. So the weekend was a bust. Since I raced on the 22nd I have been on a bike once. Hope was the thought I had for this weekend but that never panned out. Today is about the best I felt since last Wednesday and might try an easy ride later. The temps are down. High 30's early morn. Turned the heat on at home. Today the sun was warm on the beach. The trees are starting to turn. Game on for fall.

I was feeling good enough to hit up the USGP in Sun Prairie yesterday. Pretty much the top tier in cyclocross in the US. While the racing was great, I was so disappointed in the amount of spectators. Way down. I could not speculate on how many but I think we get more at our local MTB race here in town. And thats sad. Such a talented field. Such a well run series.  I know the series was in some money trouble so maybe they just did not get the word out soon enough.

Here's a pic gallery from Velonews.

Trek has stuck a ton of money to rescue the series. And Im sure they expect no return in the investment. I learned that the hard way last year albeit on a very smaller scale. Last year I stocked up on cross bikes, tires, wheels etc. And lost my ass. Took a huge hit on several high end bikes. I was very disappointed as cross racing\bikes are a fav of mine and maybe I let my personal thoughts drive my business and when you do that you lose almost every time.
This fall I have no cross bikes in stock. I have one on order and it might not get here till November. With Treks lack of disk brake bikes I'll wait till next year to get a demo. I would believe that they will have a high end model then.
I did notice several top riders who have access to disk brakes choose to run center pulls anyway yesterday. So there must be some concerns, weight or otherwise.

As I get my strength back I hope to ride a few times this week. Yesterday I went into my basement and went thru all the cool weather clothing I have. Im terrible on change of season clothing. I either dress too warm or too cold. It takes a few tries for me to get it right.

Id better pop a few sudafed and get to work.

DLD

Friday, September 21, 2012

THE (my) PARK


The morning hours is not the only time I visit my Happy Place. Some days Im there as much a three times. On those days at least once is by bike. Its a fav destination for many riders and you pass a ton of bikes when there. And if the park is not cool enough by itself, its also the route there that gets me.
From the store I ride only about 4 blocks until Im out of the "downtown" area. Then its about 4 miles along Lake Michigan. Awesome views. Then its another two miles on wooded roads to get to the park. And I mean deep woods. Tree canopy's for at least a mile of that.
Then, six miles and your in the park. In the park, I have a "road loop" and a "cross bike loop" that I do that has a little woods in it.
Then, I exit the park from the back road and ride a few miles to a small road that actually access the back of the marsh area behind (south) of the park. Tons of wildlife there. Its all private land so I gatta stay on the road but you can see a ton of wetland there.
A month ago a coyote crossed the road right in front of me in the middle of the day.

This ride had been a fav of mine. Its about an hour and 15 minutes or so depending on how many side trips I take and around 17 to 20 miles total. Mostly I do this one as my nooner for lunch. And almost always by myself.

Cross bike is ride of choice this time of year. Cross bike loop is my fav.

Nowadays the park is empty and the deer come out more now that the crowds are gone. I swear they recognise me. I can ride right up to them. Sometimes I have to shoo them off the road to keep going....

This park has been a big part of my latter years of life. Just a place to go I guess. Soon I hope winter bring some snow and Im able to groom out some XC ski trails. We got shut out last year. That was a bummer.

But not to rush the seasons. Still got fall to enjoy. Trees are starting to turn.
Get outside ans enjoy. Do it for real.
Have a good weekend.

DLD

Thursday, September 20, 2012

HOPE

825am

Things are getting back to reality. Life is resuming its normal schedule. Mornings at the HP. Still finding our that my phone is my best camera. I like this pic. Feel free to take it. A lot of people tell me I should parlay my pic taking into a biz. I dont know.
Maybe someday when Im retired.
However today I am under the weather quite a bit. Huge head cold. My head feels like its 100 pounds. Fever and all the fixin's to make a pretty good flu. Pounding ibuprofen and sudafed (isn't that how you make meth or something?)
I wonder if I knocked out my immune system with last Saturdays extended physical effort?

The store is slowing. The cold mornings are whispering to prepare. Hours are cut. Inventory is shrinking(by design). The front door is down top half speed and slower in the near future.
Soon it will be time to hibernate, pull up the ski's and pray for snow.

But as far as Im concerned, this is the best time to ride. Put on the arm and knee warmers and get out in the woods and country roads. Soon the trees will be in color. And in my book its game on to try and get the most out of fall that I can.

I will pull out all the stops to get that done, but not till I feel better. Glad Im getting this in the middle of the week. Hope for the weekend.

DLD

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

HAYWARD CABIN


One of the best things of last weekend is where we stayed. I was pumped to be able to get out of the big city of Hayward and stay in some quiet, private digs. 
This four cabin resort is about a 8 minute drive out of town. All four cabins were taken by riders. Somehow I lucked out when buddy Steve D found this place and booked it.
This cabin sleeps six but Im not sharing. It was super clean with two bedrooms, kitchen\dining and a living room with a patio. I could live here.


Here's the view thru the patio door. We got here Wednesday nite. I would start every morn on this deck with a coffee watching the eagles, herons and ospreys, and end the day watching the sun go down with a Spotted Cow. Every night, around 9pm, two coyote packs would howl across the lake. Almost like telling each other where they were. Friday nite they sounded like they were about 100 yards away but probably more than that. It just does not get better.

Way better than a hotel room. With a full kitchen my wife was nice enough to cook my a huge pasta dinner Friday nite. A true sit down dinner.

Thats a real moose rack up there.
I'll mention that it was only $99 bucks per nite. Which is what most paid for some crummy hotel\motel in town. I have already put in a deposit for next year. These accommodations for sure added to my Fat Tire experience and Im not sure I would return if I had to stay elsewhere. Also, the owner of the resort drives the lead four wheeler in the race and helps mark the course on Friday. With the resort full of Fat Tire racers he kinda is used to us weird bikers so its all good.
I hope to go back next year. I need to do something to increase my odds with the registration lottery next spring.

DLD

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

POST RACE EUPHORIA

815am

I'll wind down this race thing but first a few thoughts. The wind was cold this morn on the beach. Fall is approaching quickly. I say bring it. Park is pretty much deserted now in the morn. Its mine again. I just need to pack a jacket in my car from now on.... And again Im pretty impressed on how good the camera is on my Galaxy.
 As of today I have yet to even look at a bike since Saturday. But hope to get in a quick ride later today. Just a easy spin on the cross bike. On my way back from the HP this morn I was thinking...

How many of you do this.....
So I did the race Saturday. Finished up and at that time was a bit disappointed. And sick. And sick for a dumb reason. Looking at my data, I had my highest heart rate on the final climb at Telemark. People cheering you as you climb. Laying everything out there. But there was no one behind me or in front of me. So why did I almost make myself barf 50 yards from the end of a 40 mile race?
I dont know.

How many of you do this........
Race a pretty epic race. A very hard race. The last 30% of the race I was pretty disorientated putting in some hard efforts. Finish the race. And your hurting so bad you swear under your breath you will never do this again. With my bold move at the end I was thinking, at that point in time, that I was not having fun. Questioned why I was even there. This was a mistake and I want to go home. But those feelings are false. I was having fun at that time. I did have a pretty good race. I just did not realize it until about 30 hours later.

How many of you do this......
Its a long race. A lot of shit happens to you during this race. You pass and get passed by the same people many times. Maybe witness a fall. See someone suffering more than you. See a deer run across the trail. Whatever..  a lot go's down in a short period of time. But your so focused on your task you see but don't notice. Then... after a day or two, all these things you start remembering. One at a time. Sometimes not until two or three days later you remember some rider you were racing at some time and wonder what happened to them. How was that guy who endo'd in the mud hole? Even stupid stuff like when you forgot to unlock your fork on this huge downhill. Even today I am remembering stuff that happened. It just kinda creeps back. I could write 5 posts on shit Im remembering today.

How many of you do this.......
Cant wait to do this again next year.


DLD

Monday, September 17, 2012

2012 Chequamegon Fat Tire

The view from the back. Roughly spot 1800.

The race. It was harder than I remember. First things first tho...
Once again, like Ore to Shore, miss information had me painfully starting way to far back. Its been ten years since I did this. I saw at registration that we had "gate numbers" and when I asked (the wrong guy) about that he said it was new and that you did not have to show up early with your bike. That you were "staged" already by gate number. He said each gate is about 200 bikes. So gate 5 was about 1000 to 1200 in line. I thought that was cool. No worries.
Wrong.
I found out that gates one thru four were about 100 bikes and that 5 was everyone else. So that means I show up at 930 and literally lined up 20 yards from the back of a line of 1850 bikes.
Oh my God, are you kidding?
So, yeah, I started this thing around bike number 1750 to 1800. Out of 1850. I was very upset that I did that. I just did not ask enough questions. Just like O2S, guys next to me were wearing jeans. Some were drinking beer. Again, I was in trouble here. I needed to get out of here quick.
The start. Guy behind me was drinking PBR.

Here I am at the start, Im smiling but terrified of what could happen in front of me, in the pic you can almost see the back of the line. I considered pulling out and moving to the rear just to say I started dead last. 
So, the gun go's off. At least we start moving cuz I was so far back I could not hear the gun anyway. After a 5 minute wait we move. No more that 20 yards in, bikes go down in front of me. Just a clip fall but it had the domino effect.
If I was not scared yet I was now. There was no way I was getting out of Hayward without indecent.
As the front runners peddle out of town we surge, stop, surge, stop several times. Then its a slow peddle. Then I get to the far left and go. Trying to get out of here. As we left town I hooked up with some guy pulling his girlfriend along. Once we hit Hwy 77 I grabbed her wheel and off we went passing bikes by the hundreds.
Another backup entering Rosies Field. Crap.

But happy that I made it off the pavement in one piece. I did not see any crashes so things went well in that respect. Once we got rolling in the woods it was congested. Bikes were passed one by one instead of in groups. I would pass 10, and a couple would pass me. And thats how it went for the first hour or so. Always in congestion. It was pretty much that way until we hit OO.
So up to OO here was the stats. I started between 1750 and 1800 across the start line. At OO I registered in at bike 1188. 
So that means in the first 16 miles I passed an estimated 587 bikes. At that point I was watching my Motoactiv computer. It looked like my goal of three and a half hours was reachable. At least so far.
Another hour go's by. At this point I am watching my heart rate and still holding back. My thoughts were to hold back until Fire Tower and then start spending what energy I had left. I really had no basis as to strategy since it was so long ago I did this but that sounded like a good plan.
Pretty much held my own until the hill. When I started Fire Tower I did not realize I was on it until half way up. I stopped riding and  walked knowing I needed to conserve and being a hero on this hill would spend me and ruin my race. I forgot how tough that hill was. I had a hard time walking it let alone riding. People were running past me. Riding past me. I put in a interval to clear the last step. I was defiantly in zone 5 and hurting. Had no breath left.
I would have to say at least 60 to 70 bikes passed me on that thing. Very tough.
Ongoing, I knew the hardest parts were on the way. I looked at the computer and did some math. I appeared that my goal will not be reachable. I have lost too much time in the last hour.
So my thoughts were to just finish.
The next hour I hit the Birkie trail. Really, the last "segment" of the race. Less that 10 miles to go. Now, its all up and down. Some climbs I just could not do and walked. Some of them I could get some momentum on the down the roller and peddle 3\4th the way up. Kept that up for about 20 minutes. Then, looking at the computer (which is something I did way too much of) it showed 3 hours 15 min with only a few miles to go. I thought I had a shot. So I laid myself out on the next couple climbs.
Peddling with a steady cadence in granny gear. 
But too much is not good. Five miles to go (and still climbing) I exploded and almost fell off the bike. I looked down and saw that the 3 and a half hour mark has passed. 
I could almost hear the finish line. And at that point was mentally done.
I soft peddled the next mile as to not throw up. Gained some composure and rolled into Telemark not feeling well.
3 hours 39 minutes 48 seconds. So close to my 3 hour 30 minuter goal. Finishing in spot 1244. Losing 56 spots after OO (which I thought would have been worse).
I finished feeling pretty sick and felt that way pretty much the rest of the day. I slowly walked back to my car, which seemed to take forever, and went back to the cabin and laid low for awhile. Feeling better around 5pm. Pounding ibuprofen to help out with the next morning.

The finish.

For the few hours right after, I was sick and bummed I did not hit my goal. Once again thinking this was a mistake for me to do. Just too hard for a Clyde of my size (260 pounds) to do. What was I thinking. I finished the race hurting physically and mentally. More than I can remember ever before.

Fast forward to Sunday morn. I felt better and had time to think about it. I only missed my mark by 9 minutes. Really not that bad. If I had been on the ball and lined up as I intended to do Im pretty sure I could have made up those nine minutes.
Looking at my data, I walked for 14 minutes of the race. Not sure if I can change that. Some hills I was just better off walking to save energy.
So in hindsight, Im happy with it. I really can not think of anything I would have done differently once we started rolling. I really wonder what my time would have been had I started 7 or 8 hundred bikes farther up.

So that means one thing. I need to come back and try again next year.
Will (re) do it for real.

DLD

Friday, September 14, 2012

BIG

You pretty much cant roll thru Hayward without taking a pic of the 140 foot Musky. It towers.
Yesterday I did get in a pretty good hour and a half ride around the cabin. Nice roads. Very quiet. And it forgot about the rolling hills of the Birkie trail. These road reminded me of what Im up against tomorrow. Your either going down or up. 
I'll try to take advantage of the 29' wheels and gain as mush momentum as I can Im pretty good at that.
Spent last nite in a local bar on main street watching the Packer game with a ton of Bears fans. Must have up on vacation.
I even spotted a Farve Vikings jersey. That was creepy.
So for four hours I took in the local flavour.
Today I have some kayaking on tap. A road spin on the MTB to clear out the legs, a trip to Cable to register and Im toying with the ides of driving the hour or so up to the Apostle Islands. Other than that its a goof off day. Prep the bike.
6am out of bed to get the bike on the line tomorrow. I would like to line up at most, half way back. Under 1000 anyway. Not sure how early I need to be there to do that but no way Im getting up sooner than that. Im on vacation.

Next post might be Monday. Race in morn, then up and on the road home Sunday morn.

Have a good weekend.

DLD

Thursday, September 13, 2012

View from cabin deck, 11am

Got to the cabin late last so really did not get to see a lot until this morn. Just beautiful country here in Hayward. I love the north woods where everything seems to slow down a bit including the Internet.

Just got back from coffee and am heading out for a road ride on the cross bike. Then, its nap\relax time, some dinner and then a football game. No TV in the cabin so I will have to hit up some local Hayward flavor tonite at some sports bar. Tomorrow I will have a little kayaking (for the first time) planned. The lake here is small and looks easy to do.

I also found out that the owner of the resort here is one of the guys driving a lead out 4-wheeler for the race. How cool is that? (Said with Jens Voight ascent).

Im off to put to start training for the race Saturday, Better late than never.

DLD

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

FAT TIRE 40

Pic ripped off of facebook. I will be pretty far back.

I dont have any real memories from the last time I did this race. Some 10 years ago. I do remember finishing my first one in 2001. In 5 hours 17 minutes. I remember riding back to the motorhome and falling over cuz I could not get my leg around the back of the seat. Laid there for awhile, near tears and muttering something like "never again".
And, of course, I did it the very next year. In 2002 I shaved an hour off my time.
One of those years was muddy, I dont remember which. I remember blasting down a part of the Birkie trail. One of the downhill rollers only to fall face first in the mud hole on the bottom. I fell hands first and my hands stuck in the mud. When I pulled out one hand the glove came off and I could not find it.

Those pretty much are the memories left of those two races. I tried to get in several years after but was denied. After a couple of denials I just quit trying.

Fast forward 10 years. On a whim, I sent in my registration this year. And got in. First time in 10 years.

845am
Here I am, packed and ready to what seems like going to visit an old friend. Leaving this afternoon. Im sure things are a bit different there since I was in attendance. But Im looking to some of the stuff being the same. One thing is constant....
As usual, I never train for these things. I sure could have used some more seat time leading into what will be my longest MTB ride in ten years. But really, its easy to do these things when you have no expectation except have some fun. But I do have a number in my head.

Read that post real quick.
So its not going to be too hard to beat my fastest barn burning time of 4:22min. But Im going to put some crazy wild pressure on my self and set out to roll in under 3:30min.
I have no idea of what racing shape Im in. My weight it up. So the last few miles of this race will destroy me. My only chance is to not burn to many matches in the first and easiest hour or so. Its more strategy than fitness. And I always thought I was a pretty smart racer.
But for the last ten years my MTB races lasted an average of 52 minutes. No comparison.

I did have a good Ore to Shore race a month ago or so. But that was only 28 miles and a 1:52min. Closer, but still no comparing.
So off I go. Not remembering what to expect. Still, I did the race at 42 years old, and to come back at 52 and (if I) beat that time is a cool thing. When your younger a 10 year split in age is not such a big deal, but your body go's thru some pretty big changes between 42 and 52. Most of them not so good. I hope to erase some of those changes Saturday.
Whatever the outcome a good time is priority one.

DLD

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

540am. Overlooking sand run up from Saturday.

I'm trying to move on from the weekend but still wrapping things up from the race. Almost done. While its a lot of fun work part of me is happy to have it over and done with. And for good reason. Tomorrow I leave for Hayward, Wisco to attend my first Fat Tire 40 in ten years. Not sure if Im ready to race my MTB for 40 miles but its too late now....
Animals come out more when people are gone.

Saw these guys this morn. The visits to the HP are getting better by the day. Almost nobody out there. Kids are in school and this place gets deserted. Very peaceful. I am, in fact, going to kit up after I type this and ride the cross bike back over there. My second visit today in over an hour. Thats a good day.
The rest of the day is all work related. Once again ( for what, the third week in a row?) trying to get a weeks worth of work in a few days. But this is the last for awhile. Really, the next trip is Iceman the first week of Nov. Cant even think about that now.

For the rest of this week I will be staying at a very nice cabin just 5 miles out of Hayward. Its expensive and remote. I like remote (not expensive tho). They have kayaks! I have been wanting to try that in like, forever. Will this finally be the chance I have been waiting for? 
I say yes. Heres a pic of the cabin. Very cute.
We will be arriving Wednesday and leaving Sunday. Days starting out with relaxation and ending in terrible pain and suffering. Sure sounds like fun!
The cabins have wifi so posting will be a breeze. Not that I will spend a lot of time on one but I could sneak a post or two in before Saturday.
I better go, time to ride. More on the race tomorrow.

DLD

Monday, September 10, 2012

SBCC #2

Pic ripped off of Nathans Facebook. Shows most of the sand.
Today is a cross race specific post. No comments on me and my way of life. Except that the beach was a little cool this morn and the coffee was hot. 

First and foremost, thanks to all that raced and helped. Things went well. Good, in fact.

Also, before I get going on stuff, just a shout out to Nathan for unknowingly letting me put him up front and center. I have not went thru any pics of Saturday yet and his was easy to rip off of Facebook. Thx!

Just a couple of things about Saturday.

This year was a make it or break it for me. I understand last year was the first, but really if this did not work out financially  I was going to pull the plug. But Im happy to say, while I still cant retire, did make a few bucks and will be happy to continue this race ongoing. Thanks to all for making that possible.

How bout that sand. And why not the hill. 

Ive been a race director for quite some time having managed our WORS race for 5 plus years in the past.  And I know for a fact that you cant make everyone happy. Not everyone liked the sand. Several stated they loved the hill (Equalizer by name).  So why was the hill out and the sand in?  Cross racing here is still evolving. And if you are not trying new things you are going backwards.  Its a fact that if you want to know what the future of cross racing in the States is, look to Europe. And what do you see there? Lots of sand and longer courses. And I could be wrong, I have not attend every race in Wisco, but I was told this course was the longest and sandiest. (did I spell that right?)
That said, its not only reason for the course change.
Bringing the course closer to the building just makes it a better spectating experience. And the heated building would be perfect fore a late season winter race. I would love a December race here. Or.....
Someday, maybe down the road several years, I am considering having the cross race and WORS race the same weekend. Maybe some sort of festival thing. Doing that I would have to give the hill to the MTB'ers that weekend. So it was sorta a test of sorts. One that I think was successful  This is the first time Ive said this in public so everyone involved with the WORS race just calm down. This is only a thought that I am entertaining.
But I am always looking forward.

In the future I will be constantly evolving the course. Changes will be made. Couple of things that will help improve will be expanding the pits four fold. It needs to be way bigger. And use the entire gravel road for a roadie section. Keeping at least a few hundred yards off the grass.

Which brings me to the bumps. Im well aware that its a rough one.  I had plans to roll it out a little this summer but the weather was way too dry for that to work. Really, not much more I can do about that. Will keep things in mind in that regards.
With knowing the money will be there, purses will increase along with the schwag.

Closing, thanks again to all who helped. Hope you all had a good time. Thanks to all who entered. Entry count was up 50+ bikes from last year.
Thanks to the entire WCA  and USAC crew who had nothing but good to say about the course. I was kind of worried about the amount of sand\length of run.

The event was a success in every way, shape and form and lets do it again next year!

DLD

Friday, September 7, 2012

MY CROSS CAREER



















As I prepare for the Sheboygan Bicycle Company Classic cross race tomorrow I thought I would touch a bit on my own cross career. It was short lived and about the most fun I had on a bike. I did a pretty full campaign in 2008-9.

Cross racers are mostly roadies. Sure, some MTB riders in there but really its due to the road season ending so soon, to give the roadies something to do before (or during) the winter. At the start of the cross season the MTB races are still in full swing so any MTB people have to double dip to get in both at the same time. That makes for some full weekends. And not all roadies do this. Only the more outgoing road racers. Not the stuffy ones.

Take a look at the pics above. Pic on the left is me NOT doing it right. I remember that one. A ton of people were heckling right there so, for some reason I tried my first step thru. And failed. So badly that I stopped, rode back 30 yards and did it without the step thru... 

The pic on the right was the next year. Much better. I still dont step thru but thats fine by me. One thing I will point out. Look how tall that barrier is. Its huge! And I have about the shortest legs in the world. Im 5'10 but my inseam is only 30. So with such short legs I cant clear that tall barrier and had to actually step on top of it and push off it as Im doing in the pic. Good thing it was securely in the ground.

I have not raced since 2009. Just too much other stuff I guess. Thats the year I opened the store. Weird that a bike store takes all my time from bike races. But thats OK. I like coming into work everyday. So its a fair trade.

So instead of racing I spend some time putting a race on. Its hard but fun.

I have been prepping for the race all week, have not been on a bike since Monday.


Have a good weekend. Im sure I will have a report Monday...

DLD

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Marquette, MI.

Todays post will be quick.
Headed down to Milwaukee last nite to pick up all the WCA cross stuff. Stakes and miles of tape. Today will be a day of working in the park. After UPS gets here and I check in a bunch of stuff. Then Im out.

Todays big deal is Vaughters calling out some current and awesome riders for past doping.
I really do not have a lot of time to comment on it but this stuff is going to be around awhile.

Read it here.

Tilford talks about Tommy D here.

We get it. A lot of riders did it. Im not surprised. What does surprise me is how easy it was to get away with. The guys that did really must have been on the wrong program.

Anyhoo, the pic up top is from the mini v. last week. Seems like a million years ago. Im in this zone today where I cant concern myself with whats going to happen after Saturday, but only the next two days, nothing else.

Here's some info on my dealio..

DLD



Wednesday, September 5, 2012

750am Phone pic
Its 830am and Ive been up since 330. I arrived at the store 5 hours before it opens. I knew this would happen. I called it. No sleep. Brain will not shut off.

Today it really starts. Cross race stuff. After work tonite I head down to Milwaukee to pick up tape, stakes and barriers. Tomorrow I will start the official race prep. Grass cutting, hole filling and such at the park. Running around making sure I have stuff like enough copies of release forms, extension cords, banners. The awards are still not here but I have faith they will arrive tomorrow.

Its a lot for one guy to do but I would have it no other way. Make a list, start from the top and work down. It will consume me the next two days. I have the store fully staffed to run without me Thursday, Friday and Saturday. I will get it done. Its stressful but fun stressful. Self induced. Really, almost all of the stress in my life is self induced.

Another nice visit to the HP today. Now that the kids are in school the store opens an hour later and I have no problem using that hour to my advantage. The Park, for the most part becomes a ghost town and thats when I consider it mine again. At least in my head. Im not sure what I would do if I didn't have that place available to me.

Then, when the cross race is said and done, I will have to turn my attention to Chuammy. I can never spell Cheumequan.

So besides all this I still gatta find time to put some hours on the bike.
????????
Not sure how the posting will go the next few days. 

DLD

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Chillaxin'  845am
I dont take a lot of pics anymore. But I did happen to have my camera in the car this morn when I saw these two guys. The river that runs thru my HP has a billion turtles in it. Thats a estimate as I never counted.

The weekend was filled with some good rides. Two and a half hours on Saturday, 3 plus hours on Sunday and a hour on Monday.

Today, my full attention turns towards my cross race this Saturday. Its always bout' 3 or 4 day before that I start freaking out. Its about one day before that I calm down after realizing I have it covered. Im not there yet.

Unlike the past, Im kinda stressing out over a course design. Im torn between two separate sections. Both have advantages to the race but both cant be in at the same time. 
Im just going to have to ride both sections tomorrow and pick. Flip a coin and move on.

The next two weeks are going to be a blur as this week its my cross race, the week after Im leaving most likely on Wednesday to head up to Hayward,WI to do the Shuammy 40 miler. Between now and then, along with all the other stuff, I hope to get in at least four 3+ hour, mid level effort with a few interval rides in so I dont explode during the MTB race. 
right now I have a ton to say about that race but I need to forget Im doing that this week and focus on the task at hand. Along with work will be a busy next four days.
Back in the spring I knew I had these two events back to back and didn't give it another thought until last week and now think its a bit much. Things like cutting the grass at home will get ditched.
Just so much time in one day.
I will have to over staff the store this week to free me up to get stuff done.
And Im off.....

DLD