Quick and Dirty

Hey sicko, get your mind out of the gutter. This is about bike racing. And some other stuff.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Last weeks races...

I had some good rides last week, I'm on track for at least some promising fitness for this weekend's championship races. I'll have a 7th row start, so I don't have much hope for a top 20 like last year but I'll race hard and try not to get lapped!

The race last saturday was pretty awesome- The long awaited epic muddy day at the Watsonville fairgrounds. The Velo Bella crew put on a fun event and the weather provided the kind of conditions that Nor-Cal crossers say they crave... but seem to avoid when they finally arrive! I was surprised by the low turnout but oh well, it's easy to get spoiled around these parts.

I had a decent start, John Funke was kind enough to let me slide in in front of him for a second row starting place. John dashed up into the mix on the first lap along with Justin, Andy J-M, and my teammate Dave Wyandt. Ben J-M and The Clown were pretty much gone by the end of lap 1, and that left the rest of us to fight for 3rd.

I knew I had an advantage with a nice clean bike each lap, so I kept cool and waited for Dave and Justin's bikes to get heavy and stop working! It worked, I put some space on them by the end of the 2nd lap and actually rode up to Andy! I was pretty happy with this, but it wasn't long before he ran away from me on one of the horrific muddy-corral runs. I stayed steady and tried to be one with the mud. This pretty much worked since I kept Andy on the run for the rest of the race. I felt good- I don't really enjoy racing in the mud, but it does play to my strengths. I was very with my 4th place finish, but I do wish I could have stayed with Andy to the finish.

Sunday's race was looking to be another messy one, the track at Ft. Ord has a lot more fast pedalling parts though, so I knew it would be tough. I spent the night at my teammate Brent Chapman's house with him and his wife Jen. We had fun since Barb stayed down too so she wouldn't have to drive home in Saturday's raging rainstorm. On Sunday, Brent and I went to the race together and he ended up just helping me with my bikes, etc. since his back was feeling cranky. He put in a pretty big effort on Saturday (and earlier in the week) setting up and tearing down the Surf City course, so he deserved a restful day of cheering and hanging out at Central Coast. Thanks Brent!

So anyway, I got on my bike and rode a slow lap on the course. I cleaned that bike, and got on the other one to pedal around and try to get my legs to move after all the running from the day before. I was having fun saying hi to everyone and putting around when I compulsively yanked the front wheel up to wheelie for Sabine... Whoops, I've got thick gloves on and I can't pull the brake in time! I totally looped out and went down hard on my back on the pavement. I landed on the top of my hip on my lower back and saw a flash of pain. I was really surprised and I couldn't tell if I was ok right away. I walked it off, and pedalled for a bit to see if I could race. I decided to suck it up and pay the price for my dumb move. Let this be a lesson to you all- showboating doesn't pay. And always be sure you can really work the rear brake before you go to ride a wheelie.

The "gun" went off and we hit the gas. I was feeling some adrenaline from my crash and I led out the first lap. This was a bit of a mistake, and Dave Wyandt and Justin Robinson rode up to me for lap 2. Dave and I tried to 1-2 Justin for a while, but we weren't really going hard enough to make it tough for him and soon we all rode together at a less vicious pace. This was a mistake, because you can't let a guy like Justin have a rest in this kind of situation. He was in front when we came into a tricky mud hole and he went through no problem. Dave botched it, and then I botched it. Justin saw this and took off. Dave started to give chase, and tried to tell me to get on his wheel. This was a mistake since I was feeling bad, and Justin extended his gap. Dave chased in earnest after this, and I kind of rolled home for 3rd. Dave was very close to Justin at the end- I think he could have gotten him if this race was a full hour. It ended at 50 minutes, which was good for me but bad for Dave... Oh well.

More great racing in Nor-Cal, perfect training for nat's. I'm actually in Providence right now hanging around in the hotel while Simon, Evan, Paul and Dan do their masters races. So far, I only know that Paul got lapped at the end by Ned Overend. Results soon to come on the others...


At 11:13 PM, Blogger Velo Bella said...


At 6:56 PM, Blogger Olaf Vanderhoot said...

good ride on Sunday, DJ.

that sounded like an unbelievably fast start.

At 8:24 PM, Blogger Doug said...

Hi There...

Totally random question. So, I just got a new cross bike with EC90X forks, and the things vibrate like a mother going down hills...heck just slowing down fast on the street the things chatter like hell. Noticed you ride these as well (your race pic). Any suggestions on how to fix or dampen these forks? Much appreciated.


At 8:41 AM, Blogger Josh and Barb said...

Toe the hell out of your brake pads. You have to do this with pretty much all front brakes on cx forks. In cross races, brakes don't matter so much- they just scrub speed as you come up to the barriers and on steep descents. Otherwise try not to use them! -josh


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