I'm reflecting back on the posts in the middle of January in which I said, "Goddam it's cold!" Well, today hit 100 with 95% humidity. This shit makes riding really tough - but, like any shitty cyclist, I will persevere.
On a random note - look at this huge concrete monkey I so want this for my yard. I'm thinking about having the paint it any color they want. Ok, back to cycling.
Tour de France - so far the first week of the tour - I swear I can't get enough of this. There have been more crashes than the Cat 4 Gateway Cup series.
Vino, Zabriskie, Van Den Broeck, Wiggens, Boonen - all out. Hoogerland (crazy ass name) getting taken out by a press car, going over the bars and landing in the barb wire fence - that was fucked up - and my biggest loss - Chris Horner. I have always been a fan of Horner and they way he won the Tour of California was tops. I raced in the Chicago Downtown crit that went down Michigan Ave. (truly, one of the coolest crits I have been in) and he was in the race in his Astana kit - that was the year he did not go with the tour because of Contador - cool to see. I had high hopes for him. The only thing that amazes me about the amount of crashes is Vandevelde is still alive - that dude falls down more than me. The highlight of the tour so far was Friday's stage when HTC lined up on the front and drilled it to the finish - they were 9 strong with Cavendish on the back, drilling the pace at over 40 mph - that was textbook cool. Am I a big fan of Cavendish - well my wife is!
Back to me. I need to start re-tooling my riding. I remember showing up to a group ride in Louisville and my buddy, master racer and former Jelly Belly racer said - yeah, this ride has a lot of guys who plan all week to try to hang on - well, that is the way I am feeling lately. I did the Hub ride on Saturday and a few guys up front just drilled the fuck out of it. I feel off going up Conway - I swear I had nothing. It turned out nice and I rode in with a few Hub guys who also called it quits. Sunday I did knucklehead and once again, I gave up on the big hill. Knucklehead is a weird ride (as the name implies) - the ride starts a 6:30, but I pick them up, like most people, along the way. When we pick up the ride, there are about 20 guys. Where I wait adds about 10 guys. After 20 minutes, the ride has grown to over 100. The pace out is really nice, especially for being so fucking early - around 18 or so. After and Clarkson, Clayton takes a huge downhill and the ride splits between long and short at Strucker. I usually take the short which is about 45 miles roundtrip. After the split, the ride gets ridiculously fast as we wind through the bottoms. Going back, the group rapidly dwindles, depending on the fire-power in the group. I took a meaty pull along the bottoms and I kindof gassed myself. I went into the hill giving it up and that was a mistake. They eased up near the top and if I pushed it, I could have caught on at the light - but I missed them by 30 sec. I had some nice alone time riding back.
I missed TNW because we went to the ballgame, missed Wed night Throwdown because of my daughter's birthday, and track was rained out Thursday. Saturday, I did the Hub ride again, but I was feeling really shitty so Adam and I turned off at the outer road and had a nice conversational ride back. Sunday, I rode knucklehead again. This time I had a plan - don't pull in the flats! So I sat in and had a great time. The ride was fast - 21.5 but my avg. watts were really low 215. Mark Gorski was on the ride and he can still ride the shit out of a bike. That guy was such a stud - when I was in grade school I idolized him and Craig Virgin. On the ride was K-dog, Jeff aka. Roadog, Tim, Matthew and Eddie. Good times.
4th of July with the Hub was good times. We met at the shop for the 4th of July parade (man, does my kid look happy) and then had the annual 4th of July Hub softball gameRon trying to give our side a pep talk consisting of - if we drink more beer, we will hit the ball farther.
This week I am planning on riding some track! Oh yeah!