Sunday, June 26, 2011


I'll give you a small taste of the happenings today. I just haven't posted lately so I wanted to at least give you something. I was able to take the age group win and that also meant I was the KS State Champ 19-29. I was pretty pleased with that, but I did have to stop twice on the first lap as the front tire was wanting to get rid of all the air it had in it. I wanted to be a bit closer to the overall leader. But hey, a great day to be on the bike none-the-less.

Here are a few photos from riding yesterday.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Ants in my pants

Well, maybe not in my pants, but they were in my helmet! Jed's as well. Apparently we ran over an ant hill and flung ants all over ourselves. These little buggers were vicious too. They were definitely of the flesh eating variety of ant. In fact, Jed and I had to tear away from the parade lap so we could get back to the house and hose ourselves down. It was not enjoyable to say the least. But, aside from this little fiasco the Campfire Ride was certainly a success. Some people held off because of the amount of rain we have been getting, but the trail was in surprisingly good shape and perfect for putting some rubber down. Once the sun went down we got the fire going and started in on the s'mores. (sorry, no pics at the moment, but I know some of the other guys were taking some, so maybe I'll swipe theirs and add it in later.)

 Oh, and I gotta post some pics of sleeping beauty. Dustin and I curled up on the deck and watched the amazing light show last night (lightning, in case you weren't catching on).

We ended up falling asleep outside. Man was it amazing. Or dare I say, de-light-ful! That's right, I just went there.  Ok, I'm just gonna wrap this up now.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Training Wheels

Maybe training wheels are needed. But, after reading race reports from the MO State Championships it sounds like I was in good company. Maybe I will learn how to keep it upright. But, as a wise man once told me (my pops) "if you ain't crashing, you ain't trying."

Just some minor road rash as I slid out in some loose stuff in a corner. But, annoying none the less.

As Betsy Shogren pointed out though, at least my brand new Swiftwick socks remained unscathed. Thank goodness too, I love those socks!

Oh yeah, and don't forget to check out the post below if you are in the market for a sweet bike. Don't worry, I didn't crash nearly as much on that one!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Bike for sale!!!

First things first, I wanted to share a little action from Dandy Randy's Racecourse. This baby rides like a roller coaster and is so much fun! Jed came out and shared in the splendor with me. It was sure nice to have someone to share in the joy! I know, endless Flint Hills gravel at our doorstep and roller coaster trails in our backyard. Be jealous.

Ok, now on to the real business at hand. I have a magnificent bike that needs a new home. Don't worry, it's potty trained. Here is a spec list and pics:

2008 Gary Fisher Superfly
19" Monocoque Carbon Frame
Titec Carbon Handlebars and Stem
XO Carbon Shifters and Rear Derailleur
XT Front Derailleur
Juicy Ultimate Hydraulic Disc Brakes
Bontrager RXL Carbon Seat Post
Brand New Drive Train (Race Face Rings, New Chain, New Cassette)
Bontrager RXL Wheels - Tubeless Ready (rim strips included, just add sealant and you are good to go!)
Maxxis Crossmarks

I know right!? And this could be all yours for $1800. I am willing to negotiate on price and delivery. 

Friday, June 10, 2011

Series results updated for the UFD. We are halfway through the season and I am currently tied for third. Wait, wait, hold your applause and congratulations. I know that sounds pretty cool, but the Cat 1 19-29 field has not been deep at all this year. As you can see for yourself by clicking on the link there has not been many 19-29 competitors this year. In fact, for two races in a row Steinmetz was the only guy in the class! Trust me, he would have won if anyone did show up. It's the only way I could be in third after only doing 1 of 5 races ! I suppose I've got my excuse, I was out for some of these do to this:

Broken clavicle in case you couldn't gather

I'm good and over that now, but I will be missing yet another race this weekend due to a wedding. Ah! I just want to race my mtb. Oh well, soon enough. I should be good and trained up by the next one so I will have n excuses!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Thursday Night Ride

Storm rolling in at dusk

Had yet another amazing time on the Thursday night group ride. I'm not sure I could have a bad time. It is truly amazing to see so many people out on a weekly community ride. (Well, I say that, but that's just because I haven't been caught up in the recent crashes!) With yet another summer storm threatening to close in on some hapless bike riders (oh yeah, you DK'ers know what I'm talking 'bout) we decided it would be best to head right for it. "Head right for the carnage," you say. Well yes actually. By heading into the wind and towards the storm we allow ourselves to actually stay ahead of the storm. If the weather would have turned on us we could have just spun around and coasted on the tail wind back to town. Fortunately the storm stayed farther south then we ever intended on going, so we stayed dry. Instead we were treated to a simply beautiful June evening with gorgeous views of a Kansas storm front. One of the many sights I love in the plains.

Matt Day was very enthused to be the model in my skyline shot. I was just happy that I got decent colors out of the sky and foreground. Now if I only had some fancy editing programs I could really make something out of it. That's ok, Matt makes it beautiful. No touch ups needed. 

Ah yes, that is Sir Timothy, good shepherd of the High Plains flock. Tending to his sheep and making sure none are lost to the storm. 

And I will end you with the same picture I started with, only slightly tweaked. I know, but I like them both. So here you go. Peace out.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Dirty Kanza 200 Report

Well, another DK come and gone. As previously stated in the blog post just below this one I did not participate. At least not as a racer. That is not to say that I wasn't completely immersed in the happenings. In 2009, again not racing, I was fortunate enough to ride around with the film crew. As a race enthusiast that was a blast. You can check out that video courtesy of the boys at IM Design here. Then in 2010 I missed out altogether. Living up in New York I didn't have the means to travel back for this special event. The mere thought of not even being here for the festivities nearly had me shedding tears. Yeah, that's what this thing means to me. So when this year's DK rolled around I was all sorts of filled with excitement. Just coming off the broken collar bone I had never considered that I would race it this year. Plus, it doesn't really fit into my training schedule for this year. At least that's what I tried to tell myself. But, then Jim had to talk me into going and riding the first half of the route a few days before the race was to take place(like that was hard to do!). I felt absolutely amazing. So great in fact, that when Jim assured me there was a spot on the starting line if I wanted it, I had to give it some serious consideration. But, wisdom prevailed and I chose 'option B' which was running support for the Salsa gang and Nick Legan from Velonews.

I knew these guys were experienced warriors of gravel grinders. And being the support crew of riders of this caliber meant I needed to be on top of my game. Everyone rolled through the first checkpoint looking good. It wasn't until the halfway point that a couple of the guys started to feel the effects of the heat and early race pace. Ryan Horkey and Joe Meiser decided it was best to take a bit of a rest in the shade after 100 miles. Tim "Eki" Ek and Jason Gaikowski had rolled on through and kept on pushing the pace. A lot of riders were lost to the pit of despair known to cyclists as DNF at the halfway point. Already the heat and hills were claiming the souls and legs of would be DK finishers. And the day was just under way and only getting hotter...and hillier.

Nick was possibly the least experienced on the gravel, but not a stranger to the bike. Nick has conquered routes such as the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix. I was certain that if he could handle those cobbles then he could master our flint rock. After 100 miles he was following his plan to perfection. Good hydration and steady pace. Since Nick had taken his time on the first century he was able to capitalize on the fundamental principle of a classic fable that most riders had forgotten or simply ignored. Nick was able to leave the halfway feeling pretty fresh and did so ahead of a ton of people that had come in faster than him. After all, this is a 200 mile race. There are no prizes for first to the halfway point.

Photo courtesy of Jason Boucher

I can only assume these guys were waiting on a ride. There is usually no coming back from a break of this nature.

On the third leg trouble really set in for any riders still out on course. A random thunderstorm decided it was time to roll up on the hapless racers. As only Kansas can produce the storm brought cloud to ground lightning, torrential down pour, hail, and the threat of tornadoes. Hmm...the forecast called for 10% chance of rain. At least heat would no longer be a problem. But, they faced a foe of equal tenacity, mud. I've been to the east coast, and I assure you that mud is rideable. This mud is like quick mix concrete. Attempt to pedal through it and your bike will stop dead in it's tracks and instantly weigh 50 lbs. Kansas did it's best to prevent being conquered. But, in the end Jason, Eki, Nick joined 65 total finishers that all powered through these obstacles to best the 2011 DK200. Congrats fella's!

After sending these guys home for some much needed sleep my night was not over. I had already seen Randy come home in 16th overall and 2nd in the master's a class. I nearly lost my mind when he finished I was so proud of him! Then Scott bested 200 miles of torture as well. But, at about 2:30 in the morning Jed and Garret came across the finish line. I know the feeling of beating this race and I couldn't have been happier for all of them. 

In the end that's what this challenge becomes. Beating the race, not the other riders. The other guys and gals may start as your competitor, but when you're out there on the road they instantly become your life support. Often being instrumental in reaching the finish alive. Or at least crucial in enjoying the day, finishing or not. I think most people would agree that is what makes this race so amazing and special.