Friday, May 30, 2008
I took the Specialized Allez out for a short 12 mile spin after work. I didn't have a lot of time to ride since the mother-in-law is coming in to town tonight... Anway, I rode east on Summit and then went up the High Bridge/Smith Avenue to the top. Rain started falling while I was riding up Smith. I turned around at the top and went back down the hill and back to the east side of the river. As I was approaching Ramsey Hill, two punks in a car yelled at me to get off the road. Of course there was a confrontation... I had some words with them. told them I was a Ramsey County prosecutor (I'm not even a lawyer...) and told them I would give their license plate number to the cops who I said I knew... Plus, I told them they looked like they were on probation already... Their attitude changed immediately... I continued up Ramsey Hill with out any problems...
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
The Loon State Stone Arch Ride took place as usual this evening. I met up with the guys at Franklin and East River Road. Among the riders were Mike Delaney, Tim Lewis, Patrick Horrigan and John Stamm. Scott Olson joined us on River Blvd. As usual, we followed the river to Downtown Saint Paul, went up the High Bridge/Smith Road and then continued on to the short but steep Marie Climb. We turned and went down the west side of the river by the yacht club and then took Ohio to Cherokee. From there it was down the High Bridge, up Ramsey Hill and then we circled back and went up Irvine. I cut off for home on Summit and got in 33 miles on the Specialized Allez.
The Acapulco Restaurant and Bar in Stillwater is the meeting point for the TCBC ride of the same name on Tuesday nights. I didn't get there in time for the start. I parked at Jerry Engen and Lori Belz' house in Lakeland and rode down into Afton to meet up with the group on the backside of the Coulee. The ride hits some nice hills on it's 36 mile route. In the main pack were Rob Belz and his sister Lori. I rode back to Stillwater with the pack and then Rob, Lori and I headed back to Lakeland. I got in 31 1/2 miles on the Specialized Allez.
Sunday, May 25, 2008
I was cruising east on Summit Avenue when twin sisters Melissa and Heidi Douman caught up to me on their road bikes. They joined me for a ride up the High Bridge and Smith Avenue and then south to Marie Avenue where we turned west, went up the big climb under 35E and then headed across the Mendota Bridge. From there, we rode along the river through Fort Snelling and up into Minnehaha Park. Then, it was north on West River Road. The big storm front came through as we got to Lake Street. Fierce winds and driving rain hit us for a short while. They continued on to the U of M and I crossed the Lake Street Bridge and headed for home. Climbing the High Bridge, Melissa dropped me like Alex Atherton on the Stone Arch ride... That kid can climb! I tried talking them into joining the Loon State team... I got in 20 miles and rode the Allez.
Saturday, May 24, 2008
The TCBC All Club ride was today. As usual, we left from Snail Lake Park in Shoreview and rode out to Scandia and back for 60 miles. I was toast from Wednesday and Thursday races but I managed to make it there and back. Tons of people were there including Rob, Ron and Lori Belz, Barry Torgerson, Pete and Barb Thurmes and Jerry Engen. I rode the Roubaix.
Friday, May 23, 2008
I rode the big Buck Hill Mountain Bike Series 2 Lap Race Thursday night at the famed and storied Buck Hill Ski Area. The bike of choices was the Teginator Specialized Stump Jumper Single Speed. My time was 40:31 as I rode a 2 to 1, 36 x 18 gear. Things went pretty well until I heard a clicking sound coming from my crankset. After the race, I checked it out... One of the chainring bolts fell off! I got a nice prize in the raffle drawing. My schwag included a Salsa water bottle and a Salsa short sleeve jersey. Score (copyright Rob Belz)! Others racing included Rob Belz, Lori Belz, Tom Bengel (who I drove with) Shane Kullman, Barry Tungseth, C J Faulkner and many more. Jerry Engen rode around whil we raced.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
The second Black Dog Time Trial of the season took place on the 21st. What a great night for racing. The temp was warm and there was hardly a wind in the air. That made for perfect conditions as over 160 racers showed up for the event. I had my best race of the season by clocking a 16:28 for the 7 mile course. That was 56 seconds faster than two weeks ago. I moved up a few places too as I took 5th out of 18 in the 50 plus. Among the other Loon State racers were Dan Cleary, John Stamm, Dave Ludwigson, Jim Cullen, Jordan Cullen and Tim Power. Others racing included Dan Casper, Dan and Doug Swanson, Timmer, Aric Hareland, Hollywood, Andy Kruse, Bill Kosfeld, Steve Knowlton and many more. Thanks to Bruce Adelsman of skinnyski.com for the picture.
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
The Tuesday Night World crit races at the famed and storied Opus business park ended for the season tonight... As usual, the series drew a big crowd. I worked the cash register at every TNW crit... I'm done counting other peoples money for the year... Anyway, I rode out from Saint Paul on the Greenway Trail and rode back with Bill Stuber. I got in 33 miles. Thanks to all those who helped out at the registration table this year including Shane (big props to him) Kullman, Mike Delaney, Skibby, Mark K, Bob R et el...
Sunday, May 18, 2008
The high speed I'm referring to is not my pace during the Cable Off Road 18 Mile Mountain Bike Race on Saturday. It is referring to the $186 speeding ticket Wisconsin's finest gave me on Friday... Trooper T Weiberg would not cut me any slack. I got the ticket after forgetting to drop the cruise control when I turned off 65mph Hwy 53 and on to 55mph Hwy 63... If I had only been 5mph over the limit, the ticket would have ONLY been $160... The day didn't turn out too bad though. I caught this 3 pound largemouth bass in Nelson Lake. A chartreuse spinner bait was too hard for him to resist as I tossed it up against a floating bog. He was set free to fight another day. As for the race Saturday, I continue to lose valuable time climbing hills. I had good speed on the flats and downhills and the 1x9 Niner EMD with the straight carbon fork performed really well. Anyway, I got 21st place and 3rd in the 50-54. I brought home the hardware... Other Loons who had good days were Rob Belz who got 7th (3rd age) in the 18 miler, Dave Hoagland who got 21st (first age group) in the 23 miler finishing with Hollywood, Dave Meyer and former Loon Barry Tungseth. LSC member Bill Stuber and his son Joe raced in the 18 mile event and John Wyland did the 23 mile race. Others racing included Stu Benson, Charlie Ganzhorn, John Schmidt, Bill Kosfeld and many more.
Thursday, May 15, 2008
I took out the time trial training bike for some intervals after work today. Cruising down Summit, Jens (John Kortbein) caught up to me and we rode together to River Blvd. That's where I started the time trial intervals. Maybe it was the hill ride last night or maybe I'm still recovering from the Synergy Time Trial on Saturday but I just didn't have a lot in the legs tonight. I still did five intervals but the longest one was a little under 2 minutes. Anyway, I only rode 12 miles.
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
I went on the Loon State Stone Arch ride this evening. Tons of teammates were on hand including Delaney, Stamm, A Squared, Horrigan, Loecken, Larry, Scott O, Paidosh, Lewis and a few others. We rode the usual hills including the High Bridge/Smith Avenue, Ohio and Ramsey. We rode a little more conservatively than a few weeks back. I got in 35 miles.
Monday, May 12, 2008
That's the title of one of John Wayne's greatest westerns. It's a movie based on a true story about cowboys in the wild west searching for white children captured and raised by Native Americans. I did a different kind of searching today. On my road ride yesterday, I spotted some single track trails off a couple of roads. Today, I grabbed the new Niner EMD and called Tommy Bengel to join me on the new single-track. Unlike John Wayne, our search was unsuccessful... The so called single-track was nothing more than overgrown walking or deer trails. I even managed to pick up a tick. The little creep was walking up my leg as I was sitting down for dinner. Anyway, I got in 12.94 miles.
Sunday, May 11, 2008
The Niner EMD (Eat My Dust) 29er mountain bike build is finished. I completed it this morning and then took it out for a little shakedown cruise. In fact, I had it done in time to do the Spring Cup mountain bike race but Mother's Day plans put an end to that idea... I didn't need to race after the Synergy time trial yesterday. When we got home from the Mother's Day family stuff, I went out for a few more miles on the Roubaix road bike after taping the Giro D' Italia. I went up High Bridge and hit a few hills on the way back for a total of 16 miles. Anyway, the Niner turned out pretty good. It weighs 25 1/2 pounds. Next up, I have to finish the Masi track bike build. Check out the picture of the Niner EMD with the Twin Bins 'O Bike Parts in the background...
Saturday, May 10, 2008
Actually, that would be the Synergy Time Trial on the Withrow course in Washington County. The boys from Now Bikes and the Synergy Race Team like Bob Sumada, Ben Popp, Mike Brown, Per Nelson et el put on a great event as usual. I had a decent race but had a tough time in the headwind out of the south east like everyone else... My time was 1:08:10 for the 25 mile course. Tons of peeps were there. The usual suspects were at the front and included riders like Dan Casper, Tim Mulrooney, Dan Swanson and Hollywood among the many. Some of the top women were Theresa Moriarity and Linda Sone. Among my Loon State teammates, Greg Golbrisch, Dave Ludwigson, Andy Frye, John Kortbein and Mike Lyner were ahead of me. Those finishing behind me included Dan Cleary, John Stamm, Brian Loecken and Chris Paidosh. Some of the other guys placing in front of me were Rick Christiansen, Jim Redmond and Sam Meier. Placing behind were Paul McKinney and Bill Kosfeld. Anyway, I got in a little over 36 miles.
Thursday, May 8, 2008
I got out for an easy 17 1/2 mile cruise on Summit Avenue and River Blvd. My legs were pretty stiff from yesterday's Black Dog Time Trial but they loosened-up after a while. I rode for a few miles with Tom Bakken (sp). He's a big, tall guy who used to ride for the U of M but plans on racing for CAT 6. I tried to talk him into joining the Loons...
The Black Dog Time Trial Series returned on May 7th. While the road was bad last year, it was much worse on Wednesday. I rode the Specialized Allez time trial training bike instead of the Specialized Transition time trial machine since I didn't trust the road surface. I'll use the Transition from now on... Tons of peeps were out including fellow Loon State riders Dan Cleary, Jim and Jordan Cullen, Mike Lyner and Dave Ludwigson. Others racing included Bill Kosfeld, Steve Knowlton, Timmer, Aric Hareland, Linda Sone, Dan Casper, Dan Swanson, Theresa Moriarity, Charlie Townsend, Andy Kruse, Hollywood, Pauly K and many more. I got in 18 1/2 miles with the warm-up, race and cool-down.
Monday, May 5, 2008
I'm not much of a control freak but today I was out on River Blvd doing Timmer's Time Trial Ladder Intervals when I got a flat on the second one at 25mph. At that point, you want to be a control freak. I was on the aero bars so instead of braking right away, I slowed down by not pedaling and maintained control of the bike. Next, I changed the flat and used the CO2 inflator. I probably got 75psi into the tire so that made high speed intervals a little difficult. All told, I did four intervals and then headed home for a total of 12 miles. Once home, I emptied the CO2 out of the tire and inflated it with real air... I'm waiting on a few parts to complete the build on my Niner...
Sunday, May 4, 2008
It was another biathlon for me today... I rode an easy 27 miles with Jerry Engen, Lori Belz, Barry Torgerson, Rob Belz and Bill Stuber. We rode from Lakeland north and west through Lake Elmo and Oakdale before hooking up with the Gateway Trail. That fabulous trail took us out to Highway 96 where we headed east and then south through Stillwater. On Greely Avenue, we stopped into the Central Hub owned by Ben Dickhausen. His shop is jammed full of bikes to repair. He's got a good reputation in the area. After that, we continued on south and back to Lakeland. On the way out, SPBRC's Dave Dow was putting in miles on his road bike. Lots of other riders were out too in the fantastic weather. Later, Jerry joined me for over 50 rounds with the .17 caliber rifles at the Hudson Gun Club. Most of the members are just there practicing for hunting season. A few might be members of right-wing, motherland first, posse militias. It's good to be on their good side...
Saturday, May 3, 2008
Nothing beats climbing in the Afton Hills. Today, I rode down from Lakeland with Jerry Engen, Lori Belz, John Wyland, Rob Belz and Bill Stuber. The wind was cranking out of the Northwest. When it's windy, the Afton Hills provide plenty of protection. We rode down 21 and went west on Valley Creek. Next, we headed from the bottom to the top of Trading Post. That's a nice warm-up climb. We took County 18 down the hill and into Afton. Don't go that way... The road is getting really bad as you go down into Afton. From there, we rode the backside of the Coulee along the river. That one is really tough. In fact, it's much tougher than the Coulee itself. Rob Belz rode away from the group on that one. Either he's climbing really well or I'm not... After that, it was back to Stagecoach and the big climb to Afton State Park. A right turn on Trading Post after heading west of Afton State Park kept us out of the wind. The short, punchy climb on the south side of Trading Post led to the big descent back to Valley Creek. We took Stagecoach to Indian Trail and then crossed I94 back to Lakeland. The total miles were a little over 33. I rode the Roubaix. Earlier in the day, I started to put the Niner together. I need a few things including a 31.6 seat post, and a different crankset. I didn't realize it but the XT crankset I had was 170mm instead of 175.
Friday, May 2, 2008
Andy Frye punched the ticket on his "Frye On The Rivet" blog. Why? After careful inspection and introspection, the answer could be in his dedication... He's such a big shot at bikethrow.com that he might not have time for his blog anymore... Or, the likely answer is that he keeps starting flame wars on his blog and he's tired of the negative feedback. I say, bring back "the Rivet" Andy! I've got your back...
Thursday, May 1, 2008
Freedom of the Hills is the title of the penultimate book on mountaineering. It tells you every thing you need to know about scaling the toughest mountains. Since I live in Minnesota, I don't spend a lot of time climbing mountains, but freedom of the hills can apply to bike riding too. Phil Ligget likes to say; "He's dancing on the pedals" when talking about riders like Contador, Leipheimer, Valverde, etc. If he were describing me, he'd use one of his other favorite sayings; "He's cracked..." Yes, they say train your weaknesses. Mine is climbing. I guess it isn't really freedom of the hills for me but I can climb with the bus and I need to train in the hills to get stronger there. Today, I got in 18 miles as I rode east on Summit to Irvine/Ramsey Hill. The first climb I did was up Irvine. Then, I moved over to the Irvine Alley. After that, I climbed Ramsey Hill. Next, I rode over to the High Bridge, rode up it and continued on to the top of Smith Avenue. From there, I rode down to the bottom of Ohio, made a u-turn and then went straight to the top. I followed the High Bridge back to downtown and then rode up Grand Avenue and back to Summit. I pretty much avoided the rain except for sprinkles on the top of Smith and Ohio.
I got home from work yesterday to find the UPS sticker on the door. My Niner EMD (Eat My Dust) frame arrived but they needed a signature to drop it off. After calling UPS, they told me I could pick it up at the Broadway location up until 8pm. As a result, I had plenty of time to go for a ride. The route was one of my favorites. I rode east on Summit, Phalen Blvd, Maryland and Stillwater Road all the way past Lake Elmo, Manning Avenue and then to Neal. From there I dropped down to County 10 where I had a great tailwind all the way home. When I got back, it was off to UPS. I got the Niner frame online since I couldn't get one through my favorite shops. The other thing I bought was a 29 inch carbon straight fork. I got that one through the Bicycle Chain. Now I just have to put the bike together. I had a Jamis Dakota 29er with a suspension fork. I sold the frame and fork at the local bike swaps and kept the components which I'll transfer to the Niner. Anyway, I got in 38 miles on the Specialized Roubaix.